Desperate John Deere tractor owners are downloading illegal Ukrainian firmware hacks to get the crops in
This is what comes of treating your customers at once like indentured servants and vampiric prey. While John Deere doesn’t have a monopoly, their name is synonymous with the industry and their market share is staggering, especially in the US. Knowing their claims to hardware ownership would yield little, they seize on the disastrous DMCA to claim ownership at all times on every thing that makes a tractor anything other than a hunk of steel and plastic.
Farmers are let with nothing but bad choices. They can pay endless fees to have minor repairs performed, they can break the law, or they can go belly up. Given such a false choice, they turn to Ukrainian hacks. Nevermind that many of the people who employ such hacks don’t know how to evaluate the safety of the software they’re taking on; they should have known their place and made sacrifice at the alter of John Deere.