By on August 25, 2021

Den Rozhnovsky/Shutterstock.com

Software updates. Precisely when we had to start having a conversation about software updates – over the air or otherwise – in an automotive context isn’t something I can answer. We didn’t have them for about 100 years. Then, we did. What’s more, it seems like everyone is more or less OK with that, but should they be? Are these software updates really making your car better, or are they slowly throttling back your car’s performance and functionality in a bid to frustrate you into buying a new one?

Let’s take a few minutes to explore the possibilities.

THE CASE AGAINST OTA SOFTWARE UPDATES

I was working as a service advisor at a Volvo store when I really encountered “software updates” as a regular part of vehicle service. Sure, I’d run across software updates and version codes at some of the tuning firms I’d worked at – but those were special cars. The SPA Volvos were arguably special, too, but they were much more ordinary than a C63 AMG or R35 GT-R. Still, the then-new Volvo XC90s needed software updates.

The touchscreen isn’t working? Software update. Adaptive cruise control not adapting the way you thought it should? Software update. Hearing a high-pitched whistling sound when you drive? Software update. The door isn’t opening the picosecond you’re reaching for it? Probably a dead key battery. Replace the battery, then run a software update (just in case).

If it wasn’t presented as such a matter-of-course thing, it would have been laughable – but more than one customer asked us why it was that they had to come in for a software update. Why couldn’t their car just update over WiFi while it was parked in the garage? Now, I don’t think this word-track came from Volvo Cars, but we were telling customers at the time that the reason had something to do with Volvo’s emphasis on safety and reliability.

“What if you need to rush to the ER at 3 AM,” we would ask, “and your car was halfway through an update? You’d have to wait. Worse, what if the connection failed halfway through because of a power outage or someone turning the router off and on? The car might not start in the morning.”

Whether that was the official word or not, it seems like it had some truth to it. Bloomberg reported on an NIO driver in China who found themselves stuck in a chaotic traffic jam for over an hour when the car they were driving was immobilized by an over-the-air update. And this wasn’t, “the car won’t go” stuck. This was, “I’m trapped!” stuck.  According to the South China Morning Post, the NIO driver who was stuck in the car posted “Police officers came, one group after another, yet we could not even wind the window down,” on the Chinese social media site Weibo.

Now, sure – it’s easy enough, in some circles, to simply say, “That’s China!” and move on. The thing is, it’s not just Chinese off-brands that we don’t know anything about here in ‘Murica, it’s happening to the high-end jobs, too. There are credible reports of a Ferrari bricking itself in a parking garage, and enough Teslas bricked themselves during the 2019 “holiday” update that Mashable wrote a how-to article to walk you through rebooting your Model 3. So, like, it’s a thing.

The update can go bad, the car can get stuck, etc. Those are the obvious drawbacks to OTA updates, but tighten up your tin hat and join me in yet another little thought experiment as you ask yourself whether or not there might be more downsides to an OTA update. Like, sinister downsides.

MY TIN HAT IS READY, NO OTA FOR ME

Consider the latest buzz around the Mercedes-Benz EQS and its rear-wheel steering. That rear-wheel steering is a $575 annual option that’s “enforced” by – you guessed it – OTA updates. A quick drive down the Autobahn and VW is charging you after the fact to use the hardware you already bought, billing you about $8.50/hr., to use its autonomous drive mode. It’s just another part of the futuristic dystopia that German automakers especially (but not exclusively) would love to herd us all into by “reimagining the ownership model”, which is just a fancy way of saying that they never want you to own your own car.

What happens if you do happen to “break the rules” and buy your car from someone other than a manufacturer or franchise dealer, then? A quick and easy OTA update will make sure you pay for your insubordination – like this guy who bought a used Tesla Model S last year, only to have the car’s Autopilot features yoinked away by the next OTA update. That’s despite the fact that the car came with those $8,000-ish options from the factory, and the fact that the selling dealership bought the car at an auction that was held by Tesla, itself.

How can you even begin to have conversations about Right to Repair or the multibillion-dollar aftermarket industry and all the people it employs if a company has the power to decide what features it wants your car to have from a thousand miles away? Or, worse, if they’ve managed to successfully “reimagine your ownership experience” to the point that you no longer own, well – anything?

 THROTTLING PERFORMANCE

Even if there is some sort of legislation passed (or, more likely, some product developed) to block the more obviously nefarious, option-deleting possibilities inherent in an OTA “update” scenario, that doesn’t mean the consumer has won. There are more subtle ways for the carmakers to punish and annoy us into buying a new car – and there’s a precedent from a company that doesn’t make cars right now but might be planning to: Apple.

Yes, the same Apple who agreed to pay a $500 million settlement for throttling back the performance of older hardware by artificially limiting processor speeds as the devices aged has been looking at the car market for some time, but that throttling issue is informative. Dubbed “Batterygate” in the media, the changes made by the OTA update were done to prevent “real” issues with some older batteries. The problem was so real that Apple paid $500 million because they felt bad about not properly explaining their new hardware fix – which tracks, right?

I mean, this is just me – and certainly NOT the powers-that-be at TTAC and VerticalScope – but it really kinda feels like this was done so Apple owners would think their devices were slowing down prematurely and buy a new one, doesn’t it? And, for what it’s worth, the courts in France and Germany agreed, slapping additional 25 million Euros worth of fines on the Cupertino tech giant (so far).

So, what does this really mean for us, the lowly consumers?

Honestly, not much. If you want a new car with new tech, this is the way it is. As my brother-in-law so eloquently put it, “What do I care if the bankers holding my mortgage have alien reptile DNA? I still have to pay the mortgage.”

That is to say that, yeah, we’re going to get shafted – sometimes. Other times, though, we’ll get stuff like Tesla’s objectively awesome Dog Mode or Sentry for free. That doesn’t make everything OK, of course, but it’s better than paying $149 for a USB stick with a few new rural highway off-ramps on it. Right?

You’re the Best and Brightest – tell us what you think about OTA updates and planned obsolescence and reptilian alien banking cabals in the comments.

[Image: Den Rozhnovsky/Shutterstock.com]

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57 Comments on “Opinion: Over the Air Updates Bad, Owning the Car Good...”


  • avatar
    DC Bruce

    I can’t remember when my computers began to require OTA updates. . . late 90s, I think. Heck, there was even a software product called “Oil Change” that surveyed all of your applications and updated them for you. Now your OS does that. They didn’t/don’t always work, even in the walled garden of Apple world. So, I think updates should be performed in the shop . . . just in case something gets goofy. . . not on the fly as you’re rolling down the road, or even as you car is parked in front of the house.

    The opportunities for hacking are just spectacular: you’re cruising down the road and, for no apparent reason, your car coasts to a stop. A message pops up on your screen: “You have 15 minutes to transfer X amount of crypto currency to the following URL. Otherwise your car will permanently be bricked. Immediately upon confirmation of receipt of the specified amount, we will restore your car to normal operation. Have a nice day!”

    • 0 avatar
      jmo

      That hack wouldn’t work as you could just restore the factory settings. You’d lose you preferences and have to repair re-pair(?) your phone, etc. The corporate or government hacks are an issue because the data is encrypted. They can easily reimage your machine and have windows and word and chrome installed and ready to go but all your files would be gone.

      • 0 avatar
        mcs

        @jmo: You’re right. Ransomware attacks only work with data that can’t be replaced. Not with devices that can easily be reflashed. Even in cases where you have good backups you restore the backup.

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    I’m all for OTA updates. And they can be scheduled; they don’t need to happen while you’re in traffic.

    Apple won’t get into the car mfg business, because they like to make money.

    Tesla’s fake-but-$10k FSD is a matter for a class-action lawsuit, in my opinion. It doesn’t perform actual FSD duties, and removing the feature upon resale is yet another legal matter.

    Back to OTA updates – the biggest opponents won’t be consumers; it will be car dealers who will miss the chance to sell you a new car or a service you don’t need.

    • 0 avatar

      “Apple won’t get into the car mfg business, because they like to make money.” is one of the smartest things I’ve ever read.

    • 0 avatar
      noorct

      I’m with you. I like OTA updates but they do have to be handled a certain way. I like with BMW that it tells you an update is downloading and ready to install. You can click for more information when the car is parked on what’s included in the update and an estimate of how long the update will take. Then it won’t install it until you say ok after clearly warning you the car will be inaccessible for 30-45 minutes, so you should do this when the car is parked for an extended period and you won’t need it.

      Is there a risk something goes wrong? Sure. But I’ll take that small chance over having to go to the dealer for a software flash (100% chance of being inconvenienced scheduling an appointment vs. a fractional chance of an OTA update going bad…. and if it’s parked in my driveway I just call roadside service to tow it to the dealer anyway).

      With that said, I never want an update installed without my permission and active agreement. So far I think BMW is handling it well.

  • avatar
    Matt Posky

    Props to this article. These industry trends are truly heinous and it felt like I was the only one who noticed for a while.

    The potential for abuse is already manifesting in weird ways (e.g. electronic paywalls, Tesla stripping features from secondhand cars, customer privacy violations). Benefits do not seem to outweigh the risks to consumers and we shouldn’t stand for it just because the AAI thinks it’s going to help its members’ bottom line.

    • 0 avatar

      You might have been the first one who noticed, anyway– thanks for shining the light on it and showing me the way.

    • 0 avatar
      Steve Biro

      “If you want a new car with new tech, this is the way it is.”

      But I DON’T want a new car with new tech. I want a new car with as little tech as possible. The mere presence of a modem that allows for 24/7 Internet connectivity is a non-starter for me. But that’s the way it’s going. In addition to OTA software updates, the manufacturers will be tracking your comings and goings – and how you do them. And all of that information will be sold to third parties – another non-starter for me.

      And I’ve railed on many times before here on TTAC about driver assistance technology that I REALLY don’t want. The weenies over at Jalopnik are embracing it – and wondering why the manual-transmission version of the updated Toyota 86 doesn’t have all of the nannies – even as they say they understand why most people who want a manual tranmission wouldn’t want the nannies. But, not to be deterred, they wrote to Toyota to complain. Why don’t they just fold that site already?

      But my point is… all of this questionable technology (much of which doesn’t even work right) is being rammed down our throats – regardless of whether our vehicle is IC-powered, a hybrid or full a EV. And look for the government to make it mandatory – and against the law to tamper with – before long.

      • 0 avatar
        Imagefont

        I rented a Honda Accord recently. Pretty quickly I turned off whatever the system is called that can put torque on the steering wheel and fight me if I tried to cross a painted line without a turn signal on, even though crossing every painted line on the road does not require a turn signal. It would apply the brakes if it thought I was approaching another car too quickly. It would vibrate the steering wheel if it thought I wasn’t paying attention and suggest a coffee break. The cruise control would slow down when it approached a car and sometimes get fooled by other cars not in my lane when traveling through a curve in the road, and it was then slow and reluctant to re-accelerate. The dashboard would flash BRAKE if I approached another car too quickly (by the systems estimate). Overall I found these “safety” features annoying and distracting. I do think the emergency braking system was probably the best one and the most useful with the greatest potential.

        • 0 avatar
          jmo

          Long story short you’re a terrible driver.

          • 0 avatar
            Art Vandelay

            No, Hondas automatic braking is very aggressive. I live up a curvy mountain road and it has a habit of braking for oncoming cars in the other lane. Not across the line mind you…just driving normally. My wife keeps it off (or as much of it as she can turn off) as well. She hasn’t had an accident in our 20+years together, so I’ll defer to her judgement.

  • avatar
    steve1

    As electric cars become more common, these issues will increasingly come to the fore. It’s amazing how people are so vehemently opposed to internet/phone monitoring (see recent apple kerfuffle about finding child pron on phones w/ scan software) yet seem to be all in on EVs. EVs have enormous reams of data on you which will all be phoned home. More and more car issues will be beyond a mechanic, and just be sent up the chain to await for a software update. I’m not willing to be a beta tester for this, but this IS the future. OTAs are just one aspect of this new future.

    • 0 avatar
      jmo

      You do know that ICE cars do exactly the same thing, right?

      https://www.toyota.com/privacyvts/

    • 0 avatar
      jmo

      To quote Toyota re: your new RAV4

      “Auto Insurance Designed for You. You may choose to opt-in for usage-based insurance products and services. If you opt-in, your Driving Behavior Data (such as your vehicle’s acceleration, speed, braking and steering) and your Location Data will be used to deliver usage-based insurance services to you, and for quality assurance, analysis, research and product development.”

    • 0 avatar

      You mention people opposed to phone monitoring “yet” seem to be all in on EVs. In my experience, these are two different camps– are the child pronographers in your circles big EV guys?

  • avatar
    IH_Fever

    Fact is most people won’t know, or won’t care, until there’s an issue. Then you just give them a new toy or some money to play with so they’ll go away. Sure, your car could bluescreen while we update the tracking software, but coming soon in ultrasuperupdate1000, here’s a new color for the gauges!

  • avatar
    jpolicke

    A few years ago there was a story about how FCA vehicles could be hacked and driven by remote control. I prefer the way FCA handled the software update; you downloaded the new software on a USB drive and plugged into your infotainment system at your convenience. The package opened and ran flawlessly.

    • 0 avatar
      jmo

      Per Tesla:

      “You can check for new software updates by opening the ‘Software’ tab on your touchscreen. If a new update is available, you’ll receive a notification on your center touchscreen display, with the option to install the update immediately or schedule for later. To ensure the fastest and most reliable delivery of software updates, connect your car to Wi-Fi.”

      You control when you update. Tesla did try and force the issue as some people were really out of date. But they didn’t force the update they just sent a sternly worded alert saying your really really had to. But it’s not like these updates autoinstall.

    • 0 avatar
      Art Vandelay

      The problem with your approach is that even with FCA mailing out USB sticks with the patched firmware, relatively few of those vulnerable vehicles were ever actually patched. That is a liability from the OEM’s perspective.

  • avatar
    schmitt trigger

    And when purchasing a new vehicle, in addition to the reams of financial and registration forms one is already signing, one will have to consent to a 10,000 word EULA.
    Full of technical and legalese terms: “If you, the user, violate in any form or intent Newton’s second law with this vehicle, your abilities to continue operations of said vehicle will be limited or eliminated at the COMPANY’s discretion.
    Jurisdiction for complaints will be at the island of Vanuatu”.

  • avatar
    slavuta

    Dr. Faucci said once – “That’s China! In America it is not possible to have lockdowns”

  • avatar
    slavuta

    If you ever went to the attractions and had a ride in Bumper Cars, you always feel like there it a hand of GOD out there that will at any moment shut down your vehicle and enjoyment. I really don’t want to have this feeling while riding in my automobile.

  • avatar
    MKizzy

    Given how we’ve seen how software updates can sometimes create more problems then they solve, it’s only a matter of time before some automaker completely screws up an OTA update and instantly bricks a hundred thousand cars for days at a time.

    • 0 avatar

      Could you imagine? Who do you think will be first? Tesla? NIO? GM?

    • 0 avatar
      Art Vandelay

      You can brick any device with bad firmware no matter how you apply the updates. I bricked a Windows NT box long ago via a 3.5 inch floppy disk. We have compromised vehicles via reverse engineering manual update processes for embedded vehicle devices (similar to the U-Connect hack, but without a remote component) that allowed for total control of the vehicles control systems. No internet connectivity required.

      I’m not sure OTA changed much. It is a different vector, but it also allows for more rapid fixes when a vulnerability is discovered.

      • 0 avatar
        mcs

        @Art: Some of the chips/devices I use have interesting mechanisms to deliberately brick them if the need arises. They actually have fuseable links that can be blown to destroy the internal circuitry of the chip. Some of the links are also on the circuit used to reflash them. Given recent events on the other side of the globe, you can easily imagine how those mechanisms might be used.

  • avatar
    Kendahl

    As long as the driver retains control over when the OTA update is performed, so that it can’t shut down the car out on the road, I have no problem with them. It does deprive the dealer of the chance to charge for performing the update in his shop.

    The problem comes when updates are used to strip out features the owner paid for. An example is Full Self Driving on Teslas. Since the owner paid for it, FSD is his property. He should be able to retain it for use with his next Tesla or sell it with his old car for the next owner to use.

    It’s common in the software industry to sell the latest and greatest version at a steep discount to owners of previous versions who decide to upgrade. I have no problem with this and think it fair to both sides.

  • avatar
    Imagefont

    Cars don’t need OTA updates, it’s a convenience for the manufacturer which has been sold as a feature to the end user. Unless you like the experience you get with your phone. Update, followed by second update to fix the bug downloaded with the first update. Whenever you get an update on your phone it always comes with various bug fixes. Your car should have that many potential bugs to fix. If these updates were limited to you infotainment system I’d be fine with that, because I can drive my car without all that garbage.
    Access, privacy, throttling, spyware, feature changes, all without your permission. No thanks.

  • avatar
    carcomment

    I have never updated the softwre on a vehicle and decline all OTA updates. I leave the dealer explicit instructions to not update any software during servicing. Since i dont know what the update actually does vs what the manufactuer claims, it is a no go zone. Indeed i have stopped updating all google apps and a variety of others(spotify-daily updates it seems, why?, McDonalds etc). Nope they are not adding features i need so i assume they are trying to steal my personal data ever more eggregiously. Just say no. Nice topic.

    • 0 avatar
      SCE to AUX

      “Nope they are not adding features i need so i assume they are trying to steal my personal data ever more eggregiously.”

      Your personal data may actually be more vulnerable if you don’t do the updates. In the engineering world, Rev B is not done for fun; it’s an improvement to function or safety. Updates often plug security holes.

      Also, if you’re using wireless apps, “they” already have a lot of info on you if you agreed to the EULA.

  • avatar
    dwford

    Part of my SHTF prepping plan is to get a car that is not connected to the hive mind.

  • avatar
    dal20402

    Some of you are so worried about the prospects of being hacked… but the easiest way to increase the likelihood of being hacked is not to stay up-to-date. Security is a moving target and one of the most common reasons for needing to update computers is to fix newly discovered security problems.

  • avatar
    sirwired

    I *wish* I could have OTA updates with my ’17 CR-V. I purchased an early-production one, and I think it’s needed three updates, each of which required a dealer visit, and I had to painstakingly talk the dealership through finding the TSB I needed, and convince them to stop arguing with me and install it already.

    And if you don’t *currently* have the problem in the TSB (even if it’s inevitable, because it’s software), you aren’t getting that update under warranty at all.

    One of the in-warranty updates, for the head unit, was a special PITA. To get it, the dealer had to order a new head unit, making sure to document the problem in the order. Mitsubishi (who makes Honda head units) was supposed to notice that the problem being reported was fixed by a software update. They’d then cancel the HU order, and instead mail the dealer a USB stick. Which I would then have to drop off my car for a couple hours while it was installed.

    There’s no excuse for all this bass-ackwards stupidity. Yes, OTA updates can be put to nefarious ends, but the solution to that particular problem isn’t “No OTA updates”… talk about tossing out the baby with the bathwater.

    • 0 avatar
      28-Cars-Later

      “but the solution to that particular problem isn’t “No OTA updates”… talk about tossing out the baby with the bathwater.”

      Yes it really is that simple. Besides the obvious dystopian angle this overall [not] Agile CI/CD concept allows the end product to suck because the attitude always is “we’ll get it on the next build”. Software and firmware used to be better because it went through a testing and certification process typically using a waterfall product development model. This was reinforced by the fact patching was difficult as it had to be done with physical medium and shipped to a location. Now, they can introduce code which barely builds and when bugs are invariably discovered, their attitude is download version 1.2.3.4 which fixes your problem and introduces five more. This fail is especially egregious in firmware, because firmware is generally meant to last the life of the product. In thirty years of programming from TI_BASIC to now, I can count on two hands how many times I have flashed a BIOS or firmware – most of those being a custom BIOS to remove the WIFI card whitelists added by Lenovo to Thinkpads. But now, you want to push out weekly [?] firmware and software updates to my *car* which is large enough to kill people or damage property when your $9/hr foreign chimps f*** something important up? See Boeing for how that works out:

      https://www.industryweek.com/supply-chain/article/22027840/boeings-737-max-software-outsourced-to-9anhour-engineers

      To dust off an old saying, Just say NO!

  • avatar
    el scotto

    -le sigh- your phone tracks you, your GPS tracks you, your plastic cards show where you bought something. Vehicle manufacturers understand that buy their products to drive them. You can bet that any software update for your vehicle gets thoroughly tested. Imagine an army of contingency lawyers lining up to sue a manufacturer who’s software update made a vehicle undriveable. Yeah, Tesla degraded features on their used cars. No one has sent out an OTA that made a vehicle undrivable. Oh Wait! Lifetime movie of the week: My SUV wouldn’t start when I had to take little MacKenzie to the emergency care place.

  • avatar
    bam210135

    Jo

    Why do you think manufacturers would want to “own” the cars? I think that would be too much of a liability/headache. I get some customers want the subscription but why do manufacturers want to be left holding old cars?

    • 0 avatar
      Kendahl

      Manufacturers don’t want legal ownership of customers’ vehicles because of the liability. They do want to control everything the customer has on the vehicle and does with it unless it’s through a dealer. In part, this is to prevent them from installing buggy software written by incompetent aftermarket vendors. (That’s not to say the bug can’t reside in the manufacturer’s software.) A bug that precipitated a wreck would end up in court with the manufacturer and the vendor trying to lay blame on each other for the flaw.

  • avatar
    Art Vandelay

    Wrong thread

  • avatar
    stuki

    The kind of tech cars now ship with, pretty much requires constant updates. It’s too complex and, more to the point, adds so much complexity per value add, that iteratively beta testing on live buyers is the only way to develop it.

    The underlying problem of having no option, is due to overregulation resulting in too little competition. It’s simply too expensive to bring a car to market, for smaller, niche players who may otherwise sell Luddite Specials to work.

    Doesn’t mean you couldn’t have reasonable emissions laws. Just that you cannot have emissions laws which gets revised at behest of the car lobby, in exact lockstep with exactly the latest and greatest sensor tech to come out of the labs at Robert Bosch.

    Emissions even in LA, were plenty acceptable even 10 years ago. Which is something even Nigerian automakers can comply with by now. That being the specific, and only, reason why politicians in hock to Robert Bosch’s army of clients doing their darnedest to ensure the competition is effectively banned: By enforcing complexity so great, that we’re stuck with silliness like OTA updates whether we want them or not.

    • 0 avatar
      jmo

      “Luddite Specials”

      Ah yes the brown manual diesel RWD wagons every internet commenters says they will buy but never do. There is no market.

      • 0 avatar
        stuki

        If they cost what brown, manual diesel wagons cost when they were a thing, people would be buying them. Which is why selling them that cheap, has to be, indirectly under one pretense or another, effectively outlawed…

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        “Luddite Specials”

        Just yesterday I finally found someone to repair my circa 1975 oven/stove, should be good for another three or four decades now. How many will the average prole go through in the same time frame? Two? Three?

    • 0 avatar
      dal20402

      “Emissions even in LA, were plenty acceptable even 10 years ago.”

      Really? LA had 140 days that were “unhealthy for sensitive groups” or worse in 2012. By 2019, that had improved significantly, to “just” 86 days. If you could get that down to just a few days annually, it would save hundreds of lives annually and prevent tens of thousands of cases of asthma.

      • 0 avatar
        stuki

        10 years ago, people were still flocking to LA. Now they’re leaving….

        Virtually noone, outside of the imagination of yahoos pursuing papermill degrees in less demanding fields, and others in uncritical hock to blind belief that banning and harassing whomever the highest paying lobbyists say need banning and harassing, perceived LA air quality as a major problem 10 years ago. It was very, very different than in the 60s and 70s.

        And 10 years from now, it would be as good as today. Which I’m sure the papermill degreeists will, again, no doubt be calling some sort of horror by then.

        You can always set the bar so high that anything short of a cleanroom in Antarctica is considered “bad.” Of course, that’s not what they do either, since the goal is not really clean air. But rather to keep emissions laws exactly hard enough to extract as much money from regular people as possible, without unduly inconveniencing those paying the lobbyists, for whom the attendant costs are much easier to swallow.

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        “Really? LA had 140 days that were “unhealthy for sensitive groups” or worse in 2012.”

        Ah, but who decides what is unhealthy? Who actually sets the standards or collects the data, and what are the parameters? Very easy to alter the standards to reflect whatever you want the data to say, kinda like how they fiddle with CPI occasionally to tell the story they want to tell.

        https://www.outsiderclub.com/report/the-only-unbiased-inflation-report/939

        • 0 avatar
          dal20402

          Regardless of who set the standard, I know that when the air here is in the USG category I feel like crap and cough a lot, and there’s no way air that dirty is healthy for people with respiratory problems.

          Stuki has no problem living in a pile of his own shit. I don’t want to.

          (And people are leaving LA because the entire LA region has made it almost impossible to build any new housing, and existing housing has gotten unaffordable expensive as a result.)

  • avatar
    Ol Shel

    This is entirely our fault.

    We refuse to, en masse, demand that our elected officials prevent this theft from the consuming public.

    We don’t, and since big tech’s money is more influential than our tepid opposition, tech wins every time.

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