Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Knock off cell phone bust

Watching the news on CKY this evening, I was a little confused by the story about a raid by RCMP on three cell phone repair shops.
Their crime? Not using original parts. Knock offs made in China.
Line Karpish said these firms weren't "authorized" to do the repairs. What? I buy an Apple I phone and Line Karpish and her group gets to tell me who can repair it?


The RCMP are now able to tell me who can repair my phone? The RCMP can tell me what type of parts I can use on my phone? What else can the RCMP do?

I love this quote, "Karpish said Apple and BlackBerry do not permit even authorized dealers to repair their products on site and do not ship them repair parts.
“That’s a red flag for the public – if someone says they can repair it in-house for you, you’re getting a counterfeit part, most likely,” said Karpish"

Let's say I broke my screen (it's believable... Ive' broken at least three of them) and I was able to get someone to repair it for... $75. Telus, Rogers of MTS won't fix it, HTC, Blackberry, or whoever made it want me to ship it to them and spend more money than the phone is worth. What to do?

THROW THE PHONE AWAY! Apparently using non "factory authorized parts" doesn't sit well with the national police force.

I love this country. The RCMP...the red serge... horses...those ever appealing riding breeches... imagine them coming in and raiding a local body shop.

Let's listen in.

"Everyone back away from the counter! This is a raid!"
"What? What do you want?"
"We're the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, and we've received a tip that you're putting knock off parts on customers cars and calling them repaired. We're going to shut you down!"
"Well... ya. MPI won't cover the cost of REAL parts from GM, so we have to buy them from off shore suppliers. The metal is thinner, they don't fit as well, the primer is questionable, but it's all they'll pay for on an older car. They'll only put new parts on a new car that has less than 20,000km. "
"Stop making excuses. You're ripping your customers off. We're taking all your inventory. HEY... What's THIS? USED PARTS?!!"
"Ya. MPI makes us sign into a salvage search site to secure salvaged parts if they are available."
"That's enough! turn around... hands behind your back"

So Line, I'll be waiting to read about your next big raid, and then I want to get some cash back from MPI... it seems they've broken your rules.

Now if you'll excuse me, I have to hide my ear buds I plug into my iPod. They're some crap I got at CBit after ripping the wire out of my original ones... and I KNOW they're not Apple products.


  1. Counterfeit parts? You mean aftermarket cell phone parts are illegal? How is that even legal?

    Are they purporting to be LG or Nokia brand parts? If so, ok, fine. But if they say they're compatible with Samsung but made instead by Shang-Tsung electronics, how is that illegal? Why do we as a society even allow these companies to make every piece of their products proprietary?

    Screw that bullshit. The police in this case IMHO are not on the right side.

  2. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  3. yup. bunch of crooks=RCMP=Capitalist Govt. What about buying not working phones to use them as parts to fix the fixable phones! is that illegal too! i am really shocked of the news!

  4. the R.C.M.P are probably just following orders... they are public servants, don't shoot the messenger. The politicians are the real culprits.

  5. RM,

    You place a lot of blame on the RCMP saying that it is them who are telling you what kind of parts you are allowed to use. Is that a fact? Do you have a letter or other document from the RCMP to verify this claim? Those questions are rhetorical, there is no need to answer them. In your previous blog post you write "Don't bring a fact to a stat fight" leading us to believe that you prefer claims that can be backed up by facts. You must have know that it is, in fact, Apple and Blackberry who prevent other repair companies from fixing their devices. That is what Line Karpish said on the news. You even used her quote.

  6. @ Intersting,

    Last time I checked, Apple and Blackberry don't dictate enforcement policy to the RCMP. Are you seriously suggesting that a companies policy can endure on a product while ownership of said product is no longer theirs? Do I simply "lease" my phone, or do I own it? If I own it, I can modify it... change the chip, unlock it, change the screen... it's MINE.

  7. @RM

    No, you don't lease the device. However, Apple and RIM (BlackBerry is a product not a company) do dictate that they do not allow third party/after-market parts to be manufactured for their devices. You can feel free to put whatever after-market parts you want in your iPhone, but don't complain when Apple doesn't honour the warranty. As well, since Apple doesn't allow these parts to be manufactured, that makes the parts illegal due to laws enacted by politicians. Please note, there is a very large difference between those who write the laws and those who enforce them.

    If you have a problem with the laws surrounding counterfeit parts then I suggest you contact your MP and take it up with him/her.

    If you have a problem with the fact that Apple/RIM do not allow for third party parts to be manufactured for their devices, thereby causing you to have to go directly to them for repair rather than these small shops, then I suggest as a consumer you vote with your wallet and give your money to companies with less draconian policies.

    You're right, Apple and RIM do not dictate enforcement policy to the RCMP. However, as the enforcing arm of the judicial system, the RCMP is obligated to enforce the law as it is written. These small shops were in violation of the law because Apple and RIM do not allow third party parts to be manufactured. The RCMP was made aware of the fact that the law was being broken and as such is in a position where they have to deal with it.

    Finally, your argument regarding after market parts in vehicles is nothing more than a strawman argument, simply because motor vehicle companies like Ford, GM, etc. do not have policy in place that prevents after market manufacturing of parts. Therefore, there are no laws being broken.

    I have a feeling this entire comment will fall on deaf ears however, because clearly you don't let facts get in the way of your rhetoric.

  8. This is absurd! I understand that the RCMP is simply the enforcer here and the politicians make the laws, but the politicians make the laws because the richaest company in the frikkin world can make campaign donations. In the end, someone at the RCMP had to make the final decision to say, "Lets make the bust" if one person in that chain of authority had any damn morals other than their blind following of a stupid law designed to rip people off this would not have happened. Shame on the RCMP, you are doing the tax payers a dis-service!!!! we pay your pay checks and get no say in the matter! How do you fight Apple? You don't, sit back enjoy your broken cell phone and take is up the arse like a good Canadian.

    1. It's paycheques...we are CANADIAN.

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  10. my phone screen is broken so i caint see who calling or or read my text message either and im just a kid so how can i buy a new phone and my mom wont buy a new one so what are ways to fix a BUSTED PHONE SCREEN!
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  11. I have an aftermarket battery in my Nokia c3-00, any idea what kind of time I might be looking? If caught.... It would be my 3rd strike.... I ain't going down peacefully!

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  13. PLEASE HELP ME!!!!

    Yesterday I broke my iphone screen after slipping, falling, and banging the phone against the ground when I fell. I'm only a high school student so I don't have enough money to buy a brand new phone but I still want a phone without a destroyed screen.
    I NEED YOUR HELP!!!! What should I do???? Or where should I go????
    Also I live in winnipeg by the way

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