Share and Share Alike Edition

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September 23, 2016


Share and Share Alike Edition


Share and Share Alike Edition


I am not a fan of big government. We know this. That being said this news is interesting:

I think the idea of information sharing is interesting and needs discussion because autonomous tech is so different than anything in the industry before it. It isn’t like one company is developing a better headlight or some cool infotainment feature, or using aluminum for frames. Besides, the data to be shared is only crash and safety data, not proprietary manufacturing information.

Like I said earlier, I hate big government and government regulating companies. Hate it. But in this instance, I think federal government involvement in regulating the self-driver tech and testing is important. I also wonder if asking the companies to share instead of mandating they share is enough.

I’d like to think that the auto industry and tech companies would realize that sharing info is mutually beneficial to them and especially useful in protecting the lives of consumers since ostensibly, our safety is the concern of the industry and the whole reason for autonomous vehicles.

But, given the track record of companies in providing government regulators when asked, I’m just not sure the industry will. Altruism isn’t one of capitalism’s greatest qualities. What concerns me a bit is the quote in the article that “this is worthy of a longer discussion,” regarding data sharing. A comment like that, which supposedly says nothing, could be saying quite a bit. So where does that leave us the consumer, really?

I will say, it is kind of refreshing to see NHTSA getting ahead of the curve a bit and already defining what is recall worthy. One of my biggest concerns aside from losing something I love to do, is safety regulations, or lack thereof, concerning self-drivers.

I’m still not sold on self-drivers, mostly because we need to drill down on safety—and this data sharing issue is a part of that—but I am a little less worried about companies putting self-drivers on the road without oversight and regulation now that NHTSA is trying to regulate the safety of these vehicles and their software.

But what do you think?  Is asking for a voluntary information share enough? Or is even that too much and should the government stay out of it altogether?

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Final Thought:

Wow.  This is really, really, bad.  I feel like I have just moved decades into the past with the Cosmopolitan-designed Mii by Seat. This is a rolling stereotype if I ever saw one.

Jalopnik’s take on it is pretty entertaining:

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Or on Twitter: @Laurenfix.

Love Your Car! See you next week!

–Lauren Fix

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