Tivoization is a real threat to users freedom, but only when you consider the appropriate context. It’s not just a question of controlling hardware, more importantly its about controlling data. This issue becomes clearer when you consider health software instead of television software
To think about what free software licences should do about tivoisation, we have to understand what problems we're trying to prevent, and how it works - so that we can ensure that it doesn't work.
How tivoisation works
Tivoisation is a technique that manufacturers use to produce a computer, to sell to you, whose software they can update but you can't.
There are three elements involved in tivoisation:
- The manufacturer puts a chip in the computer which checks any software before it is run and which will only allow authorised software to be run.