We are one RFID away from a dishwasher that rejects third-party dishes on pain of a 5-year prison sentence

If a person is using the dishwasher to do laundry, I don’t think DRM is going to be their biggest peoblem…


I’ve seen it at university. Small, kitchen-top dishwasher unit. No washing machine.

There Will Be Sud(s).

It really didn’t work, but I’ve seen it tried.

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Because boingboing just barely gave me the idea! Sheesh.

You wouldn’t want to do your laundry at the same time as cooking dinner.

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But Whirlpool and KitchenAid don’t sell food or plates

What about dishwasher detergent?

Actually, it looks like I’m late to the party on this one

I don’t think dishwasher vendors currently sell detergent, but even if we imagine they started doing so, the title is:



Yes, but the point was that plates don’t fit the model (Keurig, HP). Dishwasher tabs do, though

There are people who rent, and will move into an apartment that already has a smart dishwasher installed.

There are people who buy spec-houses in new subdivisions, which will come with preinstalled whiteware including a smart dishwasher in a cavity that’s just the right size, and which “coincidentally” doesn’t fit any other make or model - are they to refit the entire kitchen just to replace the dishwasher?


Often people chose the expensive option because they can’t afford the cheaper option (aka, “the poverty trap”). It’ll be cheaper to buy a new set of dishes than to remodel the kitchen. It’ll be cheaper to buy a new set of dishes than to replace the dishwasher you don’t own anyway.


That is a shame, because right now you can get third party containers that are better quality for 1/4 the price.

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Sure. That’s why it’s a terrible title/analogy. Not only is the title/analogy distracting and confusing, but there are better examples that could actually make the point.


We are only a few more of these articles away from having to use the BoingBoing Browser to leave comments on these posts.

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I understood the article is a parody, but it is still interesting to find out why what works for inkjet printers does not work for dishwashers. At the moment the best explanation is "because whirlpool does not sell plates or cutlery ".

And those renters are going to bring their dishes when they move in, just not use the weird useless dishwasher except as a drying rack after hand washing, and/or complain to their landlord that the dishwasher is broken.

You don’t just put dishes in a dishwasher. You put utensils, glassware, various cooking implements, Pyrex, and all kinds of things in there. No dishwasher mf’r would really be stupid enough to try to lock you there since they’d never sell any units and the costs of ramping up manufacturing to supply literally all the stuff you put in to the point that customers would tolerate it there would fail any basic cost benefit analysis by the bean counters.

You don’t need to remodel to replace a dishwasher. A full set of dishes and all the kinds of things that go into a dishwasher can very quickly become far more expensive than a typical dumb dishwasher. The full set of things I put in mine are probably at least 3x as expensive as the washer.

It’s a bad analogy/fantasy not worth trying to save.

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Thankfully, manufacturers never enter into agreements with each other to establish horizontal monopolies.


Most importantly, plates and cutlery aren’t a consumables. It is feasable dishwasher companies might try limiting you to licensed dishwasher tabs, but to certain dishes??? that doesn’t make sense.

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There is a theoretical possibility of a totally impractical thing happening that doesn’t actually benefit any business profit motive since dishes aren’t consumables for a product where there’s not only no value add but major value loss to establish monopolies in domains where consumers want a very wide amount of choice (many people are very, very picky about dish patterns/flatware/cooking utensils). We can revisit it in a few years and see if the paranoid, confused fantasy actually happens.

The fact that there are this many comments arguing about the analogy/paranoid fantasy in the title reinforces my actual point really well, which is that it’s distracting from the more important points in the article.

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But dishes are consumables. Cafes, for instance, factor in the regular loss of cups as a cost of doing business (which, as I recall, is after a surprisingly low number of uses - like, 20? 50?). I assume restaurants do the same.

distracting from the more important points in the article

Well, you have certainly put a lot more effort into focussing on the trees, rather than seeing the forest :wink:

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I feel this exact way about most of these DRM articles.

I’m personally anti-drm and against the DMCA and a lot of the modern IP system. Even so, there are more often then not so much wrong with conclusions and claims in these articles, especially the w3c ones, that I find myself arguing against them rather then supporting them. Has the opposite of the desired effect. Hurts and undermines the credibility of the cause and the legitimacy of the issues. Kinda a shame.


There is already a running line of

'Manufacturer X only recommends ‘tablets Y, powder Z or cleaner ‘Calgon’ (because it’s always Calgon) exclusively for use in their machines. For longest life/best wash/so your machine doesn’t explode.’
okay, one of those may be hyperbole.

…in [UK] commercials * - and you can be sure money changed hands for that, because there are enough who believe the carrot/stick.

Now, say you can get more ‘licencing fees’ (an ongoing cut of the profits) by incorporating ‘easy-wash auto-dosing cartridge technology’ ("Long-lasting, simpler_and easier on clothes!_). Maybe you can then make the washer-dryer cheaper as a sweetener, while still making more profit?

Would they try it? I hope not.

Lest I be unclear, it’s not the same extreme as the article, but the tendency to push brands of ‘washer consumables’ like that definitely already exists.
And also, your other points there hold just fine. :slight_smile:

* (Even to the the degree where I recall ads where that’s the entire point of the commercial, with men in white labcoats looking seriously at clothes and washers, in a looks-like-a-lab-if-you-squint studio set.)


I’ve only broken one glass in the last 10 years, and it broke in the dishwasher, discovered it when i went to put the dishes away.

maybe the generic white stuff in certain sub-segment of the restaurant industry would be considered consumable dishes, but for the most part they wouldn’t classify as a consumable.

your car consumes gas. you may eventually have to replace the transmission when it breaks or wears out, but the transmissions isn’t a consumable, rather a replaceable part. the dishwasher consumes the soap tab, you get your dishes back out and can reuse them for as long as you don’t break them.