Inside of Foxconn Apple plant revealed in new video

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Both Apple and one of its biggest suppliers, Foxconn, have come under attack lately due to accusations of poor working conditions and worker suicides at Foxconn plants. Apple recently announced that it would conduct special audits of those plants, working with the Fair Labor Association. At the moment, the head of the FLA has said that the organization has already found "tons of issues" at one Foxconn plant.

Both Apple and Foxconn are apparently feeling the bad PR heat up and that's likely why they invited ABC News to become the first ever news outlet to film inside an Apple-based Foxconn factory. ABC News has already posted up a preview of that video on its web site along with a report about what they found at the Shenzhen and Chengdu Foxconn plants in China. The full show will be broadcast on ABC News Nightline on Tuesday.

The report states up front that the President of ABC's parent company Disney, Bob Iger, sits on Apple's board of directors. Furthermore, the family of Apple's late founder Steve Jobs owns the most shares of Disney. ABC is clearly trying put an editorial barrier between its coverage of this story and the company's links to Apple.

Neverthless, the report does paint a picture of workers in plants such as Foxconn City who suffer from boredom, low pay and long stretches on the assembly line. It also talks about how as many as 3,000 people are sometimes outside the gates of the factory waiting to get a chance at a job at Foxconn City.

Foxconn admits that it would likely not be showing its factory to journalists if the reports of worker suicides and poor working conditions had not shown up in the press. Louis Woo, an adviser to Foxconn's CEO, states:

Of course you can argue that we should have opened up five years ago. Well five years ago, we are under the radar screen, nobody really knows us, we are doing well. Why should I open it up?

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"It also talks about how as many as 3,000 people are sometimes outside the gates of the factory waiting to get a chance at a job at Foxconn City".

Fact is, for those 3000 people, working in a paid job at Foxconn is probably preferable to some of the other god-awful things they'd have to do.

Apple could just make these pads in the U.S., charge about the same, but just take a smaller profit and STILL be the richest company ever. Just a thought. You know McD could only sell Coke products and still be filthy rich. It's a little known fact but a good one.

seebaran said,
Apple could just make these pads in the U.S., charge about the same, but just take a smaller profit and STILL be the richest company ever. Just a thought. You know McD could only sell Coke products and still be filthy rich. It's a little known fact but a good one.

But shareholders wouldn't want that. Shareholders are what, I think, have basically screwed our economies up.. because essentially they don't give a crap about the ethics of a business or doing the "right thing" - they care, purely, about maximising their investment in a company, and don't really care how it's done.

As soon as a company goes public I think you can forget about any sense of a moral compass or preservation of jobs, a domestic work force, whatever.. only the bottom line matters.

I agree with the above, basically if company X doesn't show more profit than last quater or last year same quater their stock goes down. A normal business is happy making 50% profit every month. If your total income for the month for a small store is $37,500 and your bills are $25,000 that would be AWESOME, do that 12 months in a row and the owners will already have made $210,000 profits in a year. The problem with stock holders however is if you don't "grow" then you aren't valuable and therefore stocks take a dive. Next year you must do $250,000 in profits or more.

Maybe some of the young geeks in here don't remember what they said about Nixon. "Everybody does it, he just got caught". And that mattered, how?

I always hated how Apple's final assembly was in China, heck Dell does final assembly in Texas, sure they have foxcon parts, but at least they bring some of the jobs back here... every mac we've had at work ships directly from Hong Kong it seems like, every dell we've bought was assembled and shipped from texas...

neufuse said,
I always hated how Apple's final assembly was in China, heck Dell does final assembly in Texas, sure they have foxcon parts, but at least they bring some of the jobs back here... every mac we've had at work ships directly from Hong Kong it seems like, every dell we've bought was assembled and shipped from texas...

I am afraid that the difference is made by the business model:

Apple has a limited number of items and all of them have predefined specs.
Dell make you order the box as you like it, after then they assemble it therefore it makes more sense to assemble here.

neufuse said,
every dell we've bought was assembled and shipped from texas...

Using parts and main assemblies made in China. The only thing they probably do in Texas is put Foxconn parts into a PC and put that into a box...

d4v1d05 said,

Using parts and main assemblies made in China. The only thing they probably do in Texas is put Foxconn parts into a PC and put that into a box...

True, but nearly all companies do this. Almost everything is manufactured by someone else. Some companies also just take a fully built product and re-badge it.

neufuse said,
I always hated how Apple's final assembly was in China, heck Dell does final assembly in Texas....

For US orders. It keeps you guys believing that its made in the USA. For the rest of the world we get ours from Malaysia.

That is CRAZY! Those people rush the doors like that to try and get a job. You will never see that in (present day) America..

Do you know that Foxconn aka Hon Hai Precision Industry Co., Ltd is headquartered in Tucheng, New Taipei, Taiwan. I always thought it was a mainland China company.

I dont care how apple/foxconn word the interview or story or any kind of positive spin they even try to put on it, they will not be able to overcome the images of those suicide nets.

no matter what they show people are not going to believe it. I think alot of it will be staged and making sure apple and foxconn are the good guys, but i love that piece he said about 1$ a hour for 10 hours a day.

lflashl said,
no matter what they show people are not going to believe it. I think alot of it will be staged and making sure apple and foxconn are the good guys, but i love that piece he said about 1$ a hour for 10 hours a day.

think its closer to $2, but its still higher then the average.

Hell-In-A-Handbasket said,
im interested in the show, but all in all, it will still be a " this is what we are allowed to show you " show
Yep! +1

DrakeN2k said,
The talking to the staff will be staged, but interesting.

If you own an Apple product and love the company/brand, you'll believe it all. It will become gospel and Law.

If not then you'll see it for what it is.

VoX said,

If you own an Apple product and love the company/brand, you'll believe it all. It will become gospel and Law.

If not then you'll see it for what it is.

Do you think that other factories down there are different?
Do you think that other companies like HP, Dell etc. etc. have different ethics?

profit is what rules; anything else is....... relative................

VoX said,

If you own an Apple product and love the company/brand, you'll believe it all. It will become gospel and Law.

If not then you'll see it for what it is.

You'd (almost) have a point if just about every other electronics company wasn't guilty of the same thing.

It may be publicity but Apple acknowledges the problem. Not a word from the others (or their fans/users).