Workers in Apple iPad factories forced to sign anti-suicide contracts

Do you think you have a difficult job? Try working for Foxconn in an Apple iPad/iPhone factory in China. As reported by The Daily Mail, in addition to working nearly 100 hours of overtime in a month, standing on their feet for 12 hours at a time, and not being allowed to say a word while working, employees are now also forced to sign “anti-suicide” contracts.  This was in response to a large number of deaths the previous year.

The main impetus of this requirement appears to be legal in nature. If an employee violates the contract by killing themselves, the binding document states that the family of the deceased is allowed only the legal minimum in damages. In addition to signing the pact, the company has also put up “anti-suicide nets” around the living facilities to help prevent employees from jumping off of the building to their death. These measures were implemented after last year’s plan of hiring monks to exorcise evil spirits had failed.

The popularity of the iPad has put tremendous pressure on suppliers to deliver parts to Apple in a timely manner. To meet this demand, workers are forced to put in long hours, live in dorms with up to 24 other people in the same room, and not say a word to each other while working. These working conditions put a strain on the workers’ mental health, but don’t expect many changes until consumers are willing to pay higher prices for the products they want.

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Can someone confirm that it is only the parts of Foxconn that produce Apple products that are forcing their staff to do this? I have a feeling that it's the whole of Foxconn. Also, since when has the daily fail been a reputable news source?

d4v1d05 said,
Can someone confirm that it is only the parts of Foxconn that produce Apple products that are forcing their staff to do this? I have a feeling that it's the whole of Foxconn. Also, since when has the daily fail been a reputable news source?

It has never and will never be a source of reliable information. I wouldn't be surprised if they just made this up to cater for technology news.

As for the article at hand, it's absolutely disgusting... and I would be interested to know if Foxconn is as bad as this across the board or if it is just to meet the demands of Apple. If I could afford to, I would attempt to ethically alter my PC. However, I'm just not sure if it's possible to purchase much, if any technology without running into stuff like this. If a business round the corner manufactured CPUs, GPUs, Mobos, CPU Fans etc, I would give it a go but I can't see it ever being feasible in my life time.

This is disgusting but ... the fact is that China has appalling human rights laws and appalling worker protection laws. Western countries take advantage for our own benefit.

I like how the focus is on Apple so a few people can say 'well I won't buy from them' and then just forget about it. It's a great way to shut up your conscience without having to face up to it.

A vast amount of companies are using Chinese labour to produce cheap goods. The reason they are cheap is because of these horrible working conditions. It doesn't matter what brand it is, there's a high chance the product or parts of it came from China. There's a very high chance it was put together by people being paid and treated terribly.

If you care about worker's rights then don't just bash Apple, bash every company using 'made in China'.

I didn't know Apple had sweatshops in China ! WTF?
The theory behind an anti-suicide contract sounds so retarded, but it is understandable.
However no one should be forced to work like that. Damn commies.

"but don't expect many changes until consumers are willing to pay higher prices for the products they want."

you obviously haven't seen the prices we pay for cheap made in china products in NZ so that's a crock of bull **** here's a hint Apple iPad 16GB $1,050.85 for something that cost them what $ less than 100 bucks I bet to make

Despite the huge costs for iDevices, they are still relying on this cheap form of labor, I own an iPhone but really I should be disgusted at the lengths companies go to, to earn a extra few bucks off the most vulnerable of people.

The real problem is that everything that comes from China (so pretty much everything we buy) comes from similar conditions. If you get an Android or WP7 phone it's probably been manufactured under similar conditions.

It's frustrating to see Apple's name dragged through with this when EVERY company that uses Chinese labour is there exploiting the lax worker protection laws. Anyone who buys anything is supporting this abuse because they want cheap stuff.

So if they sign the contract and then six months later commit sideways then what ?? are they going to fire them send them to jail bring them back from the dead and shoot them ROFL this just makes me ROFL maybe they should provide a counselor to help work through their problems and PAY them more

Athlonite said,
So if they sign the contract and then six months later commit sideways then what ?? are they going to fire them send them to jail bring them back from the dead and shoot them ROFL this just makes me ROFL maybe they should provide a counselor to help work through their problems and PAY them more

The article does explain what would happen if the employee breaches the contract. Try reading next time?

I think Apple is more of a target with these kind of news items because of the cost of their products and the air of detached arrogance that Steve Jobs seems to exude. So, when people read these articles about workers in China being exploited it touches a nerve, because the personality behind Apple reflects an almost 'I am super awesome and my products are the best' attitude. But it's really hypocritical. If he was so superior, he wouldn't allow such exploitation. Then, you could kind of understand why his products are so absurdly expensive, and you wouldn't mind so much that of all the billions he makes he doesn't give one penny to any charities or humanitarian organizations. Basically, these stories about Apple upset more people because in the end, Steve Jobs is a arrogant self-absorbed, jerk.

"last year's plan of hiring monks to exorcise evil spirits had failed."
Made me spit out my soda, and start rofling.

alexalex said,
Evey one of you here has signed an anti-suicide close when buying life insurance policy.

Clause, the word you are looking for is clause....

So what are they gonna do, intentionally hire people with spouses and kids just so they can hold employees hostage? Can't punish a poor abused single person with no family.

The Shenzhen factory (where ipods and xboxes come from) employes 420,000 people. That's more than live in Atlanta Georgia. Since 2007 there have been 17 suicides at that factory.

Divide one number by the other and you find a suicide rate of 1 per 100,000 per year. How does that compare to the rest of the world? Well the American national suicide rate is 11 per 100,000 per year . Those most likely to kill themselves in the US match exactly those that were doing it in China.

Other wealthy western nations 'enjoy' similar rates of suicide - many times greater than this particular factory.

It's not like this is particularly unusual: check your life insurance agreement from your employer, you'll find your survivors don't get a damn thing if you commit suicide. If anything this is a case of Chinese companies finally catching up to the west.

This is the smartest post I've seen in this thread. Glad someone is applying some critical thinking to this issue.

evn. said,
The Shenzhen factory (where ipods and xboxes come from) employes 420,000 people. That's more than live in Atlanta Georgia. Since 2007 there have been 17 suicides at that factory.

Since they did informed a problem with the number of suicides then you can bet that the real number is over 17 persons. May be they are not considering suicides committed outside of the installation. Or may be the problem is way more shadier.

Magallanes said,

Since they did informed a problem with the number of suicides then you can bet that the real number is over 17 persons. May be they are not considering suicides committed outside of the installation. Or may be the problem is way more shadier.

Let me understand your logic here. "Foxxcon reported 17 suicides of workers in a 4 year span at one of their factories. That many suicides is a problem and a clear indication that something crooked is going on. Because there is a clear indication something is crooked going on you can predict that more than 17 suicides have happened and the problem is actually worse!"

"They're bad because they're bad and because they're bad we know they're bad", tautology of this form isn't sound.

I hope they read it all the way through and not just blindly sign. Otherwise they'll be part of the Human CentiPad 2.

Yet one more reason not to buy an iPad2...but really this boils down to simple business and how one country/culture chooses to deal with this kind of demand without loosing any profitability. As extreme as this is the average Chinese worker still seems to be grateful to have a job and are mostly unaware how other countries treat their workers.

DATmafia said,
Yet one more reason not to buy an iPad2...but really this boils down to simple business and how one country/culture chooses to deal with this kind of demand without loosing any profitability. As extreme as this is the average Chinese worker still seems to be grateful to have a job and are mostly unaware how other countries treat their workers.

i'm just going to go out on a limb here and think, it probably sucks to work in any factory in china. You get paid **** and have a depressing job. And since everything is made in china........

I here they are Apple slaves and Steve Jobes turnned them into AppleBorgs Brainwashed them and if he hears anyone that speaks and acts unrobotic his OS X sends a signal to a chip in there heads that explodes killing them.

Actually if they pay the family the minimum when the person kills themselves, that's actually more than a family in the US would get if their spouse had a life insurance policiy and kills themselves. In which case the family in the US would get NOTHING. Just saying. Yes I know the company might be to blame, but all I know is if they sign a contract, that would make judge Marilyn Milian from the tv show people's court all wet.

warwagon said,
Actually if they pay the family the minimum when the person kills themselves, that's actually more than a family in the US would get if their spouse had a life insurance policiy and kills themselves. In which case the family in the US would get NOTHING. Just saying. Yes I know the company might be to blame, but all I know is if they sign a contract, that would make judge Marilyn Milian from the tv show people's court all wet.

That is true, but in the US you can't make people work under such terrible conditions. It simply doesn't compare. A contract like that wouldn't be binding anyway because the employer violated the law with respect to working conditions and compensation.

Blame Foxconn, not Apple.

I see two solutions here :
- Foxconn can charge Apple twice as much and give twice as much to its employees… but it would still lead to suicide somehow, just less.
- To fix the suicide problem completely, can't Foxconn just recruit twice its number of employees and rotate their shifts so that they don't work 90 hours per week?

It's a very huge problem, yet the steps needed to fix the situation are so simple.

PyX said,
Blame Foxconn, not Apple.

Apple is just as much to blame as Foxconn if they dont do anything to stop this. Apple is in control here and Foxconn is the one benefiting from their relationship.

techbeck said,
Apple is just as much to blame as Foxconn if they dont do anything to stop this. Apple is in control here and Foxconn is the one benefiting from their relationship.

Yes, Apple could boycott Foxconn, but as you say, everyone's to blame in the story :
- Apple for not making the necessary audits and for not taking measures to counter this.
- Foxconn is the biggest organization to blame since they are responsible of the measures they're taking to produce more and more.
- Even the government of China is in the game, they should act up and put new laws in place. No more than 35-40 hours per employee per regular week, no more than 8 hours of double the salary overtime, and if the producer exceeds, he needs to pay 10 times the overtime to the employees. Since the "10 times" doesn't make sense, I guess it would stop them.

They also need a better minimum wage, better social advantages, like buy Apple products at the cost price, health plans (dental, psychology, etc.), labor unions to defend their rights, etc. China is way behind any country when it comes to that and this is one of the reasons why every company's there somehow.

I really have to wonder how much of this is Foxconn forcing their employees to work long shifts for little pay vs. the employees working themselves to the bone for slightly above average pay to support entire families because it's a job that they actually can support a family with. I know it's a lot more fun to cast Apple and Foxconn in a menacing light, but I don't think we're getting the whole picture here.

PyX said,
Blame Foxconn, not Apple.

But Apple was who said (several times) "read my lips, our products is 100% green and it is not done by slaves".

PyX said,
China is way behind any country when it comes to that and this is one of the reasons why every company's there somehow.

Precisely why the work is done there and not in developed nations with rights and a sense of entitlement.

This is how the global economy works. When American call centers started to demand rights, their jobs were moved to India.
And, with all the jobs moving away from the expensive labour force, we're forced to take service industry jobs that require 75% of annual wage for the products we covet so much.

It's all rediculous.

AnotherITguy said,
Here's an idea for apple, MADE IN THE UNITED STATES.

oh psh... it says right on it "Designed in California" thats good enough for people anymore... just like GM is an american car! designed in detroit, tech parts made in taiwan, chips made in japan, assembled in mexico, and final build in canada... but yea its an american car... just like the Apple products are American products!

AnotherITguy said,
Here's an idea for apple, MADE IN THE UNITED STATES.

So then Apple's raw cost on an iPhone would be like $1000, marked up to $1500 to cover business expenses, payroll, R&D, and profit..

"These measures were implemented after last year's plan of hiring monks to exorcise evil spirits had failed."

...well at least it's not a lack of trying... I can't believe what I just read

leakAddict said,
"These measures were implemented after last year's plan of hiring monks to exorcise evil spirits had failed."

...well at least it's not a lack of trying... I can't believe what I just read

Well, if the evil spirits had left...Apple would not longer exist....haha.

techbeck said,
So Apple makes record breaking profits and this is why huh...nice.

+1

And the consumers don't care how their products get into their hands.

Maybe Apple should cut into that huge profit margin, since they just reported higher income than Microsoft, and actually give their workers better benefits. Oh wait, they won't.

LOL, everything Foxconn has Apple with it. As if HP, Sony, Toshiba or what so ever other 90% of PC and gadget aren't being build there.

iwod said,
LOL, everything Foxconn has Apple with it. As if HP, Sony, Toshiba or what so ever other 90% of PC and gadget aren't being build there.

Since everyone always says Apple can do stuff MS cant because MS is so "big"... lets take it this way with Apple... they write about Apple because they are so "big" in the media now days...

I used to work at a factory that didn't allow us to talk to one another. I can see why it's such a drain on you mentally. Every hour feels like a full day.

Andrew Lyle said,
I used to work at a factory that didn't allow us to talk to one another. I can see why it's such a drain on you mentally. Every hour feels like a full day.

What's the reasoning behind it? That you won't work as fast if you're chatting? I get the impression that the jobs are brain-dead so you could easily chat while doing your piece of the assembly line, but I've never worked in that environment to know for sure.

Fezmid said,

What's the reasoning behind it? That you won't work as fast if you're chatting? I get the impression that the jobs are brain-dead so you could easily chat while doing your piece of the assembly line, but I've never worked in that environment to know for sure.

I expect that some production line jobs might actually require a lot of concentration. I expect it's a way of keeping workers down, isolated etc. If they can't talk, they can't complain.

We the consumers feed this, if there was no demand for apples "overly priced" devices then guess what? However we constantly demand and want want want now, that companies are forced to meet these increasingly insane deadlines and contracts. Also it's the companies choice to accept contracts at dirt low prices. If they all said no we want our workers to have fair wages guess what? Apple would have no where to turn and would have to pay more.

why do they have so much overtime anyways? can't they just hire more people to fill that time? wouldn't overtime cost the company more? if they cant find people, why not? China is a huge population base

neufuse said,
why do they have so much overtime anyways? can't they just hire more people to fill that time? wouldn't overtime cost the company more? if they cant find people, why not? China is a huge population base
It doesn't say they get paid higher rates for overtime.

virtorio said,
It doesn't say they get paid higher rates for overtime.

Just making an assumption on what overtime generally is

neufuse said,

Just making an assumption on what overtime generally is


Seems like they are paying the workers by the day, not by the hour. If that is true, then the company benefits from not hiring - just force the workers to work illegally long hours, which is exactly what they are doing.

rfirth said,
Seems like they are paying the workers by the day, not by the hour. If that is true, then the company benefits from not hiring - just force the workers to work illegally long hours, which is exactly what they are doing.

Incorrect, the workers do get paid over time (the $8 per day is an average based on the legal hours per day) - many however have moved from the country and are not only supporting themselves but they're also sending money back to their family in the country side (hence there is a massive exodus every Chinese new year from the city to the country to visit family). The issue isn't just pay but the tug of war between supporting oneself and the duty to ones family in terms of helping out the family.

neufuse said,
why do they have so much overtime anyways? can't they just hire more people to fill that time? wouldn't overtime cost the company more? if they cant find people, why not? China is a huge population base

There might be other taxes and money to pay per worker, plus admin and recruitment costs, housing and feeding more people. And a half hour break for a 12 hour shift is less costly than a half hour break for an 8 hour shift. Pay is probably so low that workers feel they need the overtime.

Workers do it because they want/need it. We should have less people in the world. We can't continue to grow Earth's population: first we're killing each other, then Earth is going to do it for us.

Luis Mazza said,
Workers do it because they want/need it. We should have less people in the world. We can't continue to grow Earth's population: first we're killing each other, then Earth is going to do it for us.
Wrong. The rich are hoarding their millions and billions, and depriving Earth of the huge spending power of the middle-income population which would generate a lot of jobs.

We should dispose of people with too many millions of dollars in their bank accounts, and redistribute the money.

Yeah, right.. This will work. NOT! If someone wants to seriously kill themselves, this won't stop them, at all. This will just protect the bottom line of the company. "We know there's a pretty good chance you will want to end your own life making apple products in our hellish nighmare we call a factory, so when you do, since you signed this, we get to **** over your family even more, pouring salt on their newly formed scars."

Yeah apple. I will "Think differently", away from your products.

djdanska said,
Yeah, right.. This will work. NOT! If someone wants to seriously kill themselves, this won't stop them, at all. This will just protect the bottom line of the company. "We know there's a pretty good chance you will want to end your own life making apple products in our hellish nighmare we call a factory, so when you do, since you signed this, we get to **** over your family even more, pouring salt on their newly formed scars."

Yeah apple. I will "Think differently", away from your products.

Exactly that, well said

That is crazy. Jobs can pass up on a new Ferrari and take a pay cut in order to make sure these people have better working conditions. But then again, gotta keep the share holders happy...

C-Squarez said,
That is crazy. Jobs can pass up on a new Ferrari and take a pay cut in order to make sure these people have better working conditions. But then again, gotta keep the share holders happy...

Don't see how the CEO buying a car would be making the share holders happy.

Yeah I wouldnt pay a cent more for an apple product, the smart thing would be to offer an applecare package called 'world care' or some crap, whereby you pay extra for your applecare but that extra goes to buying the Foxxconn workers some biscuits for the break room....maybe building a breakroom...

That way consumers like me who dont care still get competitive priced products and consumers with surplus funds such as some of you, get to feel good about yourselves. Hell maybe you even get a complimentary 'world care' sticker for your shiny new apple product.

Osiris said,
Yeah I wouldnt pay a cent more for an apple product, the smart thing would be to offer an applecare package called 'world care' or some crap, whereby you pay extra for your applecare but that extra goes to buying the Foxxconn workers some biscuits for the break room....maybe building a breakroom...

That way consumers like me who dont care still get competitive priced products and consumers with surplus funds such as some of you, get to feel good about yourselves. Hell maybe you even get a complimentary 'world care' sticker for your shiny new apple product.

iCare

Ubermind said,

iCare

thats weird, did my post disappear...eitherway nice one and nice team workUbermind.
iCare it is

problem solved.

Osiris said,
Yeah I wouldnt pay a cent more for an apple product, the smart thing would be to offer an applecare package called 'world care' or some crap, whereby you pay extra for your applecare but that extra goes to buying the Foxxconn workers some biscuits for the break room....maybe building a breakroom...

That way consumers like me who dont care still get competitive priced products and consumers with surplus funds such as some of you, get to feel good about yourselves. Hell maybe you even get a complimentary 'world care' sticker for your shiny new apple product.

My sarcasm detector is inconclusive. The thing is faulty anyway..

Apple needs to take some of that record profit and pay it back..I would be more than happy to pay a few bucks more for a iPad if I knew that money was improving the lives of the ppl at foxconn who made it and not toward that new mansion jobs is building out in california

Does anyone that is that depressed that they would kill themself care about how the company would feel?

Apple should lead the way charging more for their products to make sure the people making them have better conditions to work.

Instead of charging more, they could stand for slightly less profits. They are among the biggest companies in the world. They CAN afford to pay a little bit more, and contract out to a better company to manufacture.

Ash said,
Instead of charging more, they could stand for slightly less profits. They are among the biggest companies in the world. They CAN afford to pay a little bit more, and contract out to a better company to manufacture.

They have responsibility to their shareholders though so profits are king...Steve could improve his reputation by doing a bill gates and actually use some of his wealth for projects like this. Bill is off fighting malaria and jobs cant organise a 5 min break for some Chinese toiling in whats practically his factory.

winrez said,
Does anyone that is that depressed that they would kill themself care about how the company would feel?

Apple should lead the way charging more for their products to make sure the people making them have better conditions to work.


Here's an idea, pass sweeping union reform in the US preventing unskilled laborers from bullying manufacturers and demanding exorbitantly high wages and the US will be able to compete in the manufacturing sector again. I'm sorry but no assembly line worker deserves to make $20/hour. It is not skilled work like the engineering that goes into the products is. These greedy union thugs are the sole reason there are few US manufacturing jobs anymore.

rafter109 said,

Here's an idea, pass sweeping union reform in the US preventing unskilled laborers from bullying manufacturers and demanding exorbitantly high wages and the US will be able to compete in the manufacturing sector again. I'm sorry but no assembly line worker deserves to make $20/hour. It is not skilled work like the engineering that goes into the products is. These greedy union thugs are the sole reason there are few US manufacturing jobs anymore.

Great idea! Let's make working conditions just as bad here.

Psst ... maybe you're approaching this from exactly the wrong perspective.

rafter109 said,
Here's an idea, pass sweeping union reform in the US preventing unskilled laborers from bullying manufacturers and demanding exorbitantly high wages and the US will be able to compete in the manufacturing sector again. I'm sorry but no assembly line worker deserves to make $20/hour. It is not skilled work like the engineering that goes into the products is. These greedy union thugs are the sole reason there are few US manufacturing jobs anymore.

Funny enough many of the things made could be automated but the only reason why they don't automate in China is because labour is cheaper than a robot. At the end of the day though it is the Chinese governments official policy to ram as many people into jobs as possible to keep the economy ticking and the workers quiet and occupied. If you want to also blame someone for the high cost of doing business in the US then blame those politicians who force companies to pay for the healthcare and retirement savings contributions - last time I checked it isn't the businesses responsibility to pay for said things.

Mr Nom Nom's said,

Funny enough many of the things made could be automated but the only reason why they don't automate in China is because labour is cheaper than a robot. At the end of the day though it is the Chinese governments official policy to ram as many people into jobs as possible to keep the economy ticking and the workers quiet and occupied. If you want to also blame someone for the high cost of doing business in the US then blame those politicians who force companies to pay for the healthcare and retirement savings contributions - last time I checked it isn't the businesses responsibility to pay for said things.

Of course the irony is that we (Americans) don't use robots as cheap labor because labor unions have essentially made it illegal to do so. It's easier to go out of business in the "freest nation on earth" than it is to retool a plant to use robots instead of workers.

Osiris said,

They have responsibility to their shareholders though so profits are king...Steve could improve his reputation by doing a bill gates and actually use some of his wealth for projects like this. Bill is off fighting malaria and jobs cant organise a 5 min break for some Chinese toiling in whats practically his factory.

It's hardly true to say that the factory practically belongs to Apple when so many other companies use it.

So basically make people who are already suicidal feel worse about things by the fact the one thing they feel they have control over (their life) taken away from them?

I guess they can grab a gun and shoot up the place now to get in line with western culture. Thankfully there seems to be no particular contract against that.

My god, that is a hell working condition. Seriously where are the standards in the workplace, but then again its china so there is little to none. But they better be getting paid good.

Xypro said,
My god, that is a hell working condition. Seriously where are the standards in the workplace, but then again its china so there is little to none. But they better be getting paid good.

According to the article, they get roughly $8/day...

Fezmid said,

According to the article, they get roughly $8/day...
What!?!? $8!! Each day!! Damn, they livin' like a balla, shot calla, 20 inch blades on the impala ...

Dear Diary,
Was going to kill myself today, but signed new anti-suicide contract.
Will review my living status in 12 months when contract comes up for review

Seems full proof
I know it was more for the damages but the whole thing is clearly for teh lulz.

but don't expect many changes until consumers are willing to pay higher prices for the products they want.

Well that will never happen., so..

WiCkeD SaM said,
but don't expect many changes until consumers are willing to pay higher prices for the products they want.

Well that will never happen., so..

People are already paying way to high for Apple Products, so i question whether this is valid.

crashguy said,

People are already paying way to high for Apple Products, so i question whether this is valid.


Yeah, higher than that, and I will start laughing my ass out. I still can't go ahead and buy and iMac for 1.2 k, while I can make a better desktop at the same price.

Jose_49 said,

Yeah, higher than that, and I will start laughing my ass out. I still can't go ahead and buy and iMac for 1.2 k, while I can make a better desktop at the same price.

I think it makes sense that for what's perceived as a higher quality item, you pay more. It's logical. The brand does mean things for products. However i feel Apple it already at the top of what is logical to pay. I don't think they could really push the prices up any higher and expect people to continue to pay.

Especially with their rapid replacement rate for their products.

crashguy said,

I think it makes sense that for what's perceived as a higher quality item, you pay more. It's logical. The brand does mean things for products. However i feel Apple it already at the top of what is logical to pay. I don't think they could really push the prices up any higher and expect people to continue to pay.

Especially with their rapid replacement rate for their products.

They have obviously researched and found the optimium price of what ppl will pay vs how many they sell @ that price....in the consumer space like this higher price does not equal higher profit...so they would be loosing money to do this which
1. doesnt benefit shareholders
2. doesnt benefit consumers
only benefits workers in some far off country which the majority of people do not give two tosses about.

The smart and only way they could do it without affecting shareholders, consumers, profit and appeasing hippies would be to offer an alternative package similar to 'flying green' that airlines offer, you can pay more for your ticket and they will go plant a tree for you and you get to feel good about yourself. Alternatively if you are a consumer you can say suck it, pay enough for airfare as it is and go about your business. Key point being choice.

WiCkeD SaM said,
but don't expect many changes until consumers are willing to pay higher prices for the products they want.

Well that will never happen., so..

As long as there is a middle man such as apple, I don't see this working.

crashguy said,

People are already paying way to high for Apple Products, so i question whether this is valid.

Maybe we just have a warped sense of perspective. I don't understand why people expect things to be so cheap when they're clearly costly in time and resources to produce.

Laura said,

Maybe we just have a warped sense of perspective. I don't understand why people expect things to be so cheap when they're clearly costly in time and resources to produce.

A current product last from 3 to 5 years (less if is a Apple product with a non-upgradeable battery), while there are some old PC that are still running (over 10 years). So yes, most people will be willing to pay extra if it means more quality.

Windows7even said,
Sign a anti suicide contract? What r they gonna do..kill you again?

Did you read the article? It pretty much says that if an employee commits suicide, they agree that their family will receive the legally minimum compensation (a.k.a. next to nothing).

Joey H said,
Did you read the article? It pretty much says that if an employee commits suicide, they agree that their family will receive the legally minimum compensation (a.k.a. next to nothing).

Then shouldn't it be re-named 'anti-litigation contract' because that is pretty much what the purpose of it is.

Mr Nom Nom's said,

Then shouldn't it be re-named 'anti-litigation contract' because that is pretty much what the purpose of it is.

Not sensational enough.

Joey H said,

Did you read the article? It pretty much says that if an employee commits suicide, they agree that their family will receive the legally minimum compensation (a.k.a. next to nothing).

Yeah but if someone in my family kills themselves then I don't expect to get any money from their employer.

Joey H said,

Did you read the article? It pretty much says that if an employee commits suicide, they agree that their family will receive the legally minimum compensation (a.k.a. next to nothing).

Yeah but if someone in my family kills themselves then I don't expect to get any money from their employer.

"Foxconn makes consumer electronics for a number of well-known companies (The following is an incomplete list):

Apple Inc. (United States)[16][5][17]
Acer Inc. (Taiwan)
Amazon.com (United States)
Asus (Taiwan)
Intel (United States)
Cisco (United States)
Hewlett-Packard (United States)[18][17]
Dell (United States)
Nintendo (Japan)
Nokia (Finland)[16]
Microsoft (United States)
Sony (Japan)
Sony Ericsson (Japan/Sweden)[17]
Samsung (Korea)
Vizio (United States)"

Stetson said,
"Foxconn makes consumer electronics for a number of well-known companies (The following is an incomplete list):

Apple Inc. (United States)[16][5][17]
Acer Inc. (Taiwan)
Amazon.com (United States)
Asus (Taiwan)
Intel (United States)
Cisco (United States)
Hewlett-Packard (United States)[18][17]
Dell (United States)
Nintendo (Japan)
Nokia (Finland)[16]
Microsoft (United States)
Sony (Japan)
Sony Ericsson (Japan/Sweden)[17]
Samsung (Korea)
Vizio (United States)"

What you're stating may be correct, but it's irrelevent. Foxconn has most of their manufacturing operations and processes split into segments by client.

What is being reported here appears to be *specific* to the Apple manufacturing line only; although I doubt any other part of this organisation has better conditions for its employees.

Soulsiphon said,
I'm at a loss for words. These don't count.

Yes, they do. If they don't like it, don't sign it. Or, even better, don't work for these companies. Yeah, I know, they're Chinese, communist, poor, blah blah blah but really, in the end, it's their choice.

Brent1700 said,

Yes, they do. If they don't like it, don't sign it. Or, even better, don't work for these companies. Yeah, I know, they're Chinese, communist, poor, blah blah blah but really, in the end, it's their choice.

Really? Their choice? They need to feed their families and survive so people do what they have to do in order to survive and provide for their families. People in a lot of other countries dont have the choices as others do. And because they dont have choices, corporations like Apple take advantage of this...make record profits to produce a shiny product that people must have... while behind the scenes people are suffering.

I used to buy apple stuff...iPods...iTunes....for my nieces since they have an iTouch. Not anymore.

techbeck said,

I used to buy apple stuff...iPods...iTunes....for my nieces since they have an iTouch. Not anymore.

You do realize that 100 other companies use Foxconn to make their products right? It's not just Apple. If you do that you'll need to stop buying HP, HTC, Acer, etc.

giantsnyy said,

You do realize that 100 other companies use Foxconn to make their products right? It's not just Apple. If you do that you'll need to stop buying HP, HTC, Acer, etc.

But yet those companies dont have the same problems and are not being reported on. Why? Because its Apple and EVERYONE wants their products so there is a hell of a lot more demand for Apple products. Why other companies like HP, HTC, Acer, etc...dont have this problem. But again, they are not being reported on.

techbeck said,

But yet those companies dont have the same problems and are not being reported on. Why? Because its Apple and EVERYONE wants their products so there is a hell of a lot more demand for Apple products. Why other companies like HP, HTC, Acer, etc...dont have this problem. But again, they are not being reported on.

Do you know that they don't have the same problems? Foxconn doesn't just produce Apple products, they produce products for many tech companies. Apple news tends to get more coverage, especially when it's something negative.

techbeck said,

But yet those companies dont have the same problems and are not being reported on. Why? Because its Apple and EVERYONE wants their products so there is a hell of a lot more demand for Apple products. Why other companies like HP, HTC, Acer, etc...dont have this problem. But again, they are not being reported on.

Hey, don't hate the player, hate the game. China is providing cheap labour and any smart businessmen would be stupid not to use it to their advantage. Yes, it is sad, very sad but that's the way business works. If US companies did not use China, then many of the products we see today would be at a much higher cost.

Xxgreatestever said,

any smart businessmen would be stupid not to use it to their advantage. Yes, it is sad, very sad but that's the way business works.

Smart and morally bankrupt. But I don't think anyone in the west can get up on their high horse too much. Unless you live in a cave or in the wild your house is probably full of stuff made by an exploited worked in some god forsaken country. Out of the companies listed in a post below this one, I have a product(s) from almost every company in my house. Four of them I can see right now.

But it does seem Apple has a partcular problem with workers commiting suicide. Unless other companies have this problem too and it is just under reported or Apple's issues have more media exposure.

Stetson said,

Do you know that they don't have the same problems? Foxconn doesn't just produce Apple products, they produce products for many tech companies. Apple news tends to get more coverage, especially when it's something negative.

WRONG! Apple only gets news coverage only if it is something positive. They ignore it if Apple has negative news. That why channels like CNBC when they talk about tech are so hard to listen to.

Scutley said,

WRONG! Apple only gets news coverage only if it is something positive. They ignore it if Apple has negative news. That why channels like CNBC when they talk about tech are so hard to listen to.

Do you not pay attention? "antennagate" "glassgate" "locationgate" and now this. Every week there's a new analyst who pumps out an article about why Apple will lose the phone market or the tablet market because they know it will get them a ton of hits.

Stetson said,

Do you not pay attention? "antennagate" "glassgate" "locationgate" and now this. Every week there's a new analyst who pumps out an article about why Apple will lose the phone market or the tablet market because they know it will get them a ton of hits.

Well they probably will lose their markets, but the items you cite span two years. How is this every week?

For what Apple does and doesn't do, they get far more positive press, even when it is less than factual.

If you try and watch or follow the finanical end of the tech industry, they spend 90% of the time talking about Apple, which is a tiny % of the technology market, and makes it hard to not gag purple unicorn fairy dust.

Apple is rather bad and unethical company, even in the way they treat their US based employees is scary. Look up the articles on the employee that showed Woz an App on an iPad 3G. (And this was Woz of all people, at a conference where they were announcing the product.)

They have no problem flat out lying to their own customers, they have no problem with releasing both defective and sub-average products to their faithful customers, and telling them they are the 'best'. i.e. Apple hasn't shipped a 'high end' video card in a Mac in the last 20 years, yet they most Mac users still think they are getting the 'fastest' and the 'best' for graphics and Video.

They also use marketing practices that cross lines that are considered egregious even in the world of marketing, which should really say something.

And if you think this is 'normal' for a corporation, compare them to the big evil 'Microsoft'. Pick any good ethical argument, from paying taxes, to false advertising, and compare them. (Hint, Apple dodges far more taxes, and they continually have ads banned by ethics boards, advertising standards in the UK, etc.)

Apple is a rather bad company on average, but gets away with it because they don't mind using Derren Brown like techniques in their advertising, sucking people back in, even after they show their true colors by screwing over their own customers.

techbeck said,

But yet those companies dont have the same problems and are not being reported on. Why? Because its Apple and EVERYONE wants their products so there is a hell of a lot more demand for Apple products. Why other companies like HP, HTC, Acer, etc...dont have this problem. But again, they are not being reported on.

my htc says made in taiwan not china

techbeck said,

Really? Their choice? They need to feed their families and survive so people do what they have to do in order to survive and provide for their families. People in a lot of other countries dont have the choices as others do. And because they dont have choices, corporations like Apple take advantage of this...make record profits to produce a shiny product that people must have... while behind the scenes people are suffering.

I used to buy apple stuff...iPods...iTunes....for my nieces since they have an iTouch. Not anymore.

+1 Good post.

The same thing is evident in the food industry. Look at McDonalds making billions of dollars in profit selling dirty, unhealthy, food[-like substances] to people at way below regular market prices. Yet people pay McDonalds for that same unhealthy food instead of buying good food and cooking it at home.

If more people made *investment* decisions on products that they buy, the world would be a better place by now; companies like McDonald's would go bankrupt; people would not work for FoxConn; and many other such good things.

Edited by Jebadiah, May 6 2011, 1:09am :

Rubbish mate.. its the same for all electronic goods suppliers.. Sony, LG, Toshiba, HP to but name a few... if you think its only apple then bloody ell.. wake up.. Its only apple that are being reported on because Apple are big in the market at the moment.. its a popular brand to target

techbeck said,

But yet those companies dont have the same problems and are not being reported on. Why? Because its Apple and EVERYONE wants their products so there is a hell of a lot more demand for Apple products. Why other companies like HP, HTC, Acer, etc...dont have this problem. But again, they are not being reported on.