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Apple manufacturing partner Foxconn settles with protesting employees

post #1 of 48
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Apple's Chinese manufacturing partner Foxconn has settled a dispute with plant workers who threatened mass suicide over wages and working conditions at the company's Wuhan factory which produces Microsoft's Xbox 360 gaming console.

The Taiwan-based electronics maker said in a statement released on Thursday that it had reached an agreement with a group of workers who were protesting the low pay and dismal work environment at the company's plant in Wuhan, China, reports The New York Times.

Foxconn, the world's largest electronics manufacturer and supplier of products to Apple, Hewlett-Packard, Microsoft and others, claims that the two parties came to an amicable agreement to the week-long ordeal which ended with the resignation of 45 employees.

In its official statement, the company noted that most of the approximately 150 protestors had accepted the proposed terms and have returned to work. Details of the settlement have not been released.

“The welfare of our employees is our top priority, and we are committed to ensuring that all employees are treated fairly and that their rights are fully protected," Foxconn said in the statement.

An employee at the facility, speaking on condition of anonymity, said that over 100 of the 32,000 workers at the Wuhan campus had taken to the rooftop of a three-story campus building in a protest that lasted eight hours. Some of the disgruntled employees reportedly threatened to jump from the roof if the company failed to meet their demands.

“That day was very cold,” he said. “Some women could not stand the freezing temperatures and fainted.”


Protestors gather atop a building at Foxconn's Wuhan campus | Source: The Epoch Times


The unnamed worker said that Foxconn promised a $450 per month salary including overtime pay as part of a deal for workers who were forced to relocate from the company's main factory in Shenzhen to Wuhan, but employees have received only two-thirds that amount and need to endure poor working conditions.

Foxconn is no stranger to employee unrest, and was the subject of some controversy during a rash of suicides in 2010. The disturbing trend brought Chinese factory conditions to the fore and compelled large tech corporations like Apple to launch internal investigations of workplace conditions and employee compensation.

In response to the 2010 suicides, Foxconn promised to up wages by 20 percent and is looking into replacing a portion of its workforce with robots.
post #2 of 48
........and they get unlimited texing.........
post #3 of 48
What will these people do when Foxconn replaces them all with robots?
Apple had me at scrolling
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Apple had me at scrolling
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post #4 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by iVlad View Post

What will these people do when Foxconn replaces them all with robots?

Become technicians and fix the robots.
Multiplex is an online comic strip about the staff of a movie theater.
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Multiplex is an online comic strip about the staff of a movie theater.
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post #5 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fast Fred 1 View Post

........and they get unlimited texing.........

And a $10 iTunes gift card.


[/joke]

Why does Apple bashing and trolling make people feel so good?

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Why does Apple bashing and trolling make people feel so good?

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post #6 of 48
$450 a month salary and they were getting 2/3.

Just think about the $450/month they would be happy with. Makes me feel lucky and blessed.

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2012 27" iMac i7, 2010 27" iMac i7, 2011 Mac Mini i5
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post #7 of 48
what does this have to do with Apple. if i'm not mistaken, this plant makes Xbox 360s.
post #8 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by jungmark View Post

what does this have to do with Apple. if i'm not mistaken, this plant makes Xbox 360s.

Correct. Not that AI felt the need to point that out

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A non tech's thoughts on Apple stuff 

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post #9 of 48
Hmm ... in a lot of U.S. labor conflicts, suicide might not be the strongest bargaining chip. Management might take them up on it ...

I admit to being a Fanatical Moderate. I Disdain the Inane. Vyizderzominymororzizazizdenderizorziz?

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I admit to being a Fanatical Moderate. I Disdain the Inane. Vyizderzominymororzizazizdenderizorziz?

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post #10 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by charlituna View Post

Correct. Not that AI felt the need to point that out

Actually, they did when they wrote that Microsoft is a client.
post #11 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by jungmark View Post

what does this have to do with Apple. if i'm not mistaken, this plant makes Xbox 360s.

Yep, and as expected, Microsoft is getting a complete pass on this at C|net. Barely a mention, only that Microsoft was "investigating" the situation. I also wonder why AI decided to drag Apple into this.
post #12 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by jungmark View Post

what does this have to do with Apple. if i'm not mistaken, this plant makes Xbox 360s.

Aha ... a new set of evil American exploiters to blame ... profiting from the backbreaking labor of the citizens of the people's industrial paradise ...

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post #13 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by iVlad View Post

What will these people do when Foxconn replaces them all with robots?

They'll never get replaced with robots. Human employees in China are WAY cheaper than robots. That's why more than 2/3 of all goods manufactured today are "hand-made".
post #14 of 48
Americans will at most walk in small concentric circles carrying home made sign with semi-clever quips on a sticks or simply invade some public place, start a drum circles and take turns using the Starbuck's bathroom, but the the Chinese are hardcore.

Seriously though, I can't even begin to imagine what these people go through if they think mass suicide is a viable solution.

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post #15 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rothgarr View Post

They'll never get replaced with robots.

Every job that does not require sentient problem solving or creative thought will eventually be replaced by a machine.

Originally posted by Marvin

Even if [the 5.5” iPhone exists], it doesn’t deserve to.
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Originally posted by Marvin

Even if [the 5.5” iPhone exists], it doesn’t deserve to.
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post #16 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by lkrupp View Post

I also wonder why AI decided to drag Apple into this.

It's relevant since Steve flew out there to see what the problem was. As restrictive and secret as the company is, Steve talked a lot about 'behind the scenes' when interviewed.
post #17 of 48
How come I'm not surprised the exterior of their manufacturing facilities are unfinished dumps?
post #18 of 48
Foxconn makes tons of gadgets for many of the top world companies, not just Apple.
No, they won't be using robots anytime soon. It's more cost-effective to have it done by hand, over there, in Shenzhen, China.
Read and listen to this and you'll gain a little more insight.
http://www.thisamericanlife.org/radi...-apple-factory
post #19 of 48
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Originally Posted by bigmike View Post

Read and listen to this and you'll gain a little more insight.
http://www.thisamericanlife.org/radi...-apple-factory

Hahaha! Now THAT is a link I appreciate. This podcast is funny! I'm only 10 minutes in it, but will listen to the entire hour. And that's just Act I, will listen to Act II as well. Thanks bigmike!
post #20 of 48
Let them jump. These workers are lucky that I'm not their employer. Is anybody forcing anybody to work there? Threatening mass suicide is a pathetic thing to do, and I would've let them try and do it, to see if they could back up their lame threat with action, and not just talk.

This story is also kind of funny, because it's one of the few times where there is a story about Foxconn, and Apple has nothing to do with it.

I remember reading about how the suicide rate at Foxconn was lower than that of the general population, so even with a mass suicide, and 50 Chinese offing themselves, it wouldn't have made that much of a difference, statistically speaking.
post #21 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by Apple ][ View Post

Let them jump. These workers are lucky that I'm not their employer. Is anybody forcing anybody to work there? Threatening mass suicide is a pathetic thing to do, and I would've let them try and do it, to see if they could back up their lame threat with action, and not just talk.

This story is also kind of funny, because it's one of the few times where there is a story about Foxconn, and Apple has nothing to do with it.

I remember reading about how the suicide rate at Foxconn was lower than that of the general population, so even with a mass suicide, and 50 Chinese offing themselves, it wouldn't have made that much of a difference, statistically speaking.

What an awful thing to say!
post #22 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by Apple ][ View Post

Let them jump. These workers are lucky that I'm not their employer. Is anybody forcing anybody to work there? Threatening mass suicide is a pathetic thing to do, and I would've let them try and do it, to see if they could back up their lame threat with action, and not just talk.

This story is also kind of funny, because it's one of the few times where there is a story about Foxconn, and Apple has nothing to do with it.

I remember reading about how the suicide rate at Foxconn was lower than that of the general population, so even with a mass suicide, and 50 Chinese offing themselves, it wouldn't have made that much of a difference, statistically speaking.

You're vitriol and lack of sensitivity is so astounding I have to question if we are of the same species..

"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

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"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

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post #23 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilBoogie View Post

What an awful thing to say!

What's awful is certain people who constantly whine about Foxconn and Apple from time to time. Last I checked, we're not talking about slave labor here, and nobody forces anybody to work there. The wages are in line with what people make in China I believe, so I see no reason for anybody to complain.
post #24 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by iVlad View Post

What will these people do when Foxconn replaces them all with robots?

If Foxconn had the ability to replace the workers with robots don't you think they would have already done so?
post #25 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by Apple ][ View Post

What's awful is certain people who constantly whine about Foxconn and Apple from time to time. Last I checked, we're not talking about slave labor here, and nobody forces anybody to work there. The wages are in line with what people make in China I believe, so I see no reason for anybody to complain.

I want to retract my earlier statement that the podcast is funny. It only started out that way. When you get really into (t)his story, understand what is going on in that factory, it isn't funny at all. People died while this Mike Daisey person was over there, because some were pulling 34-hour shifts. The living conditions are horrific. They have 11-year olds working there. Forced, no. Necessary, well, families who are hungry.

Yes Apple ][, maybe the wages are inline, maybe they aren't enslaved. But if you are able to open your mind, and truly understand how these people are living their lives, working under these conditions, you would understand that it is bad. So bad, I wish nobody had to endure this. And that includes you. Because I love people. Without them, I'd be alone.

And without an iPhone. But that is not a thing that matters in life. Life does.

Philippe

PS If you feel like replying, please do it in an personal message, and leave this thread on topic, even though I may have digressed.
post #26 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by Apple ][ View Post

Let them jump. These workers are lucky that I'm not their employer. Is anybody forcing anybody to work there? Threatening mass suicide is a pathetic thing to do, and I would've let them try and do it, to see if they could back up their lame threat with action, and not just talk.

I'm sure your bosses would think you were such a genius for calling their bluff. I'm sure they would especially be impressed if someone did kill themselves, and you were still so heartless.

But I'm mostly sure, you've never really managed that many thousands of workers in China before.
post #27 of 48
The only reason they drag Apple's name into such articles is that there is a chance Apple will show some concern. No such chance with MS under Balmer.
post #28 of 48
People in this forum act like these workers are idiots, they knew exactly what sort of reaction they would get in the media just by threatening suicide. I doubt anybody had the intention of jumping. The intention was pretty clear, draw media attention to put the company in poor light.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

Americans will at most walk in small concentric circles carrying home made sign with semi-clever quips on a sticks or simply invade some public place, start a drum circles and take turns using the Starbuck's bathroom, but the the Chinese are hardcore.

The huge difference here is that the Chinese workers Weill actually work. Most of those people using the Starbucks bathroom have never actually worked a day in their life. Sure they ave "Occupied" jobs but that isn't the same thing as actually working. There is a vast difference between useless people in the USA protesting their inability to find work and people in china actually trying to improve their lives.
Quote:
Seriously though, I can't even begin to imagine what these people go through if they think mass suicide is a viable solution.

They don't go through anything that any other worker worldwide doesn't go through. The difference is that they are learning to manipulate the media. This can be good or bad, depending on he direction they take.
post #29 of 48
I know of at least a couple of cases where manufactures transferring production lines to china where told to leave the automation here. The preference in china is to try to employ as many people as possible. It should be pretty obvious why this is the case.

Quote:
Originally Posted by freediverx View Post

If Foxconn had the ability to replace the workers with robots don't you think they would have already done so?

Nope. However it is also a mistake not to believe that Automation isn't used in these plants. Some things these days aren't practicle to do without automation, however where possible humans are used in great numbers.
post #30 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by Apple ][ View Post

Let them jump. These workers are lucky that I'm not their employer. Is anybody forcing anybody to work there? Threatening mass suicide is a pathetic thing to do, and I would've let them try and do it, to see if they could back up their lame threat with action, and not just talk.

It was an exceedingly stupid move to respond to this manipulation by the workers.
Quote:
This story is also kind of funny, because it's one of the few times where there is a story about Foxconn, and Apple has nothing to do with it.

I remember reading about how the suicide rate at Foxconn was lower than that of the general population, so even with a mass suicide, and 50 Chinese offing themselves, it wouldn't have made that much of a difference, statistically speaking.

You know over the years I've had the unfortunate experience of knowing people that offed themselves or tried too right here in the USA. Funny how nothing of note is said in the media about the places they worked. This excessive focus on a few suicides in china is morbid and frankly a form of trolling of the media by the left.
post #31 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by Apple ][ View Post

Let them jump. These workers are lucky that I'm not their employer. Is anybody forcing anybody to work there? .

Really, This is the level of your compassion? We're you abused as a child? It is hard enough to imagine a human being can be so callous about another, but to take the time to publicly demonstrate it is astounding. Looks like you may be CEO material, or maybe your just ignorant to the facts. I truly do hope the best for you.
post #32 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Apple's Chinese manufacturing partner Foxconn has settled a dispute with plant workers who threatened mass suicide over wages and working conditions at the company's Wuhan factory which produces Microsoft's Xbox 360 gaming console. [...]

Glad to hear it's been resolved. Would have hated to see that particular definition of "Red Ring of Death."

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post #33 of 48
In case any one wonders, suicide is a crime in US. My friend left a note about killing himself after major loss in stock trade; and, he was arrested.
post #34 of 48
Shouldn't' it say Microsoft's manufacturing partner settles with employees? After all it's an X-Box plant not an iPhone factory.
post #35 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

In its official statement, the company noted that most of the approximately 150 protestors had accepted the proposed terms and have returned to work

In other news, the other 429,850 FoxConn workers are expected to go on strike on Monday.
post #36 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris_CA View Post

In other news, the other 429,850 FoxConn workers are expected to go on strike on Monday.

They should have over 1.3 million workers right now.

"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

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"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

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post #37 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

Americans will at most walk in small concentric circles carrying home made sign with semi-clever quips on a sticks or simply invade some public place, start a drum circles and take turns using the Starbuck's bathroom, but the the Chinese are hardcore.

Seriously though, I can't even begin to imagine what these people go through if they think mass suicide is a viable solution.

Collective Bargaining taken to the extreme. Too bad that wouldn't work in Wisconsin. Governor Scott Walker would probably encourage the suicides.
post #38 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by Apple ][ View Post

Is anybody forcing anybody to work there?

No if they want they can choose for them and their family's to starve to death due to having no money.
post #39 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by Radjin View Post

Shouldn't' it say Microsoft's manufacturing partner settles with employees? After all it's an X-Box plant not an iPhone factory.

Yes, but is Foxconn, the same company that makes iPhone and other Apple products, which means a hot potato for public relations departments of companies that have dealings with them. Are Microsoft, Apple or otherwise.

A couple of months ago I spoke with a Mexican who told me that a factory of this country was bought by Foxconn, when they tried to change the working conditions to be equivalent to the factory in China they discovered that the Mexicans are not the Chinese, mexicans protest, a lot. At the end Foxconn withdrew its intentions or at least the majority.

From this we can deduce that the working conditions of their factories is not located in just a couple of factories, company policy

I think things like this do much harm to the image of the companies that are related to Foxconn, the company is to be, and they should think about whether they are worth paying so little for their products in exchange for bad press.
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post #40 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilBoogie View Post

Actually, they did when they wrote that Microsoft is a client.

But they used a headline that referenced Apple, implying that this protest linvolved workers for that client, not one of the others. Which was in fact the truth

A non tech's thoughts on Apple stuff 

(She's family so I'm a little biased)

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A non tech's thoughts on Apple stuff 

(She's family so I'm a little biased)

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