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Steve Jobs’s Legacy of Slave Labor

October 11, 2011

From this Gawker article:

In 2010, the Daily Mail managed to get a reporter inside a facility in China that manufactures products for Apple and the paper shared a bit about what life is like:

With the complex at peak production, operating 24 hours a day, seven days a week to meet the global demand for Apple phones and computers, a typical day begins with the Chinese national anthem being played over loudspeakers, with the words: ‘Arise, arise, arise, millions of hearts with one mind.’

As part of this Orwellian control, the public address system constantly relays propaganda, such as how many products have been made; how a new basketball court has been built for the workers; and why workers should ‘value efficiency every minute, every second’.

With other company slogans painted on workshop walls – including exhortations to ‘achieve goals unless the sun no longer rises’ and to ‘gather all of the elite and Foxconn will get stronger and stronger’ – the employees work up to 15-hour shifts.

Down narrow, prison-like corridors, they sleep in cramped rooms in triple-decked bunk beds to save space, with simple bamboo mats for mattresses.

Despite summer temperatures hitting 35 degrees, with 90 per cent humidity, there is no air-conditioning. Workers say some dormitories house more than 40 people and are infested with ants and cockroaches, with the noise and stench making it difficult to sleep.

A company can be judged by how it treats its lowliest workers. It sets an example for the rest of the company or in Apple’s case, the world.

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