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macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
54,487
16,567



Earlier this month, the staff at Munich, Germany's Apple Store Rosenstraße formed a "Betriebsrat" [Google translate] -- an official labor council that focuses on the working conditions within the store.

IFO Apple Store:
It's the first such council within Apple's Germany stores... and will deal with issues such as routine overtime, sales pressure from management, high noise levels within the store, and other health and safety matters... Employees will eventually expand the councils to all eight Apple stores in Germany.



A tipster sent us this photo from within the store, showing the office the Betriebsrat has taken within the store. The office, according to the tipster, originally belonged to the Store Leader. The iPad to the right of the entrance says "bitte rein kommen!" which translates to "please come in!"

The picture appears legitimate, with the circular sign on the door matching those within other Apple Stores we've seen, and the GPS data within the photo matches the location of the Apple Store Rosenstraße in Munich. We have removed the data from the picture for privacy reasons.

Last year, it was reported that Apple Store managers were participating in "union awareness" training, covering the legal dos and don'ts of dealing with unions. While not an actual employee union, the betriebsrat is a legally protected entity in Germany.

Article Link: Labor Council at Munich Apple Store Takes Over Manager's Office
 

jayhawk11

macrumors 6502a
Oct 19, 2007
774
283
Good. Retail staff get treated like crap compared to their corporate counterparts.
 

JD92

macrumors 6502a
Apr 14, 2005
934
31
Great news. Anyone who's worked in both a unionised and non-unionised retail environment will know how big a difference a union makes.
 

rmwebs

macrumors 68040
Apr 6, 2007
3,140
0
<offtopic>

Are they using an iPad as a door sign there :eek: Cant help thinking that it'll have some major screen burn. My iPad 1 was showing a ghosted safari after only 2 years of light use.

</offtopic>

Glad they are able to do this, Retail work is horrible, customers are *******s and its the minimum wage guys that take all the flack.
 

Noble Seven

macrumors newbie
Feb 4, 2012
7
0
I've always wondered, how do you find GPS data in a photo, and more importantly, how do you remove it? This would be helpful to me, thanks.
 

Gemütlichkeit

macrumors 65816
Nov 17, 2010
1,276
0
Last time I was in that store I snapped a picture of the stair case. Nothing out of the ordinary, the same apple stairs you see at most stores and two "guards" made me delete it from my camera. They weren't store employee's, they were dressed completely different.
 

sth

macrumors 6502a
Aug 9, 2006
570
10
The old world
Good to see that Apple isn't trying to stop labor councils in their retail stores. While they are indeed protected by law in germany, many of the big retail chains in Germany are doing everything in their power to prevent their employees from forming a labor council.

PS: According to Wikipedia, "works council" might be a better translation.

I've always wondered, how do you find GPS data in a photo, and more importantly, how do you remove it? This would be helpful to me, thanks.
EXIF-Data. You can view it with OSX's Preview app. Just open an image and select Tools -> Show Inspector.
 
Last edited:

tarasis

macrumors 6502a
Oct 26, 2007
639
62
Here, there and everywhere
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We live in Germany and my wife has always known them (in English) that it's called Workers Council.
 

pancakedrawer

macrumors regular
Dec 13, 2010
190
6
Melbourne
Last time I was in that store I snapped a picture of the stair case. Nothing out of the ordinary, the same apple stairs you see at most stores and two "guards" made me delete it from my camera. They weren't store employee's, they were dressed completely different.

That's certainly illegal in Australia and the US. Not sure about Germany. In any case it's pretty irrelevant as it would be easily recovered in a few minutes using freeware.
 

JoeG4

macrumors 68030
Jan 11, 2002
2,732
329
Cool. Funny note, I've seen digital door signs used before (they use them for the meeting rooms in my uni's community building).. just not that often. Funny, a piece of paper would have sufficed eh? XD
 

Mike Oxard

macrumors 6502a
Oct 22, 2009
804
456
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pancakedrawer said:
Last time I was in that store I snapped a picture of the stair case. Nothing out of the ordinary, the same apple stairs you see at most stores and two "guards" made me delete it from my camera. They weren't store employee's, they were dressed completely different.

That's certainly illegal in Australia and the US. Not sure about Germany. In any case it's pretty irrelevant as it would be easily recovered in a few minutes using freeware.

Or PhotoStream!
 

Laird Knox

macrumors 68000
Jun 18, 2010
1,906
1,225
Cool. Funny note, I've seen digital door signs used before (they use them for the meeting rooms in my uni's community building).. just not that often. Funny, a piece of paper would have sufficed eh? XD

Depends on how it is being used. We have LCD touchscreens outside of every conference room in our building. They are all tied into Outlook scheduler. Meeting rooms can be scheduled at the touchscreen or from your desk. Makes it very easy to see what rooms are available without running all over the building.
 

mikefla

macrumors 6502
Feb 27, 2011
447
52
Wow, this is just great. Just keeps getting better!

Eventually a union will be formed Worldwide, it will be called ALU and then Apple will really have to Kiss A**! Ahaha

Mike

----------

Depends on how it is being used. We have LCD touchscreens outside of every conference room in our building. They are all tied into Outlook scheduler. Meeting rooms can be scheduled at the touchscreen or from your desk. Makes it very easy to see what rooms are available without running all over the building.

Sounds like your company has money to spend. Are they hiring? I'm looking for a job :)


-Mike

----------

Last time I was in that store I snapped a picture of the stair case. Nothing out of the ordinary, the same apple stairs you see at most stores and two "guards" made me delete it from my camera. They weren't store employee's, they were dressed completely different.

Apple is running a top secret stair program Worldwide. Beware! You probably got caught by the AIA, the equivalent of the CIA. This is too funny :D

-Mike
 

jonnysods

macrumors 604
Sep 20, 2006
7,219
4,402
There & Back Again
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Good for these guys. I hear good things about Apple but working retail does suck.
 

MaxDrago

macrumors member
Sep 14, 2009
36
9
Glad they are able to do this, Retail work is horrible, customers are *******s and its the minimum wage guys that take all the flack.

Isn't that what Managers are for? Once you stop letting me help you, I can toss you a manager shaped treat to chew on. That's what they pay them for.

"Manager to register 4... Next!"
 

charliex5

macrumors regular
Jun 27, 2008
181
0
Seattle, WA
Last time I was in that store I snapped a picture of the stair case. Nothing out of the ordinary, the same apple stairs you see at most stores and two "guards" made me delete it from my camera. They weren't store employee's, they were dressed completely different.

That's crazy. I was in an Apple Store in Chicago and just asked if I could snap some photos of the store and they were very friendly about letting me do it.
 

rikscha

macrumors 6502a
Mar 8, 2010
778
382
London
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charliex5 said:
Last time I was in that store I snapped a picture of the stair case. Nothing out of the ordinary, the same apple stairs you see at most stores and two "guards" made me delete it from my camera. They weren't store employee's, they were dressed completely different.

That's crazy. I was in an Apple Store in Chicago and just asked if I could snap some photos of the store and they were very friendly about letting me do it.

This is illegal in Germany as well of course. Depending on how they asked I would have made a fuss out of it. They probably asked you nicely. Nothing against friendly asking, in the end you should have asked first.
 

Spinnetti

macrumors regular
Apr 26, 2005
204
27
Kentucky
Last time I was in that store I snapped a picture of the stair case. Nothing out of the ordinary, the same apple stairs you see at most stores and two "guards" made me delete it from my camera. They weren't store employee's, they were dressed completely different.

Really?

I was there in October and took pictures of my kids on that staircase and other pictures. There was no hint of hassle. Also, I was at the Chicago one and did the same, sans kids ;)
 

Mad-B-One

macrumors 6502a
Jun 24, 2011
789
4
San Antonio, Texas
If I remember German law correctly...

...if a company has more than 18 full-time employees, they have to have one full-time worker councilman. Also, it is illegal to block unions or employees councils from forming. Management has no access to meetings without invitation of these meetings (usually held monthly with all staff) and if you are a German Incorporated, one of the board members has to be a councilman if you have a certain number of employees.

Now, you might see this as way too intrusive, but the reality of things is that having your workers closely involved in management makes them actually support the company better in hard times. The employees council is informed about the numbers this way and if the only thing saving the company is cuts in pay or unpaid overtime, they might even agree to that to save jobs. Sure, it is a bit more complex with unions involved etc. but if you look on which countries came well through the last crisis, Germany is one of them. And if you thing that the influence of workers in bigger companies will lead to a salery hike, compare what a well-trained and skilled car manufacturer worker makes in Germany to hte one in the US: Last I read was less than 60% of the US worker. The trade off is more secure jobs, a career path, and a lot of social services (such as health insurance including family with no deductible and no cap, vision, and dental included).

If you think this all comes from Socialism, you are wrong. Most basics of the social laws were formed under the Emperor in 1872/73 and they survived 2 world wars.

By the way, these regulations brought down company ventures like WalMart who tried to push their ideology into a German substity and failed after class action law suits for violating privacy laws.
 

Mac2012

macrumors regular
Nov 6, 2011
158
0
Wow, this is just great. Just keeps getting better!

Eventually a union will be formed Worldwide, it will be called ALU and then Apple will really have to Kiss A**! Ahaha

Mike

----------



Sounds like your company has money to spend. Are they hiring? I'm looking for a job :)


-Mike

----------



Apple is running a top secret stair program Worldwide. Beware! You probably got caught by the AIA, the equivalent of the CIA. This is too funny :D

-Mike
If you ask me, 9/10's of the Apple retail employees are NOTHING more than old GAP employees because they want people with "retail" experience, not on hands working knowledge of Macs or Apple products in general... they should fire most those stupid fad freaks... they aren't very knowledgable at all... just stupid kids.
 

charlituna

macrumors G3
Jun 11, 2008
9,636
815
Los Angeles, CA
That's certainly illegal in Australia and the US.

Apple's stores are considered "private property" (aka publicly accessible but privately controlled) for such matters and so the 'no photography in the store' is totally a legit rule in the US. As would be one against taking photos in the stores employee only area. I'm betting that rule is allowed in Germany as well so I hope there were no security cameras to show who took the photo or council or not, they might have just fired themselves.
 

charlituna

macrumors G3
Jun 11, 2008
9,636
815
Los Angeles, CA
Wow, this is just great. Just keeps getting better!

Eventually a union will be formed Worldwide, it will be called ALU and then Apple will really have to Kiss A**! Ahaha

On the contrary. Unions are country specific and aren't a guarantee for all areas. Or even that their power would be the same. This group isn't even an union in the fullest sense that Americans understand the term. More like an advisory group set up so employees have someone to bring gripes to without risking pissing off the boss. They can't dictate policy etc. They aren't using the leaders office because they have that power but simply because about a year ago Apple started a new policy of having all the managers on the floor and started removing offices as unneeded.

Folks like Corey what's his name and friends are just a small group of the employees. If one did a survey of every employee you might find that they are far from a majority opinion about there being issues or how to change them.

----------

That's crazy. I was in an Apple Store in Chicago and just asked if I could snap some photos of the store and they were very friendly about letting me do it.

Well sure. Almost every store has a pollcy about no photography without permission. You asked for permission. They granted. They were also likely watching to see exactly what you were taking photos of. Including no other customers, no 'where are the exits and security cameras' etc

THe other person apparently didn't ask permission and was taking a photo of an egress. From a security point of view that could have been a tourist, or a theft scouting the place. Guards are paid to assume the latter

Some stores are more lax about the asking permission part depending on traffic etc. If you aren't making a bit todo, blocking walk ways etc and you appear to be just a tourist they will leave it be. But the stores are either breaking the rules and shouldn't be letting you, or they have gotten permission to be more lax. Enjoy it where you find it
 

tod

macrumors regular
Oct 3, 2009
162
99
Ohio
I find it hard to believe Apple would use crappy drop ceilings even in the back room. I thought they stood for quality through and through.
 
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