Writing to Apple about iPhone suicides, illness

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by Mala, Feb 27, 2011.

  1. Mala macrumors 6502

    Nov 19, 2003
    Dear friends, I and a group of others wish to write to Apple requesting that it changes its manufacturing practices for iPhones.

    (For context, here are some links to stories about the illnesses and suicides in the factories of Apple suppliers in China):






    Apple is normally a very decent, good company, and we feel sure that if enough people write gentle letters requesting it to ensure that its subsidiaries' workers conditions are as good, just and fair as they would be in America or in Europe, it will act on these requests.

    I'd love to buy the new iPhone when it comes out, but don't feel that I can morally do so when it's produced under such conditions.

    Now - the advice I'm looking for. Can you suggest to me the best people to write to, in Ireland (where I and my friends are) and abroad? We want to send our letters to people who will have the power to change things, and the ethics to wish to.

    Thanks in advance for the help I know you'll kindly give.
  2. Xeperu macrumors 6502

    May 3, 2010
    A was at Apple last week. I took a picture of the room where the people who care are situated.

  3. nyfliiboy macrumors regular

    Jun 15, 2010
    ^ i lol'ed at that...on a side note unless you get a couple hundred thousand to a million supporters nothing will change. Your actions will go ignored.
  4. Mala thread starter macrumors 6502

    Nov 19, 2003
    Maybe, maybe not. Amnesty has a letter-writing programme in which people write in support of prisoners of conscience to members of what are sometimes terrible, repressive governments. It's an extraordinarily successful programme, and prisoners have stories of being released or their conditions bettered.

    I think you're wrong about Apple; I think it's a company that is prouder of the wonderful revolutions it has made in personal computing and telephone technology than it is avid for profit. I hope so.
  5. yetanotherdave macrumors 68000


    Apr 27, 2007
    Bristol, England
    While I definitely support better working conditions for these workers, you're kidding yourself if you think you can find a phone that wasn't built under similar conditions. Apple just gets more press than motorola/htc/nokia etc because it makes a more "interesting" story.
  6. Mala thread starter macrumors 6502

    Nov 19, 2003
    This too can change.

    Anyway.... would you have any names and addresses, lads? Would be really helpful, if you'd be so kind.
  7. yetanotherdave macrumors 68000


    Apr 27, 2007
    Bristol, England
    Absolutely, and I totally support it, but you can go ahead and buy your iphone knowing it's no morally better or worse than any other option.

    The other layer of resistance of course is that these aren't apple factories, they owned and run by companies like Foxconn who make the products for apple and others. All apple can do is ask them to change, and threaten to move to another supplier, they can't directly change things.
  8. Mala thread starter macrumors 6502

    Nov 19, 2003
    The Quaker company Cadbury, in the 19th century, faced something like this. The idealistic people who ran the company were caught in a quandary - the island of Sao Tome, the best place in the world to grow chocolate, was secretly using slaves.

    The Cadburys kept sending investigators, trying to get to the bottom of this, but they didn't feel that they could stop buying from Sao Tome and give a huge competitive advantage to the other chocolate makers.

    It ended with a court case, huge and unpleasant publicity, and a draining away of customer loyalty and liking.

    Cadbury's got together with the other companies and withdrew from the island, until Portugal and Sao Tome changed their methods and ended the slavery. That's why you can now eat a bar of chocolate without the sour taste of human fear and pain left on your tongue.

    But really, rather than saying "it's not going to work", lads, could you not just tell us who to write to?
  9. Xeperu macrumors 6502

    May 3, 2010
    Ye funny, "Other suppliers". Foxconn is pretty much the only company that can deal with Apples call off.

    Also before you go on a freak-out with your humanist morals, please do some research on the average suicide rate in China compared to that of Foxconn employees. You'll be pleasantly surprised.

    Also I never had a sour taste for slave labour on my tongue. Mmm, Cadbury's....
  10. Tailpike1153 macrumors 6502a


    Aug 31, 2004
    Bellevue, WA
    Good to see that you care. No one deserves to get sick or die because of their job.
  11. IndianBird macrumors 6502a

    Dec 28, 2009
    Quit and do another job
  12. nostresshere macrumors 68030

    Dec 30, 2010
    So true.

    But maybe you should research the living conditions these people had before these factories opened.

    And, if you want to help humanity, there are plenty of options right here in America. We have lots of people that would love to work in these conditions vs living in their car or under a bridge.
  13. Mala thread starter macrumors 6502

    Nov 19, 2003
    Mmm, Cadbury's indeed - and all the other chocolate that is now produced under good conditions. Cadbury's and the other chocolate companies changed their manufacturing by getting together to do so.

    IndianBird says: "Quit and do another job" - but this is not an option for the impoverished people who work for Apple's subsidiaries. Lucky you, if you have that option. May it remain with you, no matter what happens to your own economy.

    From Salon:


    But I don't want to change how you think - if you're happy to live knowing that your luxuries are produced by slaves, as were Americans before their civil war, that's your privilege.

    Rather than arguing, would it be possible - if you know them - to give me the addresses (in work, of course) of senior Apple people in the US and Ireland?
  14. Tailpike1153 macrumors 6502a


    Aug 31, 2004
    Bellevue, WA
    Food for thought

    Mala, here is why you might feel that other comments are negative towards the cause. Even if Apple were to leave a supplier/fabricator on its own, that other company may still have a long line of customers. Take FoxConn into consideration. Here are some Foxconn's other customers:

    * Acer (Taiwan)
    * Amazon.com (United States)
    * Asus (Taiwan)
    * Intel (United States)
    * Cisco (United States)
    * Hewlett-Packard (United States)
    * Dell (United States)
    * Nintendo (Japan)
    * Nokia (Finland)
    * Microsoft (United States)
    * Sony (Japan)
    * Sony Ericsson (Japan/Sweden)
    * Samsung (Korea)
    * Vizio (United States)

    Glad to see that Apple is being scrutinized but who is watching the rest?
  15. Tailpike1153 macrumors 6502a


    Aug 31, 2004
    Bellevue, WA
    Some contact information

    Here is some conatc info for FoxConn's parent company

    Hon Hai Precision Industry Co., Ltd.
    2 Zihyou Street, Tucheng City
    Taipei County, 236

    Investor Contact :

    Edmund C.A. Ding
    +886-2-2268-3466, ext. 1503

    James Lee
    Deputy Spokesperson
    +86-755-2812-9588, ext.71483

    Other Contact :
  16. Interstella5555 macrumors 603


    Jun 30, 2008
    If you're serious about this, I would honestly start by contacting my Senators and Representatives, both state and federal. It will help if you have a fair number of constituents involved, and try and get as many as you can to get a meeting with whom ever that person is in your area.
  17. CZK macrumors 6502a

    Oct 25, 2010
    This is how a corporation thinks:

    Money > People

    Dont look too far into it.
  18. Mala thread starter macrumors 6502

    Nov 19, 2003
    Thank you very much for those contacts, and those names, Tailpike1153. I'll add the contacts to my list.

    For the moment, we'll just be writing to Apple and Foxconn - but it seems that Apple is in the same bind that Cadbury's was during the slavery scandal: that its competitors are using labour conditions that are unacceptable, but if it changes it will lose competitive advantage. The solution for Cadbury's and the other chocolate companies was to meet and agree to change their way of employment.

    (There's an interesting book called Chocolate Wars about the chocolate industry, which has more detail about this: http://www.amazon.com/Chocolate-War...8201/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1298820885&sr=8-1)

    If no one here can help me, I'll find the addresses elsewhere; I'd hoped that someone could, but perhaps not.
  19. Mala thread starter macrumors 6502

    Nov 19, 2003
    Interstella5555, I'm not an American, but if any Americans would like to take your advice to contact their senators and representatives, that would be wonderful.
  20. eternlgladiator macrumors 68000


    Jun 20, 2010
    Twin Cities
    I've been to china and seen places these people work and while I won't object to your cause it'll be almost impossible for you to make an impact. Until you can turn the economic tides and make it cheaper to produce these things in America again nothing will change. I've seen the pictures of foxconn and while I know they set them up they place still looks nicer than lots of other places over there. The employees are lucky they got a raise last year.
  21. quasinormal, Feb 27, 2011
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2011

    quasinormal macrumors 6502a

    Oct 26, 2007
    Sydney, Australia.
    Injustice is everywhere. In Australia we have the ridiculous situation where an unfortunate 5% or more of the working population suffer unemployment, not because there aren't necessarily any jobs for them, but because the Reserve Bank and the nominally left wing government worry about inflation if unemployment dips under 5%. The unemployed here aren't left to starve, but receive a payment close to half of what is considered a poverty level of income. Meanwhile they make handy scapegoats.

    It would really help if we removed the logs out of own eyes first.

  22. Mala thread starter macrumors 6502

    Nov 19, 2003
    Could I ask you a question, lads, based on this concept that it's always that way, so it's always going to be this way? If your neighbour were savagely beating his small children, would you feel it was your duty not to interfere?
  23. neko girl macrumors 6502a

    neko girl

    Jan 20, 2011
    I understand that you are concerned after reading many articles. However, have you considered that maybe the articles are adding some part of sensationalism and blame on Apple as well?

    If you are serious about it, interview some workers, find their condition and plight. It's not hard to do if you know Chinese and can traverse QQ and their web based social networks.

    I would also try and get a better statement out of Apple by contacting their PR and legal departments.

    Until you get both sides of the story, I'm not sure how you can realistically drive an effort. That's assuming you're serious..
  24. Mala thread starter macrumors 6502

    Nov 19, 2003
    Believe me, if those articles spoke a word of a libel, Apple would sue.
  25. hismikeness macrumors regular

    Jun 2, 2009
    13 suicides out of Foxconn's 920,000 employees? Underwhelmed. Besides, China could probably use some thinning out.

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