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The Agony and the Ecstasy of Steve Jobs Tim Cook. Photo by Joan Marcus/forbes.com. Foxconn Factory in Shenzhen, China: Producing the World’s Gadgetry. One million people total employed by Foxconn in China. 430,000 at Shenzhen factory Supplier of 50% of world’s consumer electronics

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The Agony and the Ecstasy of Steve Jobs Tim Cook


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    1. The Agony and the Ecstasy of Steve Jobs Tim Cook Maurine Bryan

    2. Photo by Joan Marcus/forbes.com Maurine Bryan

    3. Foxconn Factory in Shenzhen, China: Producing the World’s Gadgetry • One million people total employed by Foxconnin China. 430,000 at Shenzhen factory • Supplier of 50% of world’s consumer electronics • Manufactured products include: • Apple iPhone, iPad • Computers, components and electronics for Acer, Dell, Hewlett-Packard, Motorola, Nintendo, Nokia and Sony • Second-generation Amazon Kindle Fire to be assembled and built here for delivery in early 2012 Maurine Bryan

    4. Human Costs to Our Love of Gadgetry Suicides at the Foxconn factory complex in Shenzhen, China • 4 suicides in 2007-2009 • 14 suicides in 2010 (plus 4 more attempted) • 3 suicides in 2011 • Age of workers ranged between 17-28 years old; 16 males and 5 females Working conditions reported at the Shenzhen factory • 10 people housed per onsite dorm room (built for 7) at the factory complex • 12+ hour work shifts and mandatory overtime; 1 person died after a 34-hour shift • Inhumane, abusive management • Discrimination between Taiwanese and Chinese migrant workers • No social interaction allowed during work shifts • Assembly line work risks: repetitive stress injuries, crippled hands, back problems • Inadequate workplace accident reporting • Multiple Chinese university reports describe Foxconn as a “labor camp” Maurine Bryan

    5. The Story in Social Media • The story broke in 2010 with a blog posting of photos taken from an iPhone within the factory. • Steve Jobs sent Tim Cook (chief of operations) to Foxconn, stating: “We’re all over this.” • During the week of May 24-28, 2010, 51% of total Twitter activity was about Apple, including this story. • Chinese site Weibo.com broke story of one Foxconn suicide in 2011. The Twitter-like site informs Chinese ‘netizens’ and promotes activism on human rights issues when government is silent.(Weibo, pronounced way-bwah, means “microblog” in Mandarin.) Maurine Bryan

    6. Since Tim Cook’s Visit in 2010 • Worker wages increased • 24/7 counseling services made available to workers • Suicide-prevention netting placed atop buildings • Workers sign no-suicide pledge • Contract agencies that used underage workers (13 and under) terminated • Robot-automated production process in development to do some assembly work (costs more than human assembly) • Foxconn facility in Brazil under construction to assemble iPads for entry into Brazilian market to avoid import tariff and to offset increased demand in Americas • New efforts by Apple to work proactively with “green” organizations to examine supplier workplaces and sustainable business practices prior to production Maurine Bryan

    7. Apple Executives on Twitter Maurine Bryan

    8. Mike Daiseyand Social Media Source: http://mikedaisey.blogspot.com/ Maurine Bryan

    9. Story To Be Continued: Tech Development + Social Media • When I saw his play in April, Mike Daisey’s recommendations were to: • Write a letter to Steve Jobs (when he was on medical leave from Apple). • Write a letter to the editor of your local (online or print) newspaper. • Write your elected officials. • Daisey tells his story and promotes it through traditional media. • For me, his story omissions and low-tech solutions miss the mark. Play it forward: • Tweet with your new gadget • Apple has embraced Twitter with iOS 5 in latest iPhone and iPad products. (To install Twitter on your Apple device, go to Settings, Twitter, click Install.) • Urge accountability on the part of Apple and others • Use Twitter handles and Facebook pages of multinational corporations, suppliers and governments to be socially responsible. • Digital citizens in China are gaining awareness and enlightenment using social media, and applying bottom-up pressure to officials using Weibo Maurine Bryan

    10. ??? Time to upgrade: What will Mike Daisey do? • Buy superior gadgets made at Foxconn and use social media to urge gadget makers to manufacture in socially responsible ways • Spend money on “lesser” gadgets not made at Foxconn • Opt-out of techsocietyandbuy nothing Maurine Bryan

    11. References • Crump, Mark. Analyzing Apple’s social (media) anxiety disorder. http://gigaom.com/apple/analyzing-apples-social-media-anxiety-disorder/ • Daisey, Mike. Against nostalgia. http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/06/opinion/jobs-looked-to-the-future.html • Daisey, Mike. The Agony and the Ecstasy of Steve Jobs. Created and performed by Mike Daisey. • Dream Work China http://www.dreamworkchina.tv/en/ • Evans, Jonny. How Apple can transform Foxconn’s iPhone factories. http://blogs.computerworld.com/16253/how_apple_can_change_the_world_for_foxconn_factory_workers • Fleet, Dave. Why Apple doesn’t need social media. http://davefleet.com/2008/05/why-apple-doesnt-need-social-media • Helft, Miguel. Apple says Chinese supplier made changes after suicides. http://bits.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/02/15/apple-says-chinese-supplier-made-changes-after-suicides • Humphries, Matthew. Amazon orders second-gen Kindle Fire from Foxconn. http://www.geek.com/articles/gadgets/amazon-orders-second-gen-kindle-fire-from-foxconn-20111019 • Isherwood, Charles. Moral issues behind iPhone and its makers. http://theater.nytimes.com/2011/10/18/theater/reviews/the-agony-and-the-ecstasy-of-steve-jobs-review.html • Lim, Louisa. Chinese activists turn to Twitter in rights cases. http://www.npr.org/2011/10/28/141606687/chinese-activists-turn-to-twitter-in-rights-cases • Ludwig, Adam. Mike Daisey is mad at Steve Jobs, and he wants you to get mad too. http://www.forbes.com/sites/techonomy/2011/11/04/mike-daisey-is-mad-at-steve-jobs-and-he-wants-you-to-get-mad-too/ • PEJ New Media Index: May 24-28, 2010. In social media, technology drives the news agenda. http://www.journalism.org/index_report/social_media_technology_drives_news_agenda • Rampell, Catherine. A trip to China can make a guy hate his iPhone.http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/02/theater/mike-daisey-discusses-the-agony-and-ecstasy-of-steve-jobs.html?_r=1 • Schwartz, Ariel. Is Tim Cook’s Apple going to stop poisoning China? http://www.fastcoexist.com/1678763/is-tim-cooks-apple-going-to-stop-poisoning-china • Seltzer, Larry. The Crimes of the Chinese, Foxconn, Steve Jobs and ourselves. http://betanews.com/2011/04/25/the-crimes-of-the-chinese-foxconn-steve-jobs-and-ourselves/ • Wikipedia entry. Arthur Lewis (economist).http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arthur_Lewis_(economist) • Wikipedia entry. Foxconn suicides.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Foxconn_suicides Maurine Bryan