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Chinese Employee Loses iPhone Prototype, Kills Self

kdawson posted more than 5 years ago | from the taking-the-job-way-too-seriously dept.

Cellphones 514

tlhIngan writes "Physical intimidation of a Foxconn employee, 25 year-old Sun Danyong, and a possibly-illegal search of his house may have led to suicide after an iPhone prototype in his possession was lost. Foxconn is Apple's long-time manufacturing partner for the iPhone. Entrusted with 16 iPhone prototypes, Danyong discovered that one was missing and searched the factory for it. When it didn't turn up, he reported the incident to his boss, who ordered his apartment searched. There are reports of physical intimidation by Foxconn security personnel. This ended tragically on Thursday at 3 AM, when Danyong jumped from his apartment building to his death." VentureBeat notes that "Apple exerts immense pressure on its business partners [to] help it maintain secrecy." An Apple spokesperson said this to CNet: "We are saddened by the tragic loss of this young employee, and we are awaiting results of the investigations into his death. We require our suppliers to treat all workers with dignity and respect."

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Who cares (-1, Flamebait)

clarkkent09 (1104833) | more than 5 years ago | (#28773775)

VentureBeat notes that Apple exerts immense pressure on its business partners [to] help it maintain secrecy.The implication being that this somehow caused his death? Here are some thoughts for the unfortunate gentleman in question. 1. Consider the value of a human life, starting with your own, and compare it to the value of the secrecy of some cellphone prototype 2. Consider your other options. Your bosses were mean to you: sue them, find another job, learn to live with it. Are any of these better than jumping out of the fucking window? 3. Consider the safety and mental wellbeing of the people who might be minding their own business and walking their children to school as your dumb skull slams into the pavement in front of them. If you've got to kill yourself, please don't get other people involved. 4. In short, get a life. Well, too late now...

Re:Who cares (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28773837)

Your bosses were mean to you: sue them, find another job, learn to live with it.

Yes, because that works so well in China, right?

Get some fucking compassion, idiot.

Re:Who cares (0)

clarkkent09 (1104833) | more than 5 years ago | (#28773881)

Why not? Believe it or not people are able to sue when they are harmed by somebody, even in China.

Re:Who cares (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28773905)

So tell me, what color is the sky in your world?

Re:Who cares (1)

OrangeMonkey11 (1553753) | more than 5 years ago | (#28773953)

I as well like to live in your sugar coated world

Re:Who cares (5, Insightful)

Shakrai (717556) | more than 5 years ago | (#28773991)

Why not? Believe it or not people are able to sue when they are harmed by somebody, even in China.

You realize that families who lost their children as a direct result of incompetence and negligence haven't even been able to seek redress [timesonline.co.uk] under the Chinese system? You really think some poor bastard working for an industrial conglomerate stands a chance? I think you've wandered away from the reservation on this one....

Parents devastated at the loss of sons and daughters, most born under China's strict "one couple, one child" family planning policy, have sought a government accounting and a proper explanation as to why so many schools fell down.

Police and local officials have blocked parents of the dead children from staging protests to seek information. An Amnesty International report this week chronicles instances in which parents were detained by police while seeking answers from courts.

Lawyers who took on such cases came under pressure to drop their involvement.

Did he jump? (1)

Colin Smith (2679) | more than 5 years ago | (#28773899)

I mean, you're completely right... So it seems kind of unlikely that someone would kill themselves over a phone.
 

Re:Did he jump? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28773943)

You've obviously never been to /b/.

And an iphone is much more valuable than a ipod.

Re:Did he jump? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28774055)

You've obviously never been to /b/.

And an iphone is much more valuable than a ipod.

Rules 1 & 2 damnit.

Re:Did he jump? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28774117)

This isn't a raid, faggot.

Re:Did he jump? (1)

goombah99 (560566) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774385)

No, he had my prototype Killer app for the iphone.

Re:Who cares (2, Interesting)

evil_aar0n (1001515) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774019)

Are you factoring in the culture in this case? Honor means a lot to Asians. For them, failure of this magnitude may have only one acceptable response: seppuku, or the equivalent for the locale. It may seem a little drastic for Americans - is a product or company worth that much? - but we're obviously, and thankfully, not the model for every society.

Re:Who cares (2)

kyliaar (192847) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774071)

I always equated that more with Japanese culture than Chinese.

Re:Who cares (1)

MozeeToby (1163751) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774431)

The idea of ritual suicide in the face of failure confusing and slightly contradicting to me especially given Japanese culture's emphasis of 'triumph over adversity'. Japanese culture seems to love watching people try to overcome things that are almost impossible and/or unbearable.

As an example, have you ever seen 'Ninja Warrior'? Basically, it's like 'Wipeout' on NBC only a million times more difficult. I've watched 'Ninja Warrior' dozens of times and only seen someone complete the final course once; one person out of literally hundreds of competitors. They've had Olympic gymnasts on the show not even make it to the final round. The audience cheers on the failures almost as much as the success, because the failures gave it everything even though they had to know they probably weren't going to make it.

How is it that a culture that cheers on the underdog and loves it when people try in spite of horrible odds also finds honor in taking your own life when faced with a difficult situation?

iJump (1)

Reikk (534266) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774411)

iJump

Greed is GOOD!! (5, Funny)

ObsessiveMathsFreak (773371) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774567)

Jesus Christ Kid! Wake up and smell the Coffee! It's the Noughties! I'm not paying you to think about flower power and peace among the animals.

1. Consider the value of a human life, starting with your own, and compare it to the value of the secrecy of some cellphone prototype

Consider this mac: Supply and Demand!! If there's one thing that human history has taught us, it's that people are cheap, but profits are forever. You know how many guys like this guy there are? You know how many iPhone prototypes there are? You don't need to do a lot 'a math to see how this is gonna work out. Man, I could tell you stories about coffee beans and Nicaraguans in the 80's. Fucking great times!

2. Consider your other options. Your bosses were mean to you: sue them, find another job, learn to live with it. Are any of these better than jumping out of the fucking window?

Holy shit! The only time you need to you to jump out a window is when the stock is at 5c and your pretty sure the guy is like, your spitting image. The lesson here is that if the pressure is this fucking high, you need a safety valve, otherwise known as a fall guy. In fact, I'm betting this guy was that guy! Sweet play.

3. Consider the safety and mental wellbeing of the people who might be minding their own business and walking their children to school as your dumb skull slams into the pavement in front of them. If you've got to kill yourself, please don't get other people involved.

You know, you should be thinking about other people. You should be thinking about how to make money off of 'em, or else get them outta your way. You see a bus load of traumatised kids. I see a several lifetimes worth of prescription medication sales. You see tragedy, I see opportunity.

Shit happens, deal with it. It's all part of the game. Wen just bought a new sports car. Hu just sealed the Intel deal. Yao just jumped out of ten story window. Who cares! It's all just gossip material to spend over Espresso lattes. The second you stop to moralise over rights, wrongs, lifes, deaths; is the second you stop making money. You gotta straighten those suspenders, up the sperm count on the deal, and keep kickin' ass, so people know your the hardest asshole around.

Prime example, Steve fucking Jobs. Guy's such a ball buster that he's got subcontractors breakin' down apartment doors and throwing suckers outta windows just to keep the latest indigo and cyan iDink case covers an international fucking secret. And people still think he's Michael Jackson! You will never have those stones.

So, Put it all on AAPL, Bernanke's got the kettle on. And get yourself a dog!

Eyewitness (-1, Troll)

Absolut187 (816431) | more than 5 years ago | (#28773779)

Steve Jobs was seen leaving the apartment building shortly after 3AM.

.....Applesauce (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28773785)

iSplat

Suicide? (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28773793)

There's an app for that...

Re:Suicide? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28774221)

-1 too soon

Re:Suicide? (0, Redundant)

basementman (1475159) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774319)

Too soon man, too soon.

Re:Suicide? (1)

sorak (246725) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774425)

There's an app for that...

So...umm....did he get to meet iGod?

Re:Suicide? (5, Funny)

crazyvas (853396) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774443)

It's called iDie.
I hear that it's the next big killer app.

Okay, okay. iUnderstand iStopNow else iDie.

Poor guy... (5, Interesting)

Starturtle (1148659) | more than 5 years ago | (#28773815)

...probably the only way he could save his family from being threatened.

Re:Poor guy... (4, Insightful)

FooAtWFU (699187) | more than 5 years ago | (#28773937)

I don't like playing cultural imperialist, but something about current Asian cultures seems to me to be broken: this isn't exactly the first suicide of its sort, or even an uncommon phenomenon, just one of the more high-profile cases (since it's Apple, and a senior guy). Western culture isn't immune to these effects either (cf. high-profile financial advisors committing suicide in 2008-2009), but I understand that it's significantly more of an issue in Asia. I'd hazard that it's something in the common implementation of 'honor' and self-value that predisposes people towards a massive breakdown in the face of 'public disgrace'.

Not that Americans couldn't use a bit more of the right sort of Honor in their regimen, mind you.

Re:Poor guy... (-1, Troll)

gnasher719 (869701) | more than 5 years ago | (#28773989)

I don't like playing cultural imperialist, but something about current Asian cultures seems to me to be broken: this isn't exactly the first suicide of its sort, or even an uncommon phenomenon,

There were 5,400 suicides in the UK in 2007. There have been more in other years.

Re:Poor guy... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28774107)

Nice way to throw out random numbers. Statistics without context mean absolutely nothing.

Re:Poor guy... (4, Informative)

MBGMorden (803437) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774231)

There were 5,400 suicides in the UK in 2007. There have been more in other years.

A raw stat without comparison is meaningless though. 5,400 sounds like a lot, but is it really?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_suicide_rate [wikipedia.org]

Looking at this list, it appears that the UK is 66th on the list for suicide rate. The US is 43rd. China is 26th and Japan is 8th. South Korea is 11th and Hong Kong (not sure why this didn't get lumped with China) 18th.

That said, not all Asian countries are high on the list. The Philippines is 86th and Thailand is 57th. Singapore is 48th.

If anything, the trend I see is not East Asian countries being high on the list, but rather a lot of Eastern European/North and North Western Asian countries (ie, Russia and it's western neighbors) being pretty high up.

Re:Poor guy... (5, Informative)

LunaticTippy (872397) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774111)

I had the same misconception but it is easily dispersed.

According to this [who.int] the top 7 are not Asian. China is way down there, below France, Poland, Switzerland, Uruguay.

Country, Male Suicide per 100k, Female suicide per 100k, total pop suicide per 100k, year
Lithuania 68.1 12.9 38.6 2005
Belarus 63.3 10.3 35.1 2003
Russia 58.1 9.8 32.2 2005
Slovenia 42.1 11.1 26.3 2006
Hungary 42.3 11.2 26.0 2005
Kazakhstan 45.0 8.1 25.9 2005
Latvia 42.0 9.6 24.5 2005
Japan 34.8 13.2 23.7 2006

I assumed the suicide rate would be much higher in Asia, but I guess it is just reported more or happens in more high-profile cases or something.

Re:Poor guy... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28774309)

Two things:

1) Those are per-capita. China's got a shitload more people than Lithuania...
2) Do we trust the Chinese (especially) numbers?

Re:Poor guy... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28774329)

Well in all fairness if you look at Russia and the other former soviet blocs you will easily see that: in Soviet Russia Life Takes You!

Re:Poor guy... (1)

mdarksbane (587589) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774333)

Is there a list adjusted for per capita gdp?

Re:Poor guy... (1)

Your.Master (1088569) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774557)

How would you adjust it? Should higher GDP mean more or less suicides? Should it be linear?

I don't think GDP would tell much of a story. Rich-poor divide might be a bit better, but that's harder to give an objective number to.

Re:Poor guy... (1)

rossjp (688204) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774607)

Are the stats adjusted for soviet-style kidnapping being reported as suicide? You can't help but notice all the "leaders" are soviet bloc countries.

Re:Poor guy... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28774259)

I will steal, kill, and lie my way to the top.

However, falling on my own sword ain't in the cards.

Welcome to America.

Re:Poor guy... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28774341)

high-profile financial advisors committing suicide in 2008-2009

Not enough...

Re:Poor guy... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28774357)

My sympathies go to his family, but I couldn't help thinking about all those Government officials loosing laptops, tapes, disks and whatnot with citizens life histories on them ...

Re:Poor guy... (1)

Macrat (638047) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774485)

I don't like playing cultural imperialist, but something about current Asian cultures seems to me to be broken:

Or is it the American/European taboo thinking suicide is "wrong" that is broken?

this wasn't a suicide (2, Interesting)

SuperBanana (662181) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774541)

I don't like playing cultural imperialist, but something about current Asian cultures seems to me to be broken: this isn't exactly the first suicide of its sort, or even an uncommon phenomenon, just one of the more high-profile cases (since it's Apple, and a senior guy). Western culture isn't immune to these effects either (cf. high-profile financial advisors committing suicide in 2008-2009)

Um, this wasn't a suicide. And it's a nice bit of cultural stereotyping to picture asian people happily falling on their swords. It is deeply insulting (or you're deeply stupid) to think that someone of any culture would commit suicide just for losing / selling a production prototype.

Funny thing is, we know exactly where it went- it popped up on ebay recently and was big news. It was also dead as a doornail- nobody could load firmware onto it. Yeah, it was a fuckup, but Apple could easily recover that phone if they wanted to, either legally or by simply saying "please", or giving the seller what he paid for it (unlikely.)

Which do you think is more likely? That he was riddled with guilt over the loss of a prototype worth maybe a few hundred dollars in parts and little intellectual property value (since there are millions of copies in the world?) and jumped....or was pushed over the balcony ledge by a bunch of company goons who were told to make an example of him to employees, with a public story that "our employees are so dedicated to your security, they'll..."? And really, how impartial do you think the investigation is going to be? In China, these companies own and run entire cities that make Mall of America look like a strip-mall. They don't even need to pay off the police- they already employ them.

On the other hand... (-1, Offtopic)

monkeyboythom (796957) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774145)

I finally figured out what those red spots are on my Foxconn motherboard.

Bean juice? Nahhh...

riiight.... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28773819)

he just jumped out of a window after getting beaten by thugs who broke into his apartment ? and the thugs were suspended without pay ?
did they check for the boot mark on his back as he fell face down with a splat ?

Yeah sure (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28773825)

Illegal searches, intimidation, then "suicide"... Uh huh... yeah...

jumped? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28773833)

and someone saw that?
 

On the upside.... (4, Funny)

Jailbrekr (73837) | more than 5 years ago | (#28773843)

There is now another liver available for transplant.

Re:On the upside.... (1)

Sporkinum (655143) | more than 5 years ago | (#28773941)

Nope, Damaged by impact. They'll fire up the execution vans when they need some fresh ones.

Re:On the upside.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28774413)

but at least it is nice and tenderized

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MythBusters_(2008_season)
Episode 103

A lot like GM in the 1930s (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28773851)

They also sent goonsquads over to worker's houses to search for stolen parts and stuff.

suppliers... (5, Insightful)

Bombula (670389) | more than 5 years ago | (#28773879)

"We require our suppliers to treat all workers with dignity and respect"

Because nothing says dignity and respect like working in a sweatshop and being paid pennies an hour...

Re:suppliers... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28773995)

Child labor: It just works

Re:suppliers... (2, Insightful)

Tablizer (95088) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774077)

Because nothing says dignity and respect like working in a sweatshop and being paid pennies an hour...

Welcome to your "free trade" competition. This is the world that business lobbyists want, and they aren't going away, so get used to it. Democracy, my ass.
   

Re:suppliers... (0)

Anonymous Psychopath (18031) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774559)

Because nothing says dignity and respect like working in a sweatshop and being paid pennies an hour...

Welcome to your "free trade" competition. This is the world that business lobbyists want, and they aren't going away, so get used to it. Democracy, my ass.

Don't you mean Communism?

And yeah, I know, China is about as communist as the US is democratic.

Re:suppliers... (2, Insightful)

clam666 (1178429) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774199)

Because nothing says dignity and respect like working in a sweatshop and being paid pennies an hour...

Listen pal, I know you hippies live in fantasy world of employee unions and benefits, but how do you expect to get your brand new unlocked IPhone for only a few bucks, loaded with tons of free-to-download applications if they didn't have that kind of labor practice?

Sheesh.

Re:suppliers... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28774465)

exactly.
http://storyofstuff.com/

For a business, patronage is the highest praise... (5, Insightful)

Guppy (12314) | more than 5 years ago | (#28773887)

When it didn't turn up, he reported the incident to his boss, who ordered his apartment searched. There are reports of physical intimidation by Foxconn security personnel.

The question is, will this lead to companies being less, or more likely to look upon Foxconn positively when considering an OEM who will keep their new prototype under wraps?

Re:For a business, patronage is the highest praise (1, Insightful)

El Torico (732160) | more than 5 years ago | (#28773913)

It depends on whether or not they get the prototype back, doesn't it?

Re:For a business, patronage is the highest praise (1)

edusmoreira (978831) | more than 5 years ago | (#28773985)

That depends. Is the company more concerned about securing a $2B per quarter revenues from its technology or about the $5k court settlement that it'll ultimately be required to pay somewhere in Asia?

Re:For a business, patronage is the highest praise (4, Informative)

e9th (652576) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774181)

That's an interesting question. This Digitimes article [digitimes.com] published the day before he died, but after he had reported the loss, claims that Apple and Sony are cutting back on Foxconn orders, while Dell, Asustek, and HP are climbing on board.

Re:For a business, patronage is the highest praise (1)

e9th (652576) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774245)

I should add that the timing make it almost impossible that any of those companies knew about the loss when making their decisions. But it will be interesting to see if anything changes.

Insert Your Morbid Tag Line Here (3, Funny)

eric02138 (1352435) | more than 5 years ago | (#28773895)

"The iPhone 4 - it's to die for!"

Re:Insert Your Morbid Tag Line Here (1)

El_Muerte_TDS (592157) | more than 5 years ago | (#28773993)

"The iPhone 4 - you'll be in seventh heaven"

Re:Insert Your Morbid Tag Line Here (4, Funny)

AlexBirch (1137019) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774021)

I would have gone, with the iPhone 4, the kill switch is in you.

Re:Insert Your Morbid Tag Line Here (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28774099)

This was purposefully held back by the Chinese government after Apple asked them not to release it prior to the iPhone 3GS launch. And people were speculating what the 'S' stood for. Now we know.

Re:Insert Your Morbid Tag Line Here (1)

slack_justyb (862874) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774409)

"Hey Bob, what is that in your pocket?"
"Hmm? Oh, ummm, oh! It is one of the new iPhone 4 prototypes."
"Cool! Where did you get it?"
"Well, funny you should ask. I could have sworn that I sent all these little buggers to China just the other day."
"Looks like you forgot one. Maybe you should head back to the office and send it on over?"
"Eh, we are already here at the bar. I'm sure that it isn't that important."
"True, true. It's not like anyone died over a prototype?"

Re:Insert Your Morbid Tag Line Here (1)

crazyvas (853396) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774467)

"The iPhone 4 - it comes with killer apps!"

coverups (2, Insightful)

martas (1439879) | more than 5 years ago | (#28773909)

right, "suicide".

Re:coverups (3, Insightful)

Hogwash McFly (678207) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774499)

Yeah, he jumped off a balcony...on to some bullets.

Re:coverups (4, Insightful)

Your.Master (1088569) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774593)

So, on the one hand, skepticisim is healthy.

On the other hand, this isn't skepticism, this is just a different sort of gullibility. And if you allow yourself to believe so many things for which you have absolutely no evidence whatsoever, you draw yourself into a world that is not entirely like the real world, and approach insanity.

Culture of Secrecy (2, Insightful)

jpmorgan (517966) | more than 5 years ago | (#28773919)

This is the high pressure culture of secrecy taken to its logical conclusion in a country with little worker protection. I highly doubt Apple has any legal responsibility in this, but they do share a portion of the moral culpability along with the management of Foxconn. Did the senior management of Foxconn push the man out a window? No, but they created the corporate culture in which it happened. Likewise, Apple have worked with Foxconn for years now; they created the high pressure culture of secrecy and then turned a blind eye to how Foxconn enforces it.

Re:Culture of Secrecy (2, Insightful)

loteck (533317) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774033)

And just to take this to its logical, and far more important end, the consumers who support this kind of business by voting in droves with their wallets are the singularly most important party turning "a blind eye". This is applicable across all retail. The conditions under which the goods we buy are prepared, be it Nike shoes or a Big Mac or an iPhone, is ultimately the responsibility of the individuals who are purchasing those goods. They hold all the power and therefore virtually all of the responsibility.

Re:Culture of Secrecy (3, Insightful)

SomeJoel (1061138) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774171)

You may be right, but if every company does it, how can a consumer "choose" not to turn a blind eye. If they don't buy Nike, they buy Adidas, but Adidas is doing the same stuff. If they don't buy a Big Mac, they're buying a Whopper, with the same baggage. So, unless they make the shoes themselves (out of home-farmed cows) and grow their own food they really have no choice. Without some sort of regulation (either governmental or self-imposed by the corporations), there's no way a consumer can realistically "opt-out" of the inhumanities of modern retail.

Re:Culture of Secrecy (5, Insightful)

loteck (533317) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774359)

New Balance shoes are made in the US and UK, where labor laws are, at the very least, in existence. That's a good start. Your local farmer's market would be happy to sell you all the fixins' of a Big Mac, and you can get a good idea about how sustainable their operation is by actually talking to the people who farm it.

Many people think the way you seem to, which is that "opting out" is impossible. This is an uninformed opinion, it would seem, since options abound. You just have to decide to A) look for them and then B) choose them. Moral backflipping also seems to allow people to continue to sleep at night while their conveniences are paid for in blood by their fellow man in other countries.

Re:Culture of Secrecy (1)

jpmorgan (517966) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774193)

True to a certain extent. But I would suggest that there is a lot more due diligence required when you're in a billion dollar partnership than if you're a consumer on the street spending a hundred bucks on a gadget.

Re:Culture of Secrecy (2, Insightful)

loteck (533317) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774539)

The "due diligence" you speak of for the multi-billion dollar company has more to do with an investigation into the finances of a potential partner, and has very little to do with any kind of analysis of a partner's ethical fortitude.

One might say the consumer's "due diligence" is exactly the opposite and subsequently far, far more important.

Re:Culture of Secrecy (1)

edusmoreira (978831) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774201)

You remind me of my public sector economics teacher. I remember he once said "And just to take this to its logical, and far more important end, IN OUR MODEL, WHICH ANALYZES A SMALL CLOSED ECONOMY WITHOUT A GOVERNMENT, the consumers who WOULD support this kind of business by voting in droves with their wallets WOULD BE the singularly most important party turning "a blind eye". This WOULD applicable across all retail. The conditions under which the goods we buy are prepared, be it Nike shoes or a Big Mac or an iPhone, WOULD ultimately BE the responsibility of the individuals who are purchasing those goods. They WOULD hold all the power and therefore virtually all of the responsibility. ON THE OTHER HAND, IN THE REAL WORLD..."

Re:Culture of Secrecy (1)

Glyphn (652286) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774283)

The conditions under which the goods we buy are prepared ... is ultimately the responsibility of the individuals who are purchasing those goods.

I've never been comfortable with this imputation of moral burden entirely to the buyer. Corporations are complex and no one, least of all your average buyer, has a clue as to all of the financial and commercial entanglements that ultimately deliver a buy-able product.

Also, trying to choose amongst companies is similarly non-trivial, and as their size increases I suspect the more similar they become, if for no other reason than simple stochastics. Or do you really think that large corporations can be pidgeon-holed into "good" and "bad" categories?

Re:Culture of Secrecy (2)

GigG (887839) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774423)

I think it goes a little higher than Foxconn. Remember this is the same country that put to death the former head of thier FDA. http://www.nytimes.com/2007/07/10/world/asia/10iht-china.1.6587520.html [nytimes.com]

They do tend to take more responsibility for their actions than we do in the West.

surprise surprise (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28773923)

Apple: made by idiots, for idiots. While ol' steve rakes in the cash.

As someone who is sadly related to apple, it is hard not for me to imagine black suited goons knocking on the door if "the boss" doesn't like something.

I don't want an iPhone amymore... (2, Insightful)

macbeth66 (204889) | more than 5 years ago | (#28773939)

It give me the creeps knowing how Apple does business. It is obvious that this busniess partner is evil and they continue to work with them.

Re:I don't want an iPhone amymore... (4, Insightful)

Enderandrew (866215) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774035)

In all fairness I believe both HP and Dell get motherboards and laptops made from Foxconn as well. But certainly Apple's business practices are less than stellar. For every evil business practice we hate Microsoft for, usually Apple follows the same practice and somehow gets a pass.

Re:I don't want an iPhone amymore... (4, Insightful)

je ne sais quoi (987177) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774417)

Yes. The grandparent has his or her work cut out for them because the wikipedia page [wikipedia.org] shows just how hard it is to avoid Foxconn:

Among other things, Foxconn produces the Mac mini, the iPod and the iPhone for Apple Inc.; Intel-branded motherboards for Intel Corp.; various orders for American computer manufacturers Dell and Hewlett-Packard; the PlayStation 2 and PlayStation 3 for Sony; the Wii for Nintendo;the Xbox 360 for Microsoft, cell phones for Motorola, and the Amazon Kindle.[2][3] [4]

Bottom line.. if you like electronic devices, you have to go some way to avoid Foxconn. Apple is known for its secrecy, but we documented evidence that Apple was involved in this intimidation in anyway, you have to assume that Foxconn, and only Foxconn is responsible.

Re:I don't want an iPhone amymore... (2, Interesting)

flitty (981864) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774087)

I try not to think of how/where most consumer electronics are built. I fear for what I'd find. I'm sure Apple isn't the only corporation with an overseas manufacturing business that involves some version of morally reprehensible behavior.

Re:I don't want an iPhone amymore... (5, Interesting)

hattig (47930) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774479)

Who are you going to buy instead? Everyone gets their systems built in China, under these conditions. Foxconn is probably one of the better ones.

It's the cost of cheap, disposable goods in the West.

Used to be you'd buy a fridge built in your country, a TV, a car, a washing machine, everything, and it would last years and years. But they were expensive, and major purchases. They kept an economy alive, with people being paid reasonable wages. The electronics industry in a rapid speed to be competitive has changed this. We could have a computer that lasted 10 years, but it would really hold things back if you gamed, or did real work. So it drove an industry of rapid upgrades for computers and personal electronics, that don't last long. Western design, eastern construction.

But these eastern companies don't have the same standards of construction, of employee care, or values, as we do. Additionally the stresses of overwork are immense, they don't have cushy offices, free coffee and 9-5 hours like many of us. Also their upbringing is different. Coupled together, it will add up to a situation where people burn out rapidly, or worse commit suicide if something goes wrong. Many people to replace them of course. Nothing like your own company breaking into your own living space and scaring the bejesus out of you.

Fucking killing yourself over a front-facing camera, or an OLED screen, or whatever the iPhone 4 will have. Hell, it was probably an iPod Touch 3 for all we know. That shows a massive failure of the value system. Hell, it'll turn out to be the iPhone clone rip-offs that Foxconn probably make on the side won't it? As long as the Chinese elite bosses are okay, that's all that matters. Everything else is a meatgrinder. It's 18th Century with hi-tech, and it won't improve until we stop feeding it.

"... with dignity and respect" (5, Insightful)

goffster (1104287) | more than 5 years ago | (#28773949)

Hah! Like Apple treats its iphone app developers ?

It was inevitable (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28773971)

Apple would have killed him had he not killed himself, but Apple probably would have tortured him first in attempt to find the iPhone he lost.

Fuck apple ! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28773975)

People dying for this pease of crap ? Yachhh!

Self-Terminating Data... (1)

jameskojiro (705701) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774045)

This guy in china is a perfect example of such wonderful Chinese engineering.

New Apple Slogan (0, Redundant)

zoobaby (583075) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774085)

New Apple Slogan:

iPhone, worth dying for...

It was eninvitable (1)

gubers33 (1302099) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774147)

Either he was going to do it or Apple was going to do it, at least he saved himself from the torture...unless Apple did do it and made it look like a suicide.

Foxconn owns most employee apartments (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28774157)

Not sure how illegal a search of the guy's apartment would be if they own the place.

I seem to remember an article on here about foxconn "city", everyone ate,worked and lived on the foxconn campus.

apple needs to make them to fallow china labor (1)

Joe The Dragon (967727) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774197)

apple needs to make them to fallow china labor and other laws as well going beyond them and not working people to death.

Re:apple needs to make them to fallow china labor (1)

Macrat (638047) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774575)

Why? You'll still buy the products made in China anyway.

And that is why... (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28774361)

I am a PC. :)

iWhat? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28774371)

iDied

RIP (1, Interesting)

planckscale (579258) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774433)

This is just sad. You know the security was just all over the guy saying "you're going to lose your job, never find work again, you will be sued, lose your house, and your wife/girlfriend will leave you too!" No doubt they probably shoved him around trying to intimidate him. If they were so concerned about their prototypes they'd remotely wipe them, RFID, Lojack etc. etc. Yeah the guy may have misplaced it but mistakes occasionally happen. Doc the guy the price of the phone from his pay and be done with it. If it turns up on some blog somewhere, then go after him for non disclosure. Still, I can never understand suicide, perhaps the guy had other issues and this just was the tipping point.

This should piss off Jack Bauer. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28774455)

After what the Chinese did to him a while back, I'm sure Jack will avenge this guy's death. Chloe, download the schematics to Foxconn to my PDA and find me a way in!

RIP (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28774471)

RIP, Mr Sun. Congratulations to whatever you had achieved. Wish you happiness in the other world. You just left a cold blooded world where well educated people joking about a hard working person's death.

hmm i know that this will esplode all over..but (1, Funny)

MrShaggy (683273) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774493)

Imagine after his death they discover the phone was in his jacket pocket?

Re:hmm i know that this will esplode all over..but (1)

edusmoreira (978831) | more than 5 years ago | (#28774585)

Hmmm, but even then, how would one know that it wasn't put there afterwards? Only the accelerometer log will tell!!

Die for an iPhone? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28774495)

Hell, someone had to die for Steve Jobs to get a liver.

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