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Brazil Sues Samsung Over Worker Conditions

samzenpus posted 1 year,17 days | from the no-work dept.

Businesses 110

First time accepted submitter konohitowa writes "The Financial Times is reporting that the Brazilian government has filed a lawsuit against Samsung for working conditions that put workers' health at risk (both through repetitive motion injuries as well as excessive consecutive work days). Samsung has 'promised to conduct a thorough review and fully co-operate with the Brazilian authorities once it receives details of the complaint.'"

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And then... (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,17 days | (#44571105)

Samsung has 'promised to conduct a thorough review and fully co-operate with the Brazilian authorities once it receives details of the complaint.'"

And then they will move the plant to Mexico.

mexico drug wars is bad for makeing phones (0, Flamebait)

Joe_Dragon (2206452) | 1 year,17 days | (#44571119)

and then you get the next hot phone from the same guy who sells drugs all under the table.

Re:mexico drug wars is bad for makeing phones (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,17 days | (#44571247)

and then you get the next hot phone from the same guy who sells drugs all under the table.

Yeah that's nice, that subtle racism you are showing.

Protip: lots of Mexicans are regular people, not gang members or drug cartel lords. Many Mexicans have a work ethic that I straight up admire in fact.

I'm not upset or offended. The answer to your kind of ignorance is knowledge.

Re:mexico drug wars is bad for makeing phones (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,17 days | (#44571477)

And lots of Mexicans are all different races, so I'm not really sure who the racist is here.

Just adding more knowledge.

Re:mexico drug wars is bad for makeing phones (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,17 days | (#44571535)

Oh, okay, so the bigotry is totally okay if it's against a multiracial group. Got it!

Re:mexico drug wars is bad for makeing phones (1)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | 1 year,17 days | (#44571589)

Oh, okay, so the bigotry is totally okay if it's against a multiracial group. Got it!

When that multiracial group is the one known as "Americans", we see it on Slashdot quite often - so it must be okay!

Re:mexico drug wars is bad for makeing phones (3, Interesting)

thej1nx (763573) | 1 year,16 days | (#44571785)

Criticizing American government is racism? If you are talking about the stereotype of Americans being ignorant dumb-asses, well that does exists, but is largely due to your allowing the said politicians to be in power, and yet having delusional beliefs about yourself to be a democracy. Normally the world wouldn't care btw, except for your insane laws and policies being exported out to rest of us as well eventually via treaties.

Re:mexico drug wars is bad for makeing phones (1)

kthreadd (1558445) | 1 year,16 days | (#44571967)

When that multiracial group is the one known as "Americans", we see it on Slashdot quite often - so it must be okay!

No it's not OK just because you often see it on Slashdot.

Re:mexico drug wars is bad for makeing phones (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,16 days | (#44571747)

You're the one (probably) who called it racism. Also, it's common knowledge that mexico has a huge drug problem with bodies piling up every day.

Re:mexico drug wars is bad for makeing phones (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,17 days | (#44571619)

I dunno about all that now... But every single mexican i have ever met working construction for 10 years could get me weed.

Re:mexico drug wars is bad for makeing phones (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,16 days | (#44573131)

I dunno about all that now... But every single mexican i have ever met working construction for 10 years could get me weed.

Every single construction worker I've known could.

Re:mexico drug wars is bad for makeing phones (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,16 days | (#44574305)

Im white and every single Mexican Ive worked with since 83 has bought weed from me (white guys have the best stuff; Mexican weed is for poor people. Ask any Mexican).

Re:mexico drug wars is bad for makeing phones (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,16 days | (#44572099)

I'm not racist, I'm just scared of the dark.

Re:And then... (1)

erroneus (253617) | 1 year,16 days | (#44572969)

yes... built by robots.

I think this is more about everyone scrambling to squeeze more money from their incoming streams as the global financial crises are continuing.

Re:And then... (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,16 days | (#44573239)

dont believe a word they say, they are sneaky underhanded liars that will do anything for a profit, infringe any patent, all in the name of profit. They could school Sony on how to be underhanded and sneaky!

Re:And then... (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,16 days | (#44573711)

Actually, Brazil has a law that state that electronics sold there must be built there, or something like that. (My company has a factory there for just this reason.)

Re: And then... (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,16 days | (#44574509)

No really. Apple products have been around for years and their factory is about 2yrs old only. I guess the main reason is because Brazilian government gives a lot of taxes discounts as a incentive, that applies for both local production and imported components/retail products.

Get this crap out of here. (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,17 days | (#44571115)

Why would /. allow a submission that uses a source that requires registration or a premium account to view?

Re: Get this crap out of here. (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,17 days | (#44571127)

Don't forget it is the same link available on the Drudge Report.

Re:Get this crap out of here. (3, Interesting)

girlintraining (1395911) | 1 year,17 days | (#44571391)

Why would /. allow a submission that uses a source that requires registration or a premium account to view?

Possibly because Slashdot is now owned by a company that requires registration and a premium account for many of its websites [diceholdingsinc.com] . Naturally, they aren't going to see much of a problem with that.

Re:Get this crap out of here. (1)

antdude (79039) | 1 year,16 days | (#44572673)

"/.ers sue /. for using non-free sources". ;)

Re:Get this crap out of here. (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,16 days | (#44573153)

Then it's time to shut it down and restart somewhere else. Frankly, there reports or redirected original articles are from Mainstream News associations that are laughable when it comes to reporting anything, there are some web based journalism sites that report about things long before the mainstream press learns how to find it's own ass, which rarely get posted on /.

It is just recently that the idiot media/press stopped calling Snowden a whistle blower, and a hero, after social sites lit-up, reminding the press the stuff Snowden has said thus far, has been known by many for the last ten years.

Re:Get this crap out of here. (1)

mercnet (691993) | 1 year,16 days | (#44573397)

Probably because the source paid Slashdot to post it in hopes of getting subscribers to sign up. I am going to guess the conversion rate is 0%.

Enough (3, Funny)

oldhack (1037484) | 1 year,17 days | (#44571203)

Samsux is going too far imitating Apple. Get a grip.

Re:Enough (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,17 days | (#44571231)

You mean a signal blocking grip?

Re:Enough (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,17 days | (#44571531)

Huh? You realise this is actually samsung's employees we're talking about here.

In Samsung's case, it's Samsung directly making the decisions about how they're treated.
In Apple's case, Apple specifies one thing in the contract for how they're treated, the 3rd party (sometimes) does another thing.

Apple are actively trying to stop this kind of thing, Samsung it appears are complicit in it.

Re:Enough (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,16 days | (#44571935)

You must be new here...

Re:Enough (3, Insightful)

gnasher719 (869701) | 1 year,17 days | (#44571659)

Samsux is going too far imitating Apple. Get a grip.

Excuse me, but how is Samsung imitating Apple here? Apple has audits everywhere checking working conditions at the factories of their contractors and subcontractors, and fixes problems when they are found. This here is Samsung's own factory.

Revolt of the iSlaves (2, Informative)

tuppe666 (904118) | 1 year,16 days | (#44571741)

Samsux is going too far imitating Apple. Get a grip.

Over work pressure over the iPhone 5

http://www.gongchao.org/en/islaves-struggles/revolt-of-the-islaves [gongchao.org]

"In the evening of September 23, a riot broke out in Foxconn's factory complex in Taiyuan, Shanxi. 2.000 Foxconn workers took part in the riot, many thousands looked on, and 40 people got injured. The rioters smashed shop-windows, set fires on the street, over-turned police cars and demolished company fences. 5.000 police were sent in but did not bring the situation under control until the early morning hours."

Re:Revolt of the iSlaves (1)

kthreadd (1558445) | 1 year,16 days | (#44571941)

I guess Foxconn should have hired more employees to handle the demand. But it sounds like they just wanted more profit.

Re:Enough (1)

sl4shd0rk (755837) | 1 year,16 days | (#44572725)

Apple has audits everywhere

Yep. And everyone knows that a company investigating itself is the most fair and thorough way to inspect a facility for human rights violations.

Re:Enough (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,16 days | (#44572915)

Apple's CEO boasted how great it was using slave-factories in China because they could wake them up at 2am and have them on the floor working on a product change. Apple love having people that build their products living in the factory away from their family. Apple also loves having "employees" removed from their studies at university by factory security personel and drag them into the sweatshop.

Yeah, that's a nice way to behave, just so fashion conscious people can get iThing += 1 and make extraordinarily large profits that never go back to the actual workers.

Re:Enough (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,16 days | (#44573841)

Source? I'm no fan or defender of Apple, but this just sounds like flamebait.

Re:Enough (1)

torkus (1133985) | 1 year,16 days | (#44573485)

fixes problems when they come under public scrutiny.

FTFY

I don't know why people expect anything different from the big corporations that make our fun geek toys than they do from other big business. It's always about profit margins.

Re: Enough (1)

Travis Repine (2861521) | 1 year,16 days | (#44572075)

Because there's never enough sweat shops and dungeons of work these days!! 12 hours in 100 degree heat is a bitch no matter who works it especially for pennies at a dollar, but hey, its ok cause we get the latest and the greatest phones that the planet has to offer, no??

Free Link (4)

tlhIngan (30335) | 1 year,17 days | (#44571221)

A copy of the story from The Verge [theverge.com] .

Interestingly, Samsung paid out $200,000 in 2011 to Brazil for working conditions as well.

And China Labour Watch also has citations to Samsung.

Is this really news? (2)

DavidClarkeHR (2769805) | 1 year,17 days | (#44571337)

A copy of the story from The Verge [theverge.com] .

Interestingly, Samsung paid out $200,000 in 2011 to Brazil for working conditions as well.

And China Labour Watch also has citations to Samsung.

I'm not familiar with the US law, but the Ministry of Labour in Canada will take a company to court if they believe the company to be violating worker safety laws.

In other words, it's great to see that Brazil is enforcing labour laws... but not particularly surprising. As countries move to establish and enforce workers rights (and move away from manufacturing our junk), more lawsuits will occur.

It's how workers rights are enforced, and it isn't news in a developed country ... (and brazil is far more developed than many people think).

Re:Free Link (1)

girlintraining (1395911) | 1 year,17 days | (#44571401)

And China Labour Watch also has citations to Samsung.

It says something when a private group that watches a country known for literally working its citizens to death in sweat shops, building giant dams using substandard concrete and technology that will one day result in a major ecological disaster... and saying nothing when one of the major employers started installing suicide nets on its properties to catch workers who were throwing themselves out of windows... says you have a problem with working conditions in your factories.

This is rather like Osama Bin Laden getting on the radio and says another religious extremist group has gone too far... well, I mean, if we dug him up out of the ocean, reanimated him, and his zombie self said that... *cough*

Re:Free Link (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,17 days | (#44571425)

This is rather like Osama Bin Laden getting on the radio and says another religious extremist group has gone too far... well, I mean, if we dug him up out of the ocean, reanimated him, and his zombie self said that... *cough*

Didn't you get the memo stating Osama bin Laden has been a guest of the Bush family on their estate in Kennebunkport, Maine, United States of Amerika? President Obama has weekly conference calls with bin Laden to discuss ways to subvert the freedoms of its citizens while maintaining the veil of terrorist threats.

Re:Free Link (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,16 days | (#44572077)

This could be true, so I'm not sure if it's funny or not. It's funny because it's (might well be) true?

Re:Free Link (1)

fredprado (2569351) | 1 year,17 days | (#44571481)

It only says that the government of the country in question, like all governments, does not prioritize what is important, and goes after random targets, as the political wind blows.

Samsung does nothing in China differently from other companies. More likely than not someone forgot to pay that month's bribe.

In Brazil (and in US) things are considerably better regarding working conditions, but the idea of random government targets for audits and fines and their relation to bribes (or lack thereof) still apply.

Re:Free Link (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,16 days | (#44571923)

> $200,000

That'll teach 'm.

hopeful (1)

roc97007 (608802) | 1 year,17 days | (#44571243)

It's this kind of article that makes me hopeful for the human race. That the answer to corporate solvency isn't necessarily to find some third world country where you can work your employees seven days a week for bottlecaps.

Or, if that is the answer, you deserve to fail.

working conditions (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,17 days | (#44571251)

In South Korea, work ethic is highly valued and people actually take pride in consecutive work days. Even a job as laid back as teaching usually requires 6 10 hour days a week. It's a ridiculous "hurry up and get it done but work all the damn time anyways" culture.

Re:working conditions (2)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | 1 year,17 days | (#44571593)

Then Samsung should build the phones there...

I happen to know how Samsung builds products (-1, Flamebait)

tlambert (566799) | 1 year,17 days | (#44571263)

I happen to know how Samsung builds products. And RSI is actually not an issue. This is a payoff fishing expedition from Brazil needing currency, now that they've closed down external bank transfers in US dollars, and shut down a large sector of their economy. Rather than admit their mistake and undo it, they are now looking to get their money a different way.

Re:I happen to know how Samsung builds products (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,17 days | (#44571301)

No RSI! Nothing to see here!
Where do I get my check from Samsung for putting positive comments online? (http://finance.yahoo.com/news/samsungs-pr-firm-offered-500-135402062.html)

Re:I happen to know how Samsung builds products (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,17 days | (#44571501)

Hey, you forgot your "Sent from my overpriced iProduct" sig.

Re:I happen to know how Samsung builds products (1)

icebike (68054) | 1 year,17 days | (#44571323)

I happen to know how Samsung builds products. And RSI is actually not an issue. This is a payoff fishing expedition from Brazil needing currency, now that they've closed down external bank transfers in US dollars, and shut down a large sector of their economy. Rather than admit their mistake and undo it, they are now looking to get their money a different way.

Strange, but Apple (contractors Pegatron and Honhai) have faced the same charges in other countries.
Could it be that Samsung manufactures phones so dramatically differently that all Brazil can do shake Samsung down for a couple hundred thousand?

Re:I happen to know how Samsung builds products (4, Interesting)

tlambert (566799) | 1 year,17 days | (#44571533)

I happen to know how Samsung builds products. And RSI is actually not an issue. This is a payoff fishing expedition from Brazil needing currency, now that they've closed down external bank transfers in US dollars, and shut down a large sector of their economy. Rather than admit their mistake and undo it, they are now looking to get their money a different way.

Strange, but Apple (contractors Pegatron and Honhai) have faced the same charges in other countries.
Could it be that Samsung manufactures phones so dramatically differently that all Brazil can do shake Samsung down for a couple hundred thousand?

I'm under NDA on the exact process; they consider it proprietary. It's very weird, but in the limit, it makes a lot of sense, even if it adds some overhead that a traditional RSI-prone process would not have.

It's either a fishing expedition on the payola, as I said earlier, or it's a fishing expedition on the assembly process. I think they could have just hired an independent auditor to ask about it, sign the same NDA, the auditor would have just said "Oh." and told them to drop the RSI claim.

They may still have claims on the ergonomic furniture and the breaks, assuming workers in other manufacturing plants in Brazil get more breaks and, say, Herman Miller or other highly ergonomic chairs. It looks like they've already agreed to a modification of the work hours, specifically regarding mandatory overtime.

Here's an article on the lawsuit not behind a pay-wall, since the original link in the summary is generally unreadable:
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887323455104579012712866922406.html [wsj.com]
Note that they actually own up to the overtime policy and agree to change it.

PS: If you do a more than trivial look at the earlier China Labor Watch complaint, you'll see the same overtime issue, but that the basic labor rights issues were (eventually) admitted to be limited to the two third party suppliers, rather than the Samsung plants themselves.

Re:I happen to know how Samsung builds products (1)

Psychotria (953670) | 1 year,16 days | (#44571847)

NDA? Are you scared because of that? Just spill your guts. Unless you're a coward in which case you won't.

Re:I happen to know how Samsung builds products (0)

Psychotria (953670) | 1 year,16 days | (#44571853)

How can an NDA cover "work methods" and "work conditions"? Are you seriously that stupid?

Re:I happen to know how Samsung builds products (4, Informative)

gnasher719 (869701) | 1 year,16 days | (#44572215)

How can an NDA cover "work methods" and "work conditions"? Are you seriously that stupid?

An NDA can cover anything. If you hire me to organise your kid's birthday party, you can ask me sign an NDA so I don't tell anyone about it, and if I sign, I'm bound by the NDA.

Often NDAs cover trade secrets. In that case breach of the NDA might be criminal, not just a breach of contract. Work methods could be trade secrets, work conditions probably are not, and your kid's birthday party isn't a trade secret.

Re:I happen to know how Samsung builds products (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,17 days | (#44571493)

This is a payoff fishing expedition from Brazil needing currency

Get serious...

Re:I happen to know how Samsung builds products (1)

Psychotria (953670) | 1 year,16 days | (#44571843)

US dollars? Who gives a shit about US dollars? The US is a bully and a liar and the sooner their economy fails the better.

Re:I happen to know how Samsung builds products (1)

Sockatume (732728) | 1 year,16 days | (#44572277)

Enlighten us with your secret knowledge of Samsung's manufacturing processes, upon which your whole argument is predicated.

Re:I happen to know how Samsung builds products (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,16 days | (#44572289)

Sorry, but you are just being silly. Even if your naive and shallow analysis of brazilian economical situation was right, 250 mega dollars is nothing compared to the size of brazillian economy. Also, Samsung might (and probably will) appeal the fine, and that will take years to come to a close. Stop being stupid and posing as someone who knows something - for instance, Brazil did NOT close external banks transfers. You are probably mistaking it for some other country.

Android white knights: Assemble! (1)

smash (1351) | 1 year,17 days | (#44571287)

Boycott samsung, amiright?

Moto X - 2000 American Workers (1)

tuppe666 (904118) | 1 year,17 days | (#44571729)

Boycott samsung, amiright?

Absolutely, Although you are obviously not sick enough to use lives of people to push an Apple products that have used child labour...and famously use Samsung components in their(not your) produces.

The bottom line is if you where Genuine you would be looking into buying(and promoting) a Android Motorola X as Google reopened a manufacturing plants to assemble them in America employing training and treating with dignity 2000 employees.

Re:Moto X - 2000 American Workers (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,16 days | (#44571831)

F*ck Motorola and their legacy of failure. It's just another sub-par phone without an SD slot.

Re:Moto X - 2000 American Workers (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,16 days | (#44572227)

Speaking of Android white knights, its Tuppe666! Slashdot's #1 Google shill.

Although you are obviously not sick enough to use lives of people to push an Apple products that have used child labour...

Cool so, whos non "child labour" phones have you been buying before the Moto X?

Re:Moto X - 2000 American Workers (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,16 days | (#44572689)

tuppe, you are hard to take. I sure hope google pays you for all the crap you spew, otherwise grow up you fanboy. As a fairly big 'droid fan and developer, I'm sick of you and your kind making us look lunatics.

Re:Moto X - 2000 American Workers (2)

Plumpaquatsch (2701653) | 1 year,16 days | (#44573059)

Re:Moto X - 2000 American Workers (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,16 days | (#44573407)

for someone who has abysmal english and is definitely not a US-slashdotter (labour?), you sure do tout American manufacturing. I bet it pains you that you can't be cuddled up to Sergey and Larry right now doesn't it.

poor tuppe666, the life of a rabid fantard is tough :(

Re:Android white knights: Assemble! (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,16 days | (#44571739)

Yes. I grow my mobile phones in my backyard garden out of hemp and tofu.

Fuck brazil. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,17 days | (#44571293)

that is all.

Altho some of their women are hot... So fuck them too.

Re:Fuck brazil. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,17 days | (#44571439)

Altho some of their women are hot... So fuck them too.

The readership of /. is 99% persons afraid of speaking to a woman. There is no way they're going to be engaging in sexual relations with any woman.

Re:Fuck brazil. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,17 days | (#44571445)

Their trannies are pretty hot too.

Re:Fuck brazil. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,17 days | (#44571453)

Oh bianca friere... is that you? come over here and give us a kiss.

Great idea (2)

Billly Gates (198444) | 1 year,17 days | (#44571355)

I am sure that Foxconn would still be more than happy to open their new rumored plant in Brazil and help one of the most impoverished countries in the world better themselves after this!

Re:Great idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,17 days | (#44571515)

Brazil is not one of the most impoverished countries in the world. Far from it....
If you want some of them, look no farther than sub-saharan Africa..

Brazil is hosting the Olympics and the Football World Cup. It is also on the verge of building a High Speed rail line betweenSao Paulo and Rio.

Ok, Extreme wealth and extreme poverty live side by side in Brazil but it is far from an impoverished country.

Perhaps you need to get out of your Mom's basement from time to time and see the real world beyond the lower 48 states.

Re:Great idea (1)

gustgr (695173) | 1 year,16 days | (#44572061)

one of the most impoverished countries in the world better themselves after this!

This is not really the case, at least in a large part of the country, specially in the Southern regions (São Paulo and below). I live in São Paulo right now (that's the state, not the city!), in a medium size town (pop. 250,000), have a regular job and my quality of life is not very much different than when I lived in Germany for some years, quite a while ago. The main problems are public services, specially health services (but I, like half of Brazilian population, have a private health insurance) and public transportation (we have pretty decent buses, but they can't be compared to Germany's rail system), even though we pay way too much taxes. Our GDP as of 2011 as US$ 2.48 trillion (6th in the world, higher than India, Russia and Mexico), and the tax revenue was 35% of that. So our government gets a metric fucktonne of money.

In some states, most of them in Northern and Northeastern regions, poverty is a whole different business. It looks like two countries, as a matter of fact. Even in terms of ethnicity, with Northern states having a very mixed racial makeup (due to slavery), and Southern states having a majority of whites of Italian, German, Spaniard and Portuguese origins (there was a large government program to make the population whiter in these regions, about 100-150 years ago).

Re:Great idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,16 days | (#44572467)

one of the most impoverished countries in the world better themselves after this!

In some states, most of them in Northern and Northeastern regions, poverty is a whole different business. It looks like two countries, as a matter of fact. Even in terms of ethnicity, with Northern states having a very mixed racial makeup (due to slavery), and Southern states having a majority of whites of Italian, German, Spaniard and Portuguese origins (there was a large government program to make the population whiter in these regions, about 100-150 years ago).

You seem as knowledgeable about half your country as your parent is of Brazil! Do you believe that the origin of all North and Northeast population is identical (and in that case Bahia's)? As international slave trade was prohibited in the XIX century, intra-Brazil slave trade gained traction and was responsible for moving most slaves from many Northeastern states to the likes of Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo state. Which is why the first counties to prohibit slavery were located in such Northeastern states, by the way ;-)

Re:Great idea (1)

gustgr (695173) | 1 year,16 days | (#44572555)

Do you believe that the origin of all North and Northeast population is identical (and in that case Bahia's)?

Of course not. That's why I said that there is a very mixed racial makeup. Slavery was one factor, but not the only one. There are regions in Northeastern states, such as in Paraíba or Pernambuco, where there are a lot of whites with Dutch and Portuguese background. In North and Mid-West regions there was a greater mix with native populations. It is impossible to say that it is the same, and I never said that.

What I said is that Southern states, and São Paulo, have a different ethnic profile.The focus of white immigrants during the XIX and XX centuries were mostly São Paulo and Southern states, and to a lesser degree other Southeastern states. This changed the ethnic makeup of these regions quite drastically, e.g., http://jornaldebrasilia.com.br/site/imagens/blogs/mapa_racial.jpg [jornaldebrasilia.com.br] . And this is a fact, whether you like it or not.

Re:Great idea (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | 1 year,16 days | (#44572723)

The main problems are public services, specially health services (but I, like half of Brazilian population, have a private health insurance) and public transportation

Not endemic crime? Because the inability to own anything because someone will steal it is a real turnoff. I was looking into moving there, and it doesn't seem like a really good idea with the frequent hostage kidnappings etc.

Re:Great idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,16 days | (#44572901)

Smaller cities in south/southeast Brazil, like the one gustgr described, often have the best living conditions in Brazil. Better services, low crime rate etc.

Kidnappings isn't a big problem like it was maybe 20 years ago. Crime is still high in some areas, but its not like you can't own anything. I've seen people getting their cell phones stolen, yes, but I use my smartphone in the streets of Rio. We have an expression here that means "don't make it easy", like using your cell in a traffic jam in your car with the window open. You are just making it easy to some drug addicted to take your phone to sell and buy drugs. Brazil has like 250mi cell phone lines, almost anyone can have one.

Unpossible! (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,17 days | (#44571405)

Only Apple mistreats their factory workers. This is clearly FUD spread by people with an anti-Android agenda.

Honestly though, I can't wait to see Mike Daisey's brilliant piece of investigative journalism, "The Agony And the Ecstasy of Kwon Oh Hyun."

Apple use Samsung components (1)

tuppe666 (904118) | 1 year,17 days | (#44571705)

Only Apple mistreats their factory workers. This is clearly FUD spread by people with an anti-Android agenda

Apple famously (still) use Samsung components...and Samsung although they are very successful in the telephone market, also produce windows phones, Bada phones..and will soon do Tizen phones. Ironically Samsung is not as big in smartphones as it once was. Growth from Samsung has been flat compared to companies like LG and Sony (and other brands) taking up the slack in Apples declining market share.

Re:Apple use Samsung components (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,16 days | (#44571873)

Ironically Samsung is not as big in smartphones as it once was. Growth from Samsung has been flat compared to companies like LG and Sony (and other brands) taking up the slack in Apples declining market share.

What?! Samsung are the only ones growing - they've just had a great quarter, again. LG is a distant 3rd place with 5% of the smartphone market.

Sent from my iPhone.

Not a two horse race. (1)

tuppe666 (904118) | 1 year,16 days | (#44571911)

What?! Samsung are the only ones growing - they've just had a great quarter, again. LG is a distant 3rd place with 5% of the smartphone market.

Sent from my iPhone.

http://www.idc.com/getdoc.jsp?containerId=prUS24257413 [idc.com] These are the latest figures from IDC they actually break out Android shipments. They show Samsung growing less than the overall market from 44.4% to 39.1% (the iPhone dropped from 16.6% to 13.2%). Its not a two horse race however the market leaders want to paint it, and as time goes on even less of one.

Re:Not a two horse race. (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,16 days | (#44575615)

Robert Rankin aka Tuppe666! The UK (and Slashdot)'s #1 Google shill!

What wonders will you tell us about Google today? How is their privacy invasion bettering our lives? How can we benefit from putting all our data in their cloud!

Please tell us Robert!

Re:Apple use Samsung components (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,16 days | (#44572103)

Umm, samsung is still the biggest. Apple was around 14% a couple of days ago. In third or fourth place If I remember correctly.

Re:Apple use Samsung components (1)

Plumpaquatsch (2701653) | 1 year,16 days | (#44573755)

Umm, samsung is still the biggest. Apple was around 14% a couple of days ago. In third or fourth place If I remember correctly.

In second. Selling over 2.5 times as many as the third.

Re:Apple use Samsung components (1)

Plumpaquatsch (2701653) | 1 year,16 days | (#44573699)

Wow, you actually managed to turn a "Samsung mistreats their workers" into an "Apple supplier mistreats workers" story. And you weren't ironic in the least.

Blame the foreigners (1)

DNS-and-BIND (461968) | 1 year,17 days | (#44571429)

How much of this is an actual complaint and how much of it is blaming the foreigners? I'm sure if Brazil looked around they could find hundreds of domestic companies who were much worse. What's the political situation in Brazil right now, is the government hurting for cash or is an election coming up?

Re:Blame the foreigners (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,16 days | (#44571789)

How much of this is an actual complaint and how much of it is blaming the foreigners? I'm sure if Brazil looked around they could find hundreds of domestic companies who were much worse.

Much worse? I doubt it. Bad conditions, certainly, but not in this relatively large scale by a single company.

What's the political situation in Brazil right now, is the government hurting for cash or is an election coming up?

Neither.

Re:Blame the foreigners (4, Interesting)

gustgr (695173) | 1 year,16 days | (#44572013)

Actually, it is much harder for a domestic company (specially if it is not very large) to get away with this kind of behavior.

Brazil has very strict work laws, up to the point that even nannies and house cleaners are jobs under strict regulation. This case with Samsung is indeed very worrying, however it is not as common in companies as most people would expect in Brazil. We have hundreds of unions who have very resonant voices in politics.

Work conditions abuses in Brazil come mostly in two flavors:

i) Rural work in farms, specially up North. It is not uncommon to have people working under slavery regime in some farms, and some of the scandals involve even politicians who are also big farmers. The workers are usually very poor people who are deluded into getting a job in a farm and getting rich. Their travel costs are covered by the farmer, and so is living cost and food, and they stay in an eternal debt without ever leaving. They end up working 18 hours shifts for food, with no sanitary conditions, etc. This is taken seriously in Brazil, but more often than not the responsible for this are rich people, so they get away with fines and never see the inside of a jail cell.

ii) Manual labor done by foreigners, in particular by South Americans. In Sao Paulo city there are 200,000 Bolivians, 80% of them are illegal, and most of them work with sewing. They work under very poor conditions and earn very little. Since most of them are illegal, and most of them are in debt with people who helped them to get here, they are afraid to seek the police.

But in companies this is not the case. Even to me this news about Samsung came as a shock.

Quick everyone! (1)

Joining Yet Again (2992179) | 1 year,16 days | (#44571779)

Find an excuse for the behaviour! It doesn't matter about the particular individual human beings that are suffering, because you have to look at some twisted bigger picture!

Unless it's a white American or European, then a single harm is a tragedy.

Hold the Boat! (2)

Psychotria (953670) | 1 year,16 days | (#44571821)

So, the Brazilian government is doing something positive to improve the conditions of workers and all people on here can do is complain? Wow.

Samsung’s Manaus factory, which has 6,000 employees, instructed workers to perform triple the amount of movements considered safe under ergonomic studies, prosecutors said.

So, umm, that's ok?

... while one [employee] worked 27 straight days without a day off ...

This is ok as well? I admit this one is a bit less clear cut because it doesn't say how many hours the employee worked each day, but... seriously.

You're all (ok, most) saying -- essentially -- "fuck Brazil" and that this is not right. What the FUCK?

You know what I say? Slashdot these days is populated by pre-pubescent fucktards. Seriously, get over your entitlement shit and grow a brain. If this was happening in "USA: Fuck Yeah" you'd all have the opposite opinion. Arrgh.

Re:Hold the Boat! (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,16 days | (#44572459)

Well, we can't have any story that goes against the "Samsung will save us from the evil clutches of Apple" narrative, can we?

Re:Hold the Boat! (1)

21mhz (443080) | 1 year,16 days | (#44574145)

Search for "Samsung" and you'd be surprised by the spate of negative stories featuring Samsung recently. You'd think somebody is on a campaign to tarnish them... but then, why do they keep getting exposed cheating on benchmarks, funding astroturfers, and screwing workers over in poorer countries.

Re:Hold the Boat! (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,16 days | (#44575345)

You're right,

All these morons care about is that they can get the latest 'shiny shiny' at the lowest price and they don't give shit about the human misery involved.

So much for the Slashdot 'community'. Fucking retards all.

Strong unions (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,16 days | (#44571863)

I worked at the Free Economic Zone of Manaus, where most of the phone manufacturers are located in Brazil, back in 2009. I can tell this is just business as usual: they have strong unions, and the unions make some pressure in the local gov and the gov reacts. But anyway, Samsung never made in any local list of "Best Place to Work" in Manaus. I felt like everyone working there faced it as a temporary job until he/she could find something better.

Everybody Samba! (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,16 days | (#44571891)

South Koreans might be willing to work the fun out of life.
Not Brazilians.
Everybody Samba!

Pennywise pound foolish concerns (1)

Impy the Impiuos Imp (442658) | 1 year,16 days | (#44573053)

The corrupt nature of a 3rd world's government, being kickback-oriented, has grotesquely harmed a lot more workers. Save your outrage for where it belongs instead of following in lockstep with some western politicians memeview of what should concern you.

Hint: The reason Brazil, with the population and resources of the US, isn't wealthy with everybody with a two car garage and much longer lifespans isn't because of western companies invading with factories -- it's because they don't.

Clogging them with factories as described wold cause wealth and longevity to skyrocket. You are tackling a tiny issue while General Zod flies around breaking 3 necks a second.

Strikes (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,16 days | (#44573211)

Workers should have made strikes because of this kind of stuff, specially after a month of riots around the country. The saddest part is that people have no idea about their rights.

The real story (1)

macdaddy357 (582412) | 1 year,16 days | (#44574005)

Samsung forgot to pay their bribes to the Brazilian authorities.

To appease the workers (1)

Provocateur (133110) | 1 year,16 days | (#44574031)

...they were given tickets to Carnival.

Carnival Cruise Lines, that is....

The brazillian angle (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,16 days | (#44575617)

Ok, lots of comments by fucktards that know nothing of Brazilian labor laws, or even how our justice system works (or doesn't, whatever). Better give you guys something that is actually factual. Keep in mind that, due to extreme abuse in the past, Brazil has _very_ strict labor laws that have several unalienable rights. Also, in all civil matters re. Brazilian labor law, *the employer is presumed guilty*, otherwise the employee would _always_ lose.

From http://info.abril.com.br/noticias/mercado/2013/08/ministerio-publico-do-trabalho-processa-samsung-em-r-250-milhoes.shtml (which is a _respected_ brazillian news outlet), and yes, I am a native portuguese speaker, so I am not using automated translator crap:

The Brazilian government is suing samsung for ~US$ 120 million, over massive repetitions (i.e. for way too many workers) of _severe_ breaches of _Brazilian common labor law_. Some of the violations are: unpaid overtime in excess of 5 hours/day (even PAID overtime must be at most 2h/day in Brazil); workers forced to stand up over 10h / day; a worker did 27 consecutive days of work (which is against the labor law, there are several work regimes that are allowed in special situations and contracts, but none of them will let you work more than 15 days without a break, no matter what). Also, they have a lot of workers on medical leave due to RSI injuries, way above the expected numbers for that type of factory, which is by itself enough to convict Samsung.

That kind of mass breach of the labor laws essentially gets samsung the absolutely worst possible label you can get in a Brazilian judgment: "presumption of bad intent" (aka "you were being Evil", it was not an oversight/accident). For anything the judge finds to be true, they will be punished with extreme prejudice because the "presumption of bad intent". And let's remember that Samsung will be presumed guilty, so any charges they cannot prove to be false beyond shadow of doubt _will stick_.

THAT is why the fine is so large: it is a punitive fine, it MUST cause enough damage to Samsung's bottom line in Brazil for the lesson to stick, and for the sociopaths they have as executives to lose their bonuses for the quarter/year.

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