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Sun Sued Over H1-B Workers

michael posted more than 11 years ago | from the revenge-of-the-nerds dept.

Sun Microsystems 1382

heli0 writes "The Boston Globe is reporting: 'A lawsuit filed yesterday in California alleges computer giant Sun Microsystems Inc. laid off thousands of American high-tech workers in order to replace them with younger, lower-paid engineers from India.' Could this be the straw that breaks the proverbial camel's back?"

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In short (0, Funny)

Hatechall (541378) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544730)

No.

Sux it down Sun... (2, Insightful)

ChaoticChaos (603248) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544731)

Hey Sun, since you're an American company working mostly with American companies, how about employing some Americans? Sux it down Sun. Have fun with the lawsuit. System.err.print("We're being sued. HELP!!!!")

Re:Sux it down Sun... (1)

rmadmin (532701) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544756)

Amen to that!

Re:Sux it down Sun... (4, Funny)

ChaoticChaos (603248) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544769)

I've got a better idea! Let's rehire all the American employees and replace the entire management team with people from India. w00t!

Re:Sux it down Sun... (1, Informative)

elmegil (12001) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544760)

So where were you when Halliburton et. al. were all moving their hq's to Bermuda to dodge taxes on all that government money they're profiting from?

Re:Sux it down Sun... (1)

dharma21 (537631) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544822)

Getting promoted to his new office as Vice President.

Re:Sux it down Sun... (1)

soapvox (573037) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544767)

I agree, I understand that companies are beholden to share holders but what about also being beholden to the communities and economies that support you.

Re:Sux it down Sun... (3, Insightful)

NDPTAL85 (260093) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544847)

Communities don't support companies. Consumers trade their money for a good or service from a company. After that the transaction is done. There is no further obligation from either party past that point. This whole line of reasoning that the company then still owes you something really reeks of communist ethos.

Re:Sux it down Sun... (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5544868)

People should not take this personally, Sun are not bad people they have just woke up and realised what the game really is. If Microsoft have been doing it for so long then why shouldnt Sun???

The case is simple they should not be doing this, but if one business can get away with it then others will follow (sometimes not as quick) but maybe you should be looking at other people who are doing it as well, dont hate Sun cause they are playing the game!!!

Re:Sux it down Sun... (2, Insightful)

ChaoticChaos (603248) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544888)

That kind of thinking is getting thrown out the door. I gotta tell ya, between this, Enron, and Global Crossing, I'm not in favor of a government mandated class in Business Ethics for all CEOs and Executive Management staffs of all companies. WTF boyz???? Did someone flip the switch under the "Let's make profit no matter how many people we screw over!!!"

No (-1, Flamebait)

dubbayu_d_40 (622643) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544732)

But sucky software might...

Kwik-e-mart programming (-1, Troll)

Flubu! (322749) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544736)

Thank you, come again.

hi (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5544737)

fartfennugen

fip (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5544740)

first indian post

hot grits + naked and petrified natalie portman + beowulf clusters = overseas work

Unlikely (5, Interesting)

saikou (211301) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544741)

One of the suits already got dismissed.
If, on the other hand, Sun looses this one, then bye bye US jobs and hello nice fat contract for Sun India. Which would be even worse.

No big deal (4, Insightful)

siskbc (598067) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544794)

bye bye US jobs and hello nice fat contract for Sun India.

I don't see this as being so evil. I have always been of the opinion that if someone else (or a machine) can do your job better and cheaper, have fun at the unemployment line. If this is the case, then, sorry for the unemployed, but I doubt they would have taken a pay cut. Hell, they're lucky that Sun took so long to figure out that there are a lot of highly trained Indian coders.

Then again, maybe Sun will regret firing such a huge experience base. That may be.

I will say one thing - I don't hear people complaining about when overpaid middle-management types get canned for a new batch of college grads (from this country). I hope we're not indicating that we're bitter about foreigners taking American jobs? Because that would be a bit silly.

Re:Unlikely (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5544795)

Where can the fabled loose/lose guy be?

Re:Unlikely (1)

Rhubarb Crumble (581156) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544892)

Where can the fabled loose/lose guy be?

Continental Europe.

(No, this isn't a racist post, I'm a continental European myself. Continental Europeans are (in my experience) most likely to make that mistake, probably because they tend to pronounce the 's' in "lose" identically to the 's' in "loose", making the words homophones, when of course they are not.)

Re:Unlikely (2, Interesting)

FeloniousPunk (591389) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544827)

If, on the other hand, Sun looses this one, then bye bye US jobs and hello nice fat contract for Sun India. Which would be even worse.
I doubt it. Besides the fact that Sun already has one foot in the grave, Sun does a lot of business with the US government. If something like your scenario plays out, it could kiss future contracts goodbye.

Arggh (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5544742)

Frost Pist!

I can't believe it!! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5544743)

The World War III will begin in less than 24 hours and we're talking about Sun sued over H1-B workers!!
hell! WE ARE COMPLETELY NUTS!!

I just peed my pants laughing. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5544754)

India.

Camels.

*snort*

For us non-US'ians what is H1-B? (1, Informative)

rf0 (159958) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544757)

What is H1-B? Is this the Visa that allows foriegn nationals to work in the US in high tech jobs?

rus

Re:For us non-US'ians what is H1-B? (5, Informative)

www.sorehands.com (142825) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544796)

Yes.

It was originally intended to allow employers to fill jobs when they cannot find legal residents to fill them.

To be able to use this, the employer must certify that they not only are unable to find an employee who is a legal resident. They are also supposed to certify that no terminations would happen to the non-H1b employees because of this hire (ie. termination/layoffs shortly after).

Re:For us non-US'ians what is H1-B? (1)

Jaysyn (203771) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544882)

Looks like they fucked the 2nd part up to me.

Jaysyn

Re:For us non-US'ians what is H1-B? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5544798)

read the fucking article...it gets explained pretty clearly

Re:For us non-US'ians what is H1-B? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5544799)

google is an amazing tool.

Re:For us non-US'ians what is H1-B? (3, Informative)

arpit (193641) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544800)

That's right. This is the visa category under which a company can sponsor a foreign worker to work in a US based firm. This category is only for "skilled" labor.

The visa is typically valid for three years and renewable for only three more years after that. By that time if you haven't managed to complete your green card (permanent resident card) processing you have to leave the country - though I believe nowadays H1B visas can be extended beyond the usual 6 years in increments of one year provided your green card processing is in an advanced stage. I've been working on an H1B myself for the last 4 years.

Re:For us non-US'ians what is H1-B? (1)

bublina (444516) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544801)

H1-B is a temporary work visa. It is given to foreigners seeking work in their fields. The company must sponsor you for this visa and demonstrate that you are not replacing an American citizen equally qualified for the job.

Re:For us non-US'ians what is H1-B? (1)

ekephart (256467) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544811)

More or less, yes.

"What is an H-1B?

The H-1B is a nonimmigrant classification used by an alien who will be employed temporarily in a specialty occupation or as a fashion model of distinguished merit and ability."


Here's more. [immigration.gov]

Re:For us non-US'ians what is H1-B? (1)

PD (9577) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544820)

I would expect that non-US'ians as you call them would know more about H1-B than US'ians. And yes, you guessed right.

Re:For us non-US'ians what is H1-B? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5544842)

a link on h1-b [h1b.info] . In short, H1-B is an expanded guest worker program for tech workers. Most H1-Bs are young men from India. Supporters say "It's good for business : lower labor costs for owners of capital ". American tech workers say "Why pick on us : lower wages for labor."

That's correct (1)

gatesh8r (182908) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544870)

It is supposed to be temporary for a quick need to fill skilled positions; in this case I don't think H1-B is being used properly.

"US'ians"? HOLY FUCKING SHIT THAT'S LAME (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5544876)

You need a brain procedure called a "lobotomy". It extracts some "clutter" from your brain so that you can think better. It worked for JonKatz, though michael's operation failed and made him a paranoid ass. Just don't twitch when they operate and you'll be fine.

Also, "USian" IS THE STUPIDEST FUCKING TERM EVER. Why not "American"? Are you some kind of twat that needs to be semantically correct even at the expense of common sense?

DIE, FUCKTARD, DIE.

Re:For us non-US'ians what is H1-B? (1)

brickbat (64506) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544891)

What is H1-B? Is this the Visa that allows foriegn nationals to work in the US in high tech jobs?

Yes. To be precise, "specialty occupations," which also includes fashion models [immigration.gov] !

I'm not sure how long H1-B has been available, but at the beginning of the tech boom it became a convenient way to staff high-demand technical positions for which there were insufficient domestic workers. I think the U.S. wanted to avoid some of the problems Japan faced, where a severe shortage of labor led to their later economic troubles.

Illegal???? (3, Insightful)

Bob Abooey (224634) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544759)

Is this illegal? Isn't that sort of the way business has been done for a million years now? (letting go of expensive help and hiring cheaper help) It's not like the auto industry hasn't been doing this for years by building plants in other countries to take advantage of their cheap labor.

I have to wonder if the USian labor force isn't partly to blame by pricing themselves out of the market.

Re:Illegal???? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5544808)

It is illegal to lay off workers only to replace them with other newly hired workers to do the same job. Layoffs are because the job position is being eliminated -- you cannot replace that job position for a certain period of time (I can't remember - is it six months or a year?)

Re:Illegal???? (1)

Blaine Hilton (626259) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544863)

I believe this is a major issue with the steel industry also. The unions have worked to get these high paying jobs that require no skill. As long as you can breathe you have a $30 an hour job with full benefits and a fat pension after 30 years. Now if you go to China its $2 a day per person. That may seem awful, but $2 a day there goes much further then here. They are glad to have those jobs. Here work ethic is so low. People expect to do nothing and recieve a high paycheck.

Re:Illegal???? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5544894)

"I have to wonder if the USian labor force isn't partly to blame by pricing themselves out of the market."

To some extent, maybe...but what it comes down to is people need a living wage. But is sounds like to me Sun is taking advantage of a law that was meant to help the tech companies hire foregin labor because there is not enough local labor. When Sun does something like this, it is obviously doing this to save money, which they have a right to do but they also have a social responsibility to obey the spirit of the law and to not take advantage of such programs. In then end, it helps no one as they are stuck having to get new engineers every year or so (when the visa runs out) and they have lost a lot of trust among their current employees. They appear to be taking the short sighted approach to save a couple dollars which often will hurt them in the long run.

Then again, perhaps this is more evidence the tech industry should unionize to prevent things like this.

Maybe American tech workers need to expect to make a bit less, at least in this bad economy as well. But they should also expect to work regular days then as well.

Also, as many people may worry about this trend, I wouldn't worry too much, if you are good at what you do then you will always be in demand. I've seen people actually get higher, better paying positions, because they were talanted American engineers and were promoted above a H1-B worker, because they were American.

Um... (4, Insightful)

jmb-d (322230) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544761)

How exactly does this fall under the category "Your Rights Online"?

Re:Um... (2, Insightful)

SomeoneGotMyNick (200685) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544879)

Expand it to read

"Your Rights are On the line"

The way I see it, if you're a legal resident of the US and are just as skilled as the H1-B candidate, you have the right to first hire.

Re:Um... (1)

intermodal (534361) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544886)

but its listed as Sun, not YRO

w00t! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5544762)

SUNW currently trading at $3.45. How much further can it plummet?

I have no problem with H1B's (4, Insightful)

tshak (173364) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544765)

As long as they are compensated and treated the same as Americans. Humans are not a commodity. H1B's generally come from desperate situations so of course they _will_ work for a lot less than Americans, but that doesn't mean that it's ethical to exploit the desperate situation in which they came from.

Re:I have no problem with H1B's (2, Insightful)

gRa (588044) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544831)

Why should Sun employ foreigners if they were as expensive as the Americans? They have to compete with the Americans and they do it by beeing cheaper. They are willing to do it, since in India they erarned less.

When you required from Sun to treat them the same as Americans, you would take away the chance for foreigners to become Sun's employees.

I cannot see, how this would help them from their desperate situation.

Re:I have no problem with H1B's (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5544865)

Humans are not a commodity.

True. We're not nearly that valuable.

Re:I have no problem with H1B's (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5544869)

I'm confused. You have no problem with H1B visas as long as they are nothing like H1B visas. I'm having a hard time figuring out where/if you are being sarcastic. My wife complains that I take everything to literally. Sorry.

Hum sounds like quite mild delocalisation (1)

_Eric (25017) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544773)

Could be worse...

I think you should expect Sun's US branch to shrink and Indian branch to grow accordingly if Sun loses the case.

Indian enginners are said to be quite good and damn cheep if I recall well.

As the booming years are away, we can expect tech industry to go down on its costs. Like an other industry would.

Re:Hum sounds like quite mild delocalisation (1)

zootread (569199) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544893)

Indian enginners are said to be quite good and damn cheep if I recall well.

IAAIE (I am an Indian engineer)

You're damn right we are good, but we are not cheap. Oh wait, I was born in the United States so I don't really count as an Indian engineer.

I would not complain... (1, Troll)

Mengoxon (303399) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544775)

...if I was a younger, lower-paid engineer from India.
Think about it this way: for the money you pay an American worker, Sun probably hires two Indian engineers and still makes a profit.
The two Indian engineers will be able to support many more people and relieve them from poverty whereas the American engineer would probably waste a large part of his money on the unnecessary things in life.
If you are not a racist and think that Americans are better than Indians, then you should applaud Sun. If you are either a customer or shareholder of Sun then you should also applaud them: they either make more profit or able to sell at lower prices.

Long live capitalism!

Re:I would not complain... (MOD PARENT UP) (0, Troll)

Rhubarb Crumble (581156) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544825)

Amen to that.

But I bet a lot of the people complaining are all for "free markets" and "capitalism" when it means forcing 3rd world countries to destroy their economies by allowing imports of subsidised american products (think foodstuffs), but as soon as it bites closer to home they get all protectionist...

Re:I would not complain... (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5544828)

"whereas the American engineer would probably waste a large part of his money on the unnecessary things in life."

Doesn't most of Sun's product line fall into this group?

Re:I would not complain... (3, Insightful)

xchino (591175) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544834)


Look at it this way, because we have minimum wage laws in America, and there are none in India, the company can hire out engineers, techs, manual labor, or whatever at a cheaper rate than I can legally compete with. I don't have the option to program for $4 an hour. I agree that it helps impoverished people worldwide, but I don't think American corporations should be allowed to treat foreigners any worse than they treat Americans. I think they should be forced to adhere to minimum wage, provide all benefits given to an american counterpart, including health care insurance, and pension. Global competition should be based on merits and qulity of work, not on the lack of labor laws or taking advantage of the financial chaos in still developing countries. Not only will this greatly increase the impoverished areas were work is outsourced, it will prevent American companies from taking advantage of people in need.

Re:I would not complain... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5544915)

you realize that a H1-B is a foreign work visa, which means that the person has to be working in the US, and has to be paid at least minimum wage, right? I think you're confusing this with outsourcing.

Re:I would not complain... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5544854)

The two Indian engineers will be able to support many more people and relieve them from poverty whereas the American engineer would probably waste a large part of his money on the unnecessary things in life.

Yeah, trivial things like paying rent, supporting a family...

Re:I would not complain... (1)

JollyGoodChase (562568) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544871)

Sure..and when it's your job being replaced, explain to your family how you're really helping these two Indian families. Perhaps they have a job for you over there.

Re:I would not complain... (1)

Mengoxon (303399) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544897)

and I would take that job in India... better than being unemployed!

Re:I would not complain... (2, Interesting)

ClosedSource (238333) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544898)

Look, there are people all over the world who would like to come to the US and work. Why should the high tech companies and foreign engineers get special treatment over other businesses and other workers?

I have no problem if foreign engineers get in line with everyone else to get a green card or citizenship in the US. But it's not fair to US engineers to be singled-out for replacement because the high tech industry has bribed the government for special treatment.

Re:I would not complain... (5, Insightful)

unicron (20286) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544901)

So if I go to college, work my ass off, get a degree, and get employed by Sun, continue to work my ass off, I shouldn't complain when I get fired because I was underbidded by quasi-slave labor? And if I complain I'm a racist? And for some reason, because he has more children than I do, he deserves the job more?

This is capitalism at its worst, not its best. In America, we hire Americans. We don't sublet to another country to save money and backstab our own people. At best, this is an atrocious act of business and a slap in the face of ever American. At worst it's an act of slavery and the exploitation of both our countries. I hope Sun gets dragged over hot coals on this one.

Re:I would not complain... (2, Insightful)

justinbigelow (658647) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544911)

"The two Indian engineers will be able to support many more people and relieve them from poverty whereas the American engineer would probably waste a large part of his money on the unnecessary things in life"

So you're point is that American developers dont have families to provide for. Since we can only put one roof over our children's head we are less worthy than if two could be housed elsewhere?

"If you are not a racist and think that Americans are better than Indians"

Thats not racism it's nationalism (or more derisively jingoism). If the contention was that caucasions were being replaced with Indians then that would be racism.

"If you are either a customer or shareholder of Sun then you should also applaud them: they either make more profit or able to sell at lower prices."

Lowered operating costs dont always translate to lower costs, usually it means higher profit margins. Customer benefit is suspect at best.

m2c,
Justin

Re:I would not complain... (3, Insightful)

Angry White Guy (521337) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544916)

That's a little short-sighted.

Why do you think that countries have import laws? To prevent people with lower costs of living and lower wages from doing what you are doing. The relative poverty in India puts the U.S. at a disadvantage if the companies can import products from India cheap. It will destroy the competitive market of the same products in the U.S.

Tariffs and trade agreements are designed to prevent this, as are employment regulations. Breaking these only serves to crush local competition since they cannot reduce their costs signifigantly enough to remain competitive. And if they did, YOUR wages would drop, and you would be put in the same boat as India.

The global villiage does not bring the poorer nations up to our level, it drags the richer nations down to theirs. And it the Greed of the multi-nationals which ensures that this happens.

Good! (4, Insightful)

xchino (591175) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544779)

I don't see why they should enjoy the protection import taxes and such bring them against global competition when they have no penalty for exporting jobs. Tax imported goods, tax exported jobs. Don't tax exported jobs, don't tax imported goods. You can't have it both ways.. corporations want protection from countries without labor laws becase they can't compete with sweatshops or massively underpaid workers, but they also want to reap the benefits of those same workers. I don't see why my employers job should be any more protected than mine.

Hmmm. (2, Interesting)

fuzzywig (208937) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544781)

So what happened was, Sun found someone providing the same service, for a lower price, and used them instead.
Ain't capitalism a bitch?

We are all doomed. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5544785)

Between the damn cheap ass foriegners and the greedy ass corporations, we are all doomed. That's it, I'm moving to Iraq. At least there the ruler writes cheesy romance novels to entertain the unwashed masses.

Get Reddy! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5544787)

As they say outside the American Cyanamid plant: "Run, Rajiv!"

Umm... (2, Insightful)

Telastyn (206146) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544792)

So what? It's not illegal to fire people last I heard. And it's certainly good business to make the same stuff cheaper.

I don't see how this is wrongful termination because it's done for business reasons, and I don't see how it's racial discrimination, as Sun probably has hundreds of employees of different races working for them.

If the cheap workers were (white) Americans this wouldn't even be news. Sure worker visas are being exploited, but it's not illegal. American workers are pricing themselves out of jobs more than anything else.

Re:Umm... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5544872)

It is illegal to exploit workers. The law says they are supposed to be paid a competitive wage.

Don't know about you, but ... (2, Funny)

BillsPetMonkey (654200) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544793)

Demand for embedded C programmers has really dropped off lately, so I'm off to India to get some gainful employment.

Still, I'll have to give up that nice red and yellow paper hat I get to wear at work. Damn!

Ladies and Gentlemen, welcome to the.. (1)

Angry White Guy (521337) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544797)

Global villiage. This is the price we're paying for letting multi-nationals operate. They are raping the world, and we are letting them. Once India's standard of living rises above what Sun wants to pay the engineers, Bye-bye India, hello China. Once that is done, Hello U.S.A. By then jobs will be scarce, employment low, and cost of living high. And these multi-nationals will simply move on again.

Re:Ladies and Gentlemen, welcome to the.. (1)

Mengoxon (303399) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544859)

Yeah, I hate those damn multinationals....

Pity that at the same time I love to buy their cheap products and if they offered a "fair trade" coffee for 5 cents extra I would still buy the cheap, worker-exploiting version.

Reason for H1B Visas (4, Interesting)

mlrtime (520968) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544803)

I thought one of the contingencies of hiring an H1B worker is that the employer has to prove that they cannot find a worker of equal skill in the US job market. If they US workers have the same skill set but are just more expensive then this is a violation of the H1B processes.

That being said, my wife is currently here on an H1B, and I am fairly sure that there are not many people that can do her job and I believe she is working via an H1B on all legal issues.

Obviously this post is a troll (0, Troll)

intnsred (199771) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544804)

I mean, capitalism's worship of profits would never mean tossing people out on the street in search of a lower-paid employee, right?! (Especially an evil foreigner!)

And even if it did -- that cannot happen to college-educated professionals! That sort of stuff only happens to eighth-grade-educated blue-collar manufacturing workers, right?!

Say it isn't so...

And the US is invading Iraq because of the rock-solid connections between Saddam Hussein and Al Queda's terrorism, and our heartbreaking concern of the human rights of the Iraqi people too!

There's a very real link between Iraq and Al Qaeda (-1, Troll)

BillsPetMonkey (654200) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544850)

Iraq has a 'q' in it and so does 'Qaeda'. And an 'a'. That should be enough for any freedom loving citizen.

Theoretically ... (1)

The AtomicPunk (450829) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544810)

In a free country, you're free to employ whoever you want to - this shouldn't be illegal.

However, I'm just as free to stop using Sun equipment. Which I am. :)

Re:Theoretically ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5544860)

Free doesn't mean a company can exploit its workers. It is wrong (and illegal) to fire someone simply in order to hire someone else to take their place (ie the same job position and description).

Re:Theoretically ... (1)

jgerman (106518) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544878)

As long as it doesn't violate labor laws that exist. Which Sun is accused of. HB-1 visa's are only valid hires if native workers can't be found.

If it is true (1)

ellem (147712) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544816)

and get's proved in court I hope Sun goes under. And I like their stuff a lot.

Depends upon which camel (1)

BWJones (18351) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544817)

One of the problems I have seen recently with all of the outsourcing (to whereever) is that project management and documentation become really badly cludged. Yes, I know of companies that outsource lots of programming and documentation to India because of the cheap labor, but their products are starting to suffer. Note: this has nothing to do with any particular ethnic group, rather it has to do with outsourcing work to folks completely outside company systems and workflows. I have seen the same thing happen with project outsourcing to other American companies staffed by lots of pasty white people.

Re:Depends upon which camel (1)

SkarTisu (262065) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544912)

I think the phrase goes, "You get what you pay for."

Force the law (1)

jobugeek (466084) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544818)

This would not be a problem if the law concerning H1Bs was enforced. If these people were paid comparible wages, then companies would need a legitimate reason for bringing them in.

Re:Force the law (1)

bob dobalina (40544) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544857)

Oh, the law is well enforced, believe you me. My dad ran a tech consulting company for years and he was constantly hounded by state employment administrations and the INS. If they were willing and able to chase down little tech companies, I don't see why they couldn't keep an eye on the Fortune 500 crowd.

it's lame (1)

bob dobalina (40544) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544823)

This doesn't make much sense. Why would Sun lay off people here and try to import H1-Bs when they could just expand staffing at their India Engineering Center and ship development over there, as they have already done for their HPC ClusterTools software [sun.com] ? Oh wait, they're already doing that. [ciol.com] And also why did my submission of this very same story get rejected three days ago?

This Isn't Illegal (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5544829)

This is a fact of life given economic globalization. It baffles me that Americans get so pissed about international economic regulation, then complain about situations like this.

Your point? (1)

MindSlap (640263) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544832)

> " As long as they are compensated and treated the same as Americans. Humans are not a commodity. H1B's generally come from desperate situations so of course they _will_ work for a lot less than Americans, but that doesn't mean that it's ethical to exploit the desperate situation in which they came from."

So whats the point of hiring em in favor or US workers?!?!?
In the context of the issue, this is Pretzel logic at its finest...

What back? (1)

sjvn (11568) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544839)

> Could this be the straw that breaks the proverbial camel's back?"

What back? Why? Make people stop buying Sun? I don't think so. All companies exist to make money, one way to do that is by hiring cheap labor. H-1B lets companies do that. Deal.

One such law suit has already failed, the others will as well. Now getting rid of H-1B might help solve these disgruntled ex-workers problem, but that's another kettle of fish.

Steven

There is no affirmative action for americans. (1)

Chemisor (97276) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544840)

It is obvious to every businessman that when you hire someone, you hire the best person for the job. With the quality of american programmers going down, is it really surprizing that companies turn to other countries to find qualified computer professionals? And as for the pricing, well, if they want to work for less, it is their prerogative. It is as normal as having one of your competitor companies slash prices in order to drive you out of the market. That is life, and that is justice. To tell the companies that they must hire americans is as dumb as telling them they have to hire blacks solely for their skin color, even when they are not qualified to do the work.And to tell the companies that they must pay everybody an equal wage is clearly a communist sentiment, the inevitable result of which is well described by Ayn Rand in "Atlas Shrugged". Read the story of the Twentieth Century Motor company.

why not forming a union? (3, Insightful)

kipple (244681) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544848)

this would be the right time for it.

de/repatriate yourself (1)

spoonyfork (23307) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544851)

USian and need a tech job? Move to India and then become an H1B worker. Heck, the US company that hires you may even pay for your move back home.

I think it's called a free market. (1)

elchuppa (602031) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544852)

the US exploits most of the third world, it only seems fair that they should get some of the benefits of the free market as well.

Nothing wrong this this (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5544858)

This was not illegal - perhaps unethical. But not illegal

Americans in general are very unproductive. So Sun and other companies, bring in worked from India to replace their lazy unproductive employees or in this case, also overpaid employees.

I see nothing wrong with this. If I were the owner of a company, I would do the same thing. Fire the unproductive, overpaid employees and bring in qualified, lowering pay employees.

The only issue the people using could raise is possible age discrimination. But like I said the company can argue the employees were fired for other reasons.

Makes Good Business Sense (1)

ShwAsasin (120187) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544867)

Although it may be very fair, from a business point of view it makes sense. One could argue that the same rules could apply when a company would force someone into early retirement and higher a young kid to replace them. It's life, deal with it.

Already happened elsewhere (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5544874)

..like in the textile, apparel and shoe industries (Sneaker sweat-shops in Asia, anyone).

The sales pitch is that solutions can be developed in an off-shore "Software Factory". Really clever methodolgy can substitute for having smart, creative experienced developers on-site to interface with the business types directly, etc. etc.

This, of course, is bullshit.

what about outsourcing then? (1)

xpl_the_myst (612106) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544877)

In what way is this different from a company that thinks Indian companies charge much cheaper rates and outsources most of its work (that it earlier did in-house) to them? For those who think outsourcing is not that significant, here in India, outsourced jobs from US companies form a really significant part of companies' revenue. There even exist companies that do purely this work.

Anyway, I dont understand why a company can be taken to court for having a policy like that. I might be a total maverick for all I care and I might run a company and I may like only blonde-haired sharp-nosed thick-lipped people, how does that come in the way of justice?

For people like me in India, this is good news, though ;-)

About Time (2, Insightful)

j_kenpo (571930) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544883)

It's about friggin time. Companies that do that sell out our country. Its not bad to hire from overseas, especially if the person is more qualified, but for god sakes, fly them over here, make them citizens, and pay them what they would any American worker, that way at least they are pumping their salaries back into the American economy. Otherwise, keep it in the country. Its a good thing I boycotted Sun a long time ago, I hope they lose the suit, have to pay up, are forced to close down, and then their crappy half assed programming language and crappy OS go with Scott McNealy to live under a card board box that I can kick and piss on while I point and laugh at his mis-fortune. You'll have to excuse my rant, I hate Sun after all... but really, I hope they lose and this makes an example for other companies that are forcing American workers who went to school for jobs like these out of work.

this sucks. (1)

outsider007 (115534) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544884)

all my life they tell me to go into computers, I'll make the big bucks. and now american techies can't get jobs. I swear my guidance counselor couldn't have steered me wronger if she told me there's a bright future for gas station attendants.

everyone likes to put down microsoft, but this isn't something you see them doing. and somehow they still manage to compete.

This happens everywhere. (5, Interesting)

Blackwulf (34848) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544890)

Not the lawsuits, but the hiring of H1B's over US Citizens. I work in a small company (no, not the one linked to in my URL) and there are maybe 15 coders in our office.

Three of them are US Citizens. I am one of them.

We will see job postings go up in our break room, and submit the resume's of people we know who need jobs, but the job listings are basically a reprint of the resume of the H1B that the company has selected. So, they have all this extraneous stuff that you wouldn't use in that job, but they are considered "job requirements" and THAT is how they can tell the INS that "We can't find an equally qualified citizen."

I guess it wouldn't be so bad if we didn't work for clients and have to travel on site, and many of our clients will ONLY want US Citizens. So, that leaves the three of us to do ALL of the travelling, even if there has been a personal tragedy in our life. (And one of us has a newborn child, so she's not travelling either...)

I guess I can look at this a few ways. A) My life is a wreck right now because I can't stay home, but B) I have insane job security, something that is a very good thing to have in today's economy.

Sun support seems to be harder to understand... (5, Insightful)

Gaetano (142855) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544895)

When I call sun for support over the last few years, it seems that they are more often indian and difficult to understand. I really can't stand having to ask for the same instruction 5 times to be able to understand what they are telling me. I think perhaps this is why an indian speaking support engineer is 75% more likely to email me the procedures they are asking me to perform.

I would hang up and try to get someone who speaks english more clearly if I had the time to do so when the raid array on the oracle server is acting up and I have lots of people pissed off.

My opinion of the (very expensive) support sun offers has taken a turn for the worse because of this. I don't mind speaking to an indian or any other person as long as they speak english clearly when I call the english support line.

Meta comment (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5544902)

Regardless of the importance or interest in this topic, I fail to see how it relates to YRO (Your Rights Online). I'm anonymizing(?) since this will undoubtedly be dinged as off-topic.

this happens all the time (1)

AssFace (118098) | more than 11 years ago | (#5544908)

My previous company did this in order to stay afloat. And the company before that tried to farm off as much as possible to their office in India. Initially they were farming out to India in hopes that they would do the work while we slept, and vice versa... but it turned into a logistical trainwreck - so instead they would have them write the bulk of the code and then we would go through and clean up where they messed up. The particular programmers we had over there sucked ass, so largely we had to rewrite everything that they ever did.
Where I work now is very weird in that we are all dirty Americans.
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