Why does everyone overlook Apple?

After Listening to Daisey’s podcast I could not help but ask myself how so many people still purchase Apple products without any question at all. I have talked about Apple and how they exploit their workers in some of my other classes, yet no one seems to care. Everyone seems to overlook the unethical side of Apple because they are addicted to the products they offer consumers. Is Apple really that great of a company that people will forget about values and human rights? After listening to the podcast it seems so.

Some of the most shocking things to me were the ideas that there are almost half a million people at a plant and the age of some of the workers. Working at the age of thirteen in these conditions is something that would never be allowed in America, but goes on in other parts of the world. It is very difficult for me to imagine myself being that young and working in a Shenzhen, China. I feel like there is no way out for most, if not all of the workers and it is truly upsetting. Apple has the resources to provide their employees with so many great things and it is just confusing as to why they turn their head the other way when it comes to things like this.

Continuing, the part of the podcast when Daisey mentioned suicide also stuck with me. Having nets to prevent people from committing suicide is one of the most inhumane things I have ever heard in my life. If management knows people are so unhappy with the way they are being treated I don’t get why someone has not done something. Human beings are being treated in a way that should not be tolerated anywhere in the world and I feel like people need to begin to take stand against Apple. I understand it is extremely difficult for some people to break away from their obsession with Apple products, but enough is enough. I am glad Daisey took a stand and I hope that as many people hear his point of view and follow along with his thoughts on Apple.


8 responses to “Why does everyone overlook Apple?

  1. You raise a valid point. I think it may be a combination of ignorance and apathy. For example, I’ve been waiting months for the release of the new iPhone 6. And now that it’s announced I’m planning to purchase it. Ideally there would be equally great product that was manufactured by another company under much better working conditions. However, that’s not the case and I have little evidence to believe that LG, RIM, Samsung or any other phone manufacturer has practices that are much better than Apple. I see no easy answer.


  2. I agree that consumers do have the power to make a difference in Apple’s ethical choices, but is it realistic to think that we can expect individuals to take this stand without incentive? There are many companies that are now marketing their social responsibility efforts to attract consumers who do think this way, but Apple seems to have such a dedicated consumer base that it does not matter. What can be done about this?


  3. I agree with the post above. I think we also have to take into consideration the other technology companies who may have very similar working conditions to Apple. We really have to ask ourselves, does Apple get the worst of the wrath because they are on top with the most innovative and wanted products in history? Would we be as outraged, confused and frustrated if it was a lower tier company? Maybe we wouldn’t even hear about it in the news and someone like Daisey would not even be concerned with bringing the problem to the publics attention. As horrible of a situation it is, I challenge everyone to think how the problem would be different if Apple wasn’t the Apple it is today.


  4. I agree with Ian. Foxconn also produces electronics for Dell, Nokia, Panasonic, HP, Samsung, and Sony. As an industry leader in so many other respects, it is easy to place the blame on Apple. However, the extensive issues related to outsourced manufacturing and labor conditions are an industry-wide problem. The whole technology sector should be held responsible for ensuring ethical operations.


    • I would agree with all of the other comments here. This reminds me of the “too big to fail” issue with large financial firms–some organizations in particular industries just have a grip on the market that consumers cannot avoid. Consumers are torn between getting the services they want and holding true to their values, as you point out in your first paragraph. Of course the technology sector should be held accountable, but I do not think that, as a society, we are prepared to take the necessary measures. We are an incredibly materialistic society that isn’t ready to give up our beloved iPhones.


      • I agree with everything stated here. Apple is this almost omnipotent company that can seemingly do no wrong, and yet they indirectly employ 12 year old child workers? They deserve some of the blame. No matter what PR they do to prove that they care about the working condition of some of the factories, ultimately money will prevail over human rights. It always does.


  5. This is reminiscent of Nike’s scandal in the early 90’s. Nike faced much backlash after exposés revealed the horrors of its sweatshops. Nike was not the only perpetrator at the time, but it was the biggest and most publicized. Therefore, it faced the most public scrutiny. It took over fifteen years from the first exposé to Nike’s ultimate turn around. Perhaps, we are witnessing the beginning of a similar fate for Apple. The only difference is it will be a lot harder to protest a smartphone than a sneaker…


  6. I agree with Spencer’s comment. Apple is a huge company that is so prevalent in so many people’s lives. It has become hard to find someone that I know that does not own at least one Apple product. While consumers could make a difference if we all came together and decided to stop purchasing until offshore manufacturing conditions got better, I find the likelihood of this occur very slim. As Spencer said, Apple might be “too big to fail” that I am not sure enough people would be dedicated enough to abstain from using or purchasing Apple products, which is what is “cool” in society, to impact Apple’s bottom line enough to initiate change.


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