Home > Corporate World, Mac News, Media & Reviews > Irresponsible Reporting

Irresponsible Reporting

March 1st, 2010

This time it involves Apple. The British publication Telegraph printed what appears to be a damning exposé on Apple’s bad business practices. From reading it, for the most part, it sounds like Apple was caught misbehaving, an impression bolstered by tangential reminders of past abuses.

Apple admits using child labour

At least eleven 15-year-old children were discovered to be working last year in three factories which supply Apple. … Apple has been repeatedly criticised for using factories that abuse workers and where conditions are poor. … Apple admitted that at least 55 of the 102 factories that produce its goods were ignoring Apple’s rule that staff cannot work more than 60 hours a week. … Apple has not stopped using the factories.

First off, to say that Apple “admitted” anything sounds like it confessed, that it was caught red-handed; that’s not the case, nor is it that Apple used child labor–its contractor did. Despite the article’s insinuation that Apple was being investigated by some outside source, this was a case of Apple investigating its contractors. Instead of turning a blind eye or even being complicit, Apple actually made rigorous checks of the business practices of the contractors, and instead of keeping any violations secret or covering up, it published its findings publicly, with assurances that it is taking steps to end these practices. What the Telegraph article also fails to state is that Apple is perhaps the only tech company which does these checks. Other companies simply ignore the abuses. Many in the comments section, despite the multiple criticisms of bias, state that they now see Apple in a bad light and will stop buying its products–something which might have been the reverse had the article reported the facts correctly and without the harsh anti-Apple slant. As for the past abuses: the workers exposed to the toxic gases, the worker who committed suicide, the reporter who was roughed up–none of these were Apple, they were all contractors, and Apple seems to be trying harder than anyone else in the industry to stop the abuses. Would I prefer that Apple changes suppliers? Sure, but then it’ll have to deal with the next supplier just the same. Maybe Apple could be doing more or better–but at least it’s doing something.

But I guess it makes better copy to falsely intimate that Apple is the bad guy here. Now, I have a pro-Apple bias–I’m a shareholder and fan–but at least I don’t hide it, and try to stick to the facts. Bad form, Telegraph.

Categories: Corporate World, Mac News, Media & Reviews Tags: by
Comments are closed.