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Archive for June 13th, 2006

Macworld UK – Inside Apple’s iPod factories

MacWorld reports that the Mail on Sunday (UK) is reporting that Apple is using “sweatshops” to manufacture iPods:

The report claims Longhua’s workers live in dormitories that house 100 people, and that visitors from the outside world are not permitted. Workers toil for 15-hours a day to make the iconic music player, the report claims. They earn £27 per month. The report reveals that the iPod nano is made in a five-storey factory (E3) that is secured by police officers.

Another factory in Suzhou, Shanghai, makes iPod shuffles. The workers are housed outside the plant, and earn £54 per month – but they must pay for their accommodation and food, “which takes up half their salaries”, the report observes.

Interesting. Of course, you have to view this in context – what’s the average salary for those NOT working in the iPod factory? If the standard of living is such that food and housing amount to just $27 pounds/month, wouldn’t you expect the prevailing wage to be much lower, as well?

Come to think of it, I wish that I could find a job that would pay double my monthly housing and food expenses. I’d be a rich man. I think that most Americans would take that offer, as well.

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