Print 16 comment(s) - last by Kyanzes.. on Aug 30 at 2:05 PM

Foxconn sues journalists after admitting that the stories were true

In what appears to be another corporate body versus journalist situation, Foxconn has filed a lawsuit against two Chinese reporters that authored stories about poor working conditions at Foxconn. Original news about Foxconn's Shenzhen factory burst onto the newswire several weeks ago alleging that the manufacturing giant made its employees work extreme overtime hours and were paid bare minimum wages -- the original articles even claimed that Foxconn employees were underpaid.

Wang You and Weng Bao of The China Business News wrote and edited the original article that was distributed widely within mainland China. The two are being sued by Foxconn for roughly $3.77 million USD which is the largest claim of its kind in the country. Despite this, The China Business News said that it will vigorously defend its employees. The news organization said it "stands firmly behind its journalists and will bear all possible consequences in this case."

Apple launched an investigation into Foxconn's business practices several weeks ago, claiming that it has no tolerance for partners and suppliers who treat their employees poorly. The initial report said that while the majority of Foxconn's facilities were well received, some areas such as housing were substandard -- most employees were happy but many had a few concerns.

According to original reports, it was a news report by Britain's Daily Mail that provoked the original Apple investigation. The story by Britain's Daily Mail apparently broke news four days before the article by Wang You and Weng Bao. Interestingly, Foxconn admitted to employee labor violations after the articles were already published.

Foxconn previously tried suing journalists in 2004 over a story that it felt damaged its reputation only to later retract the lawsuit when it received pressure from the Association of Taiwan Journalists. In the new lawsuit against Wang You and Weng Bao, Foxconn also claims its reputation was tarnished.

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By Schadenfroh on 8/29/2006 5:40:00 PM , Rating: 4
The two are being sued by Foxconn for roughly $3.77 million USD which is the largest claim of its kind in the country.

China has much to learn, in America that would be $3.77 BILLION.

RE: sigh
By CheesePoofs on 8/29/2006 7:24:35 PM , Rating: 2
:cookie; that made me laugh :) And sadly you do have a point there.

RE: sigh
By Bluestealth on 8/29/2006 7:27:50 PM , Rating: 3
Dr. Evil must work at Foxconn

but :)
By dOOMYLEIN on 8/29/2006 7:53:09 PM , Rating: 2
" most employees were happy but many had a few concerns"
What's bigger: most or many?:)

RE: but :)
By Howard on 8/29/2006 8:23:23 PM , Rating: 2
It's possible to be happy but not completely worry-free.

RE: but :)
By hughlle on 8/29/2006 10:04:20 PM , Rating: 2
i was in shantou a couple of weeks ago and went to a friends factory and i have to say, the accomodation and such seemed far below average but the workers still seemed happy and such (maybe that was because they had a basketball court)

You Just Can't Buy Anything Nice These Days
By Ulfhednar on 8/29/2006 10:07:27 PM , Rating: 1
I am always boycotting companies for these sorts of practises, but sometimes you just can't. I just read this article and noticed the Connect3D X1900XT sitting on my desk (not had chance to install it yet) is made partly from Foxconn components, but I can't simply send back a £200 graphics card because of who made it.

Shouldn't have to either, because companies shouldn't behave so disgustingly in the first place. *Spits on Foxconn.* I hope they get counter-sued, or better yet, I hope that Apple stand up and fights on behalf of the journalists despite their working association with Foxconn, since they are supposedly a "friendly" company.

By TwistyKat on 8/30/2006 10:37:47 AM , Rating: 2
I am always boycotting companies for these sorts of practises, but sometimes you just can't.

Right. Just like trying to avoid trans-fats. :-)

But it's the dark side of capitalism. Everyone wants a high standard of living but no one wants to know about the person whose back we are standing on to get to this level.

Of course, a majority Americans don't care about the big picture as long as they are comfortable.

By Kyanzes on 8/30/2006 2:05:52 PM , Rating: 2
It's perfectly normal for companies to take advantage of their employee base on the maximum possible level. That's where the profit originates from. And from the mines and oil refineries where they actually extract/refine basic materials needed for the production. Everyone else above them is taking a constantly growing advantage (as we move higher in the hierarchy) of the people working in these mines/refineries/factories. They get close to nothing for their workforce. But that's how business works. That's how profit is made. That's why we can live in prosperity. Our countries' influence over these territories grant us everything we have got today. And our governments buy/replace(by force if necessary) the government officials of the countries we exploit so they don't care. And I'm enjoying this situation as long as it lasts. Cause it won't last forever. There will be consequences. Hope I won't live to see that day for it can prove mean. If you don't like it, take a gun, join the resistance (cause there are resistances all over the world, you hear about them every day in the news) and fight. Of course then you would have to surrender all comfort and prosperity you take for granted in your current life you lead today. I know I couldn't do that, so at least I try not to look sanctified.

Our Response
By Dactyl on 8/29/2006 7:12:10 PM , Rating: 2
This is a deliberate move by Foxconn to shut down what little free speech there is in China. Corrupt government officials, corrupt businessmen, and gangsters there work hand-in-hand to shut down dissent. It's a fascist state.

But not every business located there acts so badly. We have to boycott Foxconn products, but the real way to hurt them is to put pressure on Apple. Attack Apple's image (which Apple treasures so dearly) for being in league with this company. It's Apple's responsibility to tell Foxconn to drop the lawsuit.

RE: Our Response
By bilbo3660 on 8/29/2006 7:44:35 PM , Rating: 2
If it was a fascist state the article criticizing a major business wouldn't have been published in the first place let alone widely distributed.

But Foxconn has such a cuddly name...
By Cunthor01 on 8/29/2006 9:29:26 PM , Rating: 2
Doesn't Foxconn manufacture ipods?

By gsellis on 8/30/2006 7:53:47 AM , Rating: 2
According to other articles, both the iPods and the PS/2.

And people blame communist Chinese government...
By defter on 8/30/2006 2:54:10 AM , Rating: 2
For the lack of free speech. It seems that capitalistic companies aren't any better in this respect (Foxconn is from Taiwan).

By Kim Leo on 8/30/2006 6:50:56 AM , Rating: 2
ha ha shows how clueless some people can be :), Foxcon makes a lot of things, have you looked on a PCI port?, and a CPU socket? mostly Foxcon.. that makes it hard to boycot them..

The mere fact that
By Dfere on 8/30/2006 10:33:26 AM , Rating: 3
The two reporters may be sued by Foxconn, and not imprisoned by China, gives me some hope.

“We do believe we have a moral responsibility to keep porn off the iPhone.” -- Steve Jobs
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