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Old 06-10-2018, 06:41 AM   #1
GeoffR
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Amazon admits Kindles made by illegally hired underpaid workers

The Guardian reports:
Quote:
Amazon has admitted that thousands of agency workers who make its Echo smart speakers and Kindles in China were hired and paid illegally.
https://www.theguardian.com/technolo...kers-illegally


The article above refers to this China Labor Watch report:
Quote:
Amazon Profits from Secretly Oppressing its Supplier’s Workers: An Investigative Report on Hengyang Foxconn
http://www.chinalaborwatch.org/report/132

Last edited by GeoffR; 06-10-2018 at 06:51 AM. Reason: spelling
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Old 06-10-2018, 11:04 AM   #2
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From the article ...

Quote:
Agency staff – known as dispatch workers in China – do not get sick pay or holiday pay and can be laid off without wages during lulls in production. China changed its labour laws in 2014 to limit their use to 10% of any workforce in an attempt to stop companies exploiting them to cut costs.
It's too bad we don't have a law like this in the United States, where corporations get rewarded (with rising stock prices) when they lay off long-time workers (who have benefits) and hire contract labor instead.
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Old 06-10-2018, 04:28 PM   #3
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Sounds like Amazon hired a firm in China to build Amazon products, and that firm did not comply with Chinese law. If Amazon knew about this and condoned it, then that's bad. However, if they didn't, but recently found out about it and are now pressuring the supplier to do what's proper, then that's good.

Since we really don't know which version happened based on the article, then it's premature to either bad mouth or praise Amazon.

It is probably true that most countries pay their workers less than the USA does (possible exceptions in Europe I imagine). Does that mean that the US should shun trade with all those countries until they pay at US levels? Wow, that would be a nightmare. Thinking practically rather than emotionally, those countries would never be able to pay at US levels, thus they would be shunned into eternity. Does that help their workers? I'm all for reasonable pay and working conditions, but does that mean "like we do it in the USA?" Are we being as big-hearted as we think we are if we shun them? It's not as simple a problem to solve as some would have you believe.
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Old 06-10-2018, 06:26 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by haertig View Post
Sounds like Amazon hired a firm in China to build Amazon products, and that firm did not comply with Chinese law.
Foxconn is huge and makes electronic products for just about everybody (including Microsoft and Apple). If they're breaking this new Chinese law in one factory, I sincerely doubt that they're obeying it in other factories.

Last edited by rcentros; 06-10-2018 at 06:37 PM.
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Old 06-10-2018, 07:13 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by haertig View Post
Sounds like Amazon hired a firm in China to build Amazon products, and that firm did not comply with Chinese law. If Amazon knew about this and condoned it, then that's bad. However, if they didn't, but recently found out about it and are now pressuring the supplier to do what's proper, then that's good.

Since we really don't know which version happened based on the article, then it's premature to either bad mouth or praise Amazon.
RTFA, please

we know this happened because Amazon's own auditors caught Foxconn in the act
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Old 06-10-2018, 08:30 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nate the great View Post
RTFA, please

we know this happened because Amazon's own auditors caught Foxconn in the act
RMFP, please.

I never said it didn't happen. I said we don't know which version happened. I was speculating on two possible versions: Did Amazon have prior knowledge of it happening and allowed it, or did Amazon find out after the fact that it was happening and is now trying to correct something that they just learned about? You can't tell from the article. One one hand, the article says Amazon "admits ...", which implies guilt of some sort. But then the article goes on to say that Amazon said their auditors found it and they are now trying to correct it. That implies Amazon is not at fault and is trying to right a wrong.

Add to that the current state of our media and what they are doing, and "Amazon admits ..." as a headline cries out "click me, click me!" You've got to find out what the real truth is before passing judgement. And that is extremely difficult to do given our current media.

So how do YOU want to interpret the headline?

Workers not paid legally by Amazon contractor in China

or

Workers not paid legally by Amazon contractor in China

The article doesn't give you the information you need to make an informed decision. In a nutshell, I implied that my mind is not made up regarding who's at fault yet, because I don't have the facts. Don't conflate that with denying that something happened.
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Old 06-10-2018, 09:57 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rcentros View Post
From the article ...


It's too bad we don't have a law like this in the United States, where corporations get rewarded (with rising stock prices) when they lay off long-time workers (who have benefits) and hire contract labor instead.
Its sad. Weve gone backwards.
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Old 06-10-2018, 10:33 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by haertig View Post
RMFP, please.

I never said it didn't happen. I said we don't know which version happened. I was speculating on two possible versions: Did Amazon have prior knowledge of it happening and allowed it, or did Amazon find out after the fact that it was happening and is now trying to correct something that they just learned about? You can't tell from the article. One one hand, the article says Amazon "admits ...", which implies guilt of some sort. But then the article goes on to say that Amazon said their auditors found it and they are now trying to correct it. That implies Amazon is not at fault and is trying to right a wrong.

Add to that the current state of our media and what they are doing, and "Amazon admits ..." as a headline cries out "click me, click me!" You've got to find out what the real truth is before passing judgement. And that is extremely difficult to do given our current media.

So how do YOU want to interpret the headline?

Workers not paid legally by Amazon contractor in China

or

Workers not paid legally by Amazon contractor in China

The article doesn't give you the information you need to make an informed decision. In a nutshell, I implied that my mind is not made up regarding who's at fault yet, because I don't have the facts. Don't conflate that with denying that something happened.
Sounds like the same doomcrying when the stories broke about Apple clamping down on their contractors in China for violating both the terms of their contracts with Apple and Chinese labour law with little mention that it was Apple's regular audits that caught the violations. It makes a much better story and/or clickbait if that part of the story is minimized.

In this case, the Guardian reported that Amazon had detected issues during an audit in March, 2018 and had requested a corrective action plan from Foxconn Hengyang. From the Amazon Profits from Secretly Oppressing its Supplier’s Workers pdf from China Labor Watch, it appears that many of the violations they detected were during the March/April timeframe. Their letter to Amazon in the .pdf is dated 2018-May-04. Amazon's response to that letter is also in that pdf though it is undated.

As for your playing word games with the "Workers not paid legally by Amazon contractor in China", can you produce any evidence that the workers at a Chinese contract manufacturer were not paid by the contractor? That the contractee paid them directly?

Last edited by DNSB; 06-10-2018 at 10:45 PM. Reason: fat finger typos... what else is old...
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Old 06-10-2018, 11:33 PM   #9
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Misleading heading to this topic. Implies wrong-doing on the part of Amazon when it seems there was none. Even The Guardian didn't go that far.
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Old 06-11-2018, 04:58 AM   #10
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