The Factory That Makes The iPhone 5 Is Under Attack By Its Own Workers

The Factory That Makes The iPhone 5 Is Under Attack By Its Own Workers
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Foxconn, the company best known for suicidal workers, terrible working conditions, and building anything and everything Apple, had to shut down one its assembly plants today because of a supposed riot that took place late Sunday night (local time).

According to a quote from Foxconn via Chinese web portal, the plant was closed on Monday to allow employees to cool off. It is still unclear exactly what kicked off a protest Sunday night and early into Monday morning, but Chinese media speculates that it might have been caused by a security guard beating a regular plant employee. Supposedly, after the employee was beat-up by the security guard, his fellow workers, numbering up to 2000, became enraged and started to trash the Foxconn Taiyuan campus. The riot started at around 11pm Sunday night spilling over to 3am Monday.

Photos published by show that during the riot, an on-campus supermarket, some gates and a bus was damaged by rioters. It is reported that over 11 fights took place throughout the night and that the rioting didn’t stop until local police were called to the scene. Over 10 people were injured, some reports state that at least 10 people are dead as a result of the riots.

Foxconn’s Taiyuan plant is reported to be responsible for the assembly and manufacturing of various auto parts as well as the newly released iPhone 5. There are over 79000 employees at the plant. This isn’t Foxconn’s first riot; earlier this year, Foxconn’s Chengdu plant in Sichuan province also experienced a similar situation. The Chengdu riot also ended when local police were called to the scene.

Currently there are over 2000 local police staff on hand at the Foxconn Taiyuan plant to “ensure the peace”.

Update: The Associated Press is now reporting that over 40 people were injured during last night’s riot. Yahoo News also reports that there are now over 5000 police officers at Foxconn’s Taiyuan plant.

富士康太原工厂员工群殴 现场一片狼藉10余人伤 [Sina Finance]
富士康太原工廠暫時關閉:騷亂與工作無關 [Sina Tech HK]
太原富士康发生数千人骚乱 死亡超10人 [NetEase Finance]


  • Why hasn’t there been any intervention by the UN over this? These people, slaves, basically, live a horrible life, just making products for the ignorant West..

    • Westerners try to get involved and stop it all the time. But China says “stop butting in Westerners, this is OUR country and we will do things the way WE want”. China doesn’t want anybody else involved in its country.

      Plus, China is a permanent member of the Security Council, so can veto anything they want.

    • because you are also part of the ignorant West. Conditions at Foxconn plants is actually one of the better ones in China. Same with their pay. Do you know why they don’t get paid more/have even better conditions? Because cheapass global companies like Apple etc want to make 200% profit (in some cases even more) to please their shareholders. And since western consumers are cheap and don’t want to pay for stuff, the global companies have to lower their sales price to remain competitive, this means they need to lower their cost base so they can keep their 200% profit. This means companies like foxconn gets paid less per item (they make it up by producing in greater numbers), and since they also want their profits for their shareholders/owners, this means they pay their employees as low as legally allowed.

      This is the price of capitalism. The same holds true in most industries, just take a look at farmers. Farmers get like 5? 10 cents? per chicken or some ridiculous number that’s just as low. After the transport costs, cleaning, plucking, temperature maintenance costs etc, supermarkets like Coles/Woolies still need to make a big profit to satisfy their shareholders. So they sell the chickens for like $15/kg. But then people complain it’s too expensive, so Coles/Woolies try to lower their cost base so they can remain competitive while maintaining their high profit margins etc.

    • Because poking your nose into other peoples’ business and dictating what is or isn’t ‘humane’ by your own biased perspective is extremely condescending. Foxconn is actually one of the ‘good guys’, the pay is steady, the work conditions are tough but not sweatshop-bad, almost anyone can get a job there regardless of education etc.

      Yes, it’s tough for privileged Westerners, but they have very different standards from us. Compared to work conditions during the Great Leap Forward or even the late 90s, Foxconn is extremely cushy. The average youth and work and make money to luxuries like phones, computers and games, instead of living day-by-day. The conditions would change as China becomes more affluent and fixes their human rights legislation, not by an external power like the UN (which China’s a permanent member) enforcing rules.

  • I’m not buying any more Apple, Microsft, Acer, etc, products while these guys are manufacturing them.
    I can live without the gadgets, but I can’t even imagine living in that factory.

  • Wonder how many police they’ll need to deploy before someone starts wondering if there’s a slighty better way to handle the situation, like maybe making their employees less unhappy

  • Unfortunately when you have over a billion people and absolutely no regard for human rights, there’s always more “workers”.

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