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A tragedy related to iPhone

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(CNET) Chinese authorities probe iPhone worker’s death

(PCWorld) iPhone Suicide Case Spotlights Tech’s Dark Side

Apparently many foreign media can not understand why a guy will jump off the building just because the iPhone he was in charge went missing? Well, it appears to me there are two factors:

1) It’s very very hard to get a good job for new graduates in China these days. Thus they join Foxconn, the “sweater shop” if you will. Not much rights once you join that shop. I suggest my western friends go there once and get some real world experience on sweater shop before express their views.

2) He was tortured. Again remember Foxconn is a “sweater shop” happens making iPhone.

My thoughts: whatever (lame thing) Apple or Foxconn wants to say, they can not bring the young life back, sadly. So for people happen to work in those unfortunate places, due to economy recession/have to support a family, make sure talk over to friends (psychological help) and seek legal help if you are treated unfairly.

In more broader terms, I believe that work/job/career occupies more important space in young people’s lives in China than in the US. Life is more than work, not to mention the stupid iPhone. I think my countrymen should enjoy lives more as economy develops. After all, we work so that we can enjoy lives (family), not the other way around.

Disclosure: No Apple stock position. I traded (bought and sold) it early this year.

Why Asian countries subsidize semiconductor industry?

I have been thinking this thing for a while. I know Taiwan has 6 memory chip manufacturing companies, and it has invested billions of dollar in those plants. Korea has two big ones: SamSung and Hynix, both are much bigger than the Taiwanese memory chip companies. A while ago I read from WSJ that the goverment was thinking about invest some money in those companies, and combine some of them, so that they will have a chance to compete against the foreign rivals.

The subsidy from Taiwanese government is not alone. I believe both Korean and Chinese government subsisized heavily in manufacturing plants owned by SamSung, Intel, SMI (Semiconductor Manufacturing International), etc. Actually, if we broaden the semiconductor concept a little, I know Asian government subsizied hard drive makers too (Seagate in China, for instance). I read one report Seagate is one of the biggest exporter of China.

Back to my original question, I already gave the hint: it’s mostly about jobs. Asia is full of human resources (labor). The employment is a big issue for government at all levels. I heard sometimes local governments in different areas bid up each other in terms of “sweetner” (tax rebate, lower land cost) to get a foreign plant built.

This is understandable, and it’s ok if done moderately. The problem is, in some cases, like the Taiwanese memory chip, essentially it’s a razor-thin profit business (if there is any profit at all). When an economy downturn (like this one) came, the business will fail.

Appendix: response of former colleague of Mr. Sun, who passed away in this iPhone incident. (in Chinese, use Google translate if necessary)
因为上月已经离职,所以昨晚才得知他离去的消息,我非常非常的震惊!
    离开前他还跟我说过话,对我选择辞职非常惊讶,连说:你怎么会走呢?当时因为一些生活的事情不顺,我的心情很忧郁,无法正常工作下去,所以选择离职。因为经济危机尚未过去,而公司的业绩确实很好,我的老板也非常照顾我们,所以当时部门很少有工程师选择离职,整个大办公室一两百人中只有我一个工程师级别的人辞职。当时在我的眼中,我觉得自己是所处环境中最不幸的人了,所以现在忆起那时的他,感觉他是很快乐和阳光的。之后,他还对我说了一些祝福的话,希望我之后找到好工作什么的。
    现在我已经从过去的事情中逐渐调整好了心态,而他,却因为这样突然的一件事情生命就此嘎然而止。实在是无论如何都想象不到!
    他是负责产品试产阶段机器分配的,而我们正是从他的手里拿机器然后做相关测试,后来他们部门又搬到我们同一个办公室,所以我们接触还是不少的。他个子不高,瘦瘦的,说话声音低低细细的非常温柔。因公司性质特别,很多人都是秉着厉害的原则,说话做事都要试着压着别人,而他从不这样做事。所以,我很喜欢与他打交道,他很好说话,做事尽心尽力,认真负责。还有几次他还让我帮忙开放行单多拿几台机器给别的部门,我也乐意照做。总的来说,我们合作很愉快,他给我的印象非常好。
    看了出事的经过,我很理解他,因为我知道他的工作所负的责任很大,管理的机器太多。比起他来我们只是管很少的一点也有上千台,每次盘点我们都很头痛。而且,工作强度又大,加班很多,很忙,那种情况下出点纰漏情有可原。可是,他实在是不应该自己压了三天才说出去,我想是因为他太善良了,不想把事情搞大,连累很多人。A公司对安全保密确实非常苛刻,出了这种事情,他们一定会给F很大的压力。之前因为一点小信息泄露的事情我们也经历过这些压力,还好有老大们顶着。这次只有他一个人顶着,实在是太难承受了。但是,他还是有选择的,比如让公安调查等等,如果环安的人对他不公,他也可以付诸法律途径。哪怕F是强大的,可是也应该试着抗争啊!
    环安的课长我也接触过,也是讨论产品的保密问题,他的态度还是很好的,而且做安管的女孩们对他的评价也不算坏。他怎么会采取那些不当的手段我就不清楚了,可能是我还不了解很多内幕的东西吧。也可能是A公司太逼F了,才做出过激举动。这个我实在不敢妄加猜测。
    这款手机才开始就一直风波不断,iPhone girl等,没想到这新的一代又沾上了无辜者的鲜血。心情很复杂。
    我从悲观失落中走了出来,而他离去了。从心理上,我甚至有些他是替我死去的感觉。因为他的事情给我的震撼彻底地使我消除了那种极端消极的想法。
    在百度上搜他的名字,竟然出现了那么多结果,他能想到他会因为这个和这种方式而出名吗?我想很多公司都会因为他的死而改善管理方法,使很多很多人受益。他是这样的善良,离开人世后还继续给后人造福。
    永远悼念和缅怀他!

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