The Probelem With Conceived In California, But Made In China

President Obama wants “Made In America” to mean something again. And it’s no wonder, when “Made In China” comes with as many human rights questions as it does.

As you may have heard, over 300 employees at a Foxconn plant in Wuhan, China recently threatened to throw themselves off a building in a mass suicide.

Foxconn manufactures consumer products for Apple, HP, Microsoft, Nintendo, Sony and several other prominent brands.

According to c|net, the activist employees have come to an agreement with the manufacturer. But over the last two years, at least 16 Foxconn employees have committed suicide in the company’s Shenzhen factory. Those deaths have prompted the company to say that it will install “suicide nets” around the factory to discourage employees from jumping from buildings.

Suicide nets? I can’t imagine how deplorable the conditions must be at Foxconn. And I can’t imagine why a company would install suicide nets, rather than address the root of the problem.

For a closer looks at this issue, listen to Mike Daisey on This American Life, which features an excerpt from his one-man show “The Agony and the Ecstasy of Steve Jobs.”



About David Burn

I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. Today—after working for seven agencies in five states—I am head of brand strategy and creative at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.