“Life is meaningless”

“Life is meaningless”

“Life is meaningless,” said Ah Wei, his fingernails stained black with the dust from the hundreds of mobile phones he has burnished over the course of a 12-hour overnight shift. “Everyday, I repeat the same thing I did yesterday. We get yelled at all the time. It’s very tough around here.”

  • 80% of assembly line workers work standing up, sometimes 12 hours a day, 6 days a week
  • 86% of workers live in dormitories with 8-10 per room
  • Making friends is hard since they are not allowed to chat on the line

Funny, I didn't hear Steve Jobs talk about these particular features of his super-duper new iPhone 4G the other day. 

In publishing, we're supposed to be, oh I don't know, a little more thoughtful about issues such as these, aren't we?  Funny, but all I'm currently hearing is pretty superficial fanboy-style trashtalk about the new iPad. Where's our social conscience gone?

News reports increasingly suggest the workers themselves are becoming restless.  I predict we're approaching the end of the cheap labour era...

Photo by jurvetson