Breaking: 'This American Life' Retracts Apple-Foxconn Expose

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John Barnes
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Re: Another note for the future
John Barnes   3/19/2012 11:15:41 AM
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Mitch, I think your explanation is dead on for the present day.  But around the corner, in the future, it's by no means clear that the distinctions it relies on will be meaningful to anyone.

Mitch Wagner
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This American Life was a plum target for being taken in in this fashion because they essentially do two different kinds of stories: Personal memoirs, where a certain amount of embellishment is perfectly appropriate. We all know that David Sedaris's life probably bears only a little bit of resemblence to the stories he tells, and we don't really care, because that's not the point. 

More recently, This American Life has been doing real journalism, where strict adherence to the fact in every detail is mandatory. Even the smallest error of fact undermines the credibility of that kind of story. 

The Apple story was both kinds of story -- a personal memoir by a man describing how he went on a project of real journalism. 

John Barnes
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Another note for the future
John Barnes   3/19/2012 11:00:05 AM
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This American Life was essentially fooled by a performance artist who, like many perfornance artists I have known, has a different concept of "Facts" and "Truth" than those of the stricter world of journalism.  Today ,the distinction is visible, real, and meaningful, but it might not be in another generation; the recent career of Andrew Breitbart, or the older one of Hunter Thompson, shows how perfornance art and journalism can overlap and fuse.  Like it or not,  eventually "what it could look like" may well overtake "what could be proven" (as it has in many areas of corporate life).

WaqasAltaf
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Re: Damage done
WaqasAltaf   3/19/2012 9:37:19 AM
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this has created an opening for research, someone's going to go out there to dig out the truth."

@ Kicheko

Not only Apple but I think all the organizations that have some untold stories that could rule them out as "bad guyz" will be thinking that they may be next. I hope this trend doesnt stop as it is for the good of humankind and it may force corporations to learn and realize that profits from business need to be shared with all who dropped their sweat.  

WaqasAltaf
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Re: Damage done
WaqasAltaf   3/19/2012 9:11:09 AM
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@nasimson

The sad part about all such stands against injustice is that people seem to forget too often. However, we can hope that people remain focused on identifying companies that are busy in violating labour laws and other unethical activities. The more we see investigative journalism adopting social media, the more we will see companies getting careful in their activities.   

kicheko
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Re: Damage done
kicheko   3/19/2012 5:25:14 AM
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Indeed life is a soap opera....now a retraction? well this could buy apple some time, but for the sceptic that is the consumer out there today, it may not cut it yet. One, there are corroborating reports like you mentioned. I'm not saying i think the guy was bought to retract his story, but i wouldn't rule out the possibility either.

Secondly this has created an opening for research, someone's going to go out there to dig out the truth. Apple may rest now but if the story is true, they know it and they better not get too comfy yet.

Mitch Wagner
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Re: Damage done
Mitch Wagner   3/19/2012 12:22:54 AM
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WaqasAltaf - I don't know that Apple has standing to sue. Individuals can be libeled, but not brands. On the other hand, I am not a lawyer -- but I've never heard of an American company succeeding in such a lawsuit in American courts. 

Dwhite706
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I think this will have little to know impact on the apple brand

Dwhite706
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It's a case off out of site out of mind. The abuse is not happening in American factories but thousands of miles away. I'm sure the electronics industry and the governments of the US and china spend a lot of time and money keeping these issues under the radar

nasimson
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@Sohaib, you're right. I've seen a lot of HR laws and policies formulated in our country, but are they implemented in most of the places? I doubt. However, if the developed countries manage to regulate the big companies, I'm sure the effect will trickle down as well.

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