There may be few things in the tech industry that demonstrate the gulf between rich and poor more than workers in India who manufacture iPhones rioting over low pay. That’s what happened over the weekend at Wistron’s Bangalore factory. It’s a reminder that, while complaints from Silicon Valley workers about their employers’ government contracts or disinformation policies get a lot of media coverage, another set of employees are grappling with much more fundamental issues.
The India riots, coincidentally, occurred just a few days after The Information published a detailed story about Apple ignoring repeated breaches of China’s labor laws restricting the use of temporary labor. These breaches might appear arcane, but their implications are not. The temporary workers, known in China as “dispatch workers,” don’t have the same benefits and legal protections as permanent employees.