For George Orwell, it was the year symbolic of an oncoming communist future.
For Apple, it was a year in which they were still the underdog.
Had Apple’s famous 1984 Superbowl commercial ran this year, the reaction would’ve been entirely different. In 1894, Apple was a fledgling company who made cheerful computers with monitors rounded to mirror the human face. Today, Apple is a giant whose products we have become completely reliant on and whose secrecy masks user data misuse and child labor in China.
Today’s Big Brother isn’t Microsoft–it’s Apple.
All Apple products are manufactured in China. We know this. We know that they’re probably made by people that are overworked and underpaid, but we don’t really know to what extent. The company that manufactures all Apple products is called FoxCon. Mike Daisey went to FoxCon and reported a portion of what he saw on the podcast, This American Life. He went undercover and was able to observe FoxCon at work. From the floor, the most startling thing he reported was silence. 30,000 people work at FoxCon. 30,000 silent people, not allowed to talk on the line. 30,000 people who create no noise. No whirring machines sound because when human labor costs next to nothing, whatever can be done by hand–is.
Your iPhones are handmade in China.
Chinese people working 16 hour days without breaks handmade your Mac.
The precision that Apple is renowned for is made at the cost of 30,000 people’s fine motor skills.
1984 is here.