Last week, a big controversy was in the air. On Friday, an episode of the popular public radio program “This American Life” was being pulled from the archives as a result of new insights showing one of the program’s featured guests lied about the subject matter.
The subject matter was Apple and, in particular, the alleged horrific working conditions found at Foxconn. “Significant fabrications” were told during the broadcast, the producers of the show revealed later.
Airing in January, the 39-minute story by Mike Daisey helped create a media firestorm over alleged abuses at the Foxconn factory. “This American Life” says it has become the show’s most popular podcast, downloaded 880,000 times.
The controversial episode in question was largely based on a monologue by Mike Daisey, a theatrical performer and writer. Marketplace China Correspondent Rob Schmitz “located and interviewed Daisey’s Chinese interpreter Li Guifen (who goes by the name Cathy Lee professionally with westerners). She disputed much of what Daisey has been telling theater audiences since 2010 and much of what he said on the radio.”
Ira Glass wrote on here blog:
“We’re horrified to have let something like this onto public radio. Many dedicated reporters and editors — our friends and colleagues — have worked for years to build the reputation for accuracy and integrity that the journalism on public radio enjoys. It’s trusted by so many people for good reason. Our program adheres to the same journalistic standards as the other national shows, and in this case, we did not live up to those standards.”
In a blog shared last Friday, Daisey said: “I stand by my work.”
However, everybody knows that China is a Communist country where labor rights are supreme. With the system more hostile towards Americans as shown in Apple v/s Proview court battle, Americans can never mess with Chinese police or government by exploiting workers. Thus, there is a strong possibility that allegations against Apple and Foxconn might be false.