Apple audits supply chain, vows to fight for reduction in worker abuses, environmental damage

Computing giant Apple today for the first time released an unprecedented trove of information about its supply chain: the "Apple Supplier Responsibility Report." Some industry observers believe the move indicates Apple under Tim Cook may turn out to be a more transparent company than under previous CEO Steve Jobs. "I would like to totally eliminate every case of underage employment," said Cook. Here's a PDF of the report. Some labor rights groups say the release is a step forward, but not far forward enough. (via @joshgreenman) Read the rest

The future of Foxconn

At TechCrunch, John Biggs presents a series on the future of Foxconn, a major supplier for western consumer electronics companies such as Apple. Made infamous by a series of suicides, the truth is more complex, found in the statistics of China's economic rise and the countless human stories that add up to it. The firm's vast campus city is home to thousands of workers, many of them living in company dormitories. Just feeding them is a massive, industrial-scale operation in its own right. In Shenzhen, home of its HQ, the median age is under 25. And while conditions are in fact better than other firms like it, its sheer size makes its problems so much bigger. Read the rest