Apple bends to Chinese government demands... again


#1

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2018/05/21/apple-bends-to-chinese-governm.html


#2

psst… don’t tell china: https://www.imore.com/how-configure-vpn-access-your-iphone-or-ipad


#3

I agree - Apple should have told china to go pound sand.


#4

I wonder if the fact that so much of the Apple hardware is made in China has anything to do with them capitulating to China’s demands?

It easier to tell China to pound sand when they aren’t currently holding on to your… hardware.


#5

I was wondering about that too.
Apple’s huge profits sorta hinge on being able to manufacture relatively cheap and sell with an enviably markup.


#6

Meh, it’s easy enough for innocuous apps to quietly bundle VPN functionality and that puts the Chinese government in a position of playing whack-a-mole which historically has not worked at all. I don’t agree with the Chinese government of course, but this particular “bending” doesn’t seem like such a big thing in light of the present situation in that market.

(Bolding that bit in hopes people see it before getting all outraged at the rest.)


#7

I think it’s more just obeying local law. They obey lawful requests in the US too, the ones that make the news are the edge cases, not the norm.

The fundamental difference in most comparisons is that apple are a hardware company. If a google product is taken off the local market, people can just use VPNs. If an apple product is taken off the local market, apple lose millions of sales.

Same reason they’re (finally) paying their taxes in Europe even if they disagree with it. They’ve done the math and decided that market is worth the hassle.


#8

Yeah, and expecting a publicly traded company to take a ‘principled’ stance on anything is ludicrous, even moreso a company like Apple.

Every company that does business in China has to bow to it, full-stop. MS, Google, Apple, anyone. Same as them ‘bowing’ to GDPR or US legal concerns either.

It’s honestly one of the biggest reasons why it’s important to fight in the US for better encryption defenses like BB champions because otherwise, companies will fold.


#9

If iAds had borne fruit Apple would care as much about your privacy as Google.


#10

Cannot be said often or loud enough.


#11

I’m trying real hard not to snigger at the fact that it’s now necessary to preemptively say one’s a fan of Apple in order to forestall devotees labeling one a hater for criticizing a publicly traded company. The emotional attachment people have to a nearly trillion dollar multinational is surreal.

I don’t think there’s any question. If regulators ban Apple from a major market, whether China, Europe or North America, a competitor will gladly step up to fellate the authoritarians. Were Apple’s board to allow that to happen, its shareholders would sue the company faster than you can say fiduciary duty.


#12

“Corporations are not above the law”?

I’ll happily repeat that as many times as necessary.


#13

The trick is to control the lawmakers so that they design the laws corporations want. That’s not happening for Apple in China, but it happens often enough everywhere else.


#14

So, respecting the laws of the country you are selling goods in is now “fellating the authorities”?!? One assumes that you apply the same standards to yourself. Thus when you’re on vacation in Mexico and you’re NOT breaking any laws it’s because you’d do anything for Enrique Peña Nieto.

Or, just maybe, you could let the dumb hyperbole die down…


#15

Quite true.

However, the attempt to persuade our fellow citizens to elect those that share our particular governance ethos is not just a trick, it is fundamental to the nature of our government. We are a democracy, which means that we are fortunate enough to be able to be fundamentally responsible for the government we get (which can be rather painful sometimes).


#16

Persuading the citizens to elect whom you want is actually quite easy. Just don’t give them the choice.


#17

Is being forced by the government to restrict the expression of your users the same as paying a tax?


#18

The story from corporate America has always been, “Let us work with China, and they will embrace our Western corporate ideals of a free market and individual freedom”. Instead, and I suspect utterly in line with corporate America’s actual aims, the exact reverse is occurring. When the time comes to turn the Free World into a Chinese-style surveillance state, these corporations will lead the charge. And it will all be for the greater good, of course.


#19

They need to hedge their manufacturing with other sources or they’ll continue to be beholden to China.


#20

quit_you