[LINK] foxconn, the real story

Kim Holburn kim at holburn.net
Sun Oct 30 08:27:24 AEDT 2011

The real question: How has foxconn cut the suicide rate by a factor of 24.51 times compared to the base rates of China?


>From the comments:

> As someone who's profession is intimately connected to the tragedy of suicide (bipolar and depression are the leading causes) I am appalled that you use suicide as a way to sell your magazine in such a careless way.
> The headline is completely misleading in highlighting suicide as if it is an epidemic compared to the normal rates. The article hedges a little, but never tells the real story of the statistics.
> From the article: "Out of a million people, 17 suicides isn't much-indeed, American college students kill themselves at four times the rate..." But where did that statistic come from? Over the course of three years - 2007 until at least 2010 according to the article, 17 people out of one million committed suicide for an average rate per year of 5.67 per million or .567 per 100,000. At the projected suicide rate in US colleges of 7.5 deaths per 100,000 students every year, it is really 13.23 times the rate, not four times as you suggest.
> Later in the article you say that the suicide rate at Foxcon's Shenzhen plant remains below national averages but do not put it in the real perspective; according to the World Health Organization, China's average between men and women is 13.9 out of 100,000 or 24.51 times the rate at Foxcon.
> If your article had any integrity at all it would be praising how they have cut the suicide rate by a factor of 24.51 times compared to the base population, not implying that buying an iPhone is killing someone. Suicide is a tragic problem that is tied very closely to mental health. Using it as a way to sell your magazine is deplorable. Misleading people about it to justify your agenda is even worse.

Kim Holburn
IT Network & Security Consultant
T: +61 2 61402408  M: +61 404072753
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