SumOfUs has launched a petition to get Apple to create the iPhone 5 in a fully ethical manner, and has already garnered over 40,000 signatures. The petition is particularly critical of Apple's use of n-hexane, a harmful glass cleaner which can cause neurological damage over long-term exposure. Inhumanely-long working hours are also called into question.
Apple CEO Tim Cook remains adamant that the company is doing its best to ensure the well-being of manufacturing employees abroad. Even within the fast-paced technology sector, however, Apple is well-known for cultivating a high-stress culture, and those standards are imposed on just about everybody Apple works with. Under these conditions, it's no surprise that basic humanitarian standards take a back seat to shipping a product. That said, I might agree with this petition, but I really doubt Apple or Foxconn will make any sweeping changes that hurt their bottom line.
If you're interested in signing the petition, hit the link below.
[We'll post links to the petitions for HP, Dell, Sony, Nokia, Motorola, HTC, Amazon, Lenovo, Toshiba, Samsung, and every other technology company who operates in similar manners without enjoying the link-bait status that seems to drive online media attention. We want everyone held to the same, high standards. - ED]