Rumor: Foxconn Interns and Alleged PS4 Sabotage Claims

Source:  Kotaku

Photo: Kin Cheung | AP
    
Last month, Kotaku reported that student interns were allegedly forced to manufacture the PlayStation 4. Now, there are rumors that some of those student interns sabotaged Sony's gaming console.
Unlike the launch PS3, which was made in Japan, the PlayStation 4 was outsourced to Foxconn and allegedly manufactured at its plant in the Chinese city of Yantai.
As pointed out on IGN's boards, a thread appeared on August 28 in a forum set up for Xi'an Technological University North Institute, the Chinese university with the alleged forced Foxconn internships. In the thread (translated by IGN's forum member Qbroid), one student claimed, "Since Foxconn are not treating us well, we will not treat the PS4 console well. The PS4 console we assemble can be turned on at best."

The thread has since been deleted. It might have been censored. It might have simply been taken down because it's not true. Who knows. Above, you can see a screenshot of the alleged comment.
Recently, however, another forum comment appeared on another Xi'an Technological University North Institute thread. In it, one commenter allegedly wrote:

If the system is broken, don't blame us students. When we were studying, they shipped in 20,000 migrant workers from Guizhou. On top of that, there were also many Yantai local students and long-time Foxconn workers at the factories. The people that made the news were us Xi'an Technological University North Institute students. We're not even 1/10 of the workers at Foxconn. So don't blame the issue on us Chinese students, and don't talk about Foxconn on this board. You have no idea how hard it was to work in the factories as a recent high school graduate. Feel free to ask questions about the PS4 but not about Foxconn.

 Those with dirty mouths aren't welcome. If you have a problem, go find quality control. We were only in charge of manufacturing. :)

This same forum user blamed the Taiwanese for the tough working conditions at Foxconn, which is a Taiwanese, and not Chinese, company. Then, there were also alleged online comments in which workers (it's unclear if they were students or not) apparently talked about spitting in consoles and taking parts out of the factory. It's also important to note that Nintendo and Microsoft also outsourced their consoles to Foxconn.
 
Sony, however, is dealing with PS4 hardware issues. The odd part is that the news stories in China regarding the internship sabotage allegations all seem to stem from the IGN forum, meaning that ultimately, all of this is based off of alleged sources—something that certainly should be taken into account. Ditto for the fact that the IGN forum member who uploaded these images has been an IGN forum member since last Friday. 

That member, Qbroid, made a post after the thread he or she created on IGN was locked down. In it, Qbroid explained that he or she was simply bringing over content that had been online in China for months before bringing it over to IGN's forums, adding that while he or she indeed could not guarantee whether the original thread's content was genuine, ignoring it is like "burying one's head in the sand."

Rumors. Disgruntled workers. And all sorts of accusations. It's a shame that Sony didn't produce the PlayStation 4 at one of its own plants.
 
 


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