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A Union Vote For Chinese Workers Who Assemble iPhones

The Chinese workers who assemble iPhones, iPads and tons of other electronic devices may soon be able to elect their own union representatives, the FT reports.

Labor unions technically do exist in Chinese factories, but they're typically controlled by management and the government. So a union run by democratic vote of the workers would be a huge shift.

The workers in question are employed by Foxconn, a giant company with over 1 million employees in China. Foxconn has been under a lot of scrutiny over the past few years, after a spate of worker suicides and accusations of bad working conditions.

Apple, one of many global electronics firms that contracts with Foxconn, brought in an independent group to investigate conditions at the company; the group's report called for union elections.

The recent history of Foxconn and other big manufacturers in China seems in some ways like a sped-up version of industrial history in the U.S. Low pay and dangerous conditions; the rapidly rising wages and increasing industrialization; then, perhaps, more labor rights for workers; and, of course, the inevitable rise of the robots to replace increasingly expensive low-skilled workers.

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NPR

Jollof Rice: West Africans Dish It Up With A Hefty Serving Of Smack Talk

Jollof rice is a celebration dish in West Africa. Each country in the region has its own take — and the rivalry over which version reigns supreme is constant fodder for a delicious war of words.
NPR

Jollof Rice: West Africans Dish It Up With A Hefty Serving Of Smack Talk

Jollof rice is a celebration dish in West Africa. Each country in the region has its own take — and the rivalry over which version reigns supreme is constant fodder for a delicious war of words.
NPR

Obama Grants Clemency To 100+ Prisoners; DOJ 'Confident' It Will Clear Backlog

Thousands of petitions are still pending, but the Justice Department tells NPR that despite doubts from advocates it plans to consider each of them before President Obama leaves office.
NPR

#IfAfricaWasASchool, Who Would Be The Nerd? Jock? Most Popular?

A trending hashtag on Twitter invites people to personify countries in Africa with various schoolyard archetypes.

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