For the second time this year, Apple has pre-empted an exposé in the New York Times with positive action, causing many to suspect insider information is behind the company’s uncanny knack for predicting criticism in the media.
The latest move involves a report into the low wages paid to employees at Apple’s retail stores.
The report, part of the New York Times’ iEconomy series, draws attention to the fact that the average retail employee earns just US$25,000 per year, despite the company raking in colossal profits.
Published over the weekend, the report recognises that Apple’s standard pay rate is above average for retail, but says the company doesn’t pay a commission, despite the fact some employees will turn over thousands of dollars in sales.
The trouble is, just days before the report was published Apple had brought forward pay increases that had been scheduled to take place in September, with some employees indicating raises of up to 30%.
At the same time, Apple also instituted a new Mac and iPad employee discount program first indicated in January, offering hefty price cuts on those hardware items on top of the standard 25% deduction.
The New York Times acknowledges the increases in its report, saying they come four months after the publisher started making its inquiries.
Even so, the timing seems too uncanny to be coincidence – especially as the same thing happened with a previous iEconomy report, this time looking into overseas labour practices.
In that case, the New York Times published its story on January 25; however, Apple had made its move just under two weeks previously, publishing a report on January 13 detailing the company’s efforts to improve conditions at its overseas factories.
So, do you think Apple is getting insider knowledge on the reports, or is the company just putting two and two together? Post your comments below.