Real world problems vs. first world problems

by Granate Sosnoff on 23rd October, 2012

We’ve all been there. Unhappy with something about our tech toy, new car, expensive meal, but somewhere deeply knowing that our whiny problems don’t amount to much compared with real concerns like clean water, food, housing and the like.

The division is blatant in the picky tech world and phone obsession.

Focused on the minutiae regarding screens, apps, agility with texting, talking, and finding a new restaurant, the idea that people actually make these phones is far away.

Even though we want the next one they are making, and very soon please.

Saturday Night Live brought this idea home recently with a hilarious and skewering skit on the iPhone 5. At a panel rant session, reviewers got a surprise visit by factory workers from China. Try not to be derailed by the Chinese accents (they’re trying hard to do this right):

Saturday Night Live – Tech Talk: iPhone 5 – YouTube.

This is about as close as we get to a class analysis these days.

When corporations like Apple are confronted their first move is to put the onus on consumers when they can. Will we pay more for their devices to ensure better wages and working conditions in China?

Because apparently Apple execs are not going to pay themselves less.

The bottom line for me is that I’d pay more for a phone (or other product) that integrates the well-being of the people involved making it over buying a product that donates a part of its sales to fight hunger or poverty — which is the dominant charity model.

That would be a first-world status symbol I would want and truly a revolution in technology.

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