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Do you think Apple is taking it too far with its bag checks?

by Lee Koo (ADMIN) CNET staff/forum admin / August 6, 2013 10:04 AM PDT

To give you some perspective to this poll, read this article: Apple slapped with lawsuit over mandatory employee bag checks

Do you think Apple is taking it too far with its bag checks?

-- Yes, it should get rid of this practice completely.
-- No, it should minimize the time it takes to complete a bag check.
-- No, it can implement the bag checks but should pay the employees.

Vote here:

Note: This post was edited by its original author on 08/06/2013 at 5:13 PM PT

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It depends
by wpgwpg / August 6, 2013 10:42 AM PDT

If they were told that was a condition of employment before they were hired, and they took the job anyway, they have no grounds for a lawsuit. If they weren't, then maybe, but two ordinary people going up against a mammoth company that can spend millions on lawyers? I'd say these guys are out of touch in any event.

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not limited to bag checks
by dlgreiff / August 6, 2013 10:57 AM PDT

2 retail jobs I worked at, I quit bringing in my purse, just my keys and smokes, winter gloves, etc. Still had to stand in line and empty out my pockets. All off the clock. Always had to stand and wait for floor mgr after you punched out for lunch. That was my time. God forbid you clocked in late from your 1/2 hour unpaid lunch break. Very annoying and demeaning. They did this at the front registers or near the front door in front of all the customers. I worked in an office for 40 years and was never subjected to this or for that matter, punching a time clock, finger scans, etc. for minimum wage real crap jobs. My previous jobs prior to retail at age 50, it was the honor system. You had security cards to get in your buildings or departments. You manually filled out your time card at the end of the week. Retail does NOT trust anyone. I will never work retail again. I signed confidentiality agreements most of my career, I would not let anything tarnish what I worked so hard to acquire. I guess it is a moot point now that I live in a tourist area with no manufacturing to get back in the office environment.

So, no, it can implement the bag checks but should pay the employees. Apple should get their people bonded and have a full set of fingerprints if they are that concerned. Oh wait, I was bonded and fingerprinted back in the 70's when I ran proof for a major bank.

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Define "wrong"
by seanpp / August 6, 2013 11:07 AM PDT

I would make a distinction between "that sucks" and "lengthy unpaid bag checks should be illegal".

My labor principles are libertarian not union. If grown adults knew the terms of their employment & decided they wanted to work there anyway - and since the claimants are stating they worked under these conditions for some time this is obviously the case - then what you do is quit. You don't stay in the job for some considerable length of time and then sue. My guess is that if a bunch of employees had quit their job over this, those positions would have been snapped up by qualified candidates who knew all about the unpaid bag-searching. If I'm wrong then Apple has to reconsider their policy.

No one was handcuffed to a desk & there weren't any sexual violations here. You shouldn't be able to sue because essentially you think the job that you decided to stay at for quite a while was lousy. You don't stay and then sue.

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Blaming the victims, NEVER A WIN!
by Demaclies / August 6, 2013 3:23 PM PDT
In reply to: Define "wrong"

You assume they started AFTER the policy was put in place, not considering that lots of long term employees were NEVER subjected to this dehumanizing abuse of rights for years and years while working there... for 5, 10 years... your logic is NONSENSE... The people working there long term, are being hit with this policy, and forced to comply or lose their job for not agreeing to having THEIR RIGHTS ABUSED IN VIOLATION OF THE CONSTITUTION.. like that means anything anymore... does ANYONE even remember what it was like to live in a world where people acted like humans, and not greedy fascists? I do... but that's not what I see anymore, and blaming the victims ISN'T going to help the problem at all... it's short of making an apology for the company, that doesn't have a just excuse for their wanton employee abuse!

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The solution for a job you don't like is to find another one
by seanpp / August 6, 2013 5:35 PM PDT

I'm not assuming anything. Whether you've been at the job 6 months or 16 years, if your company starts searching bags to reduce theft & you find that comparable to what Mussolini did during WWII (Fascism...seriously?) - then find another job. Don't stay for another five years in an apparently "fascist" office & THEN run for a lawyer.

I'm not making apologies for anyone. I'm not necessarily saying I'd put up with waiting a half hour without pay to be searched - that sounds lousy - but I'd have the decency to quit, rather than working for long enough to then sue. If they don't like your work they fire you & If you don't like the job you quit.

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Bag Checks
by Ron Geiken / August 6, 2013 12:01 PM PDT

The best way to do this to minimize inconvenience to workers is to require that they not bring bags into the work space by having a locker area where they can leave all that stuff. Also depending on how small things of value are in the work place, maybe they need a requirement that they wear clothes with the pockets sewn shut. Employees should have not place to put things that belong to the company. When you go into a court room and go through security at an airport, you have to empty your pockets have your bags x-rayed to determine that nothing improper is being moved or removed. Unfortunately all companies have employees that would take advantage of the fact that they did not do any checks at all. The company should have a locker area where things could be stored so that they do not have to enter the work area. Most men do not have bags that they carry, but women do. Any bag that could carry contraband should be searched. Another possibility is that if you bring a bag in it can be searched, but if you stow it in a locker, then it won't. 30 minutes sounds like a long time for a bag search. In manufacturing plants, in the past they may had had thousands of people clocking out is a short period, and don't remember seeing people carry bags. Maybe an automatic firing if anyone is caught carrying out company property. You wouldn't invite guests back if you caught them stealing the silverware.

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by Demaclies / August 6, 2013 3:16 PM PDT
In reply to: Bag Checks

Are you suggest that the company should abuse the human rights of their employees in a more effective and offensive way? It's quite offensive to do mandatory searches (wastes a massive amount of time as well), they also violate constitutional rights (not like the government is a good example on this issue either)! So why should people at work NOT have a right to access THEIR possessions that they might have reason to NEED during the day... like medication, food and drink, smokes, sanitary napkins, phone for emergency contact etc? Seriously... it sounds like a bad case of NAZI flavored CNN syndrome gone wild in the CEO's 'group-think' session! Apple is rich off the backs of people who oppose this kind of communist behaviour... FFS... they have the money to put in an airport style scanner, and set it up with a program to identify any component used in the workplace, no searches, no invasive prodding into your personal items... just a scan... limited invasiveness, and only bags that contain actual company property identified by the scan OS, need to be searched... simple, easy, doesn't have to end with a rubber glove up someone's azz... which is why I don't fly anymore!

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Yup. Apple is taking it WAY too far.
by LeeB / August 6, 2013 12:54 PM PDT

I realize shrinkage is a problem in some employment environments, so a reasonable deterrent may legitimately be in order. Does this one comply with the Fourth Amendment protection from illegal searches and seizures? I wonder.

If it is legal to conduct such searches, how about Apple takes some of its extraordinary profits and install airport/courthouse-style scanning machines?

The idea that they have no regard for their employees' time is outrageous. The scanners should be between the work area and the time-clock so that if they are running slow with their lines through the scanners, they're paying for every second of delay. If they don't, it's stealing from the employees. Hypocritical much?!

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Time for a consumer BOYCOTT!
by Demaclies / August 6, 2013 3:00 PM PDT

A boycott is the best form of non-violent, noncompliance... and it's the clearest way to send a message to the ones exercising a perverse abuse of the power; that they have acquired from the support of the very consumers they have built their empire upon, that, and Chinese slave labour exploitation...

This is a disgusting betrayal human rights, and even more so, of the sentiments of those very consumers who are typically young, technically savvy, environmentally considerate, and supportive.. even demanding, of social equity and social justice. I've always seen the worm in Apple, and have never signed on to their cash grabbing music pimping, a dollar a song... for a 2 cent download! Their price fixing and vicious antitrust conduct against other competitors... like Samsung, for making a phone, that looks like a phone, as if God gave Apple the ultimate rights to OWN the non-existent patent on a glossy faced RECTANGLE!

It was more than just divine justice that the man who made the misery of thousands of Chinese factory workers a daily reality, died before he could enjoy his perverse and excessively expensive yacht! It's time to send his surviving cronies the same message, put them and their bottom line in the red, so deep they'll feel like Nortel during the height of their corporate beatings!

Greed and those who blindly pursue it at the expense of the environment, social norms, and humanity at large, will have a dark destiny of their own making... not unlike the irony of their recent commercial, claiming more music is played on their phone than any other... that's because it's so damn expensive to buy, and manage an account, that listing to music is about the ONLY THING an average consumer of Apple products can afford to use the phone for now days... everything else about the phone... just too damn expensive and dripping with greed juice.

Am I biased, no... Apple never ripped me off... because I never gave them a chance... I saw the worm that this company really is, long ago, before the proof in the pudding came to light... instinct I guess. Time for everyone to follow their instincts... before Apple imposes the '3 Laws' on it's consumers and employees alike! I hope they get slammed in court!

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by Demaclies / August 6, 2013 5:23 PM PDT

Only 1 thumbs down from Apple Zombies stalking this thread...? I feel like an underachiever now! Cry me some more!

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Do it by inventing their own technology
by Ann1460 / August 7, 2013 5:00 AM PDT

Install on their equipment something that will trigger some type of alarm, photo, or other ID of anyone leaving the store with it. They're Apple. They can figure that out.

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Seems cut and dried to me
by spadeskingtx / August 9, 2013 1:43 AM PDT

Apple has the right to do this. And given that leaks of technology are a big deal the extra security seems reasonable.
However, to do these checks off the clock is likely a violation of labor laws in most states. So they could have grounds for a lawsuit asking for back pay. Good chance they can get that.

Intelligent method for a company of this size to handle this would be to have a secure locker area where employees check their bags in to lockers prior to entering factory area where they have access to product technology. Then no need to search.

This is similar to a register checkout person at a retail store not being allowed to take their purses to their register where they work. Typically places where I worked had a locker area where you stashed your purses, bags, etc prior to clocking in and heading off to work. In that scenario I would expect to do that before clocking in. But if I had to stand in a line before being searched I would expect to be allowed to clock in before having to get in that line.

To simply say those people should just go work elsewhere is wrong. Yes, they could quit. But jobs do not grow on trees so that may not be an option for most people. That does not give the employer to be jerks or take advantage of people making them do what should be work functions off the clock. That is where laws come in. Some employers need laws to force them to do right by people.

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