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AT&T Businesses Iphone The Almighty Buck Apple

Hundreds of AT&T Wireless Workers and Supporters Plan To Protest at iPhone 8 Launch at Apple HQ 103

Hundreds of AT&T wireless workers and members of the Communications Workers of America (CWA) will protest outside the launch of the iPhone 8 at Apple HQ on Tuesday, we were told. "Marking the start of a critical sales period that's expected to bring in billions for the telecom giant, workers are calling out AT&T's pay cuts for its retail employees and the company's rampant outsourcing and offshoring that undermine their job security and ability to provide quality customer service," the Communications Workers of America said in a press statement. Over the years, AT&T has increasingly handed over the operations of its retail operations to third-party dealers that now represent over 60 percent of all AT&T branded stores. On top of this, AT&T retail employees allege that they are seeing their pay decline by thousands of dollars because the company manipulates their commission structure.

Hundreds of AT&T Wireless Workers and Supporters Plan To Protest at iPhone 8 Launch at Apple HQ

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  • by known_coward_69 ( 4151743 ) on Monday September 11, 2017 @12:10PM (#55174569)

    You can get an AT&T phone cheaper at virtually every store other than a AT&T retail store. Best Buy, Target, Costco all have sales. AT&T wants you to have Direct TV for virtually any promotion at a AT&T retail store.

    • by MouseR ( 3264 ) on Monday September 11, 2017 @12:15PM (#55174609) Homepage

      Apple sets pricing on their phones especially to prevent one seller to undercut another. (They're still expensive but get lots with them, IMO).

      In my view, AT&T workers protesting at Apple is just retarded (in the most demeaning way you can take it). It's not Apple's fault AT&T workers are underpaid.

      • best buy has iphones on sale all the time. price depends on carrier and it's not apple setting the prices all the time. meanwhile same iphone at a AT&T retail store is a lot more money.

      • by cayenne8 ( 626475 ) on Monday September 11, 2017 @12:46PM (#55174873) Homepage Journal
        Yeah, makes no sense to me for them to protest Apple...seems they should be protesting in from of ATT stores, since they are the ones they have the beef against....?
        • by trmj ( 579410 ) on Monday September 11, 2017 @12:49PM (#55174895) Journal

          It's simple marketing, really. AT&T is treating their employees just like they treat their customers: not listening to them. Apple is likely to enact some corporate NIMBY-ism and tell AT&T to deal with it the eyesore of a protest.

          The protesters get publicity. A protest of the iPhone launch will get a LOT more press than protesting outside of some random AT&T store. Even if Apple does nothing, the story still reached a greater audience this way and we're now aware of the situation.

          The protest hasn't even happened yet and this strategy is paying dividends. Looks like a 100% win so far.

          • Apple is likely to enact some corporate NIMBY-ism and tell AT&T to deal with it the eyesore of a protest.

            Apple is likely to call the Cupertino police to clear them out.

            • Or Apple could have them sent to secret iPhone manufacturing facilities to have their organs converted into the latest "Samsung supplied OLED screens."

              Conspiracy, or FACT?

          • by sabri ( 584428 )

            The protest hasn't even happened yet and this strategy is paying dividends. Looks like a 100% win so far.

            Not exactly. Their strategy makes me dislike their union even more, and I hope they don't get what they want. I don't protest in your front yard to complain about the job that I voluntarily accepted, right? AT&T employees have no business protesting in my backyard, your backyard, or Costco's parking lot. Or Apple's for that matter.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by Rakarra ( 112805 )

          Yeah, makes no sense to me for them to protest Apple...seems they should be protesting in from of ATT stores,

          No one goes into AT&T stores. As a publicity stunt, it would fail.

        • Apple is successful, and unions hate success hence they hate Apple.

        • by jcr ( 53032 )

          makes no sense to me for them to protest Apple.

          It's the same shit that Greenpeace pulled. Apple gets attention, so they try to hijack that attention, even if they have no grievance at all against Apple, or try to pull on out of their ass the way that Greenpeace did.

          -jcr

      • But it's similar to saying it's not Trump's fault that "the South" erected monuments to their relatives that fought in the Civil War, and it's proven that simply is not true.
      • Retarded why? It's the launch for the biggest product at&t sells. At&t bigwigs are guaranteed to be there, probably in the front row. The place is already saturated with press. That's where all the eyes are. It sounds like what you really think is retarded is the fact that somebody is protesting something.
  • by p51d007 ( 656414 ) on Monday September 11, 2017 @12:15PM (#55174611)
    Is the MOST EXPENSIVE way to do it. Oh, but I only pay x per month...Yeah, and over that time, you pay MORE for the phone if you paid in full. A lot of consumers, still think that you have to buy your phone from a carrier store. Walk into one and you'd think you walked into an Apple store, with a bit of Samsung also. They PUSH the apple phone because apparently that make more profit on it, and I'll be Apple gives them a deal on the phone.
    • Is the MOST EXPENSIVE way to do it. Oh, but I only pay x per month...Yeah, and over that time, you pay MORE for the phone if you paid in full.

      Not for me with T-Mobile. My monthly payment for the phone * 24 plus $20 up front (plus sales tax on the total price) is exactly equal to what it would have cost to pay in full up front. And it was on sale at the T-Mobile store, so I paid quite a bit less than Newegg was selling it for at the time.

      • Zero interest as well, so if one is staying with T-Mobile, it isn't a financially foolish choice. Downside is that until the phone is paid off, T-Mobile will not unlock it.

  • by grasshoppa ( 657393 ) <skennedyNO@SPAMtpno-co.org> on Monday September 11, 2017 @12:28PM (#55174727) Homepage

    Marking the start of a critical sales period that's expected to bring in billions for the telecom giant, workers are calling out AT&T's pay cuts for its retail employees and the company's rampant outsourcing and offshoring that undermine their job security and ability to provide quality customer service,

    They do know who they're working for, right? AT&T is worse than Comcast when it comes to customer service.

  • by Anubis IV ( 1279820 ) on Monday September 11, 2017 @12:33PM (#55174755)

    So, AT&T employees are protesting AT&T's business practices. Nothing they're protesting has anything to do with the iPhone 8 or Apple at large. Nonetheless, they're protesting at the launch of the new iPhone, simply because they know that places like Slashdot can't resist posting clickbait articles that mention Apple in the headline, thus bringing attention to their cause, despite the fact that nothing they're doing has anything to do with Apple.

    Even worse, it looks like Slashdot is "breaking" this news, since I don't see a link or article mentioned anywhere, so that means that Slashdot is solely responsible for authoring the headline. Shame on you.

    • by Rogue974 ( 657982 ) on Monday September 11, 2017 @12:51PM (#55174929)

      They are striking on iPhone launch day because that is when it will hurt their employer the most. Any other day of the week, it would be a blip on the radar. On the day that there will be people camped out in front of the store relying on the striking employees to get them their precious iPhone 8s, that is the day the retailers really need all hands on deck.

      Getting Slashdot or others to take more of a notice is a side benefit because it is Apple's launch day, not the main benefit.

      • On the day that there will be people camped out in front of the store relying on the striking employees to get them their precious iPhone 8s, that is the day the retailers really need all hands on deck.

        So, while that seems intelligent at a glance, it's factually incorrect in ways that completely undermine what you're saying. For instance:
        1) No one is camping. This is an product announcement, not a product launch.
        2) No one currently needs all hands on deck. Again, it's a product announcement, not a product launch.
        3) Perhaps most important: Apple Stores don't rely on the employees who are striking, since AT&T employees don't work at Apple.
        4) Given that Apple hasn't announced an iPhone 7s or 8 yet, it's

        • by Uberbah ( 647458 )

          So, while that seems intelligent at a glance, it's factually incorrect in ways that completely undermine what you're saying.

          Followed by pedantry. Pedantry that doesn't change the fact that the protest is designed to gain the maximum amount of attention possible. By chance does your employer set up "free speech zones" to keep protestors out of sight, out of mind during presidential election years?

          • I don't think its pedantry to point out that someone is wrong about the time, location, and company that the protestors work for when those pieces of information are foundational to the person's argument that the protestors chose that (incorrect) time and that (incorrect) location specifically to cause the most damage to their (incorrect) employer.

            I have no problem with them protesting, and I think they're smart to do so where and when they actually are protesting, since they know it'll get bigger headlines

    • by Kenja ( 541830 )
      If they protested at AT&T, no one would notice.
  • Thus completing the circle of self-interested hypocrisy.
  • by ErichTheRed ( 39327 ) on Monday September 11, 2017 @01:00PM (#55175005)

    The CWA wants the AT&T from a previous era back, and in some respects I would be behind that too. Companies' power to offshore, outsource and basically get rid of any group that isn't 100% profit-generating is a lot of what contributes to middle class instability.

    I'm barely old enough to remember when "old" AT&T and the RBOCs existed...I was 10 when they were ordered de-monopolized. But from what I've heard from people alive previously, getting a job with one of these companies was a guaranteed ticket to lifetime stability. In addition, engineering was actually done correctly because there wasn't constant pressure to squeeze every single cost out of the system. I know everyone's going to say monopolies are bad, but they do provide the most stable class of jobs. Maybe monopolies are bad, but the alternative of a ton of cut-throat competitors isn't good for society either. In the model we have, public companies (and private ones controlled by hedge funds) are forced to implement whatever cost-saving trick is in vogue every quarter to make the numbers. A lot of these tricks, like spinning off "expensive" employees into a separate company to reduce benefits, offshoring to a service provider to hide expenses on a different balance sheet line, or constantly squeezing workers to get the tiniest drop of productivity out of them are detrimental to employment in general. Verizon did similar things as well, when they spun out Verizon Wireless. VZW workers get way fewer benefits than the CWA workers in Verizon proper.

    I just wish people would get it out of their heads that unions are bad. Especially in the face of automation and offshoring, they're basically the only chance an employee has against their employer. Employers have spent decades convincing employees that they have their best interests in mind and that we're all friends. I think there needs to be a more adversarial labor/management relationship put back into the mix to swing the pendulum back toward the middle more. There's a big difference between "we can't fire you for any reason" demands and standing up when management says "we're moving 20,000 engineering positions to India effective immediately so that I can buy another mansion, and by the way we're still friends, right?"

  • by supernova87a ( 532540 ) <(moc.liamtoh) (ta) (1relpek)> on Monday September 11, 2017 @01:17PM (#55175129)
    Explain to me how this would be any more justified or sensible if we replaced the words "retail employees" with:

    - telephone switchboard operators
    - ISDN engineers
    - elevator operators
    - horse and buggy whip factory workers
    ?

    Industries change, and labor changes with it. And each side gets as much as they can bargain for. What more do you want?
    • horse and buggy whip factory workers

      Okay, I'll explain the fallacy of your own dead horse for you: right now, the buggy whip manufacturer (AT&T) is enjoying historical profits while at the same time demanding the people who generates said profits work for less money.

  • The iPhone 8 is responsible for this, how...?

  • About 10 years ago, I worked at an AT&T store and made over $60,000 per year. It was a good job, and if you could show people the benefit of a wireless phone, it was easy money. As time passed, market penetration increased rapidly. It became more difficult to sell phones to "new customers". It became more common to see kids at 10, 9, 8, or 5 years old already have a phone. Fast forward, and it wasn't too long before nearly everyone had a cellphone with a data plan.

    Back then, AT&T needed a stron

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