back to top
World

This Company Will Fire Anyone Who Buys An iPhone 7

The proposed boycott from the small company, whose warning went super viral, is the latest pitched over a dispute between China and the Philippines.

Posted on

The Hangzhou-based Bina Industry issued a "Patriotic Notice" on its public WeChat page banning its employees from using iPhone products.

gph.is

Bina Industry has about 50 employees and calls itself an expert in "non-formaldehyde benzene custom interior design."

The notice itself, signed and dated by the company's general manager Zhang Yunlong, threatens to fire and never rehire employees who buy an iPhone 7. For those who already have iPhones, don't worry, the company will help, by destroying the old iPhones and compensating if the employees prove to change brands.

The compensation rates as stated in the notice for the iPhone 4, 5, 6 are 1,000 yuan (equaling $150), 1,500 yuan ($225) and 2,500 yuan ($375).

In a response to The Paper, a shareholder of the company said that Chinese brand phones were also good, asking, "Why bother following the trend to purchase expensive iPhones?"

(BuzzFeed News has reached out to Bina Industry for comment.)

So why the sudden iPhone hate? The short answer is the Philippines.

Ted Aljibe / AFP / Getty Images

China recently lost a key international ruling to the Philippines in its claim over disputed waterways in the South China Sea. The US is not directly involved in the ruling, but it has openly shown support of the ruling. (It also has a Mutual Defense Treaty that promises to protect the Philippines during conflicts.) Hence why the iPhone is now under attack.

The reactions, however, might not be anything close to what the company, whose motto is "Make Chinese Love China-made," expected.

weibo.com

"Perfect," user "Doing" commented standing in for the company's employees, "[I'll] buy the iPhone 7 immediately so that he could fire me, and deal with him in Labor Arbitration the next day. [It's like] salaries worth several months to come for free."

Advertisement

"Brainless, we are an export-oriented company," a third user replied. "If other countries also boycott China-made products, it means seclusion. Stupid." The reply has been liked by 2,300 people.

Other users agree with the company but disagree with its "blind patriotism" and urge the employees of the company to quit.

Advertisement

People have protested in front of KFCs in Hebei, Jiangsu, and other Chinese provinces holding banners that read "Eating American KFC is a loss of face for our ­ancestors," and reportedly caused branches to close.

Update: Protestors Demand Boycott of American/Japanese/Korean/Philippine Goods at Hebei KFC https://t.co/pGt7GLfXUR

Even McDonald's has been boycotted.

KFC and McDonalds under siege in some Chinese cities following tribunal ruling on the South China Sea. https://t.co/bRoGBqXqjl

Vendors on online retailer Taobao are now quick to emphasize that their dried fruits are not from the Philippines.

Some product pages even have images like these with captions reading "come order if you support the Philippines~ see if I will follow the shipment address and take care of you!!"

"How is this different than smashing Japanese-brand cars?" asked one Weibo user, referring to the 2012 anti-Japanese demonstrations over another disputed set of islands.

weibo.com

"Isn't it one's own freedom to decide what to buy! Why always the moral coercion of others," the user wrote.

Beimeng Fu is a BuzzFeed News World Reporter covering China and is based in New York.

Contact Beimeng Fu at beimeng.fu@buzzfeed.com.

Got a confidential tip? Submit it here.