WITN: Is It Racist To Say That Chinese Manufacturing Leads To Low Quality Goods — And Fraud? [TCTV]
Earlier this week, CrunchGear’s John Biggs sparked controversy (within TechCrunch ranks at least) with a post entitled “Alibaba And The Curse Of Chinese Manufacturing“. In the post Biggs wrote (amongst other things) that…
“Many decry the sad state of American manufacturing but these [Chinese] companies still sell billions in janky garbage that washes up here in huge containers and is sold throughout our 50 great states and, more important, the rest of the developed and developing world.”
“I was not surprised to hear that the CEO and those Alibaba employees were taking cash from criminal gangs to receive “gold ratings” on their products. This only makes sense. In an unfettered market, the unfettered will push their way to the top.”
So that’s how John Biggs feels about Chinese manufacturing companies, particularly those who sell on Alibaba. As Biggs was keen to point out, he has visited China, so this isn’t just a protectionist rant from a xenophobic American.
But here’s the thing: Sarah too has traveled to China. Quite a few times. In fact she just wrote a book (partly) about the country’s growing technology manufacturing industry. And on TechCrunch’s internal Yammer discussion platform she called Biggs out – even going so far as to accuse him of veering towards racism. Biggs responded that, if she disagreed so strongly, Sarah was welcome to write a rebuttal.
Instead we decided to head to the TCTV studio. In this week’s Why Is This News, we discuss whether Biggs had a point or whether… well… watch the video and see.