Mike Daisey’s life has been pretty crazy the past 12 months. He shot into fame with his monologue The Agony and the Ecstasy of Steve Jobs, which sparked the public’s interest in Chinese working conditions. Woz even saw the show and cried.
Then word came out that many parts of Daisey’s play were fabricated and an unrelenting storm of excrement rained down on Daisey. Now he’s back, and his play The Agony and the Ecstasy of Steve Jobs has been completely updated to version 2.0 so people will stop accusing him of lying while telling some of the vital truths behind Apple’s manufacturing process.
Writing for Ars Technica, Rob Pegoraro caught a recent showing of Daisey’s play and says the updates are pretty huge. Daisey has stripped out the scenes featuring 12 or 13 year-old Foxconn employees. The dorm room visits are gone. So is the incident of the man whose hand got crushed making an iPad even though he had never seen the finished product before.
At one point in the play, Daisey even addresses the recent controversy surrounding his monologue earlier this year – “I am a noted fabulist,” Daisey said. “Perhaps none of this is true. Wouldn’t that be comforting?”
Even though Daisey was berated by the media for fabricating events in his play and portraying them as fact, Daisey is still sticking strong to his message that Apple uses cruelly mistreated Chinese laborers to build their pristine products.
The revised play is more fact-based, but Daisey also fails to mention Apple’s recent efforts to fix the mistreatment of Foxconn’s workforce. It’s a shame really, because if Daisey is going to revamp his entire play to more accurately portray the facts, then he should also add that Apple and Foxconn have revamped their efforts to fix the problems The Agony and the Ecstasy of Steve Jobs brought to light.
Update: Daisey has emailed Cult of Mac a link to an article on his personal blog that discusses why he’s still doing the show and the changes he’s made to the monologue. In light of this, we have update the title of this article to more accurately portray the truth as Daisey is currently telling it.
Update 2: Daisey had emailed Cult of Mac again with more details on why he does not mention Apple’s recent efforts to improve working conditions.
“That is all listed in the program materials people were given at the door. And since Apple did this all before, with Verite in 2006, I have no idea why I should reinforce the notion that these are tremendously new steps. Further, the latest SACOM report says *nothing* has changed for workers on the ground.
Apple has done good PR already—it’s not my job to make their PR better.”
- Source Ars Technica