How Slack Has Enabled Apple Employees Go ‘Public’ With Their Complaints

By Khan Ahmad Darvesh

In recent years, Google has made headlines due to numerous complaints from its employees about its policies. Before the pandemic, employees also protested against the company. Google seems to have dealt with this situation through drastic measures. Now, it seems that it’s Apple employees’ turn to raise their concerns. They found an ally in Slack, a popular online communication platform for organizations. According to a report by The Information, Slack makes it easier for Apple employees to talk to each other and also provides a platform for them to express their concerns.

“Before Slack, unless you went to a store, it was difficult for employees to talk to people who worked in the retail industry,” Cher Scarlett, a software engineer for Apple’s global security team, told The Information. Scarlett further claimed that it provides “a platform for people to connect with people they don’t normally contact.” The report further added that Apple’s Slack has more than 3,000 channels, some of which have around 10,000 people. What Slack does is allow Apple employees, across teams and countries, to understand the issues they face and if they can ask them. As we all know, Apple is a mystery company and the employees comply with the guidelines. Laziness, and to a certain extent Twitter, changed everything. “Slacks and social media have absolutely given workers the ability to organize, the biggest catalyst added:” Scarlett.

A recent complaint was about going back to the office. Some Apple employees are not satisfied with the company’s plan to call employees to the office on certain days of the week. Apple detailed its hybrid model of bringing employees back, but the impact on employees was not significant. Some chose Slack and voiced their complaints. The difference is that the number of Covid19 cases in the United States continues to rise and the company’s plan has been postponed until January 2022. Some employees have also created the AppleToo website for the purpose of posting stories if they have experienced, any form of harassment or discrimination.

When Apple recently announced its plans for a new system that can detect photos of child sexual abuse material (CSAM), it faced criticism. According to Reuters, Apple employees “filled Apple’s internal Slack channel with more than 800 pieces of information about the program.” The report further added that many of them expressed concern that the technology might be used by criminals.