Nintendo investigating Wii U manfacturer after Foxconn admits illegal child labour

Thursday, 18th October 2012 12:29 GMT By Nick Akerman

Wii U manufacturer Foxconn is being investigated by Nintendo for using child workers in a Chinese factory.

Foxconn confessed to using workers as young as 14 to cover a lack of full employees. The legal age of work in China is 16.

“Our investigation has shown that the interns in question, who ranged in age from 14 to 16, had worked in that campus for approximately three weeks,” Foxconn admitted in a statement to Reuters.

“This is not only a violation of China’s labour law, it is also a violation of Foxconn policy and immediate steps have been taken to return the interns in question to their educational institutions.”

Earlier claims suggested these workers were forced to attend the factory for extra school credits. If they didn’t do so, expulsion would commence (via Kotaku).

Nintendo has responded with a statement:

“We take our responsibilities as a global company very seriously and are committed to an ethical policy on sourcing, manufacture and labour.”

“If we were to find that any of our production partners did not meet our guidelines, we would require them to modify their practices according to Nintendo’s policy.”

Thanks, Eurogamer.



  1. Gekidami

    Conflict minerals, high pollution and child labour. Now thats Nintendo magic.

    #1 2 years ago
  2. ManuOtaku

    The next thing we will be hearing is that the nintendo magic is due they kill fairytails to get the magic powder ;)
    edit: changed “the nex thin we will hear” for “the next thing we will be hearing”

    #2 2 years ago
  3. Da Man

    Queue five page long essay ending with ‘Where am I going with this?’ asserting how other companies use Foxconn to manufacture their hardware.

    #3 2 years ago
  4. OlderGamer

    Not saying it is a good thing. It isn’t. But in the states kids can work at that age(with papers). I have no idea the full extent of the details in this case. And I have zero idea if this is widespread across the tech manufactering industries(video games, smart phones, tablets, TV, etc).

    Keep in mind the story isn’t about 8 year olds being chained to an assemby line, working 16 hour days without food and water. Again that being said, if they broke Chinesse labor laws, that is not a good thing. It sounds like their is deeper pool of info here, what does their schooling have to do with working?

    Also, define the wording of intern? Again, in the states, we have work/school related internships/aprentice programs. This makes for an eye catching headline, ofc, but more info should be given, and it should(no doubt will be) dealt with by china.

    #4 2 years ago

    Absolutely spot on, Da Man…


    #5 2 years ago
  6. Fin

    [actually, nevermind]

    #6 2 years ago
  7. Dragon246

    They are called sweat shops for a reason……..

    #7 2 years ago
  8. SlayerGT

    All the folks in China..they can’t get some of age??

    #8 2 years ago
  9. matirishhh

    And the last mini game of nintendo land is…- SLAVE Mii

    #9 2 years ago
  10. SlayerGT

    @9 that’s sounds ridiculous and won’t about Slave MiiU!? ;)

    #10 2 years ago
  11. zinc

    The Foxxcon factory foreman went by the name koopa…

    #11 2 years ago
  12. monkeygourmet

    Nintendo Wii U…

    Made for kids, by kids…

    #12 2 years ago
  13. SlayerGT

    @4 OG I believe if under the age of 16, kids in the states aren’t allowed to work in “manufacturing”. Even with a workers permit. I know we don’t know what these youngsters were doing exactly, I hope Nintendo didn’t know about it..cause that would be crazy.

    @12 nice :)

    #13 2 years ago
  14. Dragon246

    *looks at fellow NDF people kicking out someone*
    A group for kids, by kids :P

    #14 2 years ago
  15. Cobra951

    Foxconn was exposed a while back as having a very high employee-suicide rate. Working conditions apparently are abysmal, regardless of age.

    #15 2 years ago
  16. OlderGamer

    I saw a thing on Chinese work conditions, and the thing looks to be a mess. Workers seperated from families, live in small dink apt, co provided that they share with other workers, over crowding a problem, etc. Really bad all around stuff. None of it good.

    #16 2 years ago
  17. absolutezero

    Remember the iPhone 5 riots? That was a Foxconn plant aswell.

    #17 2 years ago
  18. polygem

    @ 2: yeah you beter edit FAST! (Edit: better)

    @9,10,11,12 :D ouch

    #18 2 years ago
  19. xino

    NIntendo investigating?

    oh please!
    all these companies know about the illegal labouring! but they don’t want to do anything, it’s all about money!

    Nintendo-”take 100million, I want these consoles made in 2 months time. Do whatever it takes!”
    FOxxon- “sure thing, you know our reputation, we always deliver, that is why we are well known and the best”

    it is ALWAYS like this.
    when people find out Foxconn uses illegal workers, NIntenod (like companies) would say they will look into it but does nothing!

    Foxconn are the companies that produces your favourite consoles and iPhones.

    I dislike Foxconn, they are a terrible company. NO different to crime lord who use children and women in sex trafficking.

    F**ing bastards!

    Back in 2009/10, there was report about nearly 100 employee who committed suicide at the same time. Yet companies do not look into these matters, they leave the Chinese authority to deal with it.

    Nintendo (like companies) will not care about what goes on at Foxconn or how things are made. All they care about are getting the consoles to retailers worldwide so that they can make money.

    Neither do these son-of-a-b*ch prickers and gamers care (as well as Gadget lovers). They hear about these news and pretend it’s a serious matter, yet they are the first to get their hands on it and don’t care how they are made.

    #19 2 years ago
  20. Ireland Michael

    Foxconn also manufactures the PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Kindle, and all of Apple’s different products.

    Just putting that out there.

    Nobody can really point the finger at Nintendo without also pointing the finger at pretty much every other product they own. If you’re going to complain about this problem and still buy your toys, you’re just a raging hypocrite.

    #20 2 years ago
  21. ManuOtaku

    To tell you the truth, is not because is Nintedo, the same for Sony or Microsoft if they were in the same situation, but if the Chinese government didnt took actions on this, or dont want/willing/care to do it, why the companies that use that chinese company will have to do so, because the chinese government is the one that has to do the rulings of this type of things, they are the ones with the responsability, because if they do not act therefore everything is legal until said so or proven otherwise, if it is indeed ilegal on that country, why they let that happen?, and why they do not punish the company in question?, and i mean legally, i dont think the companies that has contracts with this chinese company are at fault, at least not until the government is allowing this IMHO.

    #21 2 years ago
  22. Da Man

    Foxconn also manufactures

    Acer Inc. (Taiwan) (United States)
    Cisco (United States)
    Dell (United States)
    Hewlett-Packard (United States)
    Intel (United States)
    Motorola Mobility (United States)
    Nokia (Finland)
    Samsung Electronics (South Korea)
    Toshiba (Japan)
    Vizio (United States)

    products. Just putting facts anyone could google out there.

    #22 2 years ago
  23. SlayerGT

    Well when we bitch about costs of hardware this is the reason things don’t cost more..

    #23 2 years ago
  24. The_Red

    I don’t understand. Foxconn pretty much makes everything from iPads and iPhones to PS3s and 360s. Is the child labor only related to Nintendo consoles or Foxconn in general? Because if it’s in general, others should join Nintendo but not just for investigating but by actually doing something.

    #24 2 years ago
  25. Ireland Michael

    @24 It’s just the media looking for a scapegoat. Facts are meaningless.

    #25 2 years ago
  26. OlderGamer

    It is like a dog biting the hand that feeds, if companies push too hard. Saying that they(Nintendo) will look into it, really just smacks of a PR move. Sony, MS, or Apple would prolly play it the same way.

    “Well when we bitch about costs of hardware this is the reason things don’t cost more..”

    Spot on.

    It is also why US(and I assume other nations too) have their major manufacturing jobs over seas in places like China.

    #26 2 years ago
  27. The_Red

    I guess so. Also, shouldn’t there be some international organization or even Chinese government that does the investigation instead of a foreign company?

    #27 2 years ago
  28. Phoenixblight


    No because the countries allow this and there is no international organization that has that kind of power to enforce those rules on governments.

    #28 2 years ago
  29. DrDamn

    This incident was at a factory specifically making Wii-U stuff. Though it could have been any of them really. It’s why Nintendo have had to respond anyway.

    #29 2 years ago
  30. Da Man

    Well when we bitch about costs of hardware this is the reason things don’t cost more
    Yep, those $ 599 surely went to charity.

    #30 2 years ago
  31. Ireland Michael

    @27 The Chinese Government doesn’t care.

    @29 This is true, but I would be very surprised if this is limited to just that facilities.

    #31 2 years ago
  32. The_Red

    Thanks for the info. As Micheal said though, it’s probably not limited to JUST one of them.

    Also, it is beyond sad and pathetic that even after this reveal, no one is taking action. I mean, I understand that governments don’t care enough to investigate and try to find these things but now that it’s been proven / admitted, shouldn’t they at least be pretending to care / taking action?

    #32 2 years ago
  33. Phoenixblight


    When FoxConn was getting a high amount of their employees jumping off the building to commit suicide because of their working conditions. Did Foxconn do anything about its working conditions? No, they instead put nets around the building and made their employees sign a non-suicide clause. SO no, no one cares.

    #33 2 years ago
  34. monkeygourmet

    You like sausage, but you don’t like seeing it get made…

    Everything we consume is through third world manufacture…

    How many people on this forum protest against things like this?

    #34 2 years ago

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