06 Mar '12, 4pm

Earth to Apple: Think different about profits, by @scottros

Earth to Apple: Think different about profits, by @scottros

What are profits and how do you tally them? The entire history of accounting exists to answer that question. Fortunately, we don’t have to. But the piece we ran last week on Apple’s profits — “Why your iThings don’t have to be weCruel” — started a vigorous discussion on the subject among readers. Our contributor Gar Lipow wanted to make the case that the production of Apple’s popular gadgets isn’t inherently unsustainable and doesn’t have to exploit overseas labor . Several commenters objected to Lipow’s statement that “The single greatest cost component of both the iPhone and the iPad is neither labor nor materials, but profits.” They noticed that the pie charts we published broke down material costs and labor costs for the iPad and iPhone by country but slapped the label “Apple profits” over what seemed to be the entire sum of Apple’s revenue for these products — without...

Full article: http://grist.org/business-technology/earth-to-apple-think...

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