This American Life caused a stir on Friday when it announced that it was retracting its coverage of Mike Daisey and his “Mr Daisey goes to the Apple Factory” performance. The presentation was a short excerpt taken from Mr. Daisey’s longer show about the troubling conditions he discovered within the factories of Foxconn, an Apple supplier. Host Ira Glass released a statement in which he claims Mr. Daisey fabricated portions of his story about his visit to China and the Foxconn factories where Apple devices are made.
Mr. Glass and Rob Schmitz, a Shanghai-based reporter for Marketplace, said Daisey’s interpreter Cathy Lee confirmed that two stories critical to his monologue were not true. She claims his encounter with underage Foxconn workers and the man whose hand was disfigured while assembling iPads never occurred.
Mr. Daisey admitted these events weren’t true, but said his performance is not journalism, it’s theatre. He “said in a statement on his website that his performance ”uses a combination of fact, memoir, and dramatic license to tell its story, and I believe it does so with integrity.” He adds that “What I do is not journalism. The tools of the theater are not the same as the tools of journalism.”
You can read more about the controversy and listen to the episode on This American Life’s website.
[Via This American Life]