What China's Talking About Today: Outrage Over Apple CEO's Earnings

A New York Times infographic suggested Tim Cook pulled in $378 million in 2011.

cook april9 p.jpg

Apple CEO Tim Cook Reuters

Over the weekend, the New York Times ran an article on executive compensation that included a graphic reporting that Apple CEO Tim Cook "was paid $378 million in 2011." That figure, as several blogs noted, is a bit misleading as it includes restrictive stock units that are worth millions now but can't be cashed out for years. Cook's actual salary in 2011 was, as the Times article noted, a more reasonable $900,000.

But in China, the less-than-accurate $378 million figure has already become gospel -- and a source of some public anger. The graphic sparked a hot topic on Sina Weibo, where close to two million users commented on the story in less than a day.

Many responses observe the stark contrast between Cook's salary and that of Apple-supplier Foxconn's Chinese workers, who are helping to build his empire, microchip by microchip.

"Apple CEO Tim Cook makes $378 million a year. That equal to the entire Foxconn staff's salary in 60,000 years," said user Zheng Zhongxiang.

Countless other users seemed to micro-blog some version of the joke, "that's a whole lot of apples."

Presented by

Massoud Hayoun is a digital-news producer for Al Jazeera America.

Google Street View, Transformed Into a Tiny Planet

A 360-degree tour of our world, made entirely from Google's panoramas

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register.

blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

Google Street View, Transformed Into a Tiny Planet

A 360-degree tour of our world, made entirely from Google's panoramas

Video

The 86-Year-Old Farmer Who Won't Quit

A filmmaker returns to his hometown to profile the patriarch of a family farm

Video

Riding Unicycles in a Cave

"If you fall down and break your leg, there's no way out."

Video

Carrot: A Pitch-Perfect Satire of Tech

"It's not just a vegetable. It's what a vegetable should be."

Video

The Benefits of Living Alone on a Mountain

"You really have to love solitary time by yourself."

More in Global

Just In