In China, there are particular laws stating that the people should work only 44 hours a week and if they work beyond that it must be considered as overtime, and they are subjected to get paid. But many aren’t abiding this rule. A rare online movement has highlighted the long working hours in China’s tech sectors.
People from all corners of China are rallying in support to improve the working conditions in startups while some of the people are saying that working long hours means attaining more success.
In late March 2019, the anonymous activists introduced a new domain name 996.ICU which depicts the grueling life of the programmers related to China. These people work from morning 9 to night 9 for six days a week and these kind of long hours are a threat to them that they will end up in ICU.
The site has provided the details of labor laws that of China which clearly says that one shouldn’t work overtime without getting paid for it. The slogan “Developers’ life matters” can be seen at the bottom of the website.
A project named 996.ICU is followed on Microsoft owned tools and code sharing site, GitHub. The list of the companies that follow this 996 rule is shared on GitHub. The famous company names that one can find in this list are Alibaba, Pinduoduo, JD.com, Bytedance, and Huawei.
The 996 work schedule is inhumane. https://t.co/ajXt3YKRAc
— Guido van Rossum (@gvanrossum) 29 March 2019
In response to the email sent from Tech Crunch, JD claimed that it doesn’t force any employees to work overtime against their wish. The company mentioned that JD.com is a competitive place which rewards for hard work and works ethics.
Alibaba has rejected to make any comments about this issue, but Jack Ma stated that no company should follow the 996 ritual and put their employees’ health at risk.