China explodes extra work culture “996” China is doing extra work on notice from its workers
The country’s supreme court on Thursday issued a lengthy sentence in China known as “996”, the practice of working from 9:00 to 21:00. Six days a week which is considered common among the country’s large tech companies, startups, and other private firms.
“In recent times, extreme overtime in some industries has received widespread attention,” the Supreme People’s Court wrote in a statement issued by the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security. The court wrote: “Workers have the right to rest and vacation”, adding that “employers have a legal obligation to respect the national working time system”.
Cite several examples of companies in various industries claiming to violate workers’ rules, including an anonymous courier company claiming that employees are told to work 996 hours. The court said that forcing employees to work so hard “seriously violates the law on extending the working time limit and should be considered illegal.”
China explodes extra work culture “996” The founder of Pinduuduo died because his Chinese e-commerce behemoth became much bigger than before.
The founder of Pinduoduo died because his Chinese e-commerce giant is much bigger than before.
The public reaction against the culture of overwork is not new. Jack Ma, co-founder of Alibaba (BABA), was widely criticized in China two years ago for calling 996 culture a “huge blessing”. And Chinese labor laws have already banned workers from working for so long.
But the latest ruling from the country’s supreme court comes as Beijing clamps down on private companies in China, imposing new rules and fines to reduce the influence of powerful corporations. The campaign was justified by President Xi Jinping and other senior officials to address data security risks and educational inequalities and prevent social instability.
The court wrote Thursday: “There is nothing wrong with recommending hard work, but it cannot be an ieldal to prevent employers from [their] legal obligations.”
The controversy over 996 cultures was reignited this year during the campaign against private enterprise. In January, e-commerce company Pinduduo (PDD) suffered a backlash over allegations of overwork from its employees after two of its employees died unexpectedly, one of whom committed suicide.
The company did not immediately respond to a request for comment on its work culture, but said it formed a team to provide psychological counseling after an employee committed suicide.
Recently, even young people in China have begun to reject an intense work culture, wanting “flat lies” or “tang ping”. Philosophy refuses to target people for social work, marriage, pregnancy, or property purchase because of the small rewards that come with achieving those goals.