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Deceptive story-telling : what's next?

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hi there

Proud owner of two fairphone 2 and one fairphone 3, I must say I’m a lot frustrated by the last fairphone.

In fact, this is deception, and it’s start with a lot of things :

Above the ethical aspect of the phone, I wanted a phone without private life parasits. FP2, with it’s OpenOS was great.
But all dreams come to an end : unfortunately, one of my fp2 became suddenly dead. I discovered the back side of fairphone: all services are delegated to external companies, most of them are USA based and, by definition, are not aware of what is privacy concern (all US companies have to share their metadata with governement agencies…):

  • the help desk (fairphone zendesk com ) US based company, is hosted in USA cloudfare (104.16.55.111)
  • the “dead phones/parts” return company (fairphoneco 12return com): obfuscated company, hosted in USA softlayer (169.50.151.253)
  • the “shop” website (shop fairphone com) , delegated to hypernode io/com: obfuscated company too, hosted in USA aws (3.121.69.82) seems to be just a magento reseller.
    (“obfuscated” from the 2 above lines means, ‘whois’ domains data have been “privacy”-ized by saying there where personnal data (!!) => REDACTED FOR PRIVACY ; and not bein abble to find a registering-number, country nor city attached …: if theses companies are doing legal things, why do they hide ?)
  • even this forum is delegated: forum fairphone com ( => vps760 greenhost nl ) this time, it’s really seems to be an real NL based company…
  • not even speaking about trackers on the main fairphone web site (google tracking, youtube, doubleclick, myfont counter, etc…)

Hey you at fairphone, can you stop disseminate my personnal data with all theses unknown people ? I can’t trust them: I don’t know who they are…
I know you own good developpers (I think about the great peoples who ported android 7 to the FP2) , why don’t you developp your own “ethical” web services ?

On the phone itselfs :
Saddly, I had more problems with my phones than any chineses phones I had seen in my work :

  • 2 screens broken (unfortunately the people fairphone didn’t thought about making the screen dimensions compatible with a well known apple/samnsung/anything, to be abble to exchange protection from them): I had never found any tampered glass for my fairphones.
  • 1 screen half sensitivity dead: had to send back the dead one to be abble to get back the new one: peoples at fairphone where thinking my phone was perhaps a gamestation, and not a working tool for me: had to buy a chinese 50€ phone the time my phone came back…
  • numerous “usb/microphone” death : no more sound , recharging impossible, etc… you know induction ?
  • and the last miserability: impossible to get anything else than google on fp3: you must kidding are u ?..

So I told you guys at fairphone: Even if I spend more than 1700€ in your miscelanous products/spare parts, I won’t buy anything else from you; My next phone will be a full lineage “approved” phone, even if it’s not an ethical made phone… My, and my familly privacy concerns is more important to my eyes than your story-telling.

bye bye fairphone.

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I can partly understand your frustration. But a small company like Fairphone can hardly do business these days without using third-party platforms and services - many of which are located in the U.S., mainly because we in Europe did not develop viable alternatives in time.

This is way too general IMHO. Also, with the GDPR in place since May 2018, U.S. companies must adhere to European privacy regulation if they do business here (and the fines are definitely substantial enough to simply ignore).

Otherwise: Sad to see you go.

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Then you’ve come to the wrong party. Fairphone’s unique sales points are fairer mined minerals, fairer factory conditions and repairability. That’s not story-telling, their results are observable and quantified in their reports. Indeed they offered the Open OS as an alternative OS for the FP2, but that was not part of FPs mission and not a promise for future phones either. Don’t get me wrong, I care about privacy, as do many others on these forums, but privacy is not what FP tries to sell.

With that one sentence, you yourself have already reduced the top half of your essay to a variant of “Fairphone offers X, I didn’t listen and expected Y, now I’m not getting Y and blaming FP for it”. I don’t think FP deserves the label “deceptive” for that.

As for the second half, it is genuinely sad to see that you had so much trouble with the hardware. I’ve had my fair share of trouble, but luckily all within warranty. I can understand that this reflects badly on your experience, as it definitely reduces the durability argument to a flimsy one.

That’s cool, that’s completely your choice! :slight_smile: But if you ever change your mind, make sure to monitor this thread. I suspect this is the first step in bootstrapping LineageOS for the FP3.

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This is a community forum, not the company.
Fairphone staff might read along here and engage occasionally, or not.
If you expect your remarks to be noticed by the company, please contact the company directly.

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As @RSpliet so perfectly put it.
It’s your choice, but nothing to blame FP for. And nobody in this forum is gonna blame you for this choice.
But FP, as well as me, regard fair social treatment, i.e. less exploitation, of the people working to make the phone happen, to be more important. And they never ever claimed anything else.

Regarding the FP2; that’s a different story. It suffers unfortunately from problems for taking modularity a step too far. While mine is working flawlessly, other don’t. And I guess, it’s often a question of treatment. E.g. carrying the phone in the trouser pocket is something the FP2 doesn’t take as well, as almost every other phone.

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Then I recommend a Librem 5 or PinePhone; not “any” LineageOS. You don’t want to run insecure baseband and firmware, yes?

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This post mixes so many things from all over the place, it almost looks like a FUD/hate piece to me, although there are some valid points here and there, it’s simply all over the place. The one who’s doing “desceptive story telling” is you.

let’s start with:

one of my fp2 became suddenly dead

– sad, but phones die. At least FP2 is pretty repairable, have you tried to get it repaired?

all services are delegated to external companies
… zendesk

Zendesk was originally a Danish company, founded in Copenhagen. It’s HQ moved to Silicon Valley because of better investment climate for IT companies. They provide customer support software and hosting, which Fairphone bought as a service. This isn’t anything out of the ordinary, which pretty much any company does. Especially those not big enough to write their own customer support webapps.

CloudFlare

Cloudflare is a content delivery network a third of the internet is using to have reasonable response times and DDOS protection. This is most certainly part of the Zendesk package deal.
And if you bother to do a traceroute, while 104.16.55.111 belongs to Cloudflare, it looks like its actually in Frankfurt, too

Again this is only the frontend cache of a content delivery network, so obviously the domain resolves to whichever one is closest to the customer making the request.

hypernode.io

If you had bothered to actually visit the webpage, this is a Dutch company, they are bound by European privacy laws, and you can find their privacy terms and conditions as well as registered address right here https://www.byte.nl/privacy-policy/
They, too use a content delivery network - in this case Amazon AWS.
While the IP 3.0.0.0/9 block is indeed allocated to Amazon (wtf they got a /9 net?!?) the IP in question (3.121.69.82) is reallocated to a German subsidiary
CIDR: 3.120.0.0/14
NetName: AMAZO-ZFRA
NetHandle: NET-3-120-0-0-1
OrgName: A100 ROW GmbH

According to various GeoIP databases, the server is actually located in Frankfurt, Germany.

So actually NOT hosted in the united states.

dead phones / parts - 169.50.151.253

That IP is allocated to a company called 12Return in
Havendijk 22
4205 BG Gorinchem
The Netherlands
which both the webpage and the whois of the IP address/netblock will tell you

It is hosted in the netherlands, not in the US

forum

this is hosted by a Dutch web hoster. Their main focus is sustainability and Data Privay according to their webpage

lots of broken hardware

were you using it as a phone or as a hammer? phones break, usually if they are heavily used. No phone lasts forever, and Fairphone is no exception. At least you can repair it.

nothing but google on FP3

This is the only critique that has some validity to it, but meanwhile the Kernel sources including Device Tree Information files have been published for FP3, so feel free to port Lineage or Ubuntu, or whatever you feel like to it. Kernel is open source.

Or wait a month or two until someone else will. At this point its really only a matter of time.

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@AnotherElk : And who pay this forum ? How many fp employes are moderating it ?

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@corvuscorax will you admin you are a fairphone agent or a naive customer doing “free” marketing for your favorite brand ?

The question in this thread was what’s next: thanks to @JeroenH to it’s clear response.

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@teezeh small companies , must produce a huge amount of work to be competitive. In the case of fairphone, the ethical marketing was good at start. Now, with a few years more, taking care of customers should be also a concern: reliability is an important part of this job. Fairphone is dumb about it. All the remaining story telling became green washing to my eyes.

The platform is maintained by Fairphone. Nearly all moderation is done by volunteers as this forum is designed as a users-help-users-forum.

Please stop insulting other users. You’re invited to discuss the facts mentioned by others.

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That is next for you as you find privacy and security more important than fair use of minerals, fair wage for employees, modularity, and sustainability. Librem 5 or PinePhone achieve nothing in these regards; it isn’t their main goal. Likewise, privacy and security isn’t the main goal of Fairphone.

Basically, you have 2 completely different niches. I love both niches, and it appears you find one niche far more important than the other.

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You don’t like dealing with arguments, do you? There were lots in the posting by @corvuscorax you could have tried to counter. Being a fan is no valid counter-argument, sorry.

You have no idea, what greenwashing is or means, do you.

  • Fairphone has sold maybe about 200,000 phones. So, despite being in business for a few years, they are still at the beginning of the journey to change the market.
  • The FP3 is the first phone aiming at the mass market. Therefore you might want to wait a bit longer before judging reliability and durability. Especially with FP2 they had design-problems.
  • The ethics of FP have been clear from day one. They did not change. Do somecreading in their blog.
  • If you don’t care about mine workers in Congo or factory workers in China, that’s your choice. But changing their working conditions for the better is no greenwashing.
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