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Products of Slavery [productsofslavery.org] is an online visualization that takes the data (PDF) from a report of the U.S. Department of Labor on child and forced labor worldwide, and makes it open and accessible. Investigations show that more than 122 different products are made using child or forced labor in more than 58 countries.

The website is part of Anti-Slavery International's ongoing campaign, as it aims to work with businesses to eradicate slavery in private sector supply chains. The interactive map shows the types of products that are produced in specific countries using child labor, forced labor or both. The quantitative data is accompanied with what is called here as "facts": moving personal quotes from affected people that illustrate the meaning and story behind this data.


Very nice, perhaps I missed something but it does have the potential to be misleading, Country X may have 1000 products, 20 of which involve child or forced labour and country Y may have 19 products, all of which involve child or forced labour. In which country is child or forced labour more instituational or systemic, perhaps it all could be measured against the countries general industry stat's?

Fri 19 Nov 2010 at 12:13 AM

well, i bet playboy will be THRILLED to know that their logo is being used to represent child pornography!

Sat 20 Nov 2010 at 1:48 AM

While generally and conceptually informative, this information is not actionable. Revealing child and forced labor in supply chains should show how the processed materials (cotton in Malaysia, pineapples in Brazil) flows through an ACTUAL supply chain with the middlemen, distributors, and retailers identified OR some way to identify the products that are part of these chains. The only action that you offer here is a generic letter that could go to absolutely anyone asking questions about whether or not they use child or forced labor in their supply chain. Sorry, but the people in corporations who receive those letters are generally underlings who have to idea what their supply chain even looks like. So, sending out such a letter is like shouting into a black hole. When you are able to actually trace a product from materials to shelf through the supply chain and show its connection to forced/child labor? You will finally enable regular folks to take action. Until then, this is nothing more than pretty Flash.

Sat 20 Nov 2010 at 12:53 PM

Grrr... if designers are going to show relative size/population/numbers/whatever with area, they shouldn't superimpose it over a map using a projection which isn't equal area - it is poor visual grammar.

Mon 22 Nov 2010 at 3:59 AM

I think this infographic works at the bird's eye level, making you see the scale of the problem - challenges the common misconception that this doesn't happen any more, and that if it does it's just about basketball shoes or iphones. I'd liked to have seen more detail about the actual supply chains, but that would be a different sort of enterprise: more of a case-by-case thing, rather than the big picture they are attempting to show here.

Mon 22 Nov 2010 at 10:02 PM

I wish it was more evocative. The design is very clean and nice to look at but it's not communicating the dire situation of workers in these countries.

Wed 24 Nov 2010 at 2:34 PM
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