Jack Ma, the founder of e-commerce giant Alibaba, has spoken out on social media in recent days in support of the Chinese work practice known as "996." The number refers to working from 9 am to 9 pm six days a week and is said to be common among the country's big technology companies and start-ups.
On April 14th, Ma Yun recently posted his opinion on the 996 working system on his personal Weibo. He said that if you choose to work hard to win your happiness and success, then "it is a huge blessing that we can work 996". Joining Alibaba, you must be ready to work 12 hours a day.
Many netizens commented that Ma Yun as a public figure, many small and medium-sized enterprises have taken Ma Yun as the goal of struggle, but now he said a thing that violates the national labor regulations. This will cause SMEs to think that 996 is right, because Ma Yun has expressed support for the 996 working system.
Ma Yun’s remarks made many netizens very dissatisfied. Some people advised Ma to not be involved in such a “wrong” topic. This topic is unpleasant, and also shows "the fangs of the capitalists", because the enterprise enforces 996 in order to maximize the value of employees and violates national labor regulations.
Ma Yun believes that the real 996 is not a simple overtime work, not a monotonous physical activity, and has nothing to do with exploitation, because people are not stupid now, and there are many opportunities to choose. "I think the real 996 should be spending time on learning, thinking and self-improvement. Those who can stick to 996 must have found their passion and found something other than money. They enjoy the path of learning, thinking, and exploring outside of eight hours. Finding out our own happiness at work is a blessing. The people who work 996 only for the overtime salary will not last long."