Samsung exec apologizes for saying he'd rather have tablets in schools than toilets inside
UPDATE: Mr. Cojocaru apologizes for his previous statement, here is his full (translated) post on Facebook:
The title must be shocking for many of you, though some might not even understand what's this all about. Don't worry, we'll be giving you all the details, so you can understand why saying that during a press conference is a bad idea.
Head of Telecom Division at Samsung Electronics Romania, Cristian Cojocaru said that he'd rather have tablets in schools and then try and solve the issue of toilets in the courtyard.
In many countries this statement would probably be categorized as “weird,” but in Romania, from all the information we've been able to gather, this is a very sensible issue.
Just like in many other EU countries, Romania has a wide network of schools, but there's a huge development gap between schools in the cities and those in the rural areas, we're being told.
Basically, most of the rural areas in Romania lack infrastructure, which is why the majority of the schools active in villages don't have toilets inside, but in the courtyard. Apparently, even though we're in the 21st century, some people living in an EU country still have to go outside for their physical needs.
That's certainly not the biggest issue that's happening on the planet right now, but it's one that can be solved with a little help from local authorities and … money. Just the thought that 6-7 years old school kids have to go to the toilet outside when there are -15 degrees outside should be disconcerting.
Did you know that in Romania many schools in the rural areas have teachers accompany kids to the toilets outside during the winter at certain hours? But Samsung hopes to sell more tablets in these schools …
According to Samsung's Cristian Cojocaru, all current digitization projects in schools must be accelerated, and to start developing these rural areas, the authorities must invest in infrastructure.
The first step, according to him, would be for the Romanian government to buy more Samsung tablets for school kids in rural areas. Perhaps they will use the Samsung tablets to learn that there are actually schools with toilets inside.
We can agree that Samsung is a huge business, but these kind of statements made during press conferences can only harm its brand's image, especially after the Galaxy Note 7 fiasco.
Every country has several sensible matters that need to be tackled with finesse. Well, it looks like the “finesse” word does not seem to be part of a certain Samsung exec's vocabulary.