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Does Apple Have a Morale Problem?

The Apple (AAPL) retail experience has been a key part of the company’s image since its first stores opened in the summer of 2001. The sleek maple-and-stone spaces, with products front-and-center and an army of cheerful, T-shirt-wearing sales staff always at hand to answer questions or offer assistance -- for many shoppers, the bustling, busy energy of the stores is a big part of the brand's appeal.

“The Apple stores offer an amazing new way to buy a computer,” said Apple CEO Steve Jobs upon their opening, which at that point weren’t even selling the iPod yet. “Rather than just hear about megahertz and megabytes, customers can now learn and experience the things they can actually do with a computer, like make movies, burn custom music CDs and publish their digital photos on a personal website.”

But, as it turns out, many of Apple’s own retail employees don’t see it that way, and they’re taking to social media in droves to vent their frustrations – with the customers, the products and the company itself.

According to a recent report posted by 9to5Mac’s Mark Gurman -- in which he dives into the secret world of the company’s less-than-satisfied employees -- this “Apple Anonymous” community represents a very small portion of the company’s 40,000-strong retail workforce, but they’re making their opinions known on social media outlets including Twitter and Google+, posting anonymously to avoid disciplinary action from their bosses.

In short, these people aren’t very happy with their jobs. They lament what they see as failures of management, complain about customers’ often basic requests, question the direction of the company and vent about topics as mundane as the music that’s played in Apple stores.

Take a look below at what some members of the Apple Anonymous community have recently posted to Twitter.

What do you think? Are Apple’s retail employees particularly disgruntled, or are their complaints common to most retail workers?