Apple. Google. Walmart. Boeing. The U.S. Treasury. These hallowed names are among the crème de la crème in business and the economy. Top of the heap. Cock of the walk. Best and brightest. The A List, you might say.
Unfortunately, from time to time esteemed organisations like these find themselves on an altogether different kind of list. The wrong kind. Here at BNET, we call it the B List.
This is where you’ll find the scoundrels and slackers, the frauds and failures, the ne’er-do-wells and nincompoops. Some landed here for nefarious reasons, others from incompetence, arrogance, or good old-fashioned cluelessness. But however they got here, all the members of BNET’s B List have one thing in common: They were guilty of the biggest, dumbest, most appalling, or just plain funniest blunders of the year.
The Hyatt Corporation is sued by a female guest after an incident in which she returns to her room at a Hyatt in Deerfield, Ill., to discover a male hotel employee wearing her panties, skirt, and heels. The employee, 32-year-old Oscar Garcia-Franco, first tells police he'd merely been cleaning the room, but later tearfully admits the incident and pleads guilty to a misdemeanour. The guest sues the chain on grounds including invasion of privacy and negligent infliction of emotional distress, alleging that the hotel manager initially ignored her complaint and took no action until she demanded that police be brought in.
In an article detailing the return of lavish excess to Wall Street just a year after the TARP bailouts, the New York Times reports that a Morgan Stanley trader had recently been fired for attempting to hire a dwarf to appear at a bachelor party in Miami. According to e-mail exchanges, the trader had been planning to handcuff the dwarf to the groom.
In June, Microsoft ends its first major attempt to develop its own handsets, discontinuing its line of Kin phones just six weeks after launch in the face of sales rumoured to be as low as 500 units. Analysts say the phone bombed because it lacked full smartphone functionality--instead being designed around access to social-media sites like Facebook and Twitter--but nonetheless required a pricey, top-of-the-line data plan.
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