Death By A Thousand Pundits

Is anyone, other than me I mean, getting really sick of hearing about how this product or that product is a failure and it's just a matter of time before the company or the product goes under?

Oh my deity! Google+ has been out for a couple of months now and it hasn't completely replaced Facebook as the number one social media destination? Is it the end of Google+? Can Google recover from this? What about Twitter and countless other social media platforms that don't seem to notice they're doomed because they also aren't number 1?

Oh my deity! Research in Motion is number 3 in the mobile phone market. How can BlackBerry hope to survive if they aren't number 1? In which case, how can Windows Mobile or Samsung or countless other manufacturers who seem to keep going despite the fact that they haven't yet toppled Apple's iPhone. 

Oh my deity! Linux hasn't captured the number one position on the desktop! It's only a matter of time before no one uses Linux on anything! Any company using Linux or open source is doomed to failure!

The Research in Motion story particularly annoys me, and not just because I own a BlackBerry. Every day I read or hear about how it's only a matter of time before RIM folds, and that having someone buy the company and sell its intellectual property at fire sale prices is the only hope. Last time I checked, which was about 2 minutes ago (and based on the Feb 2011 financial statements), Research in Motion had some 20 million subscribers and nearly 13 billions dollars in cash and assets and no debt! How in the much maligned name of sanity can somebody write off a company in this position?

Every other minute, some know it all pundit who, I can only guess is hired by the competition to spread FUD, spouts some meaningless crap about why this product or that company is doomed to fail. It wouldn't be the first time a large corporation used the media to spread fear, uncertainty, and doubt in order to bolster its position. Somehow, making a good product, having a great customer base, and making a profit aren't enough if you aren't fracking number 1!


What bothers me is that it's often more the speculation that breeds trouble than the actual issues of the day. Call it a self-fulfilling prophecy. Companies buy into it at their peril than run off half-cocked trying to fix problems that don't need fixing. Somewhat related is the "Is this the Fill-In-The-Blank-Product Killer?" type of article. As one person commented on my post to Google+, "It's a lot easier than real reporting." And potentially a lot more harmful. 

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