It's been a nightmare week for phone maker BlackBerry, with the former smartphone king revealing awful financial figures that included a $1bn write-down on unsold BB10 devices and a plan to cut 4,500 jobs in an attempt to stay alive. Whoops.
And if that wasn't embarrassing enough, the company revealed that it had taken delivery of a new private jet as recently as July of this year, splurging up to $30m on a personal plane for its execs to whizz about in while its Z10 and Q10 models were metaphorically disintegrating at 35,000 feet and crashing into the sea due to disastrous sales numbers.
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Given that everyone on the internet loves giving things a kicking while they're down, it's been a busy old time on the BlackBerry news threads. Commenters are giving the company both barrels of the hindsight shotgun, with battered CEO Thorsten Heins taking an Elop-style hammering.
You're not the boss of me now
Beneath a Business Insider piece on the bizarre private jet scandal, reader Fredisnothere got rather personal with BB boss Thorsten Heins, saying: "On his watch they have accomplished the absolute opposite of what they wanted: their North American market share has continued to decline quarter over quarter, to around 2% now and the brand name has almost become completely irrelevant."
A point that was virtually applauded by Canadian by Waterloo, who scoffed: "It makes me sick that these morons still get paid more than Walmart cashiers." But at least the Walmart cashiers aren't stuck using Blackberrys.
Sold for spares or repair
Over at Cnet, there was a bit of sensible debate about how BB may still salvage something from the mess through clever use of its patents. Reader Godsmurf pointed out that: "It's software and security divisions probably hold greater value that is being suppressed by their marriage to its hardware division. Blackberry can survive, but not in the hardware business."
He then went on to mention former gaming giant Sega's sort-of-successful transition to software after making a mess of the hardware side of things. An analogy that works if you don't count Sega's many, many amazing turkeys.
After some thought, Godsmurf then came back with a joke about the private jet thing, replying to no one in particular: "I can see their decision-making process now: 'We're already losing $1 billion, so what's another $29 million gonna do?'"
Over on Arstechnica, the reasons as to how RIM/BlackBerry ended up in this financial jet crash were debated, with user Twdog boiling its troubles down to a failure to copy the iPhone quickly enough, suggesting: "It was entirely their fault because Apple caught the entire smartphone market 'off guard' but others (Google in particular) realised things had changed and adapted accordingly and were successful."
Reader LJ responded to this by blaming management once more, adding: "In Google's case, you have executives who understand technology. You have none of that in BlackBerry's case. BlackBerry has executives who understand business, but not technology, and they're trying to run a tech company."
Heins means business
Finally, commenters on the Huffington Post may have come up with the reason for BlackBerry's jet purchase, with reader FlameWaterhead suggesting that boss Thorsten Heins "needs a Jet to escape all the laid off employees that want to kill him."
This thought was enhanced by Ian "I'm using my real name on the internet" Llangan, who amended it to read: "He needs a Jet to escape all the laid off employees, creditors/suppliers, shareholders, let-down customers, and other stakeholders that want to kill him."
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