From Newsweek. And others.
The Beatles Suck. Yeah, We Said That
has been in business for nearly 80 years, during which time it has published history-changing stories, won numerous awards—and made its share of boneheaded predictions that can’t be unread.
Apple “probably never” would come out with a cell phone—in a list of all-time worst technology predictions. Fortune assured its readers, in 1996, that“by the time you read this story” Apple would be dead. New York Times, in 2006, that
It’s not just journalists. Even really smart people make memorably stupid predictions. This was the case long before predictions without consequences became a staple of Sunday morning news talk shows.
, I.B.M.’s visionary chairman and C.E.O., forecast the global market for computers to be around five—as in five computers. Total sales. Yes, he said it back in 1943, but this was the fellow at the helm of the company whose computers helped land a man on the moon in 1969 and dominated the technology business for decades.
sub-prime loans were “riskless.”Sir William Preece, chief engineer of the British Post Office, who in 1876 harrumphed: “The Americans have need of the telephone, but we do not. We have plenty of messenger boys.” More recently, Franklin Raines, the former CEO of Fannie Mae, helpfully reassured the world, in 2004, that