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Jeff Bezos tweets 1999 article predicting Amazon’s failure, Elon Musk awards him a silver medal

Back in 1999, an American magazine had predicted the crash of Amazon stock, calling the founder Jeff Bezos a mere “middleman”. Now, almost a decade after the article was published, Bezos — who is among the richest people in the world — reshared the magazine clipping as an anecdote to emphasise that one should not lose faith in oneself on the basis of someone else’s judgement.

The story titled “Amazon.bomb” was published on May 31, 1999, and predicted the downfall of the company stocks amid the rising competition from direct sellers.

“The idea that Amazon Ceo Jeff Bezos has pioneered a new business paradigm is silly,” began the article featuring a caricature of Bezos inside a bomb. Dismissing him as “just another middleman”, the article goes on to call direct sellers the “real winners” of the internet boom. “Net will be firms that sell their own products directly to consumers.”

Read the full post here:

While clearly, the prediction did not come true, Bezos used the magazine cover to tweet an inspirational message. “Listen and be open, but don’t let anybody tell you who you are. This was just one of the many stories telling us all the ways we were going to fail. Today, Amazon is one of the world’s most successful companies and has revolutionized two entirely different industries.”

The tweet also received a response from Tesla CEO Elon Musk, who poked fun at the Amazon founder and replied with a silver medal emoji.

For those who don’t know, in September this year, Musk became the third person to amass a fortune worth $200 billion, surpassing Bezos to become the wealthiest man in the world the Forbes reported. In an email interview with the website, Musk had replied that he would be sending a giant statue of the “digit ‘2’ to Jeffrey B., along with a silver medal”.

Since being shared online, the post has gone viral on social media and triggered a plethora of reactions online.

“Inspiring advice on how to handle criticism with a touch of emotional intelligent & nuanced perspective! Thanks, Jeff!” wrote a user while retweeting the viral post.



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