Ashlee Vance at BusinessWeek uses the title to describe IBM's recent financials.
But the title could apply to so many companies that are reporting numbers these days. It is a painful reminder that the reality is the inverse of the TV commercials and noise from the fan boys who want you to believe 80 to 90% of their revenues come from innovative, new products.
Customers write them the checks, don't they?
Yes they do, but many with a Fxxx you than a Thank you note. They are often what Fred Reichheld calls "Bad Profits" - "whenever a customer feels misled, mistreated, coerced or abused; profits from that customer are bad"
As Fred also says "accountants can't distinguish between good profits and bad"
Apparently neither can most "influencers" - so voices like Ashlee's stand out.