Forbes Makes a Costly Mistake Again

This is my I told you so moment

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Image for post
Forbes Africa 30 under 30 (2016)

So I wrote an article last year talking about Forbes. Just in case you never read it, it was about Kylie on the cover page of the Forbes magazine. The article wasn’t about Kylie at all. It was about Forbes and their standards.

Well, it turns out they have once again proved their point to me. My concern with the magazine was that they were no longer focusing on celebrating people worthy of being role models in society. Their emphasis now is just on who has made money, regardless of how they did it. Forbes is supposed to laud business people, not hustlers.

This time the mistake is up a notch. A fraudster was on the Forbes Africa 30 under 30. And I am not delighted to write about this because the fraudster is from Nigeria. But I hope this serves as a wake-up call for the publication. Here is a screenshot:

It turns out the guy is now arrested by the FBI for a bank wire fraud worth millions of dollars. The “businesses” were obviously a front to legalize stolen funds.

Forbes is a reputable publication that everyone looks up to. When they celebrate people, they are officially making those people role models for society. When the young and gullible see that people with questionable business journeys get to that point regardless, they feel an affirmation to go in any dirty direction just to make the money.

Now, you may be saying, this is a mistake by Forbes. I don’t think it is. How much research really goes into those they laud? This isn’t even about the amount of research, it is about the standards of the publication. Is it still what it used to be? How much does it cost to get a good private investigator? They don’t have to establish who is a fraudster, they just need to eliminate if something about the story doesn’t add up.

Notice this guy was on the cover page of the magazine, despite the fact that there were 30 chosen. See what I am saying? I am guessing, this “mistake” will come up yet again. Why?

It is almost like Forbes is saying “as long as you make the money, we will hail you a champ. We don’t really care how you make it, as long as you now have assets that can explain it”

I had a conversation with a friend and he was pretty pissed when he heard this latest mishap by Forbes. He was of the opinion that the 30 under 30 list is one of those things that put young people under pressure to achieve. Especially in African countries where the system is difficult. Rising to the top is challenging, except if much of the work has been done by the parents.

At this point, I only hope Forbes rebrands and take their selection process more seriously. If not, I pray another reputable organization takes their place. We should be careful about what we put out in society. Especially when we have people that adhere to everything we say.

I have stopped taking Forbes serious. These are delicate times. It matters who you listen to.

I rest my case

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