A lot of blogs are poking fun at Blockbuster‘s Chapter 11 filing and I don’t quite understand why. Since when is it funny for a business that employees thousands and thousands of people to be at risk of closing? I mean, the last time I checked, it wasn’t funny for anyone to lose their jobs.

The graphic above was posted by The Consumerist. While there’s complete truth to the graphic, it’s just not a laughing matter. A lot of innocent people could lose their jobs.

So there’s the first real thing you should know about Blockbuster’s bankruptcy: Think before you joke.

Secondly, people can’t seem to understand what Chapter 11 means. Message boards on the blogs I mentioned above are flooded with ignorance (that’s not an insult, ignorance is a legitimate term) about what kind of bankruptcy Blockbuster filed. It doesn’t take a degree in business to know there’s a difference between Chapter 11 and Chapter 7. Chapter 11 means the company’s debt has been cleared (or lessened in Blockbuster’s case) and Chapter 7 means liquidation and closure.

So there’s the second real thing you should know about Blockbuster’s bankruptcy: The store is NOT closing. You will still have to return your movies to your local store.

Of course Blockbuster’s days are probably still number unless they make drastic changes. There’s a lot of restructuring they need to do. They need a stronger online presence. They need to give consumers a better selection of movies. Not everyone is only interested in new releases. Of course I’m no expert on restructuring a business. I’m just recognizing the fact that they need to change.

So why do I care enough about this topic to write about it? No, I don’t have stock in Blockbuster (thank God). I just know what it’s like to work on the bottom ranks of a corporation. I know what it’s like when that corporation is both hated for what it has and hasn’t done. I know what it’s like to be the one who has nothing to do with the corporation’s mistakes but depends on it to pay my bills.

And I know how to sympathize. That’s the bottom line.

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