Page 71 - Business Facts

Cartographers add fake landmarks to their maps to catch plagiarizers!


This is one of those facts that makes so much sense once you hear it. Cartography is the mapping of uncharted territories, and despite common belief, Magellan and Cortés haven't done all the work that needs to be done. With the rise of GPS units, and things like Google or Bing maps becoming so useful, there's a lot of mapping to be done in the world, and it's tempting to just steal someone else's work and pass it off as your own.

In order to prevent plagiarists from stealing, cartographers draw traps into their maps. They add things like fake streets, or fake parks and rooms. If they're found in any other map, then you know that person stole from you and it makes it easy to catch and sue them!

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Subway was started by a 17 year old to pay for med school!


Have you ever noticed that Subway is owned by Doctor's Associates? The reason for this is because the chain was started by a 17-year old kid called Fred DeLuca, who was trying to find a way to pay through his med school education. He paired up with another doctor who lent him $1000 to start his first sandwich shop in 1965. 

The pair learned a lot about marketing and the company started to expand. Fred DeLuca eventually did go to college and graduated, but he had fallen in love with running Subway, so he focused on expanding it. That turned out to be a good decision, as Subway is now the biggest fast food chain in the world!

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A company crashed 2 trains as a publicity stunt, and killed 3 people!


An agent for the Missouri-Kansas-Texas Railroad named William George Crush, noted in 1896 that train crashes attracted large crowds. He had the idea to set up a pre-planned train crash as a stunt, and he convinced his bosses to go along. 

The railroad company set up a fake town near Waco, TX appropriately called "Crash." On the date of the crash, 40,000 people showed up. They placed two locomotives on opposite ends of a 4 mile track and set them on a 45mph collision course. 

When the locomotives crashed into each other, their boilers exploded. The explosion and fire killed 3 people and injured many more! William George Crush was fired on the spot, but was rehired the next day when they noticed there wasn't a lot of negative publicity from one of the deadliest publicity stunts in history.

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Delta once argued they should pay less for gay plane crash victims than straight ones!


 

In the rare occasion of a plane crash, the aftermath for the victims' families is not just about the grief of losing a loved one. They have to go through a long and arduous process of determining how much their loved one was worth. One of the key measures that they calculate is "future earnings," the idea being that a family should be compensated for the amount of money that the victim would have made if he'd stayed alive. 

In a 1985 court case, Delta somehow uncovered that one of the passengers was gay, something that the victims' parents didn't even know! They then argued that because he was gay, he was more likely to contract AIDS, which would lower his life expectancy, and therefore, his future earnings. 

In the end, Delta's argument did not gain any traction with the judge. Delta apologized for this stance only a couple of years later.

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Rock-Paper-Scissors has been used in REAL court cases!


In 2006, the two sides of a lengthy court case were unable to settle a trivial matter on the case: where a deposition would be held. Despite long discussions, they could not reach an agreement. 

Tired of this, the Judge in the case decided he'd had enough. He ordered them to agree on a neutral site. If they couldn't agree to that, then they would play one game of rock-paper-scissors. The winner would pick the setting!

His apparent reasoning of this was to shame the lawyers for getting hung up on such a silly point. Have you ever decided anything important over rock-paper-scissors? Tell us in the comments!

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