The Best & Worst of 2011

by Arkansas Business Staff  on Monday, Dec. 26, 2011 12:00 am  

Best Water-Cooler Topic
Sissy's Log Cabin of Little Rock and Pine Bluff presented in October and November a reality-show-inspired contest titled the "Perfect Girl for the Perfect Jewelry Contest." The promotion was open to single Arkansas women between the ages of 18 and 29.

Young women submitted their photographs and descriptions of themselves, and CEO Sissy Jones' grandson, William Jones, chose the winner from finalists of a public vote.
The contest winner won a dinner date with William Jones, a limousine ride with him and a $1,000 gift certificate to spend at - where else? - Sissy's Log Cabin.

Best Celeb Sightings

Actor Matthew McConaughey and Academy Award-winning actress Reese Witherspoon were spotted around southeast Arkansas, where "Mud," the largest movie production ever to be filmed in Arkansas, was being shot last fall. The two stars play leads in the movie.

Witherspoon was also seen in Little Rock.  

Little Rock native Jeff Nichols is the director of "Mud," which is scheduled for a 2012 theatrical release.

Worst Inconvenience
An international hacking group known as Anonymous electronically trespassed on the websites of 34 Arkansas sheriff's offices in late July.

The websites were among 77 law enforcement sites in 18 states that Anonymous targeted. Brooks-Jeffrey Marketing Inc. of Mountain Home hosts all 77 of the hacked sites.

Anonymous posted some sensitive information from the sheriff's office websites publicly online, but much of the leaked data was benign.

Improving the security and repairing the sheriff's office websites post-hacking took months.

"It's been very aggravating to us and an inconvenience," Newton County Sheriff Keith Slape said.

Worst Plan to Save a Business
Little Rock attorney S. Graham Catlett recently was reprimanded and fined $1,550 by the Arkansas Supreme Court Committee on Professional Conduct for his role in a 2005 scheme to pass off conventional tomatoes as organic produce.

Catlett was a business partner in a wholesale organic tomato production business. When the crop failed in 2005, he and others had the bright idea to buy regular tomatoes and pass them off as higher-priced organic ones.

But one of the business partners reported the mislabeling scheme to authorities. The business was stripped of its ability to label its tomatoes as organic in 2009. And Catlett was reprimanded this year.

Best News for Cat Bloggers
Righthaven LLC of Las Vegas, the company that was authorized to file copyright infringement lawsuits for Arkansas-owned Stephens Media of Las Vegas and Arkansas Democrat-Gazette owner Wehco Media, lost a string of lawsuits in 2011.



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