As soon as I saw this news, I knew I had to cover it. It’s too crazy. The biggest question: Why in the hell does CNBC think this is news?
You can’t really understand how crazy this is without approximately 6 months of history, though, so let’s start with that.
In the middle of last year (or perhaps earlier, but that’s when it got on my radar), certain obsessed Tesla haters started sharing photos of Tesla parking lots. The photos were supposed to be proof that Tesla didn’t have any demand for the Model 3, or at times were supposed to show that Tesla couldn’t manufacture cars to satisfy demand. In any case, the people taking and sharing photos — often marked up in one way or another to highlight something — appeared to be convinced that Tesla’s sales forecasts were a joke, a mirage, a scam, a fraud. Typically, there was an implication that Tesla was trying to hide this damning evidence but these clever Tesla investigators had sleuthed it out.
The whole charade — or misguided attempt to be like Sherlock Holmes — dissipated like a cloud of smoke when Tesla actually started delivering tens of thousands of cars a month. The demand was there, the production capacity was there, and Tesla was doing it. As if the record-shattering results of Q3 were not enough, Tesla went even higher in Q4. I thought perhaps that was the last we’d see of phony scandals based on photos of parking lots with Teslas in them — sometimes even broken Teslas (gasp)!
Instead of going away and finding a new company to troll, or new nonsense conspiracies to pitch to fellow Twitter captives, they doubled down. Some of these people created a website for posting such photos. They created a safer online HQ for nonsense anti-Tesla conspiracy theories.
If that wasn’t sad enough, as noted above, CNBC actually treated this as legitimate news. (Link here for proof — don’t click it.) CNBC is so engulfed in the illogical smear campaign that it must know that all the prior short-seller hype about parkings lots with Teslas in them and without Tesla in them didn’t end up meaning that Tesla was short on demand or production capacity. In other words, the CNBC writers and editors must have known this whole $TSLAQ thing is a joke with a horrible track record. Nonetheless, they decided it was worth publishing a story on the bland website created by anonymous short sellers peddling pointless photos and BS.
As Vijay beautifully summarized:
- Who cares about anonymous shorts with a website?
- Why don’t they reveal their names like real journalists?
- Why is a major news site reporting on this and giving them importance?
- Does CNBC report when longs create their own website anonymously?
Hmm, maybe I’ll go ahead and set up Teslove.co, post original photos of Teslas in parking lots, and see if CNBC thinks that’s newsworthy enough for a full article.
Or I’ve got another idea: I’ll post photos of Tesla in parking lots for months, proclaim that they are evidence Tesla is going to sell 5 million vehicles this year, and then when it’s shown I was ridiculously off target, I’ll set up a website about Teslas in parking lots and see if CNBC thinks it’s interesting news.
Seriously. Not kidding. This is emblematic of how bad CNBC’s Tesla coverage is.
I don't like paywalls. You don't like paywalls. Who likes paywalls? Here at CleanTechnica, we implemented a limited paywall for a while, but it always felt wrong — and it was always tough to decide what we should put behind there. In theory, your most exclusive and best content goes behind a paywall. But then fewer people read it! We just don't like paywalls, and so we've decided to ditch ours. Unfortunately, the media business is still a tough, cut-throat business with tiny margins. It's a never-ending Olympic challenge to stay above water or even perhaps — gasp — grow. So ...
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