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Reporting on Tesla by Russ Mitchell (LA Times)

dschase

Member
May 15, 2019
5
8
BOCA RATON
Fact Checking, you have outdone yourself with this post. Good grief you put a lot of time into it. Alas, I think your theory is extremely far-fetched and quite unlikely to be true.

I've spoken with Mitchell and I did not get this sense at all. Here is my counter-theory based on talking to numerous journalists who cover Tesla: Occam's Razor tells me many of these folks are decades-long career journalists who have become confirmed skeptics about certain tech companies. In the case of Tesla, they have not "drunk the kool-aid" as it were; they are not Tesla owners; they don't have the Tesla grin; they have not experienced that "living the future" feeling many Tesla owners experience; they think Teslas are nice cars and all, but for them, what fuels their skepticism (again: my guess) is what they see as hype and noise and fanfare, Elon overpromising and underdelivering, plus the secrecy and overall inaccessibility of the company and its executives for interviews and background information because they're for the most part shut out from regular access. I suspect they resent Tesla Corporate's White House-like practice of picking favorites: write positive articles about Tesla, get access to Tesla (maybe). Write one negative thing, and the door slams shut for a long time or forever. When Tesla sends journos into "exile" it probably just encourages them to keep writing negatively (what do they have to lose?) instead of the company continuing to engage and educate them so that maybe they'd start writing more fair, nuanced, better-researched articles. I sense they don't like all the pro-Tesla/pro-accuracy people (including me) giving them feedback about their articles. It creates a downward spiral of neverending negativity and FUD.

Now, before the Disagree Brigade starts a-clickin', please note: I am not defending these journalists nor the media outlets. I find the coverage of Tesla in the major media outlets generally pretty poor, very often misleading, usually lacking real information because they haven't done their damn homework, and the articles are then made worse by editorial decisions especially with headlines and choices of accompanying photos, oftentimes some uncomplimentary Elon photo which conveys a tone of contempt at the company and its chief executive.

And yet... I've had journalists tell me that from their viewpoint, they see most Tesla coverage in the news as too positive (!), and that media cuts Tesla way too much slack (!!). That blows my mind, and probably yours. There is a huge disconnect going on, as if pro-Tesla people live on one planet and skeptical-Tesla journos live on some other one where there's too much happy-talk about Tesla. (I think that's crazy and I don't know how journos get that impression.)

But.... all that said, still: I really don't think these journalists are participating in options trading, particularly of the shorts variety. It's not, in my experience, in the journalist DNA to gamble like that.

As for Mitchell's following the TSLAQ trolls he follows on Twitter (something that puzzles and dismays me a great deal), I have to wonder if a just-as-likely explanation is that he does it just to piss off Tesla fans. I just can't agree with FC's explanation that all the TSLAQ-following is Mitchell's huge tell revealing the reporter's colossal TSLA shorting activity going on in the background.

I think there are many similarities between Apple's introduction of the iPhone and Tesla's sale of EVs. Both are revolutionary products that have/will change the world but there are always people who don't see the future and will think that anything "different" will fail to be successful in the marketplace. Here's an interesting article about those people who thought the iphone would fail: These Are The People Who Thought The iPhone Would Fail. We'll be able to look back in a few years and write a similar article about today's Tesla critics.
 
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petecrayton

Supporting Member
Apr 26, 2019
86
85
jacksonville, florida USA
Fact Checking, you have outdone yourself with this post. Good grief you put a lot of time into it. Alas, I think your theory is extremely far-fetched and quite unlikely to be true.

I've spoken with Mitchell and I did not get this sense at all. Here is my counter-theory based on talking to numerous journalists who cover Tesla: Occam's Razor tells me many of these folks are decades-long career journalists who have become confirmed skeptics about certain tech companies. In the case of Tesla, they have not "drunk the kool-aid" as it were; they are not Tesla owners; they don't have the Tesla grin; they have not experienced that "living the future" feeling many Tesla owners experience; they think Teslas are nice cars and all, but for them, what fuels their skepticism (again: my guess) is what they see as hype and noise and fanfare, Elon overpromising and underdelivering, plus the secrecy and overall inaccessibility of the company and its executives for interviews and background information because they're for the most part shut out from regular access. I suspect they resent Tesla Corporate's White House-like practice of picking favorites: write positive articles about Tesla, get access to Tesla (maybe). Write one negative thing, and the door slams shut for a long time or forever. When Tesla sends journos into "exile" it probably just encourages them to keep writing negatively (what do they have to lose?) instead of the company continuing to engage and educate them so that maybe they'd start writing more fair, nuanced, better-researched articles. I sense they don't like all the pro-Tesla/pro-accuracy people (including me) giving them feedback about their articles. It creates a downward spiral of neverending negativity and FUD.

Now, before the Disagree Brigade starts a-clickin', please note: I am not defending these journalists nor the media outlets. I find the coverage of Tesla in the major media outlets generally pretty poor, very often misleading, usually lacking real information because they haven't done their damn homework, and the articles are then made worse by editorial decisions especially with headlines and choices of accompanying photos, oftentimes some uncomplimentary Elon photo which conveys a tone of contempt at the company and its chief executive.

And yet... I've had journalists tell me that from their viewpoint, they see most Tesla coverage in the news as too positive (!), and that media cuts Tesla way too much slack (!!). That blows my mind, and probably yours. There is a huge disconnect going on, as if pro-Tesla people live on one planet and skeptical-Tesla journos live on some other one where there's too much happy-talk about Tesla. (I think that's crazy and I don't know how journos get that impression.)

But.... all that said, still: I really don't think these journalists are participating in options trading, particularly of the shorts variety. It's not, in my experience, in the journalist DNA to gamble like that.

As for Mitchell's following the TSLAQ trolls he follows on Twitter (something that puzzles and dismays me a great deal), I have to wonder if a just-as-likely explanation is that he does it just to piss off Tesla fans. I just can't agree with FC's explanation that all the TSLAQ-following is Mitchell's huge tell revealing the reporter's colossal TSLA shorting activity going on in the background.
Wow! Lots of folks all wound up. It's a car, not your mother. I liked it, I bought it, like the 70 other +/- cars I have bought in the last 60 years. I wasn't influenced by the press on those either.
 
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tinm

2020 Model S LR+ Owner
May 3, 2015
2,463
11,890
New Mexico, USA
Not just a car. The post was made in the investor thread as part of an ongoing discussion about the impact that often-misleading media coverage has on the stock and the market. All that context is lost thanks to moderator(s) moving participant content around like they own it but I digress
 
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Wick

Member
May 14, 2019
88
115
New Jersey
Haven't read every post on this thread, but did you see the latest Motor Trend? Shoot out among BMW 3, Genesis G70 and Tesla Model 3. I was prepared for the usual disparagement of electric cars, but despite some criticisms the Tesla won the comparison. A little unfair to the Genesis, perhaps, since they used the 2.0 liter 4 to compare rather than the 3.3.

Obviously not a financial article, but perhaps the beginning of the motoring press getting on board.
 

CalX

Member
Jan 26, 2016
113
1,116
United States
Haven't read every post on this thread, but did you see the latest Motor Trend? Shoot out among BMW 3, Genesis G70 and Tesla Model 3. I was prepared for the usual disparagement of electric cars, but despite some criticisms the Tesla won the comparison. A little unfair to the Genesis, perhaps, since they used the 2.0 liter 4 to compare rather than the 3.3.

Obviously not a financial article, but perhaps the beginning of the motoring press getting on board.
Didn't they handicap the tm3 by using winter tires and half charged?
 

Wick

Member
May 14, 2019
88
115
New Jersey
Didn't they handicap the tm3 by using winter tires and half charged?
I'll read the article again when I get it back from the friend I lent it to, but I don't recall them mention tires or SOC. I do recall they praised the handling, but dinged the braking distance. Maybe that was a function of the tires.
 

Earthpower

Member
Sep 10, 2017
119
62
NC
I look at it this way. These "journalists" (not all) are either really stupid and bad at their job OR they are making money spreading disingenuous information about Tesla for themselves or the paper they are writing for. Pretty much means, either way, they are not worth reading since I do not read info from idiots or gossip in rags.

Why would someone subscribe to something like that?

Journalists don't make much money so they could be tempted by oil interest cash for anti-Tesla stories. Good sources for material are the shorts. My faith in journalism has declined after reading nothing but Tesla FUD in the NYT, which i know isn't true as an owner, then decries the climate crisis.
 
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Watts_Up

Active Member
Mar 4, 2019
3,350
2,263
In a galaxy far, far away

Governments fill their coffers from oil sale tax.

The oil industry is a big business from drilling oil, transporting crud oil with tankers, making petrol with refinery, distributing oil with gas stations.

Car suppliers are making big profits making engine parts such as injection, exhausts, gear boxes...

Car dealers make money from getting mechanics maintaining ICE engines.

By opposition generating electricity from solar panels and eoliennes require very little maintenance cost.

All the cars manufacturer in US, Europe, and Japan are dragging their feets from making EVs to keep a status ko.


As a result, China is going to flood the world with EVs, and very few car manufacturers will survive.
 
Last edited:

Peter’s Dream

New Member
Jun 30, 2019
1
0
Silverton
Haven't read every post on this thread, but did you see the latest Motor Trend? Shoot out among BMW 3, Genesis G70 and Tesla Model 3. I was prepared for the usual disparagement of electric cars, but despite some criticisms the Tesla won the comparison. A little unfair to the Genesis, perhaps, since they used the 2.0 liter 4 to compare rather than the 3.3.

Obviously not a financial article, but perhaps the beginning of the motoring press getting on board.
The BMW is a 4 cylinder 2 liter also. $60,000 4 cylinder
 

Earthpower

Member
Sep 10, 2017
119
62
NC
Governments fill their coffers from oil sale tax.

The oil industry is a big business from drilling oil, transporting crud oil with tankers, making petrol with refinery, distributing oil with gas stations. Car suppliers are making big profits making engine parts such as injection, exhausts, gear boxes...
Car dealers make money from getting mechanics maintaining ICE engines. By opposition generating electricity from solar panels and eoliennes require very little maintenance cost. All the cars manufacturer in US, Europe, and Japan are dragging their feets from making EVs to keep a status ko. BMW executive calls EVs ‘overhyped’ at company event about EVs

As a result, China is going to flood the world with EVs, and very few car manufacturers will survive.

If the US won't support Tesla or other alternative fuel auto companies, and actually works against them (removing EV incentives, letting Koch Bros run free with disinformation, states making it difficult for Tesla to sell cars, etc.), I agree we could very well end up buying Chinese EVs since China is supporting EV production, not working against this technology.
 
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Watts_Up

Active Member
Mar 4, 2019
3,350
2,263
In a galaxy far, far away
If the US won't support Tesla or other alternative fuel auto companies, and actually works against them
(removing EV incentives, letting Koch Bros run free with disinformation, states making it difficult for Tesla to sell cars, etc.),
I agree we could very well end up buying Chinese EVs since China is supporting EV production, not working against this technology.
I was watching the recent political pre-elections 2020 debates, there was some mention about global warming,
but no support for futur ban of non electrical vehicles in cities like in Europe or just promoting EVs in general.
 
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bhzmark

Active Member
Jul 21, 2013
3,433
5,169
Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity.

Science advances one funeral at a time.

Seriously I doubt he is motivated by anything nefarious. These two principles offer more than enough explanatory power.
 

Brando

Active Member
Sep 27, 2016
2,890
2,013
Bainbridge Island, WA
Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity.

Science advances one funeral at a time.

Seriously I doubt he is motivated by anything nefarious. These two principles offer more than enough explanatory power.
Thanks. Now I understand why we have 8 wars going on Spend +50% of Fed. discretionary budget on military. Have 25% of the world prisoners. Student in debt. (I think it is still the only debt. you can't declare bankruptcy to get relief ( - how crazy while the rest of the world allows only those that can qualify - and often pay those same to get higher educations) Highest healthcare costs and among the lowest results. OK, I'll stop whining.

Thank god unemployment at an all time low and homeless at an all time high. Only in America. MAGA.
 

SoGA Fan Club

Supporting Member
May 22, 2019
557
2,344
Savannah, GA
It astonishes me that people don't understand the seemingly inexplicable hatred of Tesla. I'll help you guys out. It has NOTHING to do with Elon Musk, EVs, or any one thing in particular. Here's the truth.

Fox News and most conservatives hate the global warming "scam", and present information to their readers/listeners to provide proof that global warming is total BS (or at least proof that the global warming theories are BS). They've presented the entire global warming movement as nothing more than a scam people devised to make money (and yes, there are indeed people out there that are using global warming to make money - don't kid yourself).

And that's ok that Fox carries the anti-global warming flag. We always need voices of reason on both sides of an issue. The problem is, Fox is not a voice of reason. Just like every other media outlet, they have an agenda and want to push that agenda. Just like every other outlet, they will withhold info that shows their position to be wrong, and push the info that supports their agenda.

So, ANYTHING related to global warming - particularly the "green movement" is seen as the total enemy. Electric cars, solar and wind power, battery storage - ANYTHING green. As most of you know, Bush created many alternative energy programs (and incentives) in the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 and other bills. The problem is, by the time much of this was pushed through congress, and funded, Obama had taken office. Suddenly, Fox News had a scapegoat to blame these programs on. After all, it was Obama that signed the checks. All over Fox News, the "subsidies" were chastised. But, really, not SO loudly until a couple of the recipients of federal loans began to fail. The darling of their ire was Solyndra.

Solyndra was a conservative talk show's daily go to point that EVERY CONSERVATIVE loved to hear about - OBAMA'S policies had FAILED!! He had no business picking winners and losers and should let the market do that. This talking point became SO successful for Fox in their fight against "green" that they began to search out any other green companies that received federal loans. Every single green company was beat into the ground (talk about all negativity and no positive stories!). Every green company that got a federal loan was mentioned - but NOT the non-green companies. You can ask ANY conservative right now if Ford got a federal loan under the same program that Tesla got theirs and 99.9% will say emphatically, "NO!! Ford did not need a bailout". I find it ironic that Ford developed the Eco Boost engine with this loan. Another company never mentioned was Nissan.

During the 2012 presidential debates, Mitt Romney seized on the hatred that Fox had created amongst its readers and listeners when he told Obama that he just wanted to be the person that picks the winners and losers, and began to call out the companies that had failed - and then said, "and that loser Obama car company Tesla."

So, almost daily, Hannity, O'Reilly, and especially Eric Billings, would run these companies in the ground. They would list the failed companies and highlight the losses or failures of those still in business. I distinctly remember in 2013, Bollinger and Fox News having a circle jerk one night talking about how Tesla had never made a penny, laughing and going on and on about "who did they think were going to buy these cars?" and "no one wants an electric car", and "their days are numbered" - 3 DAYS AFTER TESLA ANNOUNCED THEIR FIRST QUARTERLY PROFIT!! (and I'm 100% sure the timing was no accident, they had to poison their listeners' minds).

Fox, and its followers (this Mitchell guy almost assuredly being one) believed that the failures of these companies not only proved that green could not be profitable, but that there weren't really any global warming believers out there because if there were, they would be buying these company's products. The failure of these companies was the failure of Obama himself, and his policies. It was a failure of progressives. It's no different now with the left's hatred of Trump. People's hatred clouds their ability to think SO badly that to the uninterested, or the few neutral people, it's completely obvious.

So what it completely boils down to is the relationship between Obama, global warming, green companies, and finally Tesla. These people could be given a Tesla and drive it for a week, LOVE IT, but would trash it and say, "It was the worse POS *sugar* I've ever driven." Otherwise, to them, it would be admitting, "Obama was right" - and they will never do that. NEVER. They'd rather see America collapse and be starving than for Tesla or any green company to prosper (same as the left would do to see Trump destroyed).

Now you have it - Tesla is related to Obama, and Tesla's success would be a feather in Obama's hat. They want ALL of these green companies to fail (just watch when the conservatives' favorite car company Ford comes out with an electric F150 - suddenly EVs won't be so bad after all). The ironic thing about it all is that the program that gave Tesla the federal loan was created by Bush and had NOTHING to do with the environment (it was about removing our dependence on foreign oil). Sadly, Fox News has never told them that. It doesn't fit the agenda!!
 

SoGA Fan Club

Supporting Member
May 22, 2019
557
2,344
Savannah, GA
It’s not that easy! The above does not help understand:

Ok. I explained why conservatives hate Tesla so much (which is 80% of the haters). But, that hate was fueled by Fox, who I'm sure is being backed by dealerships associations, oil companies, and legacy car manufacturers, among others who stand to lose if electric cars become main stream.

Understand, you will find some liberal publications out there writing negatively about Tesla - they are not immune to being paid off. Money makes people do irrational things. However, I challenge you to find even one article on a conservative web site that is positive towards Tesla. And I don't mean one that pretends to be positive, but throws out all kinds of jabs and innuendos throughout the article. Here's one for example in a Fox News story about Tesla bringing a Model S to Nürburgring.

"Tesla has never posted an official time at the track, and the fastest private attempt stands at 8:50, achieved with a now-discontinued Model S P85D in 2015. The following year at a Car and Driver event, the same model couldn’t complete a single lap of the 3.3-mile-long Virginia International Raceway without switching to reduced power mode to keep it from overheating."

So why was the VIR run even mentioned? Doh...that's obvious!

"...and Tesla claims the latest top of the line Performance version can accelerate to 60 mph in 2.4 seconds and hit an electronically restricted top speed of 163 mph. Porsche’s figures for the record-setting Taycan Turbo S are 2.6 seconds and 161 mph, but the Nordschleife’s 73 curves require much more than straight-line speed."

So, Porsche's car is "record-setting" and AWESOME. Tesla just makes claims. It's funny that Fox brought up a Car and Driver event to discredit Tesla when it came to the track performance, but they didn't bother to mention that Motor Trend tested the Model S and did 0-60 in 2.275 seconds. But that's no accident. I can assure you of that.
 

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