Tesla fires back at Fortune with cheeky “Misfortune” blog post

The drama continues between Tesla and Fortune after the media outlet published a story questioning Tesla’s ethics claiming the company sold $2 billion worth of stock but failed to disclose that it was under investigation by the National Highway Transport Association (NHTSA) after Joshua Brown was killed when his Model S in Autopilot mode crashed into a tractor trailer.

Since the story was published, Tesla CEO Elon Musk defended the company’s position that news surrounding the Autopilot related death was not material to its stock price. Fortune disagreed citing that the stock price dropped $6 per share after news broke that the NHTSA was in fact investigating evidence surrounding Brown’s death. That’s when Musk fired back via email picking choice words with Fortune’s writer and stating, “Indeed, if anyone bothered to do the math (obviously, you did not) they would realize that of the over 1M auto deaths per year worldwide, approximately half a million people would have been saved if the Tesla autopilot was universally available. Please, take 5 mins and do the bloody math before you write an article that misleads the public.”

The Tesla vs Fortune debacle spilled over into the public Twittersphere between Fortune’s Editor Alan Murray and Elon Musk. The tweets continued throughout Wednesday with Alan Murray defending the media outlet’s position that Tesla did not disclose news of the Autopilot death. Fortune went as far as quoting statements made in an SEC filing by Tesla which warned investors that a fatal crash related to its Autopilot feature would be a material event to the company’s brand, business, and operating results. Tesla would later bring to light that Fortune mischaracterized the quote within the SEC filing.

Tesla has since released a blog post on this matter titled “Misfortune”.


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