ReutersDec 04, 2019 08:40:20 IST
British cave explorer Vernon Unsworth is suing Tesla Chief Executive Elon Musk for defamation over three tweets on 15 July 2018, including one in which Musk allegedly branded him a pedophile, calling him "pedo guy."
The tweets came after Musk offered a mini-submarine to help Unsworth and others rescue a boys' soccer team from a flooded Thailand cave. Unsworth described the offer as a "PR stunt."
Musk is a prolific and often controversial tweeter. He has 29.8 million Twitter followers, and some tweets have gotten him into trouble with regulators.
He is a sampling of Musk’s tweets.
- 19 February 2019: “Tesla made 0 cars in 2011, but will make around 500k in 2019.” The tweet reopened a fight with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission over how Tesla disclosed material information.
- 7 August 2018: “Am considering taking Tesla private at $420. Funding secured.” Musk was not close to taking Tesla private and had not lined up financing. Tesla shares jumped, and the SEC sued Musk, saying he misled investors. Musk settled, agreeing to have company lawyers pre-approve written communications with material information.
Am considering taking Tesla private at $420. Funding secured.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) August 7, 2018
- 15 July 2018: "Sorry pedo guy, you really did ask for it." The tweet that led to the defamation lawsuit by Unsworth.
- 17 June 2018: “They have about three weeks before their short position explodes.” Musk often uses Twitter to attack short-sellers in Tesla’s stock.
- 1 April 2018: “Despite intense efforts to raise money, including a last-ditch mass sale of Easter Eggs, we are sad to report that Tesla has gone completely and totally bankrupt.” A day after the April Fool’s Day prank, Tesla’s share price fell 5.1 percent.
Tesla Goes Bankrupt
Palo Alto, California, April 1, 2018 -- Despite intense efforts to raise money, including a last-ditch mass sale of Easter Eggs, we are sad to report that Tesla has gone completely and totally bankrupt. So bankrupt, you can't believe it.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) April 1, 2018
- 27 January 2018: "When the zombie apocalypse happens, you’ll be glad you bought a flamethrower. Works against hordes of the undead or your money back!” Musk’s Boring Co sold flamethrowers and hats to raise funds for its hyperloop transportation project.
When the zombie apocalypse happens, you’ll be glad you bought a flamethrower. Works against hordes of the undead or your money back!
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) January 28, 2018
- 25 July 2017: “I’ve talked to Mark about this. His understanding of the subject is limited.” Musk was targeting Facebook Inc Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg, who downplayed Musk’s warnings about the danger of artificial intelligence.
- 12 March 2015: “The rumor that I’m building a spaceship to get back to my home planet Mars is totally untrue” Musk has said he wanted his company SpaceX to develop a rocket capable of an unpiloted trip to Mars in 2022, with a crewed flight two years later.
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