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Elon Musk accuses the media of "sugarcoating" lies

Tesla CEO Elon Musk under fire
Tesla CEO Elon Musk defends company in combative earnings call 05:07

Tesla founder and CEO Elon Musk is ratcheting up his war with the press, accusing media companies in a tweet of hypocrisy and of having lost the public's trust. He also vowed to launch a website where users "can rate the core truth of any article" and track the credibility of journalists and publications. 

"The holier-than-thou hypocrisy of big media companies who lay claim to the truth, but publish only enough to sugarcoat the lie, is why the public no longer respects them," he wrote. 

The tweet linked to an analyst note brushing off media criticism of Tesla, whose stock has fallen more than 10 percent this year amid questions about its vehicle production, safety concerns and other operational issues

When a reporter at tech site The Verge criticized Musk's tweet with a comparison to President Donald Trump, Musk doubled down.

"Anytime anyone criticizes the media, the media shrieks 'You're just like Trump!'" Musk wrote. "Why do you think he got elected in the first place? Because no ones believes you any more. You lost your credibility a long time ago.

Musk then proposed creating a "ratings site" that would evaluate outlets' credibility and flag bots.

Tesla's Model 3 sedan, which the car maker is counting on to help it crack mass automobile market, is behind schedule and analysts have questioned whether Tesla can meet production targets. Consumer Reports, which has recommended other Tesla models, declined to recommend the Model 3 this week after finding significant issues, including a braking problem that Musk has promised to fix. Wall Street Analysts have also raised questions about the company's capital position after it burned through $1.1 billion in the first quarter. 

Elon Musk responds to report on Tesla Model 3 braking problems 00:28

On Wednesday, consumer groups called for an investigation into Tesla's Autopilot feature, which has been linked to two deaths and one injury.   

After Tesla earlier this month posted its largest-ever quarterly loss, Musk held a combative phone call with analysts in which he cut people off and berated some for asking "boring bonehead questions." He also said that investors concerned about swings in Tesla's shares "should definitely not buy our stock." 

The following day, Tesla shares dropped 10 percent, wiping out $2 billion in market capitalization.

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