Tesla has to show that Zoox is using the information the employees allegedly stole. In a nutshell, Tesla would have to show similarities between its logistics processes and Zoox's. (https://www.fenwick.com/FenwickDocuments/Trade_Secrets_Prote... for a good summary)
But given the shitshow that is Tesla's logistics , that's extremely unlikely, as Tesla's logistics processes simply aren't valuable IP. Tesla has displayed a chronic inability to manage their own supply chain, especially during the period the employees were at Tesla. If anything, Zoox used the information allegedly taken from Tesla as an example of what not to do logistically, and trade secrets law doesn't let you sue for that.
EDIT: To clarify: there are 2 lawsuits in the article. One is against an employee for stealing trade secrets, which doesn't require proof that his new employer is using the secrets. That lawsuit doesn't involve Zoox. The other lawsuit is against Zoox and former Tesla employees for using Tesla's trade secrets. I'm only referring to the one against Zoox. It's pretty clear that the secrets were misappropriated, so the real question is whether those secrets are actually being used.
After Emigh joined Zoox, Tesla says he mistakenly sent an email to Cooper’s old Tesla address, with a modified version of a proprietary Tesla document attached. The document was “freshly-emblazoned with the Zoox logo,” Tesla claims, but it still featured hallmarks of the original version, which the automaker says shows “without doubt, that the Defendants are actively using the Tesla information they stole.”
I defer to your legal background, but this seems like extremely poor judgement and that it would make the case harder for Zoox.
[edit: the linked article has changed substantially since I first read it. I quoted the article as it was at the time of my commenting, and it had much more details around the XPeng allegations involving iCloud and similar incidents with Apple/FBI investigations]
The issue though is that Tesla has to show that Zoox is actually using that information in its products or processes. It's possible--even likely--that they'll be able to do so with respect to the Autopilot secrets (I didn't address that in my comment edit: since that was a separate lawsuit from the one against Zoox) but with respect to the logistics secrets there's a snowball's chance in hell that Zoox modeled any of their logistics after Tesla's processes.
So sure, their logistics are a mess in general, but if they had a great idea for, I dunno, shipping-based rolling warehouse allocation or something, and Zoox got caught doing the same thing, it's game over.
But that's not the world we live in. Tesla posted their lawsuit online, and the details are available all over.
From the Verge, on the Zoox lawsuit:
The employees allegedly made off with information related to what Tesla calls its “WARP” system, a proprietary software platform the company built to collectively manage things like manufacturing, warehousing, inventory, distribution, and transportation. “These materials and knowhow were developed by Tesla over many years, and at great expense,” the company’s lawyers write. (WARP was described by multiple former employees to CNBC last year as “seemingly never complete,” which made it hard to keep track of budgets.)
The company claims that Turner, who was a manager at a Tesla distribution center, sent confidential documents containing information about the company’s receiving and inventory procedures, along with “internal schematics and line drawings of the physical layouts of certain Tesla warehouses” to his personal email address with the words “you sly dog you...” Turner allegedly sent another document to his personal email later that same day with a note that said: “Ooooh man... so much time and effort. Loved every second of it though,” according to Tesla.
Zoox hasn't started building anything yet. It's still in the prototype stage. It's possible that Zoox would have used this information if it got to the point of actually building a car (but see Faraday Future for an example of optimistic thinking). But Tesla would need to show that Zoox used a proprietary system for managing inventory, warehousing, etc., instead of the many platforms available on the market, most of which appear to function better than Tesla's in-house system. Tesla would alternatively need to show that Zoox used the layouts of Tesla's warehouses in designing its own.
It's the same issue that Waymo ran into with Uber: whatever the former employee may have done, the new employer isn't liable for anything if they don't actually use that misappropriated information.
Didn't the Waymo-Uber suit end up with Uber settling by paying a quarter billion dollars (in equity, but still)? Doesn't seem like Waymo ran into any fatal liability barriers.
Yep. They did.
In fairness, though, Waymo did run into difficulties during the litigation in respect of tying the misappropriated documentation to Uber itself, though.
I don't think the difficulty was fatal, but I don't think either side was looking forward to a long and protracted discovery fight to prove the point while Cruise et al. were sitting on the sidelines sniping secrets.
Rephrased your argument is:
1. Tesla has to show that Zoox is using or used the information.
2. The above point only likely if Tesla's logistics processes are valuable.
3. We know know that they are not valuable because Tesla has had trouble keeping its supply chain optimized.
I take the most amount of issue with #3, but also with #2. That they have trouble shipping whole cars on time does not prove to me that some sub-process of their manufacturing isn't well run or novel. Quite the opposite, really, since they're much more likely to have found alternate approaches since they were building lines from scratch and, thus, not tied to the old ways of solving things. That they're failing to ship on schedule is normal for operations at that size for the first time.
But even leaving aside #3, I still think #2 presumes a level of understanding at Zoox that I don't necessarily think is fair to assume. It may have taken Zoox time to realize that the Tesla approach was wasteful, but that doesn't excuse them from using stolen IP.
Zoox isn't even to the point of making a product yet--its still in the prototyping stage, and Tesla accused it of stealing logistics IP related to supply chain management and storage. So Tesla can't show them of #1 (using the IP) because Zoox simply isn't in the position of being able to use the IP.
Any other lawyer want to sound off on if this is right? Because it doesn't seem right. If I'm using stolen trade secrets to decide what not to do, I'm still making very good use of that information.
Edit: added "other" to first sentence since original commenter is a lawyer
> (a) Whoever, with intent to convert a trade secret, that is related to a product or service used in or intended for use in interstate or foreign commerce, to the economic benefit of anyone other than the owner thereof, and intending or knowing that the offense will, injure any owner of that trade secret, knowingly—
>> (1) steals, or without authorization appropriates, takes, carries away, or conceals, or by fraud, artifice, or deception obtains such information; [or]
>> (2) without authorization copies, duplicates, sketches, draws, photographs, downloads, uploads, alters, destroys, photocopies, replicates, transmits, delivers, sends, mails, communicates, or conveys such information;
Edit: Just saw parent comment clarified they were discussing Zoox's liability, not the former employee. In that case, subsection 3 of the above excerpt would apply:
>> (3) receives, buys, or possesses such information, knowing the same to have been stolen or appropriated, obtained, or converted without authorization;
I still read the statute a bit differently from parent. Liability doesn't flow from whether or not the IP was implemented by Zoox but from whether or not Zoox knew the information was stolen. Tesla will have to prove Zoox intended to obtain the proprietary information and knew it was stolen.
I think the OP is referring to the requirements for the sources which trigger 'big dollar' litigation remedies.
The Fenwick memo is pretty helpful - it distinguishes between Wrongful Use and Wrongful Acquisition. Most of the big remedies require Wrongful Use to be demonstrated.
If A and B were pharmaceuticals and I know A secretly wasted 20b on a compound that B is considering to test, maybe this is a trade secret that I should be careful divulging.
My intuition is that there is a line between "taking professional skills with you" and "trade secret".
 - https://www.chicagotribune.com/classified/automotive/ct-tesl...
 - https://forums.tesla.com/forum/forums/tesla-replacement-part...
What do you mean by this? They seem to be hitting their delivery targets despite incredibly (and unpredictably) high demand.
I think we have different ideas of "hitting their delivery targets" since Tesla has missed nearly every delivery target they've ever set for themselves...not just for the Model 3 but for the S and X as well. For the Model 3, theses misses are despite having a known number of customers years in advance of actually manufacturing the car.
Tesla has also had repeated issues delivering their cars to customers. And getting exported cars out of port (one of the most straightforward logistics functions a manufacturing company can manage). They still can't get replacement parts to many of their existing customers. These are all basic logistics failures that almost every other manufacturing company (carmakers and otherwise) has no problem handling.
Tesla's car designs and brand IP are currently very valuable. They're also not the subject of these lawsuits...
The "shitshow" standard is not the standard a court uses regarding IP theft/misappropriation. I'm in enough IP legal battles to know that dumber stuff has been valid in courts.
Hypothetically, what if their supply chain issues are caused by dogmatically following a flawed and proprietary supply chain algorithm?
If their rival did indeed steal and use the algo, does it matter if it's flawed, for the purposes of a suit?
(Ex: maybe they decided it's easier to prove use of the flawed algo than some of the crown jewels for whatever reason)
My point about the value of Tesla's logistics IP is that it doesn't make sense for anyone to use it because it's not valuable: Tesla has messed up on the basic logistics enough times that its clear they're not very good at logistics.
All the mistakes in the world don't matter if the final outcome is a good one. Elon Musk has already been pretty public about some of the mistakes they made and what they learned from them, is it really inconceivable that they learned from those mistakes and are on their way toward a well working logistics system?
Clearly they aren't the best in the world with this stuff, but to say that they have nothing of value at all seems over the top.
I thought Tesla brought manufacturing in house to simplify their logistics.
Why companies are still using engineers from China to work on trade secrets is beyond me. Even if they start off clean, they can be easily persuaded to steal by the Chinese companies or government.
The reason, of course, is so that the baby can be born in the US and thereby obtain the full rights of US citizenship.
So some of these Chinese engineers you speak of may be American born US citizens, although they’re wholly raised in and possibly completely loyal to China. The sad thing is that considering the culture someone was raised in (which seems possibly fair, though I’m not 100% certain it’s defensible) comes indistinguishably close to considering race (absolutely not fair in any way). The societal dialog exploring this distinction is fraught to the point that I am uncomfortable even making this comment, and I doubt HR departments are prepared to encode policies that are so perilous.
One escape hatch would be the US security clearance system, which is no doubt allowed to take many factors into account. But that wouldn’t apply here.
However, Tesla is the largest battery manufacturer in the world, and manufactures their batteries at significantly lower cost, higher performance, tighter tolerances, and with greater automation than anyone else in the world.
It’s underestimating the difficulty of the problem by far to point to specific (relatively minor, if not insignificant) failures of Tesla and generalize that their logistics IP isn’t worth stealing or couldn’t possibly be beneficial to a competitor.
The gross margins that Tesla has achieved on the Model 3 I believe speaks for itself as the worlds best at that price point, and that does not come without a well run supply chain.
There is no question that Tesla runs hot. I’d like to see anyone else try and come close to what they’ve shipped without a fair share of fuckups along the way.
Panasonic manufactures the battery cells for Tesla and most of the market. Tesla assembles the cells into batteries. It would be accurate to say that Tesla is the largest manufacturer of car batteries, but they are nowhere close to being the largest battery manufacturer in the world.
We must be talking about a different Model 3. If Tesla had terrific Model 3 gross margins, it wouldn't have needed to (try to) close all of its stores and eliminate all customer referral incentives just to make the $35k Model 3 possible...in one color and style...with limited options. It's competitors could have great margins too if they only sold the car in one color, one style, and no packages, because their economies of scale would absolutely dwarf Tesla's.
I’d like to see anyone else try and come close to what they’ve shipped without a fair share of fuckups along the way
Toyota and VW shipped 10 million cars worldwide last year without any logistics issues. Hell, most companies are able to ship their products without any controllable logistics issues. Why does Tesla get a pass for failing to do something that every other manufacturer gets right?
Tesla Gigafactory 1, which started in 2013, has already grown into the biggest battery factory in the world with an annual production capacity of over 20 GWh. 
Actually they have exceeded 20 GWh currently and are pushing towards 35 GWh. 
Panasonic is a 25% stakeholder in Gigafactory 1. The fact that you think Tesla merely assembles packs, is because most of what they are doing to hit $100/kWh is trade secret.
Their packs are cheaper, lighter, denser. They will be cobalt free. And that’s driven by Tesla IP not just Panasonic. 
As far as margins, the idea that you could ship a 50kWh electric car for $35,000 was pure and utter lunacy 10 years ago.
There literally isn’t enough battery production in the world to produce a million EVs a year, let alone 10 million. You are comparing apples to oranges.
 - https://www.google.com/amp/s/electrek.co/2018/09/26/panasoni...
 - https://www.tesla.com/sites/default/files/blog_attachments/g...
 - https://electrek.co/2018/11/13/tesla-battery-cells-improved/
there's a lot going on behind the scenes.
Tesla fans love to claim Autopilot is the best because, for example, Waymo's system is not available to purchase. How then can we be expected to believe a secret Tesla battery project is beating competition? There is no independent review and it is not in production.
These companies are shipping with more or less established infrastructure and supply chains that have been optimized over decades. Tesla has been building almost all of its infrastructure and supply chain from scratch (batteries, supercharger networks, software tech, etc.), while also getting cars delivered. And breaking tons of new ground in almost every area of automotive tech.
(You can argue that Torota and VW build infrastructure too, but almost all of it is incremental, and almost none of it is groundbreaking.)
> Why does Tesla get a pass for failing to do something that every other manufacturer gets right?
Nobody's giving them a pass. It just seems unreasonable to draw conclusions without understanding the entire context.
Pretty sure that title goes to Johnson Controls, who produces about 1/3rd of all car batteries globally.
It's also an assumption that they had to (try to) close all their stores to make the $35k Model 3 possible.
The fact of the matter is, every manufacturer wants to sell products for the highest overall profit (unit profit * volume) possible, and lower overhead. The fact that they previously refused to sell (presumably lower margin) short-range 3s does not mean it wasn't possible. Maybe it wasn't possible. Or maybe they'd rather make $100 per unit on a mid-range than $1 per unit on a short-range.
Why is "black" and not "white" the standard color?
Asking this because I think that black electric cars need in general more air-conditioning, therefore more energy, have therefore less range than white cars - based on the belief that it's easier to heat a car than to cool it => if the previous statements are correct, why is the high-energy-consumption-colour less expensive than the low-energy-consumption-colour?
Uh, duh? Last I checked, Tesla mostly sells cars. If they were the largest manufacturer of, say, cellphone batteries, THAT would have been surprising.
I see Tesla as a company that is basically putting all their resources into building their tech tree and their vehicle and parts factories, but cannot mine enough vespene gas to support the stores.
Huh.. and here I thought Tesla was the little guy in an industry defined by century-old behemoths.
The truth is people like to shit on other people. As Taylor Swift famously said, "we don't live just in a celebrity takedown culture, we live in a takedown culture. People will find anything about you and twist it to where it's weird or wrong or annoying or strange or bad."
Yes, there's plenty we can criticize Tesla on, but people will extend this to even seemingly benign things like having something stolen from the company because it's cool to hate on the company in $current_year
My problem with Tesla is the same I have with Uber and AirBNB: it's not that they royally fuck up now and then, it's not even that they fuck up regularly.
It's that their fuckups all betray their moral turpitude.
They do not "fuck up" as in "security breach" or "bad bugs".
They "fuck up" as in "lie, steal, cheat" and yes, arguably even "kill".
I don't care which great achievements these companies may bring us. Or have already brought us. They need to die. Other companies can pick up those achievements and iterate on them.
I drive with AutoPilot every day. One thing is damn sure, you watch it vigilantly, and you can always, always take control by just turning wheel or tapping the brakes.
Tesla tells me every single time I engage AutoPilot to keep my hands on the wheel and be ready to take control.
A special place in hell for automation that you don’t even know exists, that was concealed from you for a profit motive, flying your plane into the ground.
I can scan more of my immediate surroundings and notice potential hazards which are not just directly in front of me much more easily.
I also find it's a lot less tiring to have the car dealing with the micro-adjustments in steering while I do the higher level planning.
I've said it before in other comments, but I honestly believe 20 years from now we might not have "sleep in your car while it takes you from point A to B" but we will look back and wonder how we managed to drive cars while constantly have to manually and meticulously center them in our lanes.
In fact I personally think it's quite analogous to how airplane autopilot actually functions (even if the general public perception of airplane autopilot does not match reality). It requires a pilot to constantly be monitoring the situation, and in fact it frees the pilot to be able to do necessary planning tasks, but at no point does the autopilot itself carry the actual responsibility of operating the vehicle.
> I don't focus on making minor adjustments to keep the vehicle centered in the lane.
Why is this a benefit? In this video  you only have two seconds to make a correction.
> I don't worry about drifting out of the lane
That is concerning given what we know about AP's behavior.
The behavior demonstrated here was new as of March 2018, later disappeared, and then reappeared again in an AP update in 2019 . This issue was also demonstrated to appear at the location of a Model X crash that resulted in a fatality .
Then there are the two left-turning white tractor-trailer deaths in Florida, seemingly identical conditions on divided roads, spaced 3 years apart  .
You could say, "well I don't have conditions like those where I commute", but then, you don't know where the next screw-up will be.
EDIT: Here is another case, just happened two days ago , a Model X on autopilot unexpectedly veered right at highway speed, crashing into a truck.
Also note, there is no proof that AP is safer. NHTSA's "40% safer" claim was debunked when they were forced to release data as a result of a lawsuit .
> In fact I personally think it's quite analogous to how airplane autopilot actually functions
Airplane pilots have minutes to react to autopilot malfunctions. In a car you may have only 1 or 2 seconds.
There are many reasons to legitimately shit on Tesla including their worker treatment, statements made by their CEO etc.
The assertion was they are so far from perfect that in fact their IP isn’t even defensible in a court of law.
So please don’t reply with more quips about how Tesla isn’t perfect. Why does their CEO mouthing off on Twitter, or attacking disgruntled employees, or dubious onsite health care, or pie-in-the-sky volume estimates, or market manipulation, or literal dumpster fires on their property, mean that their IP is so much shit it can be stolen without consequence?
Throughout, despite, or perhaps even in part due to all of the above, they have still achieved great things and changed an industry. They are still the biggest battery manufacturer in the world. They still make a handful of really fucking awesome electric cars, which you can order in a few minutes on your phone and have delivered to your house. And their margins on those cars are the industry best. Those points seem to support the notion that they must have some valuable logistical IP and trade secrets backing that up.
Nobody said that Tesla's IP was not valuable or that stealing it is okay.
> But given the shitshow that is Tesla's logistics , that's extremely unlikely, as Tesla's logistics processes simply aren't valuable IP. Tesla has displayed a chronic inability to manage their own supply chain, especially during the period the employees were at Tesla. If anything, Zoox used the information allegedly taken from Tesla as an example of what not to do logistically, and trade secrets law doesn't let you sue for that.
I am saying that its logistics IP is worth nothing to another company, and right now its logistics IP isn't worth much to Tesla either. Even Musk acknowledges that they're in "logistics hell" right now...
Also, the gross margins on the Model 3 have little to do with supply chain. They cut a lot of corners on build quality, interior fit and finish, etc. to get to that margin and they're only able to do so because of lack of competition in the segment.
Is it reasonable to call something a cut corner when the end result is success by nearly every metric? Maybe that corner needn't exist? Scaling issues are unavoidable. So much nitpicking.
The safety comes from robust design, not superior manufacturing practices. Neither are fit and finish related to safety.
And no, scaling issues are absolutely not unavoidable. These are all solved problems. Tesla just rushed vehicles out the door with crap production line QA because they were running out of money and market patience.
Moreover, both of your responses ignore my original point of customer satisfaction. If this were a major problem, why would they have among the highest satisfaction?
How do you reconcile those positions? All Tesla buyers are so blinded by the cult of Musk that they tell everyone their car that they hate is great?
Are we expected to just ignore LG Chem? Tesla's batteries are good, and I'm glad they're investing in them, but Tesla isn't ahead of their competitors there in any significant way.
Tesla has the largest single battery factory, but they seem to be second behind CATL in the latest annualized production rates.
CATL shipped 7.3GWh in 2018-Q2, I can’t find Q3 numbers but I did find one site saying “monthly installed battery capacity with 1.47GWh, 2.45GWh, 2.49GWh and 3.4GWh produced respectively from August to November in 2018.” But these are not just EV batteries.
For EV batteries specifically, Tesla produces more than 50% of global supply.
I believe this excludes plug-in hybrids and buses. It is also counting all Gigafactory pack capacity, which includes cells made by Pano in Asia that are assembled at Giga for Model S/X packs, so a bit squishy.
Um, okay. I mean, there's the Chevy Bolt and the Jaguar I-PACE. They're both pretty good EVs, and they compare against the short-range RWD M3 and the MX 75D, respectively. I don't see any big fuckups with those two cars, at least compared to the Tesla cars.
Speaking personally, I've owned a LEAF, an MX, and an I-PACE. Of the three, the Tesla has been an order of magnitude more problematic than the other two.
It is interesting to speculate on the value of source code, though. For Tesla autopilot I'm more than willing to accept that there is some "secret sauce" of trade secrets in there that would help out a competitor, but usually I find that source code contains the most mundane stuff. Most professionals could write it nearly as fast as they could learn to work with the legacy systems if they knew what they were building. Instead it's the requirements that are gold. You figure out exactly what needs to be built in a great amount of detail, then you are at least as well off as having it big ball of messy logic.
Take note those that want to "steal" a competitor's project: just buy a copy of the executable and start figuring out exactly what it does ;-)
BTW, as a (on topic) side note, I once had an ex-colleague tell me that they copied all of the source code for every company they ever worked for -- just so they could look stuff up. It is not completely implausible that an ex-employee would copy the code to help their own performance without any involvement of their new employer.
R&D of this sort is funded best with a strong profit motive, unless the government is willing to shell out for it.
In order to work on pie in the sky ideas, you need to hire brilliant people for long periods of time, with low certainty of success. And this is expensive, and corporations will not generally do this out of the kindness of their hearts... the stars align sometimes where the private incentives and public interests are the same.
Xerox PARC, Google X, Bell Labs, and so forth meet this description just as much as DARPA.
But the traditional direct profit motive is an important piece of the engine of progress, and relying only on this other incentive structure would cause stagnation.
The definition of open source might include such a thing, but a project that originates from a lone genius rather than a community is not what is usually meant when people speak of open source.
That is great for many things, but for something like self-driving tech, it is already being used in cars on the road. This is not just experimental, it already has people's lives on the line. That is a lot of trust in something that is not available to be audited.
EDIT: Lorkki's comment explains part of my thoughts on it well. Other companies subsidize open source project that exist at the core of their business. Is there a difference here other than scale? If so, what, and how would it change the situation?
It may be normal for a company to withold information to keep a competitive edge in a nascent industry, but it will also mean that their press releases lauding reduced death rates in their products will be double edged swords, unless they make the ethical decision to share their improvements with other players and reduce death rates across the industry.
“To promote the progress of science and useful arts, by securing for limited times to authors and inventors the exclusive right to their respective writings and discoveries.“
As I see it, there are two ways to avoid the wasteful duplication of effort that we're seeing today: Either a private monopoly pays for it, or the government does. Both options (and the status quo) have their pros and cons, but I'd personally prefer that the government fund it - ideally, borrow to fund R&D now, and then pay off the debt through taxes on autonomous vehicles once they go live. In practice, we're definitely trending toward the first option, one implication of which is that open source is a pipe dream.
For example: knowing that someone machined the 6061 aluminum in the engine is completely different from knowing that it took twelve tries and a five-axis mill to do so, and that the entire chassis takes twelve hours to assemble, twenty people, and fifty-three robots.
From a discussion about determining whether to interpret radar-detected objects as obstacles:
"Initially, the vehicle fleet will take no action except to note the position of road signs, bridges and other stationary objects, mapping the world according to radar. The car computer will then silently compare when it would have braked to the driver action and upload that to the Tesla database. If several cars drive safely past a given radar object, whether Autopilot is turned on or off, then that object is added to the geocoded whitelist."
It may be that much of what makes autopilot effective is just data, rather than intelligent algorithms.
Furthermore, giving away such data used to tune the system may create customer privacy concerns.
Just need a 'no code no road' law.
And if you take into consideration that they had to spend lots of time to make up for mistakes made along the way (Musk's infamous "we tried to automate too much" statements), that just makes it that much more impressive that they are where they are today.
Other commenters here are talking about how their famous difficulty in ramping up production or problems with sourcing parts as if it means there's nothing of value for someone to steal. But I just can't see that being true.
I can't see Tesla having absolutely nothing of value in their logistics processes at all. And if there is even one worthwhile thing, something they are doing right that others are hesitant to try, or can't do for other reasons, that's something that is very valuable to Tesla as a company.
Tesla on the other-hand is executing on its patents so hard it doesn't even have time to try to protect them.
Perhaps their secret is _just doing stuff_, instead of, you know, _not_.
If thats the case, with my experience at San Francisco startups, there is a very real chance Zoox hasn't stolen the _valuable_ knowledge :P
> Later that day, Tripp heard from the sheriff’s department in Storey County, Nev. Tesla’s security department had passed a tip to police. An anonymous caller had contacted the company to say Tripp was planning a mass shooting at the Gigafactory.
it sounds like there's a reasonably high probability that some one high up at Telsa arranged for some bullshit report to be made to police claiming an ex-employee whistleblower was going to go on a shooting spree at the factory. I'd like to see this bullshit report investigated and prosecuted as attempted-murder-(by-cop), this behaviour by any employer to any former employee, let alone a whistleblower, is completely unacceptable. It makes it a bit hard to take other claims made by the same company about other former employees seriously given that in some cases the company is observably acting in a very toxic and fraudulent manner.
So the only evidence that we have as to whether this anonymous call did or did not occur is the statements by Tesla alleging that it did, and you choose to believe that it didn't. Why? I can understand holding Telsa to a higher burden of proof, - concluding that we don't have enough evidence - but why jump to claiming it was all made up? Without some evidence indicating it was fabricated, that sounds like a rather slanderous accusation to make.
maybe the call was indeed real, but the call was from someone in management at Telsa, or someone at arms length that they got to do make the call. i agree this is speculation, if there is evidence that this is the case then whoever was involved stuffed up pretty badly. maybe i'm completely off the mark. as I said, i'd like to see it investigated.
Regardless of whether there was actually a call, or who made it, it's difficult to understand what other motivation any party other than Telsa trying to suppress a whistleblower would have to chase after the former employee. again, this is speculation, but i'd bet on it.
Is this real or more of a sort of blame game strange conspiracy theory thing?
They even misquoted the tweet to say "500K" instead of "about 500K" and anyone can add up the previsouly published numbers to conclude the company should reach a runrate of 500K at the end of the year (Musk tweeted nothing new, it was already disclosed in the quarterly report).
Also, with respect to the "previously published numbers," Tesla provided a range of 360k to 500k. A large range, indicating significant uncertainty. Musk's tweet narrowed that range quite drastically to the upper-high end (i.e., "about 500k"), indicating substantially less uncertainty about Tesla's capacity. That is materially new information. Moreover, Musk's comment was that Tesla would make 500k cars in 2019, not make cars at an annualized rate of 500k/year at the end of the year. He had to correct that tweet with a followup, but the followup tweet also contained material information: he narrowed the 2019 delivery estimate of 400k.
Musk is going to face some penalty for violating the settlement agreement. No one is sure what that will be. He'll probably still be CEO afterward, but he'll definitely be a few million poorer...and it's likely that Tesla will also pay another monetary penalty for its failure to uphold its part of the settlement agreement.
You're serious? The other ones are hilariously insignificant (absolutely none of them were material, in any way). They were just about Tesla products. You can't be serious.
You didn't read any of the papers submitted to the judge, did you? You gotta prove that saying "production of about 500" is a material information, when you already disclosed that production should reach 150+350.
Sure the SEC say that 500 is new to them, although they were already aware of 150+350.
I'm fairly certain that during the Q4 2018 earnings call they talked about expecting to deliver between 350,000 and 500,000 cars in 2019.
I'm not a lawyer, I don't know much about public companies or regulations, so I don't know if that counts or not (or if saying "500,000 in 2019" is hugely different than "between 350,000 and 500,000 in 2019"), but it's not like the 500,000 was never said before.
And the original tweet was also simply wrong. Musk had to correct in a followup tweet about the 500k being an annualized rate.
So 2019 production estimate was 450,000-600,000 and the SEC felt compelled to file for contempt over a tweet that said about 500,000 units...
This is so frivolous, it's embarrassing.
Virtually all tech companies have missteps and Tesla is no exception. Let's look at the big picture here in what Tesla is trying to do.
We had Solar panels installed with a Tesla powerwall and did home efficiency improvements and are now pretty much self sufficient (includes charging our vehicles). Think about that for a second.
Meanwhile. We have Facebook, Google, Netflix, Amazon and even Apple just cater to our desires for consumerism and endless distraction with some of them even trampling user privacy. But hey, let's all trash everything about Tesla because it's the hip thing to do right?
Trade secrets, like how they get their material, some specific PLC code, code that isn't specifically disclosed, or change orders for specific mechanisms have de jure copyright and ownership by Tesla. If Tesla decides not to publish, publicize, or even share documents, someone who shouldn't have documents but does, as well as the person who violated the copyright would be in trouble.
Full disclosure: I am shorting TSLA stock. I have worked on autonomous vehicles and do not believe Tesla's claims about their technology. I expect Tesla to go bankrupt sometime in the next few years. I'm even more convinced of this now that I see them using company-killer lawsuits against other competing start-ups.
Full disclosure: I do agree that there is such a thing as going overboard, but when your top engineers get recruited to a new company doing the same exact thing and take their laptop with them, that's a bit much. Especially when they load up all their drives with documentation before they leave.
Then you are financially motivated to spew lies. Short sellers are probably the scummiest people on the planet, that will do anything to make a quick buck.
Take this for example:
> I expect Tesla to go bankrupt sometime in the next few years.
Short sellers have been saying that since 2008 because it serves their interest. Yet, here we are a full decade later.