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Talk:Elon Musk

About Errol MuskEdit

Elon specifically states his father did not invest in Zip2 in his latest Rolling Stones feature interview. "One thing he claims is he gave us a whole bunch of money to start, my brother and I, to start up our first company [Zip2, which provided online city guides to newspapers]. This is not true," Musk says. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Ivanalesi (talkcontribs) [1]

External links modified (January 2018)Edit

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Addition to PatentsEdit

Under the patents section, it should also include a link to the 2014 decision by Musk and Tesla to not initiate patent lawsuits against anyone who, in good faith, wants to use their technology. The section is for Musk patents in particular but ultimately it was his passion that drove the decision of Tesla sharing their patent bank with the world. Mygraymatter (talk) 05:34, 26 March 2018 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 27 March 2018Edit

Number of children should be 6, not 5.

(Their names: Nevada Alexander, twins (Redacted), triplets (Redacted).) Hawwah2312 (talk) 20:07, 27 March 2018 (UTC)

  Done Thanks for spotting that. Emir of Wikipedia (talk) 20:28, 27 March 2018 (UTC)

"Lithium third most abundant element in universe."- Elon Musk quotedEdit

Even though I like this guy I can't take him spreading disinformation like this:
I think it's a significant point to be made that he can make serious mistakes. Lithium is the 44th most abundant element in this galaxy and 33rd in the Earth's crust. Not third; Oxygen is third, ie. Water is the most abundant mixed atom molecule.

There is no "just a mistake" here, he is basing the entire production of electric cars (just all electric cars) on the false assumption of an abundance of Lithium for electric car batteries. This is a major error and/or a serious deception on his part to the investors of both the company and buyers of the cars.

CHARGED: Electric Vehicles Magazine - (Editor’s Note 6/17/16 4PM EST: While onstage, Musk stated that Lithium is the third most common element in the universe which is not accurate. In fact, Lithium is the 33rd most common element in Earth’s crust.)
I don't want to be tactless in the way I insert this into the article, but it is important enough for magazine editors to correct, therefore it is important enough to add to this article, but I think it should be written up by another editor. And to be sure I find it highly suspicious that there is not one mention of Lithium in his article. (talk) 06:35, 9 April 2018 (UTC)

Please be careful to avoid WP:OR when editing the article. In particular, Abundance of elements in Earth's crust is a terrible metric for predicting shortages, and abundance in the universe is just plain stupid (and largely unknown). Helium is pretty abundant in the universe, but are we going to go to the Sun to extract it?
That being said, according to this source Elon is right.[1]
Of course we can do OR here on the talk page to see if a claim makes sense:
  • Lithium (2008) $4,440.00 per metric ton
  • Lithium (2009) $4,530.00 per metric ton
  • Lithium (2010) $4,350.00 per metric ton
  • Lithium (2011) $3,870.00 per metric ton
  • Lithium (2012) $4,220.00 per metric ton
  • Lithium (2013) $4,390.00 per metric ton
  • Lithium (2014) $5,050.00 per metric ton
  • Lithium (2015) $6,500.00 per metric ton
  • Lithium (2016) $7,475.00 per metric ton
  • Lithium (2017) $9,100.00 per metric ton
  • Lithium (2018) $16,500.00 per metric ton
Compare with
  • Iron: $57.86 per metric ton
  • Aluminum: $1,885.29 per metric ton
  • Lead: $2,385.00 per metric ton
  • Copper: $5,719.76 per metric ton
  • Nickel: $8,931.76 per metric ton
  • Molybdenum: $26,000.00 per metric ton
  • Cobalt: $91,500.00 per metric ton
Amount of lithium in a 70 kWh Tesla Model S battery pack: 0.063 metric tons (63 kilograms). That's $1039.50 at today's price, $573.30 at last year's price.
You would do better worrying about cobalt, which is also used in a Tesla battery. 65% of the cobalt produced every year currently comes from the Democratic Republic of the Congo
Speaking of aluminum (third most abundant in the crust), when the Washington monument was constructed in the 1880s it was topped with an aluminum pyramid weighing in at 100 ounces and standing nine inches tall. Aluminum was chosen in the belief that it would be a good lightning rod tip. In 1884, aluminum cost $1 per ounce -- about the same price as silver, and roughly equal to equal to a day's wage for a skilled worker.
Also see:[2] --Guy Macon (talk) 09:33, 9 April 2018 (UTC)
The issue that I posted has nothing to do with the price. I didn't say he got the price wrong, it's been said in several places that he is getting the abundance of Lithium wrong, both on Earth and in the universe at large. You only make the point with quoting prices, but by showing price fixing can make things worse.
By the way, you may not have realized it but that is Elon Musk's metric not mine... "In particular, Abundance of elements in Earth's crust is a terrible metric for predicting shortages, and abundance in the universe is just plain stupid (and largely unknown)." he's the one you are calling stupid, not me. But as I've said/linked, there is a whole article on the abundance of elements, so it obviously is not "largely unknown." Where is this logic you claim to have; yet you're missing that you're arguing is against Elon Musk not against me. (talk) 01:45, 19 April 2018 (UTC)
I didn't say you were stupid. I said that Elon Musk's metric was stupid. But he did not get the abundance of Lithium in the universe wrong,[3] and I haven't seen him make any claims about the abundance of Lithium in the earth's crust. And yes the price is important. Price is a rough indicator of rarity, production cost and demand, and it is the most important metric if one is discussing whether there is enough Lithium available to make that many Teslas. --Guy Macon (talk) 08:22, 20 April 2018 (UTC)

That's funny, your reference shows that Elon Musk's claims about Lithium are wrong. You must be misinterpreting the atomic number with abunancy rank, it would be third on every chart simply for being the third atomic number on the periodic table, which maybe is the same mistake Elon Musk is making. But the fact is, as it says in many places, Lithium is 44th in stellar abundance, and 35th in the Earth's Crust, so Musk is completely wrong to say 3rd. (talk) 03:58, 29 April 2018 (UTC)

RfC about the bias in this articleEdit

Shouldn't this article pander only to all the positive of Elon Musk as a biased glowing review of his excellence for mankind and not mention any flaws, since he is so perfect (sarcasm/Already far fromWP:NPOV)?? (talk) 04:25, 17 April 2018 (UTC)

There is no need to start a WP:RFC for this; it is covered by WP:NPOV. --Redrose64 🌹 (talk) 15:17, 17 April 2018 (UTC)
It may have been written a bit too sarcastic, and it was regarding how far the article is from WP:NPOV, which made it look slanted in the other direction, but the discussion has already started above the RFC, so it was more of a request for more people. If it were really WP:NPOV it wouldn't be sweeping his mistakes under the carpet and giving him a perfect review. (talk) 01:36, 19 April 2018 (UTC)
We're not having an RfC about an opinion expressed as a joke. Talk pages are for discussing actionable proposals. Make a proposal and wait for discussion. Johnuniq (talk) 01:54, 19 April 2018 (UTC)

RfC about bias in this article (see main section)Edit

Is there bias in this article and what should be done about it?
Specifically excluding Musk's major mistakes, stating Lithium is 3rd in abundance,
and the many times people have attempted to clear this up, should it be missing from the article?
Here an editor of a magazine has to specifically state that Elon Musk is wrong about Lithium abundance. (talk) 03:58, 29 April 2018 (UTC)

Please find something constructive to do. It appears that Musk gave a three hour "performance" and made a mistake during that time. Are you nominating this for the world record of the smallest number of mistakes made in a three-hour performance? Or, are you claiming it is super bad and must be in the article? There cannot be an RfC about a wishy-washy "what should be done about it" issue. Make a proposal (based on a reliable source). Then, if the proposal is not accepted here, start an RfC on the issue of whether the proposal should be accepted. Johnuniq (talk) 05:24, 29 April 2018 (UTC)

If you search the internet with the terms "Elon Musk Lithium" you'll find all kinds of pages/articles ("About 428,000 results"), but if you look for the word lithium in this article you won't find it even once. I find that highly suspicious. I've listed plenty of references, so it appears from my perspective that it is your own personal bias behind the suggestion that I'm not being constructive. Since a veiled threat has been made on my talkpage I'll drop it, but the point has been made here with the 428,000 result Google search and nothing in the article. (talk) 07:27, 29 April 2018 (UTC)

Please suggest some text that could be added to this article, with a source that verifies the text. There is no need for such a proposal to be polished text, just provide an idea of what should be included. You might review WP:TP for information on using colons to indent comments. Johnuniq (talk) 08:50, 29 April 2018 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 15 April 2018Edit

I think the first sentence should emphasize that Elon Musk is an African-American in the interests of showcasing diversity. To do otherwise is racism and it's highly problematic that Elon musk is not showcased as a successful African immigrant to America. (talk) 02:47, 15 April 2018 (UTC)

  Not done: please establish a consensus for this alteration before using the {{edit semi-protected}} template. Emir of Wikipedia (talk) 14:50, 15 April 2018 (UTC)
Oppose change, on the basis that African-American has a well-defined meaning in the English language, and Elon Musk does not meet the definition. --Guy Macon (talk) 08:24, 20 April 2018 (UTC)
The IP knows that and their post is just trolling. I removed the IP's edit request but was reverted. Johnuniq (talk) 10:24, 20 April 2018 (UTC)


So he was born in South Africa, moved to Canada when he was 17, then moved to the US when he was 19. And we are calling him a Canadian? I don't think so. --Guy Macon (talk) 18:33, 22 April 2018 (UTC)

We should not call a Canadian citizen of Canadian descent a Canadian? --Emir of Wikipedia (talk) 19:05, 22 April 2018 (UTC)
Definitely not. The "Canadian citizen" comes from his two-years in Canada - the rest of his life has been in South Africa or the US. And many people have dual US-Canadian citizenship; it is slightly more inconvenient to go to school and impossible to accept certain job offers without applying for citizenship.
The "Canadian descent" claim, while technically correct, is also dubious. His father, Errol Graham Musk, was South African-born and has English, Dutch Afrikaner, and French Huguenot, ancestry. His mother, Maye (Maiden name Haldeman) Musk, was born in Canada but moved to South Africa when she was two years old. She has English, German and Swiss, ancestry, and her father and mother were both both born in the US. If ancestry is the way to determine nationality, you might as well call Elon Musk a Frenchman. --Guy Macon (talk) 01:15, 23 April 2018 (UTC)
A bit of interesting trivia: according to[4], Elon Musk figured out that it would be easier to become an American citizen as a Canadian than a South African. According to [5], "Elon made his move after he graduated high school. Though he already felt like an American, he'd done research and concluded that it would be easier to obtain American citizenship as a Canadian immigrant rather than as a South African one."
Marginally related: [6][7] --Guy Macon (talk) 09:02, 19 May 2018 (UTC)
This is not a source: It is a buzzfeed-style website that does not generate original content and instead copies text with a link to the source. For the statement about Elon Musk becoming Canadian, there is no functioning link to any source. Furthermore, the very same text appears in the 2nd source posted (the snopes source) which is effectively calling into the question the validity of that very text. There is no cited reliable information that Elon Musk considered himself American and only sought Canadian citizenship because it was easier. For that reason, I still reference my earlier comment, that there is not yet any reliable source in this discussion to indicate that having Canadian citizenship and living in Canada for a pivotal period of life makes one not Canadian. Sundin14 (talk) 21:44, 19 May 2018 (UTC)
This is factually inaccurate - how would it be difficult to go to school in Canada without citizenship? The vast majority of international students in Canada do not require applying for citizenship to study there, nor do they seek to obtain it. There needs to be an established reason why having Canadian citizenship is not in and of itself grounds to apply the demonym "Canadian" to that person. So far in this discussion, the argument I am criticizing here is the only argument that seeks to argue against Canadian citizenship being grounds to use the demonym. With that argument nullified, I see no argument in here right now against the reverting back to it saying "Canadian American". One would need to establish why both citizenship and having lived there would not be grounds for the demonym, with precedents from other Wikipedia articles, which I have not yet seen posted here. For that reason, I feel it should be reverted back to its original form until that argument and precedent can be established. (5/18/2018) Sundin14 (talk) 21:37, 19 May 2018 (UTC)
Also, I want to challenge to the comment that his ancestry is not Canadian, argued by listing prior European ancestries of his Canadian mother. Elon Musk has explicitly stated that he is Half Canadian [8] Sundin14 (talk) 22:17, 19 May 2018 (UTC)

Tri-country citizenshipEdit

The article currently states:


South Africa (1971–present)
Canada (1989–present)

United States (2002–present)

Do each of these countries allow simultaneous citizenship in two other countries? Do we have a source that Musk is currently a citizen of all three, at the same time, in 2018? N2e (talk) 05:03, 15 June 2018 (UTC)

The South African nationality law page states that "a South African citizen who by a formal and voluntary act acquires the citizenship of another country, automatically loses his or her South African citizenship unless they apply for, and receive permission to retain their South African citizenship before acquiring the citizenship of another country". The Canadian nationality law page states that "on 15 February 1977, the restrictions on multiple citizenship disappeared overnight". And the United States nationality law page tells us that the U.S. government "recognizes the existence of dual citizenship and completely tolerates the maintenance of multiple citizenship by U.S. citizens". So (assuming all those to be true – only the SA one is properly sourced) there's no reason Elon couldn't holding all three nationalities provided he applied for and received the requisite permissions from South Africa. But I entirely agree that a recent source would be good. Rosbif73 (talk) 10:48, 15 June 2018 (UTC)

I have found a piece in The Sunday Times from 2005 that says "Still a South African citizen, Musk has lived in Canada and California for 17 years", see here. Presumably if he was a citizen in 2005, he would still be a citizen now, as it would have been revoked at the acquisition of the Canadian or US citizenship, especially the time of the Canadian citizenship as he refused conscription. Hrodvarsson (talk) 01:22, 19 June 2018 (UTC)

South African-bornEdit

Using "South African-born" in the very beginning of the article appears unwarranted. The only thing of note he did there was being born. We don't call Steve Nash a South African-born Canadian basketball player, or Ted Cruz a Canadian-born American politician, because just like Musk, all they did of significance was having been born there. It is different for articles like Jim Carrey where the person acquires another citizenship much later in life and had already been noteworthy in their country of origin, but for people like Musk, Nash, and Cruz, this is unnecessary. DrJenkins365 (talk) 09:02, 18 June 2018 (UTC)

Musk left South Africa at age of 17, compared to Nash who left at age one, and Cruz who left Canada at age three. Also note that Britannica describes him as "South African-born American", see here. Hrodvarsson (talk) 01:14, 19 June 2018 (UTC)
Per MOS:BLPLEAD, this should be deleted (and I will do so forthwith). Musk's place of birth is not relevant to his notability. Rosbif73 (talk) 10:12, 20 June 2018 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 20 June 2018Edit

Elon Musk is a triple citizen so the first line should say he's a "...South African-born, Canadian-American..." Wizkoo (talk) 08:53, 20 June 2018 (UTC)

  Not done: We've been through this before. MOS:BLPLEAD#Context isn't particularly explicit regarding how to deal with multiple citizenship, but consensus seems to be that "Canadian" doesn't belong in the lead as it isn't relevant to his notability. If anything I'd venture to say that his place of birth doesn't really belong in the lead either, for the same reason. Rosbif73 (talk) 10:07, 20 June 2018 (UTC)

Second the suggestion to remove place of birth from the lead. It is well covered in the body. --Guy Macon (talk) 17:40, 20 June 2018 (UTC)
Is it being well covered in the body not an argument for inclusion rather than exclusion in the lead? Hrodvarsson (talk) 20:27, 20 June 2018 (UTC)
No. Otherwise we wouldn't have a body and a lead. WP:LEAD and WP:BLPLEAD tell us what to include. --Guy Macon (talk) 21:27, 20 June 2018 (UTC)
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