Tesla reporting vs. journalism — shame on CNBC

So this is a rant about a recent story on CNBC’s website, the headline of which read:

Tesla Model 3 was traveling up to 90 mph before fatal crash in Florida, NTSB finds

As far as I can tell, the reporting is accurate. What troubles me is the fact that the reporter didn’t do any research and apparently didn’t know much about the topic. Rather they relied on innuendo and the scare word, “controversial,” to make the story more exciting:

The NTSB’s preliminary report did not address whether any of Tesla’s controversial driver-assist systems, marketed as the standard Autopilot and premium Full Self Driving packages, were involved or believed to be involved in the crash. A spokesperson for the NTSB declined to comment on any the systems. …

The speed limit of the residential street that the crash occurred on in Coral Gables, Florida was 30 mph, according to the NTSB.

A competent reporter would have least asked someone knowledgeable about Tesla’s Autopilot before making that statement. Any Tesla driver with Autopilot will tell you that the product will never exceed 5 mph over the speed limit on a residential street. Period. End of story.

And with 6 million auto crashes in the United States, and 35,000 deaths, precisely what is newsworthy about this one, given that it is totally unrelated to the self-driving features.

Sloppy writing like this confuses the public and creates fake controversy.

About Kevin

Just an old guy with opinions that I like to bounce off other people.
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