The report which 1st appeared in Business Insider around 9th August, sourced information from his 2015 biography written by Ashlee Vance. The report claimed that in 2014 Elon Musk’s executive assistant named Mary Beth Brown who had been working for him for 12 years had asked for a significant raise.
He then rather than obliging her with one, asked her to take a two weeks off during which time he would perform her duties and determine whether she was was indeed critical to his success. Brown returned after 2 week and then Musk relieved her of her duty.
This ruthless story was the basis of report, which then gave guidelines about how to remain worthwhile to the company. The Fortune magazine then also decided to carry the same report under the title:
How to Not Get Fired by Elon Musk — And Be Indispensable at Work
Musk who is generally active on twitter, decided to react to them and in the process blasted the media houses for not carrying out a proper fact check before publishing their article.
According to him, the biography in question was never independently fact checked even though he had requested so. He then put for his version of events. He claimed that his secretary was asked to stop working as her role now demanded various specialists as opposed to her being a generalist. Even though she was let go, it wasn’t before she was compensated with a whole year’s salary plus company stock.
The CEO of Tesla Motors and SpaceX then blasted the TIME media group which owns the Fortune magazine by asking them to spend at-least a few moments to carry out the necessary fact check:
This is about as true as TIME being a paragon of great journalism. Please spend at least 8 seconds checking your facts.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) August 11, 2017
Questions might also be raised as to why the publications decided to carry the story now out of the blue even as the biography has been out for about 2 years. It also remains to be seen if the numerous victims of Fake News in India too would take a cue from Musk and start protesting against the “hitjobs” carried out by the media.