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Named afterTesla Ticker Symbol + "Q" which is the NASDAQ notation for bankruptcy
FormationOct. 7, 2015; 4 years ago (Oct. 7, 2015)
TypeAnti-Tesla, Networked advocacy, fraud deterrence, Pro-Shorting
Key people
Lawrence Fossi, @TESLAcharts, @Paul91701736, Martin Tripp

TSLAQ is a loosely-collected group of largely anonymous[1] individuals critical of Elon Musk and aspects of Tesla, Inc. who primarily organize on Twitter[2] and Reddit[3] in order to share news, openly discuss matters concerning the company and its stock, and coordinate efforts. Edward Niedermeyer, author of Ludicrous: The Unvarnished Story of Tesla Motors, establishes the doxxing of Lawrence Fossi, a Seeking Alpha writer and Tesla short seller, as "catalyz[ing] th[e] loose association of individuals... some of whom were pure financial speculators [...] and others who were motivated by factors other than money."[4] The group has been profiled in a web mini-documentary which included interviews with prominent members @TESLACharts and @Paul91701736.[5]

The group at times exchanges online verbal hostilities with Tesla fans[3], and Tesla officials such as CEO Elon Musk have actively engaged prominent members.[6] In the latest in a series of communications between the two, sarcastic open-letters were exchanged between Musk and CEO of Greenlight Capital David Einhorn (a noted Tesla bear whose company shorts $TSLA) in early November 2019, with Einhorn directly referencing a website from the TSLAQ community.[7]


Using GoFundMe, TSLAQ members led by Fossi ran a campaign for and contributed to the defense fund, accruing in excess of US$100,000, for fellow member, Randeep Hothi, who was initially sued by Tesla. Mr. Hothi allegedly chased a car full of Tesla employees and attempted to cause an accident by driving erratically to confuse the car's Autopilot system, among other things. The allegations and the request for a temporary restraining order against Hothi was eventually dropped by Tesla.[8]


Some members short Tesla stock as they believe it will lower in value in the future; Tesla was the most shorted stock in 2019, with over $10.5 billion in shorted share value at its peak,[9] although as of November 2019 that value has fallen to $8.3 billion.[10] As per Business Insider, members "[e]xchange research, news articles, and sometimes outlandish conspiracy theories about the company" and "[are] betting on the company’s death and have found much success in irritating the billionaire executive."[11]

According to the LA Times, members believe Tesla is a fraudulent company and its stock will eventually crash. Their self-reported main goal is to "change the mind of Tesla stock bulls and the media." Claims against Elon Musk and Tesla include that Tesla has reached a cliff in demand, and that Tesla is distorting its sales numbers of cars.[2]


  1. ^ Kolodny, Lora (February 1, 2019). "Anonymous Tesla short sellers who fly over its parking lots taking pictures of cars have a new web site". CNBC. Retrieved November 7, 2019.
  2. ^ a b Mitchell, Russ (April 8, 2019). "Must Reads: The crowd-sourced, social media swarm that is betting Tesla will crash and burn". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved November 7, 2019.
  3. ^ a b Katwalla, Amit (May 5, 2019). "Inside the obsessive Twitter turf war over Elon Musk's Tesla tweets". Wired. Retrieved December 19, 2019.
  4. ^ Niedermeyer, Edward (2019). Ludicrous: The Unvarnished Story of Tesla Motors. BenBella Books, Incorporated. p. 125. ISBN 9781948836326.
  5. ^ "Tesla: Electric Noise". Real Vision. March 27, 2019. Retrieved January 16, 2020.
  6. ^ Musk, Elon (June 17, 2018). "How big is your short position? Just curious". twitter.com/elonmusk. Retrieved September 7, 2019.
  7. ^ Palazzo, Anthony, Hull, Dana (November 11, 2019). "Short seller Einhorn accept's Musk's offer to tour Tesla facilities". Bloomberg. Retrieved December 4, 2019.
  8. ^ O'Kane, Sean. "Tesla drops lawsuit against critic after judge asks for evidence". The Verge. Retrieved November 29, 2019.
  9. ^ D'Souza, Deborah (July 26, 2019). "Tesla Short Sellers net $1.5 Billion in Profits after Q2 Earnings Miss". Investopedia. Retrieved December 9, 2019.
  10. ^ Dugan, Kevin (October 24, 2019). "Short Sellers Slammed as Tesla Shares Surge the Most in 6 Years". New York Post. Retrieved December 9, 2019.
  11. ^ Ungarino, Rebecca (April 17, 2019). "Inside Tesla Twitter". Market Insider. Retrieved December 9, 2019.