It’s no secret that Tesla CEO and tech millionaire Elon Musk is an avid fan of anime and video games, following his appearance at E3 2019 - but the beloved eccentric is garnering a mass amount of backlash, after posting an artist’s work to Twitter without proper credit.
Musk posted artwork of Nier: Automata’s 2B on June 15, simply captioned: “2B.”
Fans were quick to point out that he’d reposted the image without crediting artist 'Meli Melo,' prompting a slew of comments from Musk about “credit” that are leaving a bitter taste in the mouths of fans and critics alike.
When asked to credit the artwork, Elon replied with a simple, “no,” later elaborating that “no one will ever find out who it was,” when further pressed on the subject.
“I wish people would stop crediting artists on Twitter when any fool can find out who the artist was in seconds,” Musk wrote in a now-deleted Tweet. “It’s destroying the medium.”
That’s not all; Musk went even further on the topic, writing, “...the constant credit crowd are damaging the ethics of the internet. And if they don’t like me, too bad.”
Musk’s statements on proper credit are inciting outrage across the internet, with users decrying his thoughts on the matter as art theft.
“This isn’t cute,” Twitter user SymphWave wrote of the debacle. “This is perpetuating a cycle of artists working super hard on something, only to have their hard work snatched and used for easy likes and retweets. Just because you’re rich and famous doesn’t mean you’re exempt from this bullshit, asshole.”
This isn’t cute. This is perpetuating a cycle of artists working super hard on something, only to have their hard work snatched and used for easy likes and retweets. Just because you’re rich and famous doesn’t mean you’re exempt from this bullshit, asshole. pic.twitter.com/6Rl4SOFgvb— SymphWave🏳️🌈 (@Homo_Cakes) June 16, 2019
The drama didn’t end with art, either; Musk’s seemingly humorous statement that “no one should be credited with anything, ever,” was contested by another user, who claimed that Tesla co-founder Martin Eberhard was responsible for the company’s success.
“...Tesla is alive in spite of Eberhard,” Musk retorted in another deleted Tweet. “He seeks credit constantly and fools give it [to] him.”
Netizens noted that Musk’s comments on the subject may have broken a non-disparagement agreement signed with Eberhard, although further information has yet to be released concerning the matter.
This wouldn’t be the first time Musk’s Twitter antics have gotten him in trouble, by far: Musk was made to step down as chair of Tesla in September 2018, after divulging a bit too much information to the social media platform.