Artist accuses Tesla of stealing farting unicorn artwork

Daniel Fowler
June 30, 2018

It started so well between Elon Musk and Tom Edwards.

In February of previous year Musk posted on his Twitter a photo mug artist and Potter from Colorado Tom Edwards with deliberately childish drawing of a unicorn farting electricity.

While the phrase "farting unicorn" makes this news - as reported by the Guardian - hard to take seriously, it is ultimately a high-profile case of the kind of intellectual property theft by which artists are constantly plagued.

Musk replied the following day, via Twitter, claiming the design was created by Nik Jovanovic and chosen by his software team 'as a joke (they didn't tell me in advance)'. He offered to "change it to something else if your Dad wants".

We will remind, recently took a test ride: Tesla Model X rode an underground tunnel Elon musk. Instead, he tweeted at the artist's daughter that it would be "lame" if Edwards sued and that he should just be pleased with the attention. Take note of the unicorn, the farts, and the vehicle at the base.

Edwards came up with this pattern back in 2010. It was used for ceramic mugs Edwards sells through his website Wallyware for $28 a piece. "Electric cars are good for the environment because electricity comes from magic", the mugs say.

The 61-year-old potter had been excited last year when Musk tweeted out a photo of his work, saying it might be his "favorite mug ever", The Guardian reported Wednesday.

It's clearly Edwards' mug.

A month later however, Musk tweeted his drawing of the same picture created on a Tesla sketch pad.

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"It's part of their branding now", Edwards told The Guardian as he aired his grievance. What did Musk tweet to promote the new feature?

Luckily, Edwards had a friend who bought a Tesla auto, according to Westword, and was told his design was automatically sitting within the hidden sketch pad feature.

Edwards confirmed to the publisher that he is seeking legal advice on the matter.

However, similar images of farting unicorns were used in Tesla in-car interfaces and promotional material.

Tesla declined to comment when contacted by Business Insider.

Musk, however, claims he's 'offered to pay the guy who drew it twice already for something I don't even want'.

Even J.K. Rowling weighed in on the story, calling it "the spinoff you never knew you wanted". Because if we can't get along with farting unicorns, with what can we?

In order to keep up with production levels of the Model 3, Tesla has erected an assembly line inside a huge tent in a bid to reach the targeted manufacturing volume of 5,000 units per week.

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