FUD in the wild

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lance.bailey

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#1
There is a pretty good article on the CBC this morning you can read here about Wade Anderson trying to see what corners of the continent are reachable in his model 3. It's an interesting read.

The scary part is the comments section. The FUD in there, and their illogical arguments are frighteningly funny. Lots of arguments about people damaging their children's lives because the car may be uncharged in the garage when the kids suddenly want to go somewhere. Lots of arguments about adding 50% or more to a journey because of charging stops.

It would be more funny and less frightening if it were not true. It is good to know the crazy on the other side, the comment sections in news articles can be an eye-opener.
 

JasonF

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#2
There seems to be a disturbing trend I've seen all over social media where the "big companies" get to write the narrative, and then people follow it like it's a religion. If the Big Three reject EV's, that means they're wrong somehow. And then it's not about choosing not to buy EV's, but making sure no one is allowed to have them.

The most frightening thing that keeps getting repeated is that EV's are luxury only cars that are only for the wealthy. It's most frightening because then the vast majority of people can write off EV's as something the rich buy to get special privileged driving lanes on the highway, and special privileged parking, and the ability to avoid paying their fair share of road taxes and tolls - and then everyone out there will happily root for its demise. They will happily root for government restrictions, extra fees, etc that make it more difficult and expensive to own an EV, because that "levels the playing field" and eventually forces the wealthy to give up their special cars and be just like everyone else.
 

lance.bailey

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#3
the comments are an interesting read because this is not the big three influencing or writing content of a magazine. this is "person on the [internet] street" voicing disbelievingly bad FUD and for me, that is more frightening.
 
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#4
Let the naysayers be naysayers. Their efforts won’t be sustainable. Give it 5 years for the popular narrative to change.

Soon the world will realize that EVs are cheaper to own and maintain. The naysayers’ arguments will fall flat on practicality. Or they’ll simply just die off to make room for the next generation who would know better... Remember that even they are entitled to their own opinion, and have granted themselves full permission to ignore the truth.

Also, the worsening climate - due to a collapsing jet stream system and upcoming arctic blue ocean event - will affect us all. Maybe it’s the only way for the ignorant to wake up.

Truth always wins in the end.
 

JasonF

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#5
the comments are an interesting read because this is not the big three influencing or writing content of a magazine. this is "person on the [internet] street" voicing disbelievingly bad FUD and for me, that is more frightening.
What scares me about it is that government tends to fix problems with a sledgehammer - it's never gentle. If you combine the FUD with lobbyists from dealer associations and oil providers, we could be looking at a really dark period for EV adption simply because of fear. Obscenely high yearly registration fees. Heavy taxes on batteries or charging infrastructure. Added requirements that make adding home charging difficult and expensive. More expensive electric rates for people who have EV's. Tolls and/or parking that cost more for EV's. Requiring special and/or extra insurance. Stuff like that, all justified in the name of protecting everyone who isn't driving an EV.

Government can't really stop us from buying EV's, but they have a profound ability to punish us for it if they choose to.
 
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#6
The ignorance level on the CBC story comments section is much higher than the level of pollution ICE cars are creating. Sadly, you can't fix stupid. But stupid will be shocked and speechless as more and more auto companies race to compete against Tesla. Then they will realize that the ICE choices will be limited as electric cars will be the majority. Bring on the electric future.
 

garsh

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#7
Sadly, you can't fix stupid.
Technically, this is just due to ignorance brought about by the constant campaign of misinformation broadcast by those who want Tesla to fail. Things will eventually turn around in Tesla's favor. Just keep trying to educate people you meet who are unsure about electric cars and curious about them. The tide will turn.
 
Last edited:

Needsdecaf

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#9
I finally encountered FUD on a full blown scale this weekend.

I'm a Porsche owner and a member of several Porsche groups and the Rennlist forum. This weekend, someone on our local Facebook group posted a picture of the upcoming Taycan. One person in the group posted:

"OK I want one......".

then the folow up

"Never mind, it's all electric. Those batteries are nasty for the environment. Also a lot of electricity comes from coal, also dirty and inefficient. If it ran on Natural Gas, that'd be a different story".

I was like :eek:

So, I politely attempted to educate. My first response went along the lines of:

Batteries can be recycled.
Burning fossil fuels (i.e. Natural Gas) to make electricity to power EV's is more efficient than creating fuel from those fossils and burning it in an engine.
The grid is increasingly getting cleaner, wheras burning fossil fuels in an ICE is marginally getting cleaner.

Posted a link to Jason Fenske at Engineering explained debunking many of these myths. The response?

"Actually it's not more efficient to convert natural gas to electricity than to just directly use the gas. That's just common sense. Nor is it cheaper".

I responded posting a document from the US Department of Energy showing well to wheel efficiency of NG burning ICE vs. NG fuel cell vs. NG sourced electricity. The results, as we know, show 175 mi.es per mmBTU of gas for the ICE car, 255 for the FCEV and 325 per mmBTU for the EV. And this was 2015. So if anything, the gap is probably wider.

I then got the argument that "based on the batteries in commercial vehicles, you'll only make it 100 miles before having to plug in and wait, and wait, and wait to recharge. Natural gas will get you 300 miles and super fast fill up. Also, that paper leaves out the 30,000 lbs of carbon emissions from mining and just a single battery." She then went on to rant about automobile lobbyists being happy with that, since they are pushing this agenda, and all fleet cars are going to Natural Gas, etc.

I looked up the person's profile on FB and they were well educated and professional. So I very politely rebutted here points. Told her I wasn't sure where the 100 mile range came from, but we've been past that a while, and gave her real statistics about supercharging times. The response?

Batteries are mined in countries with horrible environmental practices
Lifespan of batteries leaves much to be desired. Disposal of batteries is "hideous environmentally".
A VERY LARGE PORTION (emphasis added by me) of this country's electricity electricity comes from Coal
Changing the grid is a very, very slow process. Takes decades.
The plants in "European conutries who went solely to electric cars created more emissions from the plants than a combustion engine would have generated".

I mean, I can't make this up. This is a well educated person with a good job.

When I pointed out that the grid gets more power from natural gas (35%) than coal (27%) and that while nuclear has been holding steady at 20% for decades, but renewables have gone from almost nothing to 17% in the last 20 years, and provided more documentation, the responses stopped. I also pointed out that these statistics do not include personal solar, which also powers many of our vehicles and, as has been said, you can power an EV with panels off your roof, but you can't make gasoline up there.

And we wonder why EV's aren't more popular. People have their mind made up and will do anything to defend their position.
 

JasonF

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#10
I then got the argument that "based on the batteries in commercial vehicles, you'll only make it 100 miles before having to plug in and wait, and wait, and wait to recharge. Natural gas will get you 300 miles and super fast fill up. Also, that paper leaves out the 30,000 lbs of carbon emissions from mining and just a single battery." She then went on to rant about automobile lobbyists being happy with that, since they are pushing this agenda, and all fleet cars are going to Natural Gas, etc.
That's a really, really terrible comparison.

Fleet vehicles are purpose built. They're not designed to go a maximum number of miles, they're ordered specifically to complete their route before refueling/recharging. The fact that NG vehicles will go 300 miles is an accident because those were probably the tanks that were available at the time. Batteries, on the other hand, can be specifically constructed to go 100 miles, if that's exactly what they need.

Also, if it would take 30,000 lbs of carbon emissions to create one single battery, they would not be financially viable. Carbon emissions come from liquid fuel powered equipment, electrical supply to electric powered equipment and factories, and any fuels burned to create heat during the production process. It's not like pulling lithium out of the ground causes a stream of CO2 to spill out into the atmosphere. That means there are costs associated with producing that CO2, and 30,000 lbs worth would be something like (assuming 25% internal combustion efficiency) require something like 60 tons of liquid fuel. To produce one battery. If you checked the diesel prices lately, that's going to be one expensive battery.
 

Needsdecaf

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#11
Yeah, it's maddening. For every fact I provided, I got some hype sent back. Without facts. The last argument was when she said that coal makes up "a very large portion" of the electrical production I knew I wasn't dealing with someone who traded in actual facts.
 

FRC

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#12
I finally encountered FUD on a full blown scale this weekend.

I'm a Porsche owner and a member of several Porsche groups and the Rennlist forum. This weekend, someone on our local Facebook group posted a picture of the upcoming Taycan. One person in the group posted:

"OK I want one......".

then the folow up

"Never mind, it's all electric. Those batteries are nasty for the environment. Also a lot of electricity comes from coal, also dirty and inefficient. If it ran on Natural Gas, that'd be a different story".

I was like :eek:

So, I politely attempted to educate. My first response went along the lines of:

Batteries can be recycled.
Burning fossil fuels (i.e. Natural Gas) to make electricity to power EV's is more efficient than creating fuel from those fossils and burning it in an engine.
The grid is increasingly getting cleaner, wheras burning fossil fuels in an ICE is marginally getting cleaner.

Posted a link to Jason Fenske at Engineering explained debunking many of these myths. The response?

"Actually it's not more efficient to convert natural gas to electricity than to just directly use the gas. That's just common sense. Nor is it cheaper".

I responded posting a document from the US Department of Energy showing well to wheel efficiency of NG burning ICE vs. NG fuel cell vs. NG sourced electricity. The results, as we know, show 175 mi.es per mmBTU of gas for the ICE car, 255 for the FCEV and 325 per mmBTU for the EV. And this was 2015. So if anything, the gap is probably wider.

I then got the argument that "based on the batteries in commercial vehicles, you'll only make it 100 miles before having to plug in and wait, and wait, and wait to recharge. Natural gas will get you 300 miles and super fast fill up. Also, that paper leaves out the 30,000 lbs of carbon emissions from mining and just a single battery." She then went on to rant about automobile lobbyists being happy with that, since they are pushing this agenda, and all fleet cars are going to Natural Gas, etc.

I looked up the person's profile on FB and they were well educated and professional. So I very politely rebutted here points. Told her I wasn't sure where the 100 mile range came from, but we've been past that a while, and gave her real statistics about supercharging times. The response?

Batteries are mined in countries with horrible environmental practices
Lifespan of batteries leaves much to be desired. Disposal of batteries is "hideous environmentally".
A VERY LARGE PORTION (emphasis added by me) of this country's electricity electricity comes from Coal
Changing the grid is a very, very slow process. Takes decades.
The plants in "European conutries who went solely to electric cars created more emissions from the plants than a combustion engine would have generated".

I mean, I can't make this up. This is a well educated person with a good job.

When I pointed out that the grid gets more power from natural gas (35%) than coal (27%) and that while nuclear has been holding steady at 20% for decades, but renewables have gone from almost nothing to 17% in the last 20 years, and provided more documentation, the responses stopped. I also pointed out that these statistics do not include personal solar, which also powers many of our vehicles and, as has been said, you can power an EV with panels off your roof, but you can't make gasoline up there.

And we wonder why EV's aren't more popular. People have their mind made up and will do anything to defend their position.
Trying to educate the close-minded is a waste of time. Your's and their's. Time is better spent enlightening those who are curious but ignorant.
 

Needsdecaf

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#13
Trying to educate the close-minded is a waste of time. Your's and their's. Time is better spent enlightening those who are curious but ignorant.
Yeah, yeah, I know. After over a decade of arguing on the internet, I really ought to know better. And usually I do.
 

garsh

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#15
Trying to educate the close-minded is a waste of time. Your's and their's.
But on a public forum like that, it's good to rebut the misinformation so that casual readers don't end up perpetuating the FUD.

The important part is to remain calm, and present facts (with citations even better). Act as though you're kindly correcting their mistakes rather than "attacking". You'll come across as the educated one. It sounds like @Needsdecaf did an excellent job following this pattern.
 
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#16
I second the notion. @Needsdecaf what a great example to follow!

Another thing to point out is the end game: that all EVs will be powered by free energy from the sun, and that gasoline will run out, and burning it up will result in a much hotter planet. Which future would they prefer?
 

TrevP

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#17
I finally encountered FUD on a full blown scale this weekend.

I'm a Porsche owner and a member of several Porsche groups and the Rennlist forum. This weekend, someone on our local Facebook group posted a picture of the upcoming Taycan. One person in the group posted:

"OK I want one......".

then the folow up

"Never mind, it's all electric. Those batteries are nasty for the environment. Also a lot of electricity comes from coal, also dirty and inefficient. If it ran on Natural Gas, that'd be a different story".

I was like :eek:

So, I politely attempted to educate. My first response went along the lines of:

Batteries can be recycled.
Burning fossil fuels (i.e. Natural Gas) to make electricity to power EV's is more efficient than creating fuel from those fossils and burning it in an engine.
The grid is increasingly getting cleaner, wheras burning fossil fuels in an ICE is marginally getting cleaner.

Posted a link to Jason Fenske at Engineering explained debunking many of these myths. The response?

"Actually it's not more efficient to convert natural gas to electricity than to just directly use the gas. That's just common sense. Nor is it cheaper".

I responded posting a document from the US Department of Energy showing well to wheel efficiency of NG burning ICE vs. NG fuel cell vs. NG sourced electricity. The results, as we know, show 175 mi.es per mmBTU of gas for the ICE car, 255 for the FCEV and 325 per mmBTU for the EV. And this was 2015. So if anything, the gap is probably wider.

I then got the argument that "based on the batteries in commercial vehicles, you'll only make it 100 miles before having to plug in and wait, and wait, and wait to recharge. Natural gas will get you 300 miles and super fast fill up. Also, that paper leaves out the 30,000 lbs of carbon emissions from mining and just a single battery." She then went on to rant about automobile lobbyists being happy with that, since they are pushing this agenda, and all fleet cars are going to Natural Gas, etc.

I looked up the person's profile on FB and they were well educated and professional. So I very politely rebutted here points. Told her I wasn't sure where the 100 mile range came from, but we've been past that a while, and gave her real statistics about supercharging times. The response?

Batteries are mined in countries with horrible environmental practices
Lifespan of batteries leaves much to be desired. Disposal of batteries is "hideous environmentally".
A VERY LARGE PORTION (emphasis added by me) of this country's electricity electricity comes from Coal
Changing the grid is a very, very slow process. Takes decades.
The plants in "European conutries who went solely to electric cars created more emissions from the plants than a combustion engine would have generated".

I mean, I can't make this up. This is a well educated person with a good job.

When I pointed out that the grid gets more power from natural gas (35%) than coal (27%) and that while nuclear has been holding steady at 20% for decades, but renewables have gone from almost nothing to 17% in the last 20 years, and provided more documentation, the responses stopped. I also pointed out that these statistics do not include personal solar, which also powers many of our vehicles and, as has been said, you can power an EV with panels off your roof, but you can't make gasoline up there.

And we wonder why EV's aren't more popular. People have their mind made up and will do anything to defend their position.
"Don't bother me with the facts, my mind is made up" is a pretty common refrain I hear in conversations. You can either move on from the conversation or take them for a ride if you're talking in person. I find the latter is WAY more effective at changing the narrative than constant "talk is cheap" stuff.
 

JWardell

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#18
I finally encountered FUD on a full blown scale this weekend.

I'm a Porsche owner and a member of several Porsche groups and the Rennlist forum. This weekend, someone on our local Facebook group posted a picture of the upcoming Taycan. One person in the group posted:

"OK I want one......".

then the folow up

"Never mind, it's all electric. Those batteries are nasty for the environment. Also a lot of electricity comes from coal, also dirty and inefficient. If it ran on Natural Gas, that'd be a different story".

I was like :eek:

So, I politely attempted to educate. My first response went along the lines of:

Batteries can be recycled.
Burning fossil fuels (i.e. Natural Gas) to make electricity to power EV's is more efficient than creating fuel from those fossils and burning it in an engine.
The grid is increasingly getting cleaner, wheras burning fossil fuels in an ICE is marginally getting cleaner.

Posted a link to Jason Fenske at Engineering explained debunking many of these myths. The response?

"Actually it's not more efficient to convert natural gas to electricity than to just directly use the gas. That's just common sense. Nor is it cheaper".

I responded posting a document from the US Department of Energy showing well to wheel efficiency of NG burning ICE vs. NG fuel cell vs. NG sourced electricity. The results, as we know, show 175 mi.es per mmBTU of gas for the ICE car, 255 for the FCEV and 325 per mmBTU for the EV. And this was 2015. So if anything, the gap is probably wider.

I then got the argument that "based on the batteries in commercial vehicles, you'll only make it 100 miles before having to plug in and wait, and wait, and wait to recharge. Natural gas will get you 300 miles and super fast fill up. Also, that paper leaves out the 30,000 lbs of carbon emissions from mining and just a single battery." She then went on to rant about automobile lobbyists being happy with that, since they are pushing this agenda, and all fleet cars are going to Natural Gas, etc.

I looked up the person's profile on FB and they were well educated and professional. So I very politely rebutted here points. Told her I wasn't sure where the 100 mile range came from, but we've been past that a while, and gave her real statistics about supercharging times. The response?

Batteries are mined in countries with horrible environmental practices
Lifespan of batteries leaves much to be desired. Disposal of batteries is "hideous environmentally".
A VERY LARGE PORTION (emphasis added by me) of this country's electricity electricity comes from Coal
Changing the grid is a very, very slow process. Takes decades.
The plants in "European conutries who went solely to electric cars created more emissions from the plants than a combustion engine would have generated".

I mean, I can't make this up. This is a well educated person with a good job.

When I pointed out that the grid gets more power from natural gas (35%) than coal (27%) and that while nuclear has been holding steady at 20% for decades, but renewables have gone from almost nothing to 17% in the last 20 years, and provided more documentation, the responses stopped. I also pointed out that these statistics do not include personal solar, which also powers many of our vehicles and, as has been said, you can power an EV with panels off your roof, but you can't make gasoline up there.

And we wonder why EV's aren't more popular. People have their mind made up and will do anything to defend their position.
Facebook groups are a toxic cesspool that breeds constant idiotic comments and stupidity. No matter what their topic. You made quite a valiant effort there.
 

JasonF

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#19
"Don't bother me with the facts, my mind is made up" is a pretty common refrain I hear in conversations. You can either move on from the conversation or take them for a ride if you're talking in person. I find the latter is WAY more effective at changing the narrative than constant "talk is cheap" stuff.
I have an iPhone and an Apple laptop, so I'm very familiar with hearing that. The most common repeated FUD about Apple is "I can buy a laptop just like this for $500, you have to be insane paying that much." Then I try to counter with telling them to try comparing it to laptops with similar specs, like the Microsoft Surface - which is nearly the same price as the Apple one. That falls on deaf ears, because the response is almost always "You're just an Apple fanboy, you'll say anything to defend them." I get the identical response even if I simply say "It works for me, use what you want" instead. They're basically following a pre-written script they've committed to memory, and it doesn't matter what you reply. It's simple trolling.

The people willing to go for a ride in a Tesla are at least on the fence. Most likely if they made up their mind, they'll refuse and won't want any part of it. I've seen both at work - a co-worker who midly didn't care for EV's, until I took him for a short ride, and now he wants one; and another who spewed the FUD at me about having to wait for charging, and about it being way too expensive, and refused to even take a close look at it.

Meanwhile the only thing that really annoys me is when people tell me "blockchain" is an investment opportunity. Those people, I want to slap with something heavy.
 

TrevP

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#20
Since you mentioned the iPhone what works when someone isn't exactly being reasonable is to just ask them: "do you have a smart phone in your pocket?" and when they say "yes" just say "yeah, thought so" or "I just made my point".

You have to leave them thinking and pondering what the hell you mean. If they're smart they'll understand. If they insist just tell them that before the iPhone everything was a flip phone or had a physical keyboard, now you can't buy anything that's not an iPhone look-alike. ICE cars shall pass into history just like the BlackBerry and StarTac