The Reddit hivemind is changing its mind about Elon Musk, if a recent graph posted on the discussion site is anything to go by.
Using a Pushshift API (a data-grabbing tool that can crawl and grab relevant information pertaining to a Reddit search term), user haggenballs has calculated the "average sentiment score from Reddit comments mentioning 'Elon Musk' over time."
The Redditor — whose real name is sadly not haggenballs but rather Anthony Xie — explained his findings further on his blog.
"I’ve pulled over 250,000 comments mentioning Elon Musk from January 1, 2015 to July 27, 2018," Xie wrote. He then used a tool called VADER to analyze the text. VADER, which almost but not quite stands for "Valence Aware Dictionary and sEntiment Reasoner," can analyze everything from capitalization to emojis to measure the sentiments of a social media post.
According to Xie, on r/wallstreetbets "the consensus […] is that Elon is a poor businessman, who is consistently falling short of his promises." Elsewhere, Musk has become less popular in r/investing, r/politics, and r/cars, with the latter subreddit the most negative toward Musk.
"Over the last 3 and a half years, there’s been a slow decline in sentiment," Xie wrote. "The last 3 months have been among the worst. Only time will tell if this trend will continue."
Recent controversies that might have affected Musk's public standing include him calling a diver who helped in the Thailand cave rescue a "pedo," a copyright claim involving a farting unicorn artwork, and allegations that Tesla fired workers for trying to unionize.
What's your opinion of Musk? Sound off in the comments.
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