TIME Named Elon Musk As 2021’s ‘Person Of The Year’ As If Vaccine Scientists Don’t Exist

Elon Musk's TIME Person Of The Year cover.

TIME has announced Elon Musk, the man accused of fostering hostile work environments, union busting and generally being a cartoonishly evil billionaire, as the 2021 Person of the Year. And, rightfully, the publication is getting fucking dragged for it.

TIME’s Person of the Year award has been a tradition for nearly a century, and it’s not always an award or celebration of behaviour. In 2016, Donald Trump was bestowed the title because of his ~influence~ on the politics of the western world. And as much as I’m nauseated by most coverage of that screaming wart, at least it seemed self aware. Trump was the most influential person of that year, for better or worse.

If the publication had unleashed similar shady energy towards Elon Musk for this year’s TIME cover, maybe I’d be more forgiving of this ridiculous choice. But it didn’t.

Instead, the TIME article profiling Elon Musk frames the allegedly abusive work environments his company fostered, the COVID misinformation he shared, and his purported mistreatment of people around him as just side effects of a man in charge, a man destined for power and greatness. At times it’s tongue-in-cheek, but it still glorifies him for a title I don’t think he deserves.

The TIME article is mostly dismissive of the genuine harm Musk is causing people, and instead frames him as a flawed visionary here to change the world and save the planet. It praises his contributions to science, despite his incessantly unscientific promotion of COVID misinformation.

The profile is even more frustrating when you think about the people that could have been recognised in Musk’s place. TIME could have interviewed one of the talented, hard working scientists who created the COVID-19 vaccines that have saved millions of lives — which is way more of an impact than Elon Musk could ever have with his (allegedly) cat-murdering Teslas. They could have centred front-line workers and those trying to save everyone they can during this pandemic, but nope.


There’s a lot of quotes I could pull from TIME’s story about Elon Musk, but here’s one that encapsulates it best: “The vast expanse of human misery can seem an afterthought to a man with his eyes on Mars.”

What’s that boot taste like, may I ask? The dust of apartheid emerald mines, perhaps?

Anyway, Twitter is having none of TIME’s ‘glorifying bratty billionaires’ era, with netizens dragging the publication for what I would say is a pretty fucking shitty move.


Imagine celebrating a man for his apparent visions to change the world, when he is literally a billionaire that could end poverty if he wanted to. Couldn’t be me.