In a bold move, 19-year-old Jack Sweeney asked Elon Musk for $50,000 to stop tracking the billionaire’s private jet.
Sweeney manages several Twitter bots that track the movements of private jets from people such as Jeff Bezos, Bill Gates, and Elon Musk.
The Twitter account Elon Musk’s Jet is hugely popular and now has close to 220k followers. The account’s growing popularity had led to Musk asking the teenager to take down the account last fall.
According to Protocol, Musk contacted Sweeney directly and asked, “Can you take this down? It is a security risk.”
The billionaire offered Sweeney $5,000 to shut it down and keep “crazy people” from finding out where he might be. In a bold move, Sweeney responded with a counteroffer.
“Any chance to up that to $50k? It would be great support in college and would possibly allow me to get a car maybe even a Model 3.”
Elon Musk hasn’t responded to the offer
Musk said he would think about it, but has failed to respond to Sweeney’s offer.
Seemingly annoyed by Musk ghosting him, Sweeney decided to go public with the conversation. in an interview with Business Insider, he explained:
“He went the opposite way of me, so why wouldn’t I go the opposite way of him? I’ve done a lot of work on this and $5,000 is not enough.”
Musk said earlier that it didn’t “feel right to pay to shut this down,” and has shown no interest in negotiating the situation further.
Sweeney said that he would take an internship with Tesla over payment in exchange for shutting down the Twitter account.
Sweeney’s is using publicly available data to share the whereabouts of Musk’s private jet. The teenager said that if he were to shut down the account other people would simply open a new one.
Is it ethical for Sweeney to demand $50,000 to shut down the account or does this smell like blackmail? Let us know what you think in the comments below.