Andrew Baron, founder of videoblog site Rocketboom, put his Twitter account on Ebay (thanks to WinExtra for flagging this up). If you think that’s weird, it gets stranger – the bids apparently rose to $1,550 before Baron pulled the auction.
Not sure what’s worse: the potential that this was all a publicity stunt (I realise I’m giving it more) or that people were willing to bid so much. Baron wrote on the auction site:
I really love my Twitter account but I feel like I haven’t been using it the way I want to. Quite honestly, I feel sorry for all of my followers because they wind up with my tweets in their timelines and I haven’t been able to utilize the medium the way I want to. I also participate in another Twitter account over on Rocketboom so I’m thinking I’ll post more over there and start up a new account to do what I want to do next.
It would be silly to just delete this account I have here, especially if there is someone out there that had like interests and had something to say or wanted to get involved in some relevant conversations. In terms of monetary value, I have no expectations or needs at all so I decided not to put a minimum bid on this. Whatever will be, will be.
It seems to have worked publicity-wise: Baron’s followers have jumped from 1397 when he started the auction to 1,755 at last count.
Elsewhere, a Californian grad student used the microblogging service as a get out of jail card.
The site InsideBayArea reports on student James Karl Buck, a former multimedia intern for US newspaper the Oakland Tribune, who when arrested by Egyptian police used Twitter to send a message that he had been arrested to his network.
His contacts just happened to contain several anti-government bloggers – it’s part of a project for his graduate course – and helped him then secure a lawyer, contact the US Embassy and alert international media. Not bad for a tweet.