This 19-Year-Old Is Tracking Elon Musk’s Private Jet – And Elon Offered Him $5,000 To Stop

Elon Musk messaged the 19-year-old owner of a Twitter account that tracks the tech CEO’s private jet, offering $5,000 to remove their account, according to an initial Wednesday report from Protocol, a tech news site.

The account on Twitter is called “Elon Musk’s Jet” (@ElonJet) and it monitors the movements of the billionaire’s private jet through bots that are always monitoring air traffic data. Despite breaking no laws, the 19-year-old, named Jack Sweeney, received a message in the fall of 2021 at 12:13 AM EST, which read: “Can you take this down? It is a security risk”, according to the report. Sweeney then responded: “Yes I can but it’ll cost you a Model 3 only joking unless?” Musk retorted that he doesn’t “love the idea of being shot by a nutcase”.

Musk offered to pay Sweeney $5,000 following a few back-and-forth exchanges, but Sweeney countered his offer: “Any chance to up that to $50k? It would be a great support in college and would possibly allow me to get a car maybe even a Model 3”, reported Protocol. Musk reportedly then said he’d consider it, but as of writing, he had yet to reply either way. Sweeney had told Musk where he retrieved the data, but Musk replied: “Air traffic control is so primitive,” according to the report, which did not specify whether the messages themselves were shared with Protocol

If Musk thinks that air traffic control is primitive as they share all civilian air traffic data publicly, instead of treating private jets differently than anyone else, this could be construed as anti-democratic. Often, other institutions implement more than one standard, depending on the financial situation of their constituents (some sorely needed, like welfare).

Elon Musk offered teen $5K to stop tracking his jet on Twitter

On the other hand, Musk isn’t entirely wrong about “security issues”, which he tweeted aboutĀ earlier this month. With one of the largest sums of money at his disposal, there are other solutions that might be more effective, for Musk. There are those in the world who might act on negative sentiments about an extremely well-off CEO and attemptĀ some kind of mischief. Several private jets heading to multiple destinations could drastically reduce the likelihood that anyone would know which one he’s on. And it could avoid the sticky issue of lifting the location of some more financially gifted passengers to an elevated status over the rest of us. But it’s just a suggestion.

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