All the news about Netflix yesterday surrounded its decision to split its business in two, and rename its DVD service to “Qwikster”. But that was early in the day. By the afternoon, savvy internet folks had taken to Twitter to see if @Qwikster was ready to start its social media branding efforts… only to find that the @Qwikster account was already in use. By a pot-smoking Elmo.
And so the news changed from Netflix’s business decision to focus instead on a kid who has quickly gone from being “About tired as shyt n i can’t sleep” to potentially getting offers from a mega-corp to buy his now-valuable Twitter username. I bet he’s trippin’.
Jason Castillo (@Qwikster) had a pot-smoking Elmo as his Twitter avatar up until early this morning. He had a follower count in the low hundreds before Monday, too. But now this young tweeter has just under 10,000 followers and at least one offer of a thousand dollars for his account name.
And note: this is over the course of just two days.
The kid must be loving all of this new-found attention. In fact, he’s a little bored with all of the effort he has to put in, but he’s looking forward to payday:
“Man so much to plan so much deal so much negotiation n I want a plan when I still have part of it n stiL be making bank”
He is also looking forward to being in the public spotlight, apparently believing that coincidentally snagging the username of a new brand is worthy of untold media attention:
“Keep supporting me n my bro @SoccerIsLifegc7. We’ll make interviews happen negotiations ect. Just keep following n we’ll make stuff happen”
Castillo had the @Qwikster username well before the business was even a nebulous in the mind of a Netflix exec, so it’s unlikely Netflix will be able to convince Twitter that he’s squatting on their trademark.
But Netflix better hurry up and negotiate: Castillo has apparently already received an offer (and likely not from Netflix):
“Got offer $1,000. But idk but you guys should follow my bro @SoccerIsLifegc7 n ill think about selling it to who ever supports my bro”
And, while the Twitter rules explicitly forbids selling an account, I bet the company would turn a blind eye if Netflix and Castillo came to an agreement they both were satisfied with. Plus, there are ways around this little rule, as CNN proved back in 2009 by hiring the owner of the CNNbrk account as a “consultant” whose services just happened to include handing over the account.