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31st Jan 2022

Teen wants $50,000 from Elon Musk to stop tracking his plane

Danny Jones

Jack Sweeney asks for $50k to stop tracking Elon Musk's jet

Who blinks first?

The kid who has been tracking Elon Musk‘s private jet for sh*ts and giggles has revealed the reason he turned down the billionaire’s payout – in short, he wants more.

Musk offered 19-year-old Jack Sweeney, the man behind Elon Musk’s jet tracker account, a quick $5k to take down the account as it was a “security risk” – but the University of California student said it isn’t enough to replace the fun he has doing it.

After Sweeney joked, “Yes I can but it’ll cost you a [Tesla] Model 3 only joking unless?”, Musk said, “I don’t love the idea of being shot by a nutcase.” Now, if he wants to make certain that doesn’t happen thanks to Sweeney’s social media hobby, he knows what it’ll cost him: $50,000.

Revealing a Twitter exchange between him and the world’s richest man to Insider, Sweeney can be seen haggling: “Sounds doable, account and all my help. Any chance to up that to $50K?”

Stones on the lad, gotta hand it to him.

@ElonJet currently has over 200,000 followers and along with its sister account, @CelebJets which boasts over 5.5k of its own, Sweeney could theoretically have plenty by the short and curlies if they want to keep their aerial movements private.

While we’re not sure if what Sweeney is doing is technically classed as blackmail or not – since it’s largely funded by the taxpayer (at least in America) – flight tracking is public information according to the FAA.

Though Musk might feel like he’s being targeted more than others, Sweeney currently tracks the likes of Dan Bilzerian, Drake, Kylie Jenner and many more using a series of bots, not to mention this adjacent to the part-time work for UberJets where he helps track chartered flights in order to find clients cheaper seats.

Sweeney said that since their conversation, Musk seems to have implemented some of his own technical advice, using a blocking system that makes his jet harder to track, not that it seems to have affected him – Sweeney said “I just have to work around it”.

The only question that remains is… will Musk pay up?

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