Jack Dorsey: Bids reach $2m for Twitter co-founder’s first post

Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey has listed his first ever tweet for sale, with bids reaching $2m (£1.4m).

“Just setting up my twttr,” the post, sent from Mr Dorsey’s account in March 2006, reads.

It will be sold as a non-fungible token (NFT) – a unique digital certificate that states who owns a photo, video or other form of online media.

But the post will remain publicly available on Twitter even after it has been auctioned off.

The buyer will receive a certificate, digitally signed and verified by Mr Dorsey, as well as the metadata of the original tweet. The data will include information such as the time the tweet was posted and its text contents.

View original tweet on Twitter

The tweet was listed for sale on ‘Valuables by Cent’ – a tweets marketplace that was launched three months ago. 

In a post on the site, the platform’s founders compare the buying of a tweet to that of a more traditional autograph or piece of memorabilia.

“Owning any digital content can be a financial investment,” it says. “[It can] hold sentimental value. Like an autograph on a baseball card, the NFT itself is the creator’s autograph on the content, making it scarce, unique, and valuable.”

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Analysis box by Rory Cellan-Jones, technology correspondent

Tweets are the latest digital assets to be monetised through so-called non-fungible tokens.

NFTs use the blockchain, the same distributed database technology underlying Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, to create unique certificates of ownership of any kind of digital goods.

While the idea that digital artists can earn an income by offering buyers some sense of ownership has its attractions, the “sale” of tweets will leave many scratching their heads.

Valuables, the platform marketing Mr Dorsey’s tweet, seems to recognise that the concept will leave people bemused. In its FAQ it explains “owning any digital content can… hold sentimental value and create a relationship between collector and creator”.

Most of us might think that this is a high price to pay for a relationship with the Twitter boss. But given the feverish and often irrational state of any kind of cryptocurrency related market, maybe the buyer is betting there’ll be someone along soon to take the tweet off their hands at an even higher price.

Meanwhile, on the basis that if you can’t beat them, join them, I put one of my tweets up for sale. It was about this story – and I’ve just accepted a bid of $1. That might sound modest but seeing as I’ve got 72,466 other tweets available it could be the start of something big….

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Old offers for Mr Dorsey’s tweet suggest that it was first put up for sale in December, but the listing gained more attention after he tweeted a link to it on Friday. That tweet has since been shared thousands of times.

Within minutes of the tweet being posted, bids reached more than $88,000.

But they skyrocketed on Saturday, with a bid of $1.5m being usurped by a $2m offer at around 15:30 GMT. 

According to Valuables by Cent’s terms, 95% of a tweet’s sale will go to the original creator with the remainder going to the website.

‘Exceptional’ 15th Century bowl unearthed at US yard sale

A small bowl bought for $35 last year is set to be auctioned for between $300,000 and $500,000.

As far as antiques hunting goes, this might just be as good as it gets.

A small bowl bought for just $35 (£25) at a market sale in the US state of Connecticut has turned out to be a rare 15th-Century Chinese artefact.

The white porcelain bowl was spotted by an unidentified antiques enthusiast near New Haven last year, and they quickly sought an expert evaluation.

The experts came back with good news, revealing that the bowl is thought to be worth between $300,000 and $500,000.

In fact, it is believed to be one of only seven such bowls in existence and most of the others are in museums.

The bowl is set to be auctioned in New York on 17 March by Sotheby’s auction house, which describes the find in its listing as “exceptional and rare”.

“It was immediately apparent to both of us that we were looking at something really very, very special,” Angela McAteer, an expert on Chinese ceramics at the auctioneer’s told the Associated Press news agency.

“The style of painting, the shape of the bowl, even just the colour of the blue is quite characteristic of that early, early 15th-Century period of porcelain,” she added.

The 6-inch (16cm) diameter bowl features cobalt blue floral paintings and an intricate design around the rim.

“All the characteristics and hallmarks are there that identify it as a product of the early Ming [Dynasty] period,” Ms McAteer said.

How exactly the bowl found itself being sold at a Connecticut outdoor sale remains a mystery. Some have suggested it may have been passed down through generations of the same family.

“It’s always quite astounding to think that it kind of still happens, that these treasures can be discovered,” Ms McAteer said. “It’s always really exciting for us as specialists when something we didn’t even know existed here appears seemingly out of nowhere.”

Source: BBC