Shoeshine hands over Rio account for free

Posted on February 17, 2015


A Spanish man is to give up a potentially lucrative Twitter profile to Brazilian authorities in order to help them with the 2016 Olympic Games.

Javier Castano had registered the account @riodejaneiro in 2007, along with a few other key profiles, while the microblogging platform was still in its infancy. However, the 50 year old appears to be on a mission to gift these nation-specific Twitter handles to the relevant authorities.

Castano, who works as a shoeshine in Malaga, claims to have messaged Rio de Janeiro’s city hall for a number of years in order to pass the account along to it, so that the relevant authorities to conduct proper reputation management of the name. However, it appears that the Brazilians only recently got back to him.

Despite the account being potentially worth a lot of money to anyone who would conduct internet marketing campaigns through it, especially in light of the upcoming Games, Castano handed over the Twitter handle free of charge. The former graphic designer, who now earns around €30 (£22) a day working on the streets in Spain, believed that it was his “privilege” to be able to gift the account to the people of Brazil.

This is not the first profile that Castano has handed over, with the shoeshine having also gifted @madrid and @canada to the relevant authorities. This was only after the recipients had formally accepted the offer and confirmed their true identities. He is still on a quest to gift @japan, although an official for the office of the Japanese prime minister told the Guardian that there was “no discussion” on setting up a new account.

When he’s not editing web copy and news articles at work, Web Content Editor Tom sates his love for the written word by losing himself in a good book.
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