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Israel buys @israel Twitter account for six-figure sum

Twitter proves costly for Israel
Twitter proves costly for Israel

Israel has finally got itself a Twitter account, after it bought the @israel profile for a reported six figures.

The account was owned by Israel Meléndez, a Spaniard who resides in the US and is the owner of Greenshines, a Spanish pornography site.

The exact amount the handle was bought for is unknown but the New York Times is reporting that Meléndez managed to get six figures out of the country.

Not bad for an account he signed up for in 2007 and didn't actually do that much with.

Putting it to better use

"My account was basically unused because I was getting dozens of replies every day from people who thought the account belonged to the state of Israel," explained Meléndez.

While cyber-squatting is rife on the web (and on Twitter, hence the verified accounts) this doesn't feel like a case of Meléndez passing himself off as Israel, but he has hung on to the Twitter name long enough to make a boat-load of cash out of it.

The Israeli government has said about the account: "We thought we could put it to better use than he did."

The account currently has over 6,000 followers and is being maintained by Israel's Chaim Shacham, Director of the Foreign Ministry's Information & Internet Department.

Via New York Times