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Teen tracking Elon Musk's private jet plans to track other billionaires, too — for money

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Samuel Corum/Bloomberg via Getty Images

The teenager who recently rose to internet fame for operating a Twitter account that tracks billionaire Elon Musk's private jet is now planning to track the private flights of other billionaires, as well.

What are the details?

Jack Sweeney, 19, made headlines last week after it was revealed that Musk direct-messaged him on Twitter, offering him $5,000 to take down @ElonJet, a Twitter bot set up by Sweeney that monitors the Tesla and SpaceX CEO's private flight activity.

In response, Sweeney, a freshman student at the University of Central Florida, asked Musk if he would up the offer to $50,000, enough money to pay for some of his college education or buy a Tesla Model 3 vehicle. Alternatively, he said he would take down the account for free if Musk offered him an internship.

But the tech billionaire — whose net worth is more than $240 billion — went silent and later blocked him on all of his social media accounts.

Sweeney recently told Bloomberg News he hopes Musk rejoins the bargaining table, but in the meantime, he is launching a business — called Ground Control — that will monitor the private flights of other high-interest individuals.

Bloomberg noted that Sweeney's part-time hobby may indeed turn into a lucrative business venture.

"Firms including Nasdaq Data Link have begun offering private and corporate aviation intelligence to clients who hope to get a leg up with critical business information," the outlet reported, noting that the flight activity of important individuals can provide clues about forthcoming business activities such as mergers, acquisitions, and more.

"Companies in flight tracking have made millions in revenue per year," Sweeney said, adding, "Just a small cut of what they make would be good revenue for me."

What else?

The 19-year-old runs at least 15 flight-tracking bots on Twitter in addition to @ElonJet, including jet trackers for billionaires Bill Gates and Jeff Bezos and former President Donald Trump.

But Bloomberg noted that the real-time flight tracking of private aircraft can come with significant privacy and legal concerns.

Sweeney, however, reportedly has no plans to take down @ElonJet, which he started working on in high school. At the least, he told Bloomberg, it would take a lot more than $5,000 for him to deactivate it.

"The amount of time and dedication I have put into it is cool — like, 5K isn't enough to drop it," he said.

As of Tuesday morning, the account was still up and running. The most recent flight tracked said Musk's jet landed near Brownsville, Texas, on Sunday night.

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