National

Boy's 8,000 unauthorized Twitter accounts net him energy drink bottle lotto bonanza

Kyodo

A high school boy from Saitama Prefecture created some 8,000 Twitter accounts to participate in a lottery over the Internet and won some 70 bottles of an energy drink, it was learned Friday.

Twitter prohibits individuals from creating multiple accounts for disruptive or abusive purposes. Experts warn the case could be regarded as fraud.

According to the boy’s high school, he used some of the accounts to participate in a lottery campaign launched by FamilyMart Co. this month and won some 70 bottles of the energy drink in a couple of days. The firm allows only one entry a day per person and does not allow someone to win more than one bottle a week.

The high school learned of the case from another student who said the boy bragged about his actions on Twitter. The boy reportedly said he created the accounts using an automatic account creation application he obtained from someone he became acquainted with over the Internet.

The Saitama Prefectural Police, whom the boy’s mother consulted, said they will not investigate the case because the boy has apologized and the firm did not report the case to the police. FamilyMart said it was regretful the boy won the lottery in a way that was not intended by the firm.

“Maybe he wanted to show off his computer techniques. There are more and more people who cannot judge what is right and what is wrong,” said Yoji Ochiai, a lawyer well-versed in troubles over the Internet, calling for the need to instill in children a sense of morals in using the Internet.

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