Tokyo: Can money buy happiness? Well, a Japanese billionaire is trying to find answers to that, by conducting a ‘social experiment’.
As a part of the experiment, Japanese fashion tycoon Yusaku Maezawa wants to give away $9 million to his Twitter followers to see if money boosts their happiness. And all that the followers have to do is retweet his post.
Maezawa announced that he will give 1 million yen, about $9,000 each to 1,000 followers selected at random from those who retweeted a Jan. 1 post. In an announcement on YouTube, the tech tycoon called this contest a ‘serious social trial’ to see what impact a million yen could have on a person’s life.
Responding to his post, more than 4 million people heeded his call and retweeted. Of course, who wouldn’t!
Maezawa urged people to use the money ‘as they like’ and to answer regular questionnaires about how they’re using it. Through periodic surveys, he will be keeping track of the 1,000 lucky winners and how they spend their prize money, to understand if the money really did make them happy.
Last January, Maezawa gave away 100 million yen, or about $914,000, to 100 Twitter users in a similar experiment, according to CNN. His January 2019 tweet was the most retweeted ever at the time, with 4.68 million retweets.
An eclectic billionaire, a rock musician, hopeful moon tourist and high-rolling art collector, Maezawa’s net worth amounts to $2 billion.