Twitter User Gives Away Money in a City-Wide Treasure Hunt

July 31, 2014

Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article. 

1. anonymous /əˈnɒn ə məs/ (adj.) – referring to someone whose name is not known or is kept secret
Example: He received presents from an anonymous person.

2. philanthropist /fɪˈlæn θrə pɪst/ (n.) – a person who exerts effort in supporting the well-being of others through donations or selfless involvement
Example: She is a philanthropist who travels to poor communities to build orphanages and schools.

3. riddle /ˈrɪd l/ (n.) – a statement or question that is cleverly and/or poetically worded to pose a challenge of answering it
Example: She will give special rewards to people who could guess the answer to her riddles.

4. ripple effect /ˈrɪp əl/ /ɪˈfɛkt/ (idiom) – refers to an act or event that causes a series of other acts or events to happen
Example: The mother’s simple act of kindness had a ripple effect when her children and their friends began to follow her example.

5. treat /trit/ (v.) – to pay for someone else’s food, drinks, or any form of recreation
Example: Because she has extra money, Liza treated her friends to dinner.


Read the text below.
An anonymous moneymaker in San Francisco has initiated a charitable treasure hunt by hiding cash in various parts of the city and posting clues on their location on Twitter.

The Twitter profile @HiddenCash, which swiftly gained 97,000 followers within a week, began posting clues on the whereabouts of the hidden money in May. Those who are lucky enough to find the money get to keep the cash. The anonymous philanthropist is known only as someone who earns a fortune in real estate business and is paying it forward by sharing wealth to those in need.

As of last month, random strangers have found at least $5,000 at some of the famous places in San Francisco, including the Palace of Fine Arts and the Golden Gate Bridge. @HiddenCash would post hints of the location using creative riddles on Twitter, which added to the appeal of finding the prize.

This rare act of generosity has prompted a ripple effect. Most people who found money have used it to do selfless deeds such as treating their friends and buying gifts for loved ones. @HiddenCash is planning to extend his act of goodwill in other cities like San Jose and Los Angeles.

Despite admitting that the rapidly growing demand for more treasure hunts is overwhelming, @HiddenCash continues to satisfy and inspire his followers both on Twitter and beyond. The secret philanthropist said the wealthy must also try to give back to the community. At the same time, the anonymous person behind this good deed warned people not to depend on @HiddenCash to be their financial lifeline.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.  

Discussion A

·         If given the chance, would you imitate @HiddenCash’s goodwill in your country? Why?
·         How could you give back to your community?

Discussion B

·         What is your opinion on giving away money? Please explain your answer.
·         Why do you think some people are hesitant to be generous?

July 31, 2014