Facebook Powerball frenzy: Purported winner offers to 'share' $1 million
The second winner of the $588 million PowerBall lottery is not yet known publicly. But one man says he's the winner and will give someone who shares his Facebook photo $1 million. Is it a hoax?
Ross D. Franklin/AP
His name is Nolan Daniels, and he‚Äôs just about to give some random dude or dudette $1 million. Or so he claims.
Purporting to be the second Powerball winner in Wednesday‚Äôs $588 million payout, Mr. Daniels posted a Facebook photo late Thursday of himself holding a ticket showing the winning numbers. The photo is the only one visible on Daniels's account, which dates to 2008.
‚ÄúLooks like I‚Äôm not going to work ‚Ä¶ EVER!!!‚ÄĚ the smiling purported winner exclaimed. The numbers on his ticket ‚Äď 5-23-16-22-29-Powerball 6 ‚Äď correspond to the winning combination, but the ticket has not been publicly verified.
To make the Facebook announcement that much more bizarre, Daniels vowed to give $1 million of his winnings to a ‚Äúrandom‚ÄĚ person who ‚Äúshares‚ÄĚ his photo.
That set off a frenzy Friday as thousands of Facebook users got in on the action, with the photo being shared over 1,000 times a minute, with over 100,000 shares as of 3:30 p.m.
On his Facebook page, Daniels chastised skeptics and suggested, ‚ÄúAnyone who doubts the legitimacy of this photo will not be included in the 1 million dollar drawing.‚ÄĚ
There were two winners in the drawing. The only winners confirmed so far are Cindy and Mark Hill of Dearborn, Mo., who decided to take a lump sum payment. Lottery authorities have not revealed the name of the other winner, who bought a ticket in Arizona. Earlier on Friday, some guessed that a video of a man celebrating in Maryland might show the winner.
The payout is the second largest in US history after three ticket buyers shared a $656 million jackpot in March. As the amount grew this week, tickets were selling at a rate of 130,000 a minute.