As a comment below points out, selling “free” Twitter names is apparently ‘against Twitter rules’, though this may only apply to accounts that are inactive. Given the nature of the consulting arrangement between CNN and Cox, it isn’t clear if Twitter will allow users to sell their accounts.
Personal comment: This might be a way to monetize Twitter, look at it as domain names, what do you think?
"Strategically, a Microsoft deal looks like a good move," Wharton management professor Lawrence Hrebiniak noted in the article, adding, "Ballmer wants to get this deal done and go against Google. Yahoo should take the money and find other opportunities," Wharton management professor Keith Weigelt agrees. "Yahoo is losing the battle with Google slowly. I'd seriously consider the Microsoft search deal as a way to focus the company."
Fallon London's Tate Tracks campaign for the Tate Modern in the UK that got a spectrum of musicians to write an original piece of music inspired by a piece of art in the gallery that was initially only able to be heard in the museum on a listening post next to the piece of art that inspired the music before being released online. It was an idea that got teenagers to visit the museum.
So Twitter, be Microsoft, not AOL. Focus on the developers. Enable them to monetize and to grow with you. Become the Internet's first social OS and the rest will take care of itself. Do not chase Madison Avenue. Build the platform, monetize it with value-added services and inspire innovation and Madison Avenue and the rest of the world will plug into you.