Twitter’s (TWTR) top execs came to the New York Stock Exchange on Thursday to celebrate the company’s initial public offering, but they left it to three Twitter users to ring the ceremonial opening bell.
Actor Patrick Stewart, Boston Police Department public information chief Cheryl Fiandaca and elementary school student and anti-slavery activist Vivienne Harr together rang the bell at 9:30 a.m. to begin the trading day.
Stewart, the British actor perhaps best known for playing Captain Jean-Luc Picard in the "Star Trek: Next Generation" television series, is one of the most creative – and followed -- celebrity tweeters on the network. The actor’s sense of humor was on full display this Halloween when he tweeted a picture to his 722,000 followers of himself in lobster costume in a bathtub. And on Thursday he, naturally, tweeted from the NYSE following the bell-ringing.
Fiandaca led the Boston Police Department’s social media efforts on the day of the marathon bombing and the following week of hunting for the perpetrators in April. While all manner of true and false reports ricocheted across Twitter during those chaotic days, Fiandaca did her best to get the real story out. On April 19 she issued the first official word that police had caught bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev.
Vivienne Harr was just 9 years old last May when she saw a photo of two small boys in Nepal forced to carry heavy rocks. They were modern-day slaves and Harr set out make a difference. She decided to donate proceeds of her lemonade stand for a year to the group Not for Sale, a charity working to end human trafficking and slavery. She used Twitter to publicize her quest and ended up raising over $100,000 in 173 days.
Just because most stocks started trading at the bell ringing, however, didn’t mean investors could put a price on Twitter’s shares right away. The first trade of the company’s new shares didn’t take place until 10:49, according to a tweet – what else? – from the New York Stock Exchange.
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