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Maggie Hendricks

American student gives tickets away to strangers

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After reading about the ticketing scam that bilked Olympic fans out of thousands of dollars, I was heartened to stumble across John Britton's Web site. Britton, an American student currently studying in Hong Kong, had some extra tickets for an Olympic equestrian event. Instead of selling the seats, he decided to give them away. The only catch is that Britton wants the winners to pay it forward, or do a good deed for someone else.

"I thought I could make a few bucks by selling them, but when i was coming back on the train I thought it would be much cooler to give them away," Britton said. "I've been given quite a bit in my life."

Britton announced the winners on his Web site yesterday. One winner plans to make microloans through Kiva, while another plans to simply spread happiness. Britton, who has traveled and studied around the world through the kindness of strangers, plans to sit with the winners and hear more about their plans to help their neighbors.

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