#IRONIC

x-hashtag

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Twitter is a linguistic marketplace in which the process of “self-branding and micro-celebrity depend on visibility as a means of increasing social and economic gain” (Marwick, Boyd, 2011). The mircoblogging site Twitter lets people post quick 140-character updates, or ‘tweets’. to a network of followers. Twitter asks participants ‘What’s happening?’ resulting in a constantly-updated stream of short messages ranging from the mundane to breaking news, shared links, and thoughts on life. Hashtags are a potent resource within this system for promoting the visibility of a Twitter update.

Thanks to Twitter, the hashtag has become an important linguistic shortcut. But while everyone from Robin Thicke to Beyoncé has used the symbol as part of their art, only a few have truly taken advantage of its culture-jamming possibilities. Twitter came on the scene in 2006, but the “art of hashtagging didn’t make its worldwide debut until 2009” (Oyarce, n.d.). Consumers were instantly #hooked, and public relations specialists and marketers now consider hashtags with every post they write for clients. I have blogged before about the convergence between TV and Social Media. With Television becoming increasingly an interactive medium for key events, or sports events like the Olympics and the Super Bowl, hashtags allow anyone with a Twitter account to take part in a universal conversation about a group topic.

While hashtagging is quite a genius mechanism for getting users from all over the world to find your content, it also can become quite annoying when your comment, tweet, or Facebook post is entirely made up of hashtags. And when the hashtag isn’t relevant to the content of the post, it’s even more irritating.

I was recently looking on Instagram for pictures of a specific dog breed, #BorderCollie. I expected my search to yield photos of cute, furry little canines. Instead, I found myself staring at multiple selfies. I was puzzled and my only thought was, ‘This is not what I wanted.’

I can appreciate the benefits of hashtagging; gaining high-quality followers, connecting with relevant influences and prospectors, and creating a viral hashtag to multiply the power of your campaign. However, I for one am not a hashtag user and on the rare occasion I implement a sneaky hashtag it’s usually done ironically. So does the hashtag rein supreme? Or are there more people out there like me who sabotage the success of it.

Reference:

Marwick, A. Boyd, D. 2011. “To Be and Be Seen: Celebrity Practice on Twitter”.Available from:  http://www.tiara.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/marwick_boyd_to_see_and_be_seen.pdf [n.d. 2011]

Oyarce, S. n.d. “Social Media: The Art of #Hashtagging”. Available from: <http://www.etchedcomm.com/etched-blog/social-media-the-art-of-hashtagging&gt; [n.d.]

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5 thoughts on “#IRONIC

  1. ariellecabrera says:

    I really enjoyed reading your post on Twitter and learning the use of hashtagging. I have to strongly agree with you, hashtagging is apart of our everyday culture now and it’s something we all have to live with. It’s a way of connecting across the world, although others have taken it too far and indeed hashtag irrelevant things. Adding in some examples of the right and wrong hashtags would’ve made your post more informative in a funnier way!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Daniel Cvetkovski says:

    We live in such a recycled society that people just find new terms or names for things that have been created since the Internet first came out and started to build on itself. Our modern day #hashtag has the same functions as a “Tag” (Meta-tag) on every website. Meta-tags are commonly used for Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) where for example Facebook, may pay big dollars to own the meta-tag ‘facebook’ or ‘social media’ just so they can stay on the front page of Google, and every other search engine out there. Another interesting example of this recycling nature is related to the ‘Cloud’ – an invisible ‘cloud’ with a vast array of information being stored up there, above us. The ‘Cloud’ is another name for an Intranet or an internal server for employees to store their information on relating to work purposes – They are not by any means a new thing. Btw this wasn’t a rant on your blog – your blog identified some very interesting ideas about how these Hashtags have such an amazing linguistic nature that we as users consume, use and also produce our own content. It is the ultimate way in which each user can create mutual connections between their posts, and create a larger community based on ‘one-word’.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. qianhuiorjasmine says:

    Most of the time, hashtag has lost its own nature within media platform. I have also experienced the situation that can’t find relevant content by exploring certain hashtag. It is full of irrelevant advertisements or spam content. For I which is a regular user of hashtag, I can only try my best to use the hashtag properly

    Like

  4. qianhuiorjasmine says:

    Most of the time, hashtag has lost its own nature and quality because its great amount of usage. I have also experienced the situation that can’t find relevant content by exploring certain hashtag. It is full of irrelevant advertisements or spam content. For I which is a regular user of hashtag, I can only try my best to use the hashtag properly and not to overuse it.

    Like

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