It is believed to have been born on 23 August of 2007. Today, no message/post/conference/conversation seems complete without it. It’s seen everywhere, practically anywhere; and no #guesswhat about it, we’re speaking of the hashtag, of course.

Our search tells us, the slightly awkward looking tiny four-stroke symbol #, which has been called several things before, including pound sign, number sign, and hash symbol, was reinvented as the hashtag by Chris Messina. Mr Messina, an open source advocate, wrote the first tweet using the symbol as we know it today. He was with the Citizen Agency at the time, his tweet went: how do you feel about using # (pound) for groups. As in #barcamp [msg]? *

Hashtags are tags containing metadata that make finding things easy on Twitter and social media. More interesting to us… they seem to have brought a whole new spin to language itself. That unspaced (another new word making its way into dictionaries, hashtag got accepted by the OED in June 2014) phrase construct of #hashtags leads to a certain zaniness to the look and feel of the words themselves. Hashtags were not exactly welcomed with open arms. There was discomfort; there were jokes; there was confusion. But now, they’re everywhere. Even in messages from presidents and prime ministers.

We are fascinated by how technology is changing language. We love the easy informality hashtags bring to communication. And they make you pause, blink, look at a word or phrase in a fresh new way. So #guesswhere


“I had no interest in making money (directly) off hashtags. They are born of the Internet, and should be owned by no one. The value and satisfaction I derive from seeing my funny little hack used as widely as it is today is valuable enough for me to be relieved that I had the foresight not to try to lock down this stupidly simple but effective idea.” Chris Messina

The shoreline shot was taken at Changi Beach Park, Singapore.

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*Information sourced from the net.