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It's all a load of hash... tag

9th May 2013

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I remember a day when if someone said ‘hashtag’ to me, I’d think they must have been referring to some marijuana-based version of the childhood game ‘It’. Now, with the incredible growth of social media platforms, it seems the hashtag has a language of it’s own. 

For better or for worse, we’re all using it. Though, I’d like to add that it has its place and that place is not Facebook. Come on guys, we all know Facebook is for stalking, receiving annoying gamerequests, nosing at the private lives of others and laughing at the photos of people you dislike. Leave the # at Twitter and Instagram, yeah? 

Here is a little look of some of the most common uses:

#YOLO – An acronym for ‘You Only Live Once.’ This is what we put when we feel we’re doing something super cool and daring, when in reality it’s probably something very mundane, like; "I’m on a diet but just ate two Jaffa cakes! #YOLO" or "I set my alarm for 7.30 but didn’t get up til’ 7.33! #YOLO"

(As a side note, this hashtag is not applicable to cats, who live nine times.)

#JustSaying – This is used when we feel like we are saying either something controversial that we would like to omit guilt for or we’re saying something deep and profound, moments of personal reflection. We get to the end of our statement and realise, oh wait, should I be saying this? I’ll stick #JustSaying on the end and it’ll be acceptable.

#1DFamily/#1Directioners – This is also applicable for Little Mix, Justin Bieber and The Wanted. There is no explanation or excuse for this hashtag and anyone who uses it should be banned from tweeting for life.

#FF – An acronym for ‘Follow Friday.’ Someone, somewhere, decided that Friday is not simply the day to end the working week or the night Graham Norton is on. Apparently, it’s also the day that we must follow more people on Twitter. Said people are to be decided by the ‘FF’ hashtag. It’s like, the law, or something.

#NowPlaying – In case knowing the every pointless thought and movement of your fellow tweeters was not enough, it’s also necessary for us to now know what they’re listening to as well. YOU’RE NOT KISS FM! WE DON’T CARE WHAT YOU’RE PLAYING, NOW OR EVER! #JustSaying.

#Food - This one is more common on Instagram. Basically, I'm not sure if people actually eat food anymore. Surely they are far too busy taking pictures of it and uploading it to every social media platform possible? If you're not too busy doing this, you're browsing the #food hashtag and checking out what everyone else isn't eating. 

However, it must be recognised that the use of the hashtag is not wholly pointless. There have been effective uses of the symbol, for example, ‘#londoncleanup’ which was used to inspire people across London to get involved with helping clean up the mess created after the London riots.


But am I really seeing people wearing T-shirts with these on now? Are we taking this a bit too far? Could we be using the hashtag more productively? What are your thoughts?

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