Slight ramblings…

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So what’s the difference???

October 7th, 2011 · 2 Comments

When talking twitter, replies (@) and Hashtags (#) are often interchanged with each other and not really given a second thought. But they are 2 totally different actions with different functions
Every Tuesday I consistently harp on (I’m sure to some people’s annoyance) about adding the #agchatoz tag to your tweet so everyone can see what you write, some people don’t include the tag OR they include @AgChatOZ and think that it will get through, which it won’t
so, what is the difference?? Let’s take a look:

Reply (@)

A reply can be used in 2 ways, either to reply to a tweet that has been made (I talk about this in the Quick Tips section) or to get the attention of someone. For example you tweeted out something that you wanted someone else to see or comment on you would include cc and the persons twitter name, eg
‘cc @Sam_Grains’ would be what you include if you have a tweet you want me to see/ comment on.
A Tweet that is a reply or mentions you will show up in your @Mentions tab on your twitter homepage (if using the twitter website).
Where wouldn’t you use an @ reply?

The only places that I wouldn’t use an @ reply are if I was making a general comment that I wanted all my followers to see or I was in a twitter chat with a hashtag and I was involved in the conversation

Hashtags (#)

A Hashtag is a basically a way of categorising tweets, Hashtags can be used to explain certain tweets (eg #FF [for follow friday] or #IHateMondays).
The other thing hashtags are used for is participating in chats (eg #agchatoz). The reason that hashtags are so good for chats is that you might not follow all the people involved in the chat but still want to see what they have to say and engage with them during the chat
Clicking on a hashtag in any tweet will show you all other Tweets with that hashtag, great for when you see something and dont know what it is, all you have to do is click on it and see!
But I responded, why didn’t my tweet show?
Most people relpy to a tweet sent (especially from the @AgChatOZ acct) in a twitter chat and then they think it will show up in the tweet stream, (as shown below) but quite simply it wont! The reason is that you have replied and not included the hashtag that Twitter is looking for to display the information. Think of it like having a ticket to an event, if you don’t have a ticket then you cant get in to the event, simply by using the hashtag in your tweet, you get the ticket to enter!

Below is the Tweet stream from the Twitter website, there is one thing that connects everyone of these tweets, can you see what it is? (Click on the image to enlarge and get a better view)
That’s correct, each tweet has ‘#agchatoz’ in it somewhere. The other little detail to keep in mind is that I have set the stream to receive ‘All’ tweets (Just under the name of the stream ), twitter defaults to ‘Top’ which isn’t helpful with participating in a chat
This is a common problem in AgChatOZ every week and it’s simply because there are new people joining the chat. For new people who are trying to engage but don’t see their tweets come up like the others it must be frustrating and a potential turn off, which of course we don’t want

Remember, if you you cant figure something out online, just ask! There are plenty of people that will help you!

Please feel free to tell me in the comments if you think I have it totally wrong or what other topics you would like to see covered like this

~ Feel free to leave me a comment, if you cant see the spam picture, just enter any 6 letter/number combo in the box, and submit, it should work! ~

Tags: Social Media · Twitter

2 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Tara // Sep 25, 2012 at 8:35 pm

    Quick Question: When using the reply or the hashtag, does it make a difference whether or not you use capital letters at the start of certain words? For example, will the same results come up if i use #AgChatOz or #agchatoz or would these come up as two separate streams?

  • 2 samgrains // Sep 27, 2012 at 5:42 pm

    Hi Tara, good question!

    It really doesn’t matter if you use capital letters in your hashtag as twitter filters them on letter & not case.

    All that matters is the letter combination after the “#” symbol.

    I usually use “#agchatoz” but that is only because I have it saved and it is quicker.

    Hope to chat on AgChatOZ soon!


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