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Facebook Would Embrace Hashtags Soon

faceboo hashtag

With the desire to have an edge over Twitter’s Interest Graph, Facebook would soon introduce hashtags. It’s a blessing for the ad dollars, because the popular icon taps into the immediate sentiment of the crowd.

Facebook would soon introduce hashtags to group conversations. As per Twitter, a keyword or a phase, the hashtag is heralded by the pound symbol that enables to collect Twitter messages into a single format of news or events. Though not yet, but Facebook is planning to launch its own Linkify’d version of the hashtag. This would allow users to connect common themes and trending topics. By adding a simple hashtag, the reader would be sent to a rabbit hole of information that is connected to the hashtag being followed.

Facebook told AllThingsD: “We don’t comment on rumors and speculation,” and there was no immediate response from Twitter.

Something like this was hinted at the NewsFeed Redesign Event. The NewsFeed would be broken into separate feeds for each vertical: photos, music and entire sharing of streams. Reporters were surprised that the linked hashtags were not introduced at the NewsFeed Event, as this was the most Twitter-ish that Facebook could ever be. This is a direct affront to Twitter, dipping its valuable ad dollar territory.

Hashtags are immensely powerful. Advertisers could stick the ad out in the user’s face at the exact time when they want to see it. Following the hashtag, the company would be able to sell ads to anyone who’d search for hashtag. It’s a popular trend catching on with advertisers. However, Facebook couldn’t tap into the trending sentiment as efficaciously. Until now, the company has been placing relevant ads in the NewsFeed and in the lower right rail. However, it would do much better if it enables people to dig deep into trends across variable categories. So, manifesting Twitter’s hashtags makes complete sense.

Facebook has hinted this can be reality. Graph Search was introduced last week. This was the budding method of digging deep into Facebook by making connections through the Friend’s Graph. There are still some issues with the Facebook’s hashtags unlike those of Twitter. Most Tweets are public, whereas Facebook retains some privacy. The users therefore would be able to see the set public posts, against the tag. There is another option wherein the content of the private posts is displayed without the description of the author. However, there is a distinct possibility of Facebook receiving severe repercussions against this.

The largest issue with Twitter has been in trying to translate and explain how normal people would actually use hashtag. Instagram used hashtags, which was already thought to be influenced from Twitter. Edging on Twitter’s advertising territory, and presenting a better way to connect ads, can actually spell trouble for Twitter. Nevertheless, if Facebook adopts this language, it could actually bring forth new lexicon to the masses. On the other hand, Twitter should remember that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.

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