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#Hashtags and @Replies – Should They Stay Or Should They Go?

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There has been a lot of talk online recently about Twitter. Apparently, Vivian Schiller, Head of Twitter News let slip during a conference that the company is looking at getting rid of the #Hashtag and @Reply function of the website.

You can read the article that first caught my attention here;


She’s not the only person from Twitter HQ that has suggested this either. With lots of comments being thrown around about ‘putting the scaffolding in the background’ being thrown about, nobody really knows what to believe.

Let’s take a look at life on Twitter without @Replies and #Hashtags. What are the benefits and what are the drawbacks?


  • Space saving. It’s true, although one extra character won’t exactly give you all the space in the world, how often are you swapping and shifting in order for 1 extra letter or number?
  • Easier to use. It’s true, new users to Twitter might find the site easier depending on how Twitter bosses are planning on keeping conversations and direct tweets going.
  • Fresh. The team at Twitter could come up with something completely fresh and new.


  • How will users engage in conversation with random Twitter users without the use of #Hashtags and trending topics?
  • Direct tweets. How will they work? Will users still get a notification for mentioning their @Handle?
  • The users who have been stuck in Twitter land since its launch will struggle to adjust to the change in something that works so well.

Twitter Without @Replies and #Hashtags

I think The Guardian has hit the nail on the head with their point about being similar to Facebook. Users tag another person in the same way as on Twitter but once you start writing their name you are greeted with a list of users matching what you have typed. Upon clicking the @ vanishes and the name just appears as a hyperlink through to a profile.

I can’t help but worry about businesses though, a lot of businesses have invested the time and money into creating a significant online presence. Many huge marketing campaigns have been created in the past with companies such as Coca Cola and Nike throwing their @Handle about. What would be the fate of this company routine? Would normal users now have to search for the profile and be connected to them to tweet them directly?

It certainly is a point for discussing, so let us know what you think by tweeting me your views whilst you still can! @TeamTillison

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