What are @ and # anyway?

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by hajime, Jan 30, 2017.

  1. hajime macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2007
    #1
    I have seen these signs followed by some names on TV, at meetup events and conferences. What are they? Does that mean if I know these of a person, I can send that person private messages like personal emails?
     
  2. slingshott macrumors member

    slingshott

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2017
    #2
    They refer to Twitter. @ is their username whilst # is a hashtag which allows you to join in the discussion.
     
  3. Scepticalscribe Contributor

    Scepticalscribe

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2008
    Location:
    The Far Horizon
    #3
    If you join Twitter, you can send them a message by clicking on their name after the @ symbol - as @slingshott has already explained that is their username, much the same as here.

    And - still on Twitter - when you type in the "hashtag" - the # symbol (with the noun following it - which is usually a discussion about a topic with that title) you can join that discussion by making a tweet.
     
  4. D.T. macrumors 604

    D.T.

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2011
    Location:
    Vilano Beach, FL
    #4
    #/hashtags are also used on other social media platforms including Facebook. It's basically a topic filter, so when you click it, all content using that tag will be shown.
     
  5. hajime thread starter macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2007
    #5
    Thanks. Am I right that if I send something with #, many people who joined the discussion can read it. However, if I send a message with @, only that person can read it?

    So, if I go to meeting next time and know the @UserName of that person, I don't need to line up to get his/her contact as I could just send that person private message via Twitter?
     
  6. D.T., Jan 30, 2017
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2017

    D.T. macrumors 604

    D.T.

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2011
    Location:
    Vilano Beach, FL
    #6

    I think you're conflating a couple of Twitter concepts.

    If you're in Twitter, you send a public Tweet to someone by using their @twitter_handle, you can also do the same thing by clicking Send Tweet To on their profile and it's gets you to the same place (i.e., their @twitter_handle with space to enter your Tweet.

    If you enter a Tweet without an @twitter_handle, it simply is posted to your own timeline for others to see (and people who follow you are alerted, etc.)

    In the Tweet text, regardless of whether it's to someone (i.e., @HJonBenjamin) or not, if you use a hashtag like #bobsburgers, then it's simply a way to create a common link across Tweets. So any tweet with the #bobsburgers hashtag will be shown in a list when you click the hashtag. Think of it like keywords in a Twitter search.

    If you want to send someone a Direct Message (private) then you simply use the Message function in your Twitter client, @theirname, send the message. Keep in mind DMs generally require some kind of Following, and have a very specific set of privacy rules.

    [edit]

    I meant to also mention, you can put a hashtag(s) in your DMs as well, but the contents of those messages will remain private (clicking/tapping the #coldweather hashtag will show all the public, i.e., non-DM Tweets across the Twittersphere :D)
     

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