Why hashtags are the new headlines.

A couple of posts back I argued what we read online has become so compressed that what were once just the headlines are now the whole story.

For example, when you scan the front page of the BBC news website or your favourite Sunday newspaper on i-pad, the chance are you’ll consume the headline but won’t actually click through to the rest of the text. But while headlines have become the story it occurred to me that hashtags have actually taken their place – hashtags are now the new headlines.

Think about how the tabloids have always reduced stories to the fewest possible, strongest words. Now think about the hashtags that came out of the last budget, ie #grannytax or #pastytax. Political tweeters took arcane fiscal measures and turned them into punchy two worders that had meaning for a wide number of people and all before the Chancellor had had a chance to sit down.

Hashtags have an enormous power because they are so sharable and spread like wildfire. Political prs are going to have to be careful in future that measures don’t boil down so succinctly!


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