Twitter is one of the most active websites on the Internet today. This fire-breathing, micro-blogging social network is like a Chinese candy box, filled with acronyms, abbreviations and symbols. People live and breathe Twitter without knowing anything about its secret language. To understand all about Twitter symbols, first you have to know how they look like and what they represent.
Why Do You Have to Learn Twitter Symbols?
Twitter symbols will really make your account stand out. Punctuation controls everything on the Internet, from abbreviations, acronyms to emoticons and internet slang. Twitter’s lingo relies on simple keys which might not make sense on their own but have impenetrable purposes among its loyal users. Twitter symbols are like a unique, newly-devised vocabulary that only avid users of the social network would understand. Learning them will help you master the micro-blogging website and enjoy your online experience more than you ever imagined. They also help in solving the 140 character-limit of Twitter that makes it harder for people to explain themselves clearly.
What are the most Common Twitter Symbols?
1) Hashtags (#):
Hashtag is probably the most famous of all Twitter symbols. The # sign is also called octothorpe, the pound sign, or the number sign. Hashtags are used to identify certain topics, keywords, events or by companies (e.g. #FB) in every official tweet. It is a link that connects you to other topics or tweets that mentioned the same keyword. Hashtag has even left the screen and crawled into our daily lives recently. People also communicate through hashtags during major events or music concerts where you can track all “live tweets” taking place at a particular ceremony using a single hashtag. This symbol evolved to other social networks like Instagram and became an integral part of its symbolism.
The verification system on Twitter works to establish authenticity of highly sought tweeters in music, acting, fashion, journalism, media, literature, religion and politics. It prevents identity confusion when the Twitter profiles of public figures are parodied or impersonated.
3) At symbol (@):
One of the most powerful and significant Twitter symbols. If you add @ before any username you can click on it, examine the profile and any tweet will be sent directly to that user. It is sometimes called the reply symbol. You may also use it in a geographical context (e.g. I am @ home) but that wouldn’t be Twitter-specific language.
4) Cashtags ($):
This is one of the latest Twitter symbols. It is a clickable ticker symbol $ added to companies’ names (e.g. $FB, $GOOG) so that users can look up their finances and stocks. These codes become links. Like the hashtag, you will read every tweet that used the symbol just by clicking on it randomly.
5) Caret/hat (^):
This symbol reflects a tweet sent by an individual representative of a group, an organization or a company. It is usually written at the end of the tweet followed by the initials of the user.
Retweet is another popular Twitter symbol. People retweet all the time, from each others, from celebrities, from famous companies and brands. It is sort of a forwarding method for another user’s tweet. This is the symbol responsible for virality and Word of Mouth Marketing (WOMM).
This is a method of communicating with a fellow Twitter user without using the @ symbol. The reply, retweet and favorite symbols are usually present in the tweet box and you can choose to use them all or pick one of them to communicate.
To retweet or to favorite that is the question. Most people don’t understand the difference between favoriting a tweet and retweeting it. Also many Twitter users are curious as to the significance of these two symbols.
Favorite belongs to bookmarking tools more than any other Twitter symbol. You favorite a tweet when you want to save it for later reading or for reference.
Retweet, on the other hand, sends the tweet to all of your followers. You take action on your twitter stream and you popularize the original tweet.