Innovation & Technology

The History of Hashtags

3 minute read | January 1, 1999 Share Share

Hashtags, how it started? Where did it come from? Let me take you back when the # or the pound sign was young and wasn't that popular. 

Most of us know hashtags came from Twitter but it did not. It was though popularized by Twitter but it came from the IRC or the Internet Relay Chat around the late 1990s, where it was used to categorize items like images, messages, video and other content into groups. Hashtags made it possible for IRC users to make searching relevant and associated content easily. It was in August 2007 where designer Chris Messina asked his followers how they felt about using the pound sign to group conversations on the micro-blogging platform, thus became the first person to use the hashtag on Twitter. 

People worldwide got updated with what's going on in San Diego fire when Nate Ridder started appending his tweets with the #SanDiegoFire hashtag. The name "hashtag" however, officially originated from Stow Boyd's blog post. In July 2009, Twitter formally adopted the use of hashtags into code, automatically hyperlinking terms with the # sign. The following year, 2010, trending and trending topics became highly associated with social media when Twitter began highlighting hashtags on its homepage based on their popularity. Now, most social media sites use the hashtags like Facebook, Google Plus, Instagram, Tumblr, of course Twitter, and a lot more now is supporting the use of hashtags. 

Now you know a lot about hashtags, how would it benefit your business? Well, it is powerful in social media marketing, it can help you create more engagements and make conversations between your business and targeted audience through your content creating brand awareness that will boost sales and profitability. It can help you establish brand loyalty and build relationship with your customers, connecting with them, hearing them out. 


Bennett, S. (2014, September 2). The History of Hashtags in Social Media Marketing. Social Times. Retrieved from 

The History and Power of Hashtags in Social Media Marketing. Digital Marketing Philippines. Retrieved from

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