Hashtags are a modern phenomenon thanks to Twitter and have become a tool to spread news, ideas, opinions and PR messages. Today the hashtag #nowthatchersdead was trending worldwide with many becoming confused as they wondered how the singer and movie star Cher had passed away, other wondered what had caused the death of Terri Hatcher at such a young age. That’s the problem with hashtags they don’t always say what they want you to.
The most famous recent hashtag gone wrong was from Susan Boyle’s latest album launch – not one person at the PR company had noticed that the words could be read another way #susanalbumparty Mind you whoever Su is she like to celebrate. Bottom’s up Su! To stay in the gutter Chester Literary Festival’s didn’t see that books were so arousing with the hashtag #CLitFest I presume the success of 50 Shades helped though. The Hobbit’s international PR campaign hit problems when it stuck the ‘ch’ suffix to the film title for Switzerland reading #thehobbitch Finally in the rude category Blackberry RIM made the mistake of trying to gain personnel with the hashtag #rimjobs
These mistakes are not new though as anyone who has seen the list of questionable domain names will testify to. There’s penisland.net, nobjs.org, kidsexchange.net and the infamous powergenitalia.com (see http://www.boredpanda.com/worst-domain-names/ for more examples)
Got to love a hashtag!