Last week I wrote about the great tool, Twitter. I mentioned it was great for building friendships and community with runners and other people. One of the great ways to build discussion around a specific topic or event on the web is by using tags. I use tags all the time on this blog to make sure others looking for something about running can find it easily.
With Twitter you are able to tag your tweets as part of a broader discussion using something called a hashtag. One of the popular uses of Twitter is during conferences or meetings to help broadcast what is going on or for possible meetups. To help facilitate this happening someone decided to start using hashtags to make searching for related tweets easier. A hastag is simply using the hashmark or pound symbol (#) before a series of letters. It was made really popular during the San Diego fire and was being used for the Iowa flooding. If you go to a Twitter search engine such as Summize (now Twitter Search) and searched for the hashtag #IowaFlood you’ll get hundreds of Tweets about the flooding.
Why is this important? Every major group, organization, conferences, etc has a hashtag. As of today I haven’t seen any for running. I think it would be nice to find other Twittering runners and see how their workout went. Most of the runners I follow on Twitter tweet a summary of their daily run or race report.
I was going to propose the already famous ORN be used for a hashtag, but a quick search pulled up some unsavory content – add a “p” to the beginning. So, let’s scratch that idea! Back to the drawing boards, I did some more research and found that some people had already started using #run, but that is a little simplistic and maybe boring! Then I came along a tweet from @runnershigh that #runlog is being used by Twemes to create Twitter Running Meme. Twemes also allows you to get an RSS feed of tweets posted with the hashtag.
Therefore, I propose that from here on out we all use #runlog to tag running posts.
Anyone else have thoughts on a better hashtag?
Used appropriately I think this would be a great addition to our running community.
Step One: For it to work properly you should follow @hashtags on your Twitter account. This will help facilitate the hashtags bot to find your tweet and index it in their service.
Step Two: Start using #runlog.
Step Three: Use the Twitter search engine of your choice to find out how other runners ran today. I recommend Summize (now Twitter Search) or Tweetscan. You can also use the RSS feed from Tweme.
Note: According to hashtags.org their service has been broken since July 10, due to a Twitter-side error. You can continue using the #runlog though and it will make it easier to search for. And the service should resume normal processing eventually!