It Spreads the Meme Love
Once upon a time, viral humor was limited to jokes that started with “Knock, knock” and “Your mom’s so…” But this is the 21st century, and thanks to the Internet hive mind, helped along by Twitter’s “Trending Topics” feature, the hashtag has become a hub for meme humor. Whether it’s more topical, like the excellent #muslimrage backlash to the controversial Newsweek cover story, or completely random, like #ReplaceMovieTitleWithGoat, meme humor and the hashtag are made for each other. It also helps that it’s more aesthetically pleasing than Tumblr’s ubiquitous Bachelor Frog.
It Turns Random Sentence Fragments Into Witty Commentary
Finally, the hashtag has developed into a landing stage for stray observations and bits of snark that can’t necessarily be developed into a full-on tweet or Tumblr text post. It’s also a great way to rapidly change tone from serious to sarcastic without wasting precious characters. The result may not be the most practical (it’s unlikely that anyone will ever search Twitter for #gameofthronesisruiningmylife or #aintnopartylikeabatmitzvahparty), but it conveniently allows avid microbloggers to inject personal opinion into an otherwise everyday observation or straightforward retweet. Condensing an entire sentence’s worth of transition into a single octothorpe, the hashtag makes the case for brevity one tweet at a time.
Love it? Hate it? Share your thoughts on the hashtag in the comments below.