From instant messaging to MySpace to Twitter, the Internet has always come equipped with it’s own ever-evolving language. The following is a glossary of the latest Internet lingo to help better understand the microblogging platform Twitter.
The “at” symbol (otherwise referred to as a mention) is used to tag another Twitter account within a tweet. Once tweeted, it becomes a link to that user’s Twitter profile.
When put before a word or phrase, the hash symbol creates a hashtag, which links to other tweets containing the same tag. Hashtags highlight keywords, topics or events within a tweet. For example, “Can’t wait for #Coachella,” or “Loving my new #FordFiesta.”
On Twitter, the $ can be used in front of a company’s shortened stock market name or code to make it into a financial hashtag. For example, placing a $ in front of the abbreviation GOOG ($GOOG) turns it into this sort of tag for Google’s stock market code, which then makes it into a link.
CC literally translates to “carbon copy” and is used similarly on Twitter as it is over e-mail. Within a tweet, it’s a way to draw a user’s attention to specific content. For example, “Awesome new website –link- cc @Jane.”
Direct Messages are a way to send messages to someone following you on Twitter through a private inbox. Users can conduct confidential conversations through DMs that would otherwise be public through normal tweets.
The equivalent of Facebook’s “Like” button, tweets can be “favorited” to show appreciation for their content. Favorited tweets will also show up in a list on your profile under “Favorites.”
“Hat tip” is a way to give a shout out to someone on Twitter. It is usually formatted in the following manner: “HT @bbenstock.”
If you want to send someone a response to his or her tweet, you can hit “reply” to create your own message that immediately tags that other user within the tweet. All your followers, including the user you replied to, will be able to see the response.
“Modified tweet” is a form of retweeting in which the user indicates that they modified or edited the original tweet — usually because of the character limit.
Retweeting is the forwarding of another user’s tweet onto your own profile. When edited for added comments, retweets will leave the “RT” abbreviation between the end of the new addition and the beginning of the original tweet.
Referring to a user’s Twitter feed, a stream is a list of tweets in chronological order that have been sent out by the accounts a user is following. There are also feeds for every account’s own tweets.
Abbreviation for “thanks for the follow.”
When popularized hashtags tweeted by large amounts of people, they’re considered to be “trending.” Hashtags that have been used a certain amount of times will show up on the “Trending Topics” page on Twitter. Because trending hash tags are listed for all Twitter users to see, they can benefit companies looking to reach more users than just those that follow the company’s account.