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What the What?

WhatTheHashtag is a great site that lets you grab and post Twitter hashtag archives before anyone else.

If you are like me, you probably lurk or participate in a number of hashtaged group conversations on Twitter each week. You may even run one. Twitter is a great tool for communication, you can subscribe to the tag’s RSS feed and even display a nifty live widget. But what happens next week when your last chat has mysteriously disappeared from Twitter search, forever lost to everyone unable to make the trip to the Library of Congress?

The answer to that question is WhatTheHashtag?!.

What The Hashtag?! ScreenshotIn the simplest terms WhatTheHashtag (WTH) is a Wikipedia for Twitter hashtags. The site provides a page for each hashtag it sees appear on Twitter. Each tag gets statistics on use over the last week, a list of contributors, a brief description and a full description. The page also allows users to input related hashtags and external links. You can even tweet, using the hashtag from inside a WTH page.

The real gift is WhatTheHashtag’s Twitter transcript function.

Select a date range from the day before your chat to the day after to account for time-zone differences and you have a neatly formated transcript of all the posts made with that particular hashtag over the specified time period. The transcript is in HTML and uses tables and excellently generated.

Unfortunately, the transcript builds off Twitter search, so once your conversation falls out of the approximate week that Twitter keeps things searchable, it won’t work anymore. So you have to grab it and save it yourself.

Once you have the transcript before you, it’s easy to bring it to your community’s website.

Here are a few ways to save your transcript and display it:

  • You can save the page as an HTML page for upload to your own server or space.
  • Try copying the source and bringing it into your own site or blog for formating.
  • Want a PDF? You can just highlight the page, copy and paste it into a Buzzword document file on acrobat.com.
  • Copy the page content and paste it into an HTML editing program like Dreamweaver to get an HTML file with all the external styling built-in.
  • Using WordPress? Just highlight and copy content from the transcript and paste it into the visual tab of your WordPress blog. Works like a charm every time.

If you run Twitter chats, I highly recommend WTH. At the very lest, define your hashtag and perhaps credit yourself as its creator. The service is fast and the transcripts are easy to copy and paste into other services, allowing you to keep an archive of what’s going on.

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  1. Bon Crowder on Tuesday 22, 2011

    Thanks! I’m running a tweet chat tomorrow and I really needed this!

  2. Aram Zucker-Scharff on Tuesday 22, 2011

    Glad I could help!

  3. Dave Doolin on Tuesday 22, 2011

    WTH died, and I’m bummed because I was stashing long tail, wackadoodle keywords there.

    Hopefully someone will buy them out and pick up the data.

  4. Aram Zucker-Scharff on Tuesday 22, 2011

    Yeah, I’m pretty down over their sudden disappearance. I’m searching out alternatives, as soon as I find a good one, I’ll blog it.

  5. […] a transcript of the chat on your blog (there are tools, like What The Hashtag that can help with […]


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