James Cooper is a strategist on the Content and Community team at Social Media Group (SMG). Follow @jamescooper
You’re probably familiar with and may, at some point, have used air quotes. But have you heard of an air hashtag?
Stowe Boyd showing the air hashtag at Defrag 2009. Image: Maggie Fox.
A few weeks ago, I thought I was quite clever and original when I crossed the index and middle fingers of my left hand over the index and middle fingers of my right hand to form what I called the “air hashtag” for my colleague, Karly Gaffney. Karly seemed to like the idea.
However, I soon suspected that something so simple must already exist in the vast web of ideas. Sure enough, after asking around the office here at Social Media Group, my suspicions were confirmed. Maggie Fox, SMG’s CEO, shared a picture she snapped of Stowe Boyd doing the four-fingered air hashtag at the Defrag Conference in November 2009.
I’m in favor of the four-fingered sign because it lends itself to photographs, whereas Barney Stinson’s gesture clearly does not. However, Stinson’s gesture does have the advantage that it can be done with one hand.
So what do you think? Should the four-fingered sign become the standard? Or should it be Barney Stinson’s flamboyant air gesture? Or should we scrap the idea altogether?
This week’s roundup is all about Social Media Week.
Social Media Week “offers a series of interconnected activities and conversations around the world on emerging trends in social and mobile media across all major industries. Annually, SMW attracts more than 60,000 attendees across thousands of individually organized events, with half a million connecting to the conference online and through mobile.”
With that in mind, I’m going round up some of the most buzzed about items from Social Media Week 2012.
If anything, Kaskie was grieving over the disappearance of the carefully curated, tangible collections of music recordings we used to own — like the LP collection he still looks forward to handing down to his children, rather than the password to a cloud full of digital playlists that seem likely to be more commonplace. “You don’t own anything anymore,” he said. “How do you get people excited about anything when it’s so fleeting?” Of course, Kaskie and his panelists had a ready answer to that: you get people excited about music by turning it from an industry into a community. In days of yore — Kaskie joined Pitchfork in 2004, when Friendster was still in ascendance — building a community meant launching a music festival where people could share the experience of music. (Indeed, Pitchfork’s festival has become a centerpiece of the summer festival schedule in its hometown of Chicago. Last October, the franchise expanded to Paris.) Today, community means Twitter, where Pitchfork readers endlessly debate the site’s notoriously polarizing reviews. Community also means Spotify, feeding a steady, frictionless stream of your music tastes to your Facebook friends.