Facebook has just announced that it is becoming a little more like Twitter, as the social networking giant is now adding hashtags to posts. For the uninitiated, hashtags serve as a method of looking at what all users on the community are saying about a topic. A user clicks the tag and is taken to a page containing all the posts from others across the social network pertaining to that hashtag. Essentially, it takes a giant social network and makes it feel a little smaller by linking users talking about the same thing.
Facebook cites this feature as a missing part of its user experience. It says, “to date, there has not been a simple way to see the larger view of what’s happening or what people are talking about.” To fix that, Facebook plans to rollout some new features “that surface some of the interesting discussions people are having about public events, people, and topics.” This is, of course, in addition to aforementioned hashtags.
With the new feature, users can search for a certain hashtag via the search bar, click on hashtags that originate from other services, and compose posts directly from the hashtag search screen.
Of course, privacy settings will override, so only the people a user chooses will be able to see the post. This means that, unlike Twitter, the amount of posts showing for a hashtag will probably be a little lower, since its far more common for people to have public Twitter profiles.
Going forward, Facebook plans to roll out other features including trending hashtags and deeper insights. Both of which are designed to make it easier to follow the big topics on the social network.