France tries to rename Twitter’s “hashtag” to make it more French

The French government would now like to call Twitter’s conversation-grouping phenomenon mot-dièse. 

 

Chase Hoffberger

Internet Culture

Published Jan 25, 2013   Updated Jun 2, 2021, 2:43 am CDT

Noted elitists within the French government achieved new ground in snobbery Friday morning when the men in expensive clothing announced that their country would no longer accept “hashtag” as the proper word to describe Twitter’s hashtags.

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Instead, the French government would now like to call Twitter’s conversation-grouping phenomenon mot-dièse (pronounced ‘Mo-Dee-YEZ’), which evidently means “sharp word.”

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The change comes as part of a nationwide effort to get the French people talking like French people and using nothing but French words, even if the English-speaking American people had them first.

France actually has an entire commission dedicated to pushing this idea further. It’s called the Commision Générale de Terminologie et de Néologie, and it’s done some wild work so far. Most recently, the commission corralled French folks to change “email” to “courriel.” It’s also tried to get the French to stop referring to Saturday and Sunday as “the weekend,” but that didn’t work so well.

After all, everybody’s working for the weekend—even in France.

Photo via Dan Moyle/Flickr

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*First Published: Jan 25, 2013, 4:57 pm CST