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One of the peculiarities of :mastodon: is the lack of text search.

This is actually beneficial! It makes it harder for trolls to search for words or phrases for the purposes of harassment. But the con of this is that it makes it difficult for people to discover your public posts.

That's where hashtags come in! Hashtags are fully searchable/subscribe-able between federated instances, So if you want your art/comics/musings to be seen, hashtags are the best way to reach a specific audience!

With hashtags it helps to be simple, but descriptive. Try to think what terms you would use to search for content similar to what you're posting.

For example, are all great examples!

might be too descriptive, making it unlikely people will search for it. But if you want to use it to lump together all your Rainbow Knitted Socks posts, go right ahead!

Feel free to search for the hashtag yourself to see how "healthy" it is.

For artists:

are all excellent catch-all hashtags. Some people just want to see in their timelines so they subscribe to that hashtag; why not reach them?

Another thing: Lots of artists/creatives use the and tags, so I highly recommend using them as well to reach a wider audience.

Experiment and see what works! Of course, it's also perfectly fine to leave out hashtags altogether to keep your posts local. We're here for you!

You might notice that I use what's called "Camel Case" in my hashtags. That means I'm using uppercase letters for each word in the hashtag.

Examples:
:(
:D

Camel Case makes multi-word hashtags more accessible for people who use screen readers. That, and they're simply easier to read for everyone else! I recommend you adopt it as a habit for your future posts, to keep Mastodon as accessible as possible for everyone.

If you read all that, campers, then you've definitely earned your Hashtag Badge! :da_boogie:

@CampCounselor Interesting thread, thanks. :)

Is there a rule of thumb about singular or plural for hashtags? Do I write or ?

@yncke I've struggled with this one myself! I'm not consistent, but thinking on it more I think I know which I prefer…

If people were to search for comics, they'll probably use the plural form more than the singular, so I'd default to "". Of course, using both if you don't mind the repetition isn't bad, either.

For mediums, though, I think the singular is best; "" vs. "". I suppose it depends, but trying to put yourselves in the shoes of the searcher is a good bet!

@CampCounselor Now the only thing missing is some reset button to delete the posts without deleting the account

@hashRaygoza Do you mean the public toots that end up federated to other servers? It's true that once they're stored on another server, it's difficult to remove them from everywhere. That's one of the downsides to federated public posts.

@CampCounselor I was mostly talking of the post on the instance the account is

@CampCounselor In my experience however, hashtags are pretty empty. So I end up rarely ever checking them and resort to the chaos that is the federated timeline instead if I want to pick up new people to follow.

@toro That's totally valid too! I think the number of posts under a hashtag depends closely on how well federated you are with other instances; otherwise, all you're going to see are posts on your current instance.

@triptych Haha, yeah! I did in the replies in the rest of the thread, for what it's worth. ☺️

@CampCounselor i cw # my poetry, then when i search it, i can't find it ever

@Wewereseeds Ugh, yeah, I suppose that's a problem when hashtagging with CWs. :\

@CampCounselor thanks for this explanation! Great for folks new to the fediverse

@starrycosmos You can "pin" a feed showing a hashtag to your web portal window. :)

You search for a hashtag in the search box (first image). Click the hashtag you want to follow, and it will open a feed of it for you.

If you want to keep that feed open all the time, you can click on the options button in the top right corner of the feed (second image), and click "Pin".

@CampCounselor

Is there a list of hashtags I can look through?

@alanm There isn't a perfect solution for this, since anyone can make a hashtag anywhere just by putting a # symbol before a word. But you can check out what hashtags are trending in the Fediverse here: mastodon-tags-explorer.hcxp.co

Hope that helps!

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ComicsCamp.Club

A friendly home in the Fediverse for creators and lovers of comics and narrative art of all sorts.