Facebook hashtags are about to be a #thing


According to a report in the Wall Street Journal, hashtags might be coming to a Facebook feed near you.

Facebook is testing whether to follow Twitter's lead and allow users to click on a hashtag to pull up all posts about similar topics or events so it can quickly index conversations around trending topics and build those conversations up, giving users more reason to stay logged in and see more ads. Instagram, which Facebook acquired last year, already uses hashtags, allowing users to sort photos by the symbol.

Essentially, Twitter and Facebook had previously observed boundaries as far as social Internet markets go. But, with the acquisition of Instagram and the possible adoption of hashtags, Facebook is stepping all over Twitter's turf. It will interesting to see if Twitter falls into an Avon Barksdale role or chooses a Stringer Bell type response.

And while closely held Twitter is a fraction of Facebook's size, it is competing with Facebook for mobile and online advertisers, especially as some advertisers flock to Twitter to advertise against real-time moments. Twitter has bulked up its sales staff and released more advertiser-friendly products. Last month, Twitter opened its ads platform to third-party partners so that advertisers do not have to directly buy ads from Twitter. [Wall Street Journal]