Having had positive feedback on both Twitter and Facebook to this idea I have since started adding these tags to the listing tweets. I hope others will do the same.
Undoubtedly one of the big problems for people trying to locate their lost pet or trying to find the owner of a pet they have found in Ireland is the scattered nature of listings online. A listing may appear on one site but not another and so it is easy for one to be overlooked or missed.
One of the ways I had hoped to get around this scattering problem was by sharing the listings from Lost and Found Pets Ireland but for various reasons which I won’t linger on here, this is proving challenging. On Twitter we now could be facing into a similar problem, unless you are following the right account, listing tweets can slip through the cracks.
This is where hashtags come in. For those of you who don’t tweet, a hashtag is a simple label you can include with a tweet to associate it with a particular subject, event etc. They take the form of a pound sign followed by a short combination of characters. These hash tags are searchable so if there was a hash tag associated with a particular event for example, I could locate all tweets relating to that event by searching on the hash tag and would see tweets regardless of whether I was following any of the people who tweeted about that event or not. To see the idea in action, here is a link to a search using the found Irish pet listing tag #fpie and a search for the lost Irish pet listing tag #lfpie.
Today, I’m proposing that we do the same thing with Irish lost and found pet listings as they now seem to be coming from several different accounts. My suggested hash tags are as follows:
#fpie for found pets
#lpie for lost pets
The thinking behind these is to let people get a complete overview of the listing tweets with the ability to filter them by lost or found status (thanks to @tehkittehkat for that suggestion) while keeping the hash tags short so to reserve the maximum characters for listing details.
If this idea makes sense to you or you have any further thoughts or ideas on this I would love to hear them either in the comments area below or on Twitter – @lostfoundpets.
I hope all parties posting listings can reach some agreement on this to make the lives of those dealing with lost and found pets a little easier.