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How do you pronounce #winning aloud? Would it be hashtag winning, hash winning, pound winning, winning or something else? This goes for all hashtags.

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To be pedantic, winning is pronounced like this. –  aedia λ Aug 23 '11 at 14:45
    
It is said with crazy eyes and a smugly superior smile :) –  Chad Aug 23 '11 at 16:34
    
a bit off topic: It is said that the # character on US telephones is officially known as the "octothorpe". –  GEdgar Aug 23 '11 at 19:18
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@GEdgar - I've heard that said too. However, in a lifetime in the USA, I've only ever seen that word used in sentences very much like yours. –  T.E.D. Aug 23 '11 at 19:22
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3 Answers

up vote 5 down vote accepted

According to this YouTube video, a hash tag is pronounced "hashtag tagname". Another video agrees that you say "hashtag" followed by the name of the tag.

So #winning is "hashtag winning". To me, this makes sense because if you are saying it out loud people may not know you are referring to Twitter. Saying simply "hash [tag]" could be miscontrued because "hash" has more than one meaning.

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I have always heard Twitter hash-tags spoken as "hash [tag]". My source being personal experience in British English.

Americans often call the '#' symbol the pound symbol in my experience, so this may well be valid too. Saying "hashtag [tag]" is often redundant and overly-verbose. That's my view at least.

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As a card-carrying American, I wouldn't be surprised to hear someone say "pound", but "hash tag" would sound more correct to me, as that is the accepted name for them in written form. –  T.E.D. Aug 23 '11 at 13:22
    
The entity is a hash tag, yes. How you say it in everyday speech is another matter. The symbol itself is "hash", so this is what I at least would say. The reference to a hash-tag should be implicit/by context. –  Noldorin Aug 23 '11 at 17:52
    
I've only ever heard "hash [tag]", and when it's inline, like "the #sport event was awesome..." it doesn't get said. But for twitter-style addendum topics/comments, I've heard people say it overtly, even when it has nothing to do with twitter. For example "Where were you all of yesterday? Hash very suspicious." –  tdhsmith Sep 6 '11 at 16:46
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Depending on the context, I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that it isn't typically meant to be pronounced, unless you have some good reason to draw attention to the fact that this particular term can be searched for.

It is pretty common in a tweet to just mix hashtags into a sentence like normal words, but with the meta-data (mostly useful for tools) that it can be searched on to find related things.

However, in conversation we don't have computerized search tools available (unless you work at the NSA), so there's no point in including the metadata. You should probably expand any abbreviations though, so the poor slob you are talking to has some idea what you are talking about.

For example, this tweet:

ussoccer: A host of #USMNT players could be in action in Europa League today. Check the full listing here http://bit.ly/q3ECsD

Would read out loud as:

A host of US Men's National Team players could be in action ...

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this is of course the most sensible answer :) in my limited experience, though, TV presenters of all stripes seem to say "hashtag" - have you come across any style guides making a suggestion either way? –  d3vid Feb 24 at 13:33
    
@d3vid - I still think so as well. However, what has happened in the intervening 3 years since I posted this answer is that folks on TV appear to have decided that the fact that you can search on that term on Twitter is in fact useful information, and "hashtag" is a good shorthand for that. So the accepted answer here does seem to have become correct. If you want to see in person, try watching FusionTV (they do it a ton there, so you shouldn't have to wait too long). –  T.E.D. Feb 24 at 14:13
    
I have this habit of skipping over the timestamps on Qs & As :D –  d3vid Feb 24 at 14:54
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