Friday, August 17, 2012

@nateritter from #sandiegofire to #occupy

It's hard to believe that almost five years have gone by since I first heard Nate Ritter's name.

And it just goes to show you how much things can change in five years.

Today it seems that just about everyone knows what hashtags are, and some people go out of their way to #overuse hashtags until their #tweets become an #unreadable #mess. This results in negative reactions.

But five years ago, hardly any of us knew what hashtags were. Sure Stowe Boy and Chris Messina were talking about the concept, but most of us weren't paying attention.

Nate Ritter helped to change that.

If you look at Ritter's resume, you'll see this one item in his list of accomplishments:

Helped popularize the #hashtag via Twitter during wildfires in Southern California, October 2007

Yeah, that Nate Ritter. The #sandiegofire guy. If you're not familiar with the story, read what Chris Messina wrote about it at the time. (I wrote about it also, but Messina's comments on hashtags obviously carry a lot more weight.)

I was in a "where are they now?" mood, and I found out that Ritter is doing the same thing that he was doing back in October 2007 - namely, running his business Perfect Space, Inc.

But he still comments on things from time to time, and he recently offered some comments on a very popular recent hashtag, #occupy.

This is (part of) what he said:

owning your own business is truly the only way to have any possible control over your own financial security.

Screw the banks.

Screw the bailouts.

Obviously there are macro-economics in play here which matter also in the long run. But, from the standpoint of the individual, voting with your jobs – perhaps by not having one – seems to continue to be the epicenter of change.

Read the rest here.

And if you want to see Ritter's micro-thoughts, go to
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