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#Hashtags, #hashtags, #hashTags?

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Hashtags (#hashtags) are something that most of us have seen and many of us use on social media. For those who use hashtags, have you ever thought of what is the best way to compose one?

In addition to using words that are relevant to the subject matter you are promoting, it is important to think of how to make a hashtag more accessible to your entire potential audience. Otherwise, one may inadvertently create a barrier to connect with significant segments of your potential audience.

Capitalizing the first letter of each word in a hashtag makes it more accessible than having all of the letters in the words lowercase.

For example: #MoreAccessibleHashtag (more accessible) versus #moreaccessiblehashtag (less accessible).

Accessible hashtags are important for blind and visually-impaired users. Users who encounter digital content - like hashtags - with the help of a screen reader will run into problems when a screen reader struggles to interpret the individual words in an all-lowercase hashtag.

Accessible hashtags are also important for people who have cognitive impairments and dyslexia. Capitalizing the first letter of each word in a hashtag helps those users separate one word from another, similar to using spacing to comprehend individual words in a sentence.

Taking the time to compose accessible hashtags with a capital letter for each word expands the reach, effectiveness, and accessibility of the message. Let us do our part to implement more accessible hashtags across the digital space.

— Submitted by Jesse Kurtz, Senior Manager, Digital Accessibility