twivial pursuit

Things were getting pretty ugly over this ash cloud last night, I can tell you.

What? You think I mean amongst people whose flights had been cancelled? Nah….this is far more serious than THAT, folks! I’m talking a serious cl-ASH amongst hard-core twitterers here!!!

There I was, last Thursday morning, quietly stirring my coffee, listening to the 7 o’clock news (Claire & Ivan on the Newstalk Breakfast Show to be precise). I was hearing for the first time about all the hassle that Icelandic volcano was causing Irish travellers. As befits my current twitter obsession, my first thought was “I wonder what the hashtag will be for this one.”

Then I thought “hang on…ash, hashtag…. #ashtag!” So as I am wont to do, I stopped what I was doing, ran to the pc and posted the above tweet.

Pretty obvious pun I know, in fact it was SO obvious I was sure someone must have thought of it already.

Then the tweets started rolling in.

scarie Lol @jl_pagano #ashtag – brilliant 🙂
curlydena hope the ash clears by tomorrow. I want to see my parents, dammit! #ashtag (kudos to @JL_Pagano for the #tag too)
paddaniels What tag genius thought of the cockney ‘ashtag #ashtag ? according to Google it was @JL_Pagano congrats!
abracarioca @JL_Pagano are you the one who created #ashtag? I’d like to know if the new Google search tool is working fine. Thanks!
broddo #ashtag now trending worldwide! Was it truly @JL_Pagano who started it? Hat’s off!
junepurr @JL_Pagano were you the first #ashtag user? 🙂

So seemingly this was a ‘big’ deal in twitter terms. The term was “trending” worldwide (though at the risk of starting another row, why don’t they call it “twending”?).

Hurrah for me and my online ego. Let’s say I wasn’t going to go shouting it from the rooftops though, in fact at that stage I wouldn’t even have been thinking about it enough this morning for a blog post.

THEN I get home last night an learn that another tweeter was claiming he had thought of it first. A web journalist had tweeted a request for the tag’s creator, and @AngryBritain jumped in saying he coined it at “7:31am UK time” on the Thursday morning.

Well that’s when the competitive gene in my DNA kicked in. A quick check showed my original tweet was at 7:02am, and actually other tweeters had responded to the journalist saying that according to a site called, it was me.

Now I had a choice. Do I leave it, or do I speak up? I spoke up.

A few minutes later said journalist tweets and tells me he credited us both, and sent me his article where in fact he gives it to AngryBritain, adding “though JL Pagano may also lay claim”.

Well I wasn’t having THAT! Sadly I couldn’t let go knowing 7:02 beats 7:31. Yeah, I know, I should’ve taken the high ground, but as far as I was concerned someone was trying to take credit for something I’d done, and there was something of a principle involved.

So I put forward my case to both @AngryBritain and his sidekick @dweezil1968 (seemingly it was now a joint effort between them) and I get a reply offering to “share” it.
Again, I could’ve left it, but I was sitting there with my iPhone in my hand on a Sunday evening winding down with nothing else to do so I sent another tweet saying that if someone could show me a tweet that was timestamped before mine I’d be MORE THAN HAPPY to stand down.

Then the duo took the stance I was afraid they would… “Oh ALL RIGHT THEN. TAKE IT. IF IT MEANS THAT MUCH TO YOU” (paraphrase).


But I’ll still take it, not because I’m petty, not because I thought it was a life-threatening issue, but because the evidence clearly pointed to me and when THAT happens, I believe you should most certainly speak up.

Hopefully the title of this post shows my tongue-in-cheek approach to the whole matter! I KNOW I DO have a life, even if the 678-word length of the post suggests otherwise!!!! 😉

11 thoughts on “twivial pursuit

  1. Great post JL. It's explains the reasons you had to make a stand on the matter in the end.
    I've had a look at the article and the tweeters tweets and it strikes me that the journalist could have avoided any problem if he'd simply done a competent job and checked the timeline. As for the other two, well they could've been a little more gracious on discovery that you were the author and hence, didn't feel the need to share.


  2. Right, @AngryBritain and @Dweezil1968 hereby officially hand the honour of creating the #ashtag to @JL_Pagano at 07.02

    The fact AngryBritain has nearly 4000 followers to your 503, and has a Klout ranking of 71 (that's more than Peter Andre, Katie Price, Chris Evans and Stephen Fry in case you were wondering) is probably irrelevant.


    Now, we're off to secure our TV series.

    Join the FaceBook group here: – Who narrowly missed inventing the #ashtag


  3. LS… I know I've already thanked you via tweet, but I will again here for the record.


    Your comment does such a good job speaking for itself, I needn't bother responding.

    Thank you so much for giving me this closure.


  4. Apparently having more followers means you can claim credit for other's ideas.

    If AB had any level of decency he'd have politely acknowledged the error and left it at that.


  5. Quote: AngryBritain:

    “The fact AngryBritain has nearly 4000 followers to your 503, and has a Klout ranking of 71 (that's more than Peter Andre, Katie Price, Chris Evans and Stephen Fry in case you were wondering) is probably irrelevant.”

    >> Nice e-cock. It's truly gigantic.



  6. I think we can all agree that the #ashtag is a rather simple play on words and it could just be possible that more than one person may have thought of it within the first 30 minutes of the story breaking.

    As for 'Claiming Credit' hopefully the following will put any allegations of plagiarism to bed – Which we don't appreciate by the way Maca.

    If you go to 'Trendistic' you'll see that we can claim the first RT. By 3 minutes.

    Now, lets all play nice and move along.


  7. Whenever memes are whizzing around and I think of something good I always assume somebody else has probably thought of it before me, and so I throw a search into twitter to check if they have.

    I would've thought a journalist would search for 1st occurrences.

    1st is 1st. Independent thought doesn't mean you get to share credit or else I'd be down as co-inventor of lightbulbs and parachutes. And the wheel.

    You don't get to argue with the timeline.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s