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    • Hello, World!

      This is my first post on Cake. I'm one of the remaining Google+ users looking for a new home on the web - and while I think that I will use my own webspace more often from now on, so far this platform seems to be the most attractive among the alternatives that are being discussed at the moment. I have a huge variety of interests, some of which come and go over time, so this idea of being able to freely post to random topics and have my post seen by people interested in it, without any need to first make connections by "following" them or trying to be followed back, is intriguing.

      One of my interests is photography. On Google+, one way to get the attention of others interested in the same type of photography was to post using the hashtag of a "photo theme". An image in black&white could have been posted with the #MonochromeMonday hashtag, or an image like the one I'm attaching here(*) could use a hashtag like #28DaysOfFall. I wonder what others think: is it a good idea to use hashtags here as well, to make posts searchable even across topics?

      For what it's worth, would it perhaps even be a good idea to automatically turn (up to) the first five hashtags used in a post into topics?

      (*)I found this leaf in an empty parking lot while on a walk last weekend. In my images, I like contrasts of all kinds - and this colorful, weirdly shaped leaf on a nearly monochrome background with its regular pattern is something I just needed to take a photo of.

    • Hi fellow G+ refugee. I agree with you that Cake is quite lovely. While my interests in social media are different than yours (I actively avoid the tag "photography"!), we can all find good content here. I write to advocate the hashtagging - I avoid photography because it is so generic a description. Nowadays what post DOESN'T feature a photograph? One might argue that a mere photograph does not rise to the aspiration of true "photography", perhaps. But every individual photographer thinks otherwise. In the case above - the aspiration is achieved, though: lovely!

    • Welcome to Cake, @Factotum! Great photo. πŸ˜„

      I wonder what others think: is it a good idea to use hashtags here as well, to make posts searchable even across topics?

      Hashtags are appropriate for social networks where the focus is on brevity or on quickly sharing a photo or a link, but the best way to make a post searchable on Cake is to write naturally about something interesting, like you've done here.

      You wrote about how you found this leaf and how you liked the way it contrasted with its background. Not only is that interesting to read and a potential conversation starter, it's also better for making your post searchable than hashtags would have been, because your story includes lots of relevant terms like "leaf", "empty parking lot", "contrast", "monochrome background", and "regular pattern", all readable and used in context rather than just jumbled together as ugly hashtags. πŸ‘

      Hope this helps!

    • G'day Factotum, Welcome to Cake from another thats still posting to Google plus there are a few of us over there on Cake and still posting to G+ so your not alone on either platform. @Julianne has started a list of Photo themes here on Cake, here's the link below. Have fun here.

    • At first, I didn't like the heap of hashtags on G+. I still don't. I understand why Instagram has to use hashtags - Insta has no Collections or Circles. I think the max 5 topics on Cake is good by itself but the need to gain approval a topic, that's a pain. I don't mind one hashtag or two on Cake so that one can trace post across topics and chronology but since Topics are the official preferred category tool for Cake, then using a heap of hashtags to gain attention is just ugly and desperate

    • @AnandaSim I completely agree, using a ton of hashtags instead of leading a proper conversation is ugly, and often makes it obvious that someone is just looking for attention while not having anything to say. Still, a few hashtags where appropriate can be useful.

      I'd also think that this might be a good quality-of-life improvement for people who prefer to compose a post just via their keyboard, without having to use the mouse and/or move away from the main input field. On Google+, for example, I really like the fact that I can format text by just using special characters while typing (for those not used to G+, *bold* will be formatted as bold; _italics_ as italics, and so on)- and if starting a word with a '#' character would suggest topics, just like starting with an '@' character suggests people, this would be nice.

    • Welcome fellow refugee! I've been here a while now, and based on what you said in your post, I think you'll enjoy it here. I have. Not only is this a great place for writing, it's a great place for reading interesting content as well. A nice change from the noise of social media.

    • Thanks for the welcome, @JazliAziz - and good to see some familiar faces from G+ appear on my post already. :)

      I'm already enjoying it, although content discovery could probably still be enhanced a bit. The team seems to have all the right priorities, though, so I'm looking forward to eventual updates in that regard.