A change of tweetup name

My weekly soil tweetup has transformed to #groundchat.  Same day, same time, same great chats!

Annie Haven (@GreenSoil) informed me yesterday that she had rights over the use of the #soilchat hash tag. She had registered the name with www.twubs.com two years ago as part of her business plan and branding strategy. After chatting a bit, Annie offered to transfer the registration of #soilchat to me, but with certain conditions.


I slept on it and came to a conclusion. Annie still has attachments to the name (#soilchat); and I don’t want to take that opportunity away from her. I also want to conduct my own tweetup with openness and transparency, and with equal respect to all who attend.


So I am changing the name of my weekly soil tweetup to #groundchat. So please join me and other soil hosts every Friday from 2 – 3 pm EDT (11 am PDT) at the new #groundchat and let’s talk dirt!

Written by Cristina da Silva
Saturday, April 14, 2012 in Soils & Growing Media

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  1. MrBrownThumb says:

    Wow, this is so weird, and interesting at the same time. As a Twitter chat co-founder and moderator myself.

    I do not understand how the use of Twubs gives someone rights over the use of a hashtag. Twubs isn’t part of the United States Trademark and Patent office so registering a hashtag there doesn’t give anyone exclusive rights over it.

    • Cristina says:

      Yes. Another chat moderator told me the same thing @MrBrownThumb. Registering the hashtag on Twubs doesn’t give you rights over the use of a hashtag. Only Trademarking the name gives you exclusive rights over it. Interesting isn’t it? Twitter is so new that laws and regulations and restrictions haven’t taken effect. It’s the wild wild west in Twitter Land. 🙂

  2. Jeavonna Chapman says:

    Wow. This is a complex issue. #Flowerchat went through this with the Florist folks. I hear the sound of the lawyers murmuring in the background.

    • Cristina says:

      It is a complex issue, but simple at the same time. My husband (he’s a business coach) predicted that #groundchat will be even more successful because I’ve taken the high road. For me it’s all about sharing and connecting with other gardeners and growers who care about the soil.

  3. VP says:

    Crumbs – I didn’t know hashtags could be registered, but as MTB says, what rights does registration actually convey?

    Rather takes the social out of social media doesn’t it!

  4. N8Armstrong says:

    That is pretty bizarre. Maybe I’d better head over to Twubs and claim me some serious hashtags! Sheesh. Seems pretty petty to me.

    I sure hope you have exclusive rights to that image you used in this post! Someone might come claiming rights to it too and shut this post down! 😉
    Sorry you’ve had to deal with such a headache, Cristina. I love what you’re doing and I wish #groundchat all the luck in the world!

  5. I’m late to the party as usual, but this is ridiculous. Hashtags can’t be owned. It might be another story if someone has been running a tweet chat for years and then someone else uses the same name–that would be confusing. But that was not the case here. Plus, soil is such a common word, especially in gardening, and chat is such a common way of naming any kind of tweetchat, that to claim ownership to it seems pointless. P.S. I’m going to trademark gardening, the, an, and flower, so watch out! 😉

  6. Cristina says:

    I agree with you Monica. Love your sense of humour!

    Frankly I think it was play to gain control over the chat. Sad. They can always start their own.

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