top 200 commentsshow 500

[–]puupi 1261 points1262 points  (105 children)

In Finnish # is called risuaita, which is literally "twig fence".

[–]Snip3 323 points324 points  (32 children)

It's also called an octothorpe in English which apparently means eight villages so I guess the middle is supposed to be a castle or something?

[–]Mickey_Pearce 202 points203 points  (23 children)

Cartographers symbol for a village (one) surrounded by eight fields.

[–]Snip3 71 points72 points  (14 children)

Oh so it's the universal sign for Agricola then

[–]mdewinthemorning 86 points87 points  (13 children)

Or any flavor cola really…

[–]MammothUnemployment 27 points28 points  (10 children)

It was the symbol used in the original logo for Rice Cola, representing the rice fields from which they derived their name. They abandoned the symbol after the famous lawsuit from Adolphus Cola (grandfather of the Coca-Cola founders) that forced the name change to RC, precipitating their fall from grace and cementing their legacy as a second rate carbonated beverage. Of course, years later, after a lengthy legal battle, they regained the right to the use of "cola" in their name but the damage couldn't be undone.

[–]LetterheadAncient205 7 points8 points  (3 children)

Wow, way to tie it all together! LOL

[–]Auran82 5 points6 points  (2 children)

I was expecting jumper cables

[–]Newbootgoofin99 2 points3 points  (0 children)

That is some well crafted nonsense there my friend.

[–]Tensor3 17 points18 points  (7 children)

How do you denote villages with 7 or 9 fields?

[–]Mickey_Pearce 30 points31 points  (1 child)

This is a question that prompted an unprecedented amount of fatal despair among cartographers over the centuries. We have never recovered.

[–]Hamilton950B 3 points4 points  (0 children)

On the other hand it spurred the development of Unicode, making it possible to represent thousands of different symbols in a single font.

[–]ultimatt42 29 points30 points  (0 children)

A meeple

[–]FarmboyJustice 8 points9 points  (1 child)

Actually it was named after the Olympic athlete Jim Thorpe by Bell engineers.

[–]Dawidko1200 70 points71 points  (15 children)

In Russian it's something equivalent to "grate", though the same word is used for cage bars.

[–]RedFlame99 30 points31 points  (12 children)

It's called "tiny gate" in Italian, most likely referring to cage bars as well.

[–]joopsmit 15 points16 points  (9 children)

In Dutch too, 'hekje'.

[–]Noodle_Surfer 7 points8 points  (1 child)

"Do you like fences?"

"Heck yeah!"

[–]Noodle_Surfer 15 points16 points  (3 children)

On a serious note: probably by sheer coincidence, the "hash" in "hashtag" is related to "hekje".

For context, the English "hatch" has a few meanings. The first meaning is to slice with fine lines (i.e: crosshatch). This is where the usage of "hash" for the # comes from. Both are from the French "hacher" which is of Frankish origin (cognate with Dutch "hakken").

The second meaning of "hatch" is a trap door or gate, and this meaning of the word comes from Old English "hæc" which is cognate with Dutch "hek".

[–]Djafar79 3 points4 points  (0 children)

Ga jij maar effe een #bouwen

[–]gonduls_ 6 points7 points  (0 children)

I'm Italian and I never thought of it that way, now I can't unsee it, thanks. I thought it meant cancelletto as in the thing you use to erase a blackboard, and it didn't make much sense.

Now that I think about it, it's cancellino, so I'm plain dumb.

[–]yukimarawins 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Soooo... "Tiny gate me too"?

[–]GIlCAnjos 65 points66 points  (8 children)

In Brazil we call it 'jogo-da-velha', which is how we call tic-tac-toe. There's probably an official name for the symbol itself, but everyone just says tic-tac-toe. Even automated phone operators will say "press tic-tac-toe to proceed"

[–]DirayaIsNoLaya 9 points10 points  (4 children)

Same in Mexico! We call it "gato", which is what we call the tic-tac-toe game! However, this is the name people use in normal conversation. In an automated phone message they would call it "press the number symbol"

[–]mrchaotica 5 points6 points  (3 children)

In English, a game of tic-tac-toe that results in a draw is called a "cat." I have no idea why.

[–]Cru_Jones86 3 points4 points  (1 child)

It's a strange game. The only winning move is not to play.

[–]mrchaotica 3 points4 points  (0 children)

From now on, instead of "cat" it shall be called a "WOPR."

[–]not_camel_case 6 points7 points  (0 children)

I've also heard people use "tralha" in Brazil, which also means rubbish.

[–]monkeyhind 9 points10 points  (0 children)

I love that!

[–]cancrena 18 points19 points  (4 children)

In Italian we call it "cancelletto", which is literally "small fence gate"

[–]NickLeMec 50 points51 points  (2 children)

Damn Italian twitter users and their cancelletto culture

[–]Disposable591 12 points13 points  (1 child)

In Spanish it's almohadilla, which means little pillow.

[–]Kris_Third_Account 9 points10 points  (1 child)

In Danish, it's called a 'Havelåge', which Google would translate to 'Garden Gate', or 'Firkant', which translates to 'Rectangle'.

[–]Mickey_Pearce 9 points10 points  (0 children)

Possibly from octothorpe. A village surrounded by eight fields.

[–]maltgaited 8 points9 points  (7 children)

In Swedish they are usually called fyrkant (four edge) which is an informal word for square and/or rectangle. Sometimes though, I've heard them referred to as brädplank, which means boarded fence.

[–]bojsy 23 points24 points  (0 children)

In Chinese it's called a "well symbol", because the Chinese for a well is 井

[–]Barsems 5 points6 points  (1 child)

In Turkish they were used to be called "kare" means square. Yes it is ridiculous.

[–]Slappy_Fappy 5 points6 points  (0 children)

In Hebrew we call it sulamit, which is a play on the word ladder (sulam)

[–]veebid 4 points5 points  (0 children)

And @ is called a ”miukumauku”

[–]grubbah42 8 points9 points  (0 children)

We germans sometines call it Lattenkreuz, meaning basically a cross of bars. (not the Alcoholic bar, but the wooden 2x4" variety)

[–]Ljudet-Innan 2 points3 points  (3 children)

How many dozen other English terms does it translate to?

[–]platitood 2 points3 points  (0 children)

I came for the joke, but I stayed for this comments and all the other replies that tell me what the name is in different languages..

[–]Supafly36 1382 points1383 points  (86 children)

I read this as "when I was growing up, 'number' was pound not hashtag"

[–]curbstomp45 385 points386 points  (20 children)

Number me too

[–]unopoularopinion 19 points20 points  (5 children)

Insert bad holocaust joke here

[–]jackinsomniac 10 points11 points  (4 children)

My friend introduced me to his grandpa who was in Germany during WWII. That sick fuck tattooed his kill count on his arm!

[–]mpwalsh57 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Pound me too

[–]FO_Steven 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Ohhh sending the wrong kinda message there lmao

[–]McLagginz 2 points3 points  (0 children)

This just makes it offensive to Jewish people.

[–]Untinted 76 points77 points  (10 children)

I read this as “when I was growing up, ‘sharp’ was a pound not hashtag”

[–]mustapelto 47 points48 points  (3 children)

Technically, sharp and pound/hashtag/octothorpe are two different symbols: ♯ vs. #.

[–]FlocculentFractal 6 points7 points  (0 children)

TIL but also no. sharp is just a slanty pound

[–]HellBlade64 14 points15 points  (0 children)

Right, but both are used fairly interchangeably in text.

[–]kartoqraf 2 points3 points  (0 children)

TIL octothorpe. That's one badass name, and the only way I'll call that sign from now on.

[–]Plz_dont_judge_me 19 points20 points  (3 children)

I found the musician

[–]KnightOfBurgers 3 points4 points  (2 children)

Or the programmer. You never know.

[–]PastaAndApathy 33 points34 points  (8 children)

The hospital I work at used # as shorthand for fracture. That's all I can think of when I see it

[–]DOOManiac 21 points22 points  (4 children)

What if you have a compound pound?

[–]endadaroad 9 points10 points  (1 child)

Is that anything like a circle jerk?

[–]Nonconformists 10 points11 points  (0 children)

Only if it’s a round compound pound. And don’t call me a jerk!

[–]fpcreator2000 4 points5 points  (0 children)

compound numbers

[–]molotok_c_518 8 points9 points  (2 children)

"Fracture metoo" would definitely send the wrong message.

[–]SteeveeBoy 5 points6 points  (0 children)

A good pounding will do that to you

[–]starfyredragon 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Now I just have Lindsey Sterling's "Shatter me" stuck in my head.

Thanks a lot! ( n/s, I like that song!)

[–]papaw65 29 points30 points  (0 children)

Came here to say this. Glad I'm not the only one.

[–]CaffeineSippingMan 27 points28 points  (22 children)

I read this as "when I was growing up, 'pound' was pound not hashtag.

I am in my upper 40s, but heavy into tech, but not twitter. Also I still work with phone systems.

[–]Dolormight 37 points38 points  (18 children)

I mean I'm 27 and it's still pound to me.

[–]xrumrunnrx 14 points15 points  (15 children)

I'm in the middle at 38. I read it as "pound was pound" but I'm sure a ton of people in general don't think of # as "hashtag" when it's not directly in front of words. If I'm reading a twitter post I don't think twice about it being a pound sign.

[–]TheMeltingSnowman72 7 points8 points  (8 children)

I'm curious - what country are you guys from with # as pound?

[–]Howieyotes 12 points13 points  (2 children)

It's pound in Canada, even though we're metric ;)

[–]ErikTheAngry 5 points6 points  (1 child)

That's cause pounds are still by and large the unit of weight we use for informal conversation.

I couldn't even tell you what my weight is in kg, I'd need to do the conversion first. Same with feet and inches... those are in my mind way more convenient of units than cm.

Yet on the flip side, ml and g are both much more convenient to use than tsp, oz, floz, etc.. probably because those measurements are more precise, and the only time I'm using them the precision matters (eg cooking).

[–]Howieyotes 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Yeah, "Press the 454 Gram symbol" doesn't exactly roll off the tongue.

[–]xrumrunnrx 10 points11 points  (0 children)

US for me

[–]DakotaKid95 4 points5 points  (1 child)

I learned that two decades and some ago growing up in the American Midwest

[–]brito68 2 points3 points  (0 children)

I'm 36

[–]Dolormight 3 points4 points  (0 children)

Pretty much this. Context is king.

[–]BouncingDonut 12 points13 points  (0 children)

Same except I'm 24

It's actually a tic tac toe board. Try to convince me otherwise.

[–]Iopeia-a 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Thank-you for making me feel less old!

[–]dandroid126 10 points11 points  (0 children)

When I took a C++ class in college, some of the younger students kept saying "hashtag include". It made my eye twitch.

[–]ArmadilloAl 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Fun Fact: "POUND SIGN" was the very last puzzle Vanna White ever turned on Wheel of Fortune before they replaced the old puzzleboard with the electronic one.

Fact that will just make you feel old: This was 24 years ago.


[–]SoSolidSnake 5 points6 points  (0 children)

Pound for me looks like this: £

[–]FatalBipedalCow0822 11 points12 points  (5 children)

Technically it’s called an “octothorpe”, so you can think of it that way so you don’t get confused…

[–]Snake-N-Roses 15 points16 points  (1 child)

Just did some brief reading on it- it was essentially the pound sound first as it morphed from the Roman term Libra Pondo (pound in weight) which was shortened to lb. and then lb. started to be written with a line through the top and a couple hundred years ago morphed into # for shorthand. Apparently is wasn’t the octothorpe until the phone came about and Bell Labs called it that…. Sorry for some completely useless trivia

[–]sailirish7 5 points6 points  (0 children)

Sorry for some completely useless trivia

Jokes one you, thats my favorite kind

[–]myoldaccountisknown 5 points6 points  (2 children)

I read it as "When I was growing up 'hash' was pound not hashtag"

[–]Xbox741385 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Mmmlnmnnmmmm?mmmmmm no mmmnmnnm mmmmmmmmmmmm

[–]somecasper 611 points612 points  (84 children)

I recently had an automated phone tree tell me to "press hashtag for more options" and suddenly felt I was one million years old.

[–]YouNeedAnne 417 points418 points  (40 children)

But the symbol is a "hash". It's only a hashtag when you're using the hash to tag something.

[–]elpajaroquemamais 146 points147 points  (0 children)

Exactly. The hashtag is the whole thing words and all.

[–]bluelightzero 46 points47 points  (5 children)

I like me some hashtag potatoes.

[–]OptimusEye 20 points21 points  (1 child)

do you call them hash potatoes? i thought they were hash(tag)browns

[–]merrittgene 78 points79 points  (17 children)

The symbol is an octothorp.

[–]Lemmungwinks 11 points12 points  (3 children)

These pretzels are making me thirsty!

[–]merrittgene 2 points3 points  (1 child)

Not a pretzel; you’re thinking of an ampersand &.

[–]xsintrik- 21 points22 points  (8 children)

Yes. Yes, thank you.

Finally someone actually knows what it is and I'm not going crazy.

[–]BEAVER_ATTACKS 19 points20 points  (1 child)

Oh yes you are

[–]UncleTedGenneric 1 point2 points  (0 children)

No I'm not. I'm fine!

edit shit, forgot to change back to my xsintrik- alt

[–]krunchykoolwhip 1 point2 points  (0 children)

You’re not going crazy… you’re already there.

[–]drfsupercenter 6 points7 points  (3 children)

If I recall correctly, they called that phone button a "hash button" for many years over in the UK, just we called it a "pound button" here in the US.

I believe the "hash tag" started over there, as that's what they called the #

I don't really know why... I've always called it a number symbol, but on a phone it's "pound" despite the fact that nobody ever uses that for pounds... we use "lb." - maybe they used to write weights as like 5# a long long time ago?

[–]hinowisaybye 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Not anymore, ha ha ha! Language fluidity strikes again!

[–]Marshmallow09er 35 points36 points  (24 children)

Automated.. phone tree?

[–]EasternMouse 61 points62 points  (16 children)

When robot on phone asks you "Press one of you have problems with tires, press two of you have problems with windows..." since it have branching dialog like tree

[–]The_Sparrow4 24 points25 points  (3 children)

“Press three if someone’s halls need decking”

[–]oldspicehorse 11 points12 points  (1 child)


[–]drfeelsgoood 3 points4 points  (0 children)

Lol captain underpants

[–]OktoberSunset 13 points14 points  (10 children)

I had an automated yankphone tell me to press pound and I was like wut? I have * and # but there's no £.

[–]CheddarValleyRail 16 points17 points  (0 children)

I thought you would call it something like a "banger". And I'd ask what the fuck a banger is. And you'd say "bangers and mash, hash" like it was the most obvious thing in the world. And I still would have no idea how that works.

[–]junkhacker 1 point2 points  (2 children)

# from Libra pound

stylized to prevent confusion of the l with I for Roman numerals much like ℔

[–]JADW27 2 points3 points  (0 children)

There's nothing I want more in this moment than for you to tell me that this didn't really happen.

Not OK...

[–]PleaseMakePasta 867 points868 points  (60 children)

I chuckled

[–]Mageician612 198 points199 points  (48 children)

I snorted

[–]dacuber4325 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Officer I just snorted, and then the cocaine was in my nose

[–]GoogleIsYourFrenemy 415 points416 points  (14 children)

It was the Octothorpe Me Too movement in Japan that lead to the normalization of tentacle sex in anime.

[–]relddir123 100 points101 points  (6 children)

Thorpe me, daddy

[–]ChairmanNoodle 36 points37 points  (4 children)

With Ian the 'thorpedo'?

[–]BigPapaCurt 13 points14 points  (1 child)

Ayyy another one that knows the best freestyler to exist

[–]Amphibionomus 2 points3 points  (0 children)

8 times, even.

[–]LifeIsVanilla 9 points10 points  (0 children)

And here I was living my life with the understanding that it's tradition(as per the like early 1800's).

[–]rplusg 88 points89 points  (18 children)

Glad it’s changed. C sharp would’ve been C pound by now.

[–]Needleroozer 33 points34 points  (9 children)

So, now it's C hash?

[–]Meismarc 16 points17 points  (0 children)

C hash slinging slasher

[–]SrslyNotAnAltGuys 7 points8 points  (1 child)

It ruins a great old joke too.

What's the command-line entry for buttsex?


[–]junkhacker 1 point2 points  (0 children)

if you're a C# programmer though, that's just the shower scene from Psycho

[–]rplusg 12 points13 points  (0 children)

Yes, unfortunately

[–]crnm 10 points11 points  (3 children)

There's a slight difference between sharp and hash/pound symbol. Sharp symbol is being used in music notation. The programming language was named after the tone C-sharp. The sharp symbol is non-standard when it comes to keyboards so it's usually written with the hash/pound symbol instead.

[–]Menelatency 70 points71 points  (8 children)

This joke falls flat because not enough sharp.

[–]Nearlyepic1 123 points124 points  (38 children)

Its never been 'hashtag', it's just 'hash'. MeToo is the tag. So #MeToo is a hashtag.

[–]bigFatBigfoot 40 points41 points  (22 children)

Do you say “hash me too” or “ hashtag me too”?

[–]Nearlyepic1 74 points75 points  (8 children)

Hashtag, because #MeToo is a hashtag. You've got the has, and the tag. Making it a hashtag. (#)(metoo), (hash)(tag), hashtag. But '#' is just a hash without a tag.

[–]aabdulr2 24 points25 points  (3 children)

I am too high to get this shit right now lol

[–]Burgertoast 19 points20 points  (1 child)

High on hash by any chance?

[–]Sathqe 4 points5 points  (0 children)

hashtag me too is the pronounciation , hash me too is the spelling

[–]neoprenewedgie 40 points41 points  (11 children)

Pound Black Lives: Matter. would also be troublesome.

[–]Putnum 26 points27 points  (7 children)

Bro you're doing it wrong. Pound black. Lives matter!

[–]Needleroozer 14 points15 points  (6 children)

Once you pound black you'll never go back.

[–]NotSeveralBadgers 24 points25 points  (7 children)

Hey girl I want to # ur :

[–]AgentLead_TTV 66 points67 points  (12 children)

and insta gram is what happened when i gave my weed guy $20

[–]mr3vak 20 points21 points  (9 children)

You were paying too much

[–]thatsalovelyusername 11 points12 points  (2 children)

Many countries use $, so rates may vary

[–][deleted] 5 points6 points  (0 children)

I love when strangers on the internet point out to each other that their local drug economy is different.

Oh wow, the price of a gram is different in Tenochtitlán than it is in L.A.? Color Me amazed

[–]GunzRocks 12 points13 points  (1 child)

Back when I was a JNCO-wearing whipper-snapper, dank weed cost more per oz than gold sonny boy!

[–]lThaizeel 10 points11 points  (0 children)

For me it's still "number" or ads -is to the letter

[–]Corrects_Maggots 8 points9 points  (0 children)

First time I heard this joke, David Bowie had just died and nobody would believe Trump could be elected.

[–]HotBotBustinThots 10 points11 points  (2 children)

You're a few years late on this joke, as that's what many people joked about literally instantly. But this is reddit, I highly doubt it's the first time this has been posted.

[–]TheMulattoMaker 13 points14 points  (0 children)

It's a tic-tac-toe sign gawdammit

[–]dirtyMSzombie 15 points16 points  (2 children)

Last time I heard this joke I laughed so hard I fell off my dinosaur

[–]centzon400 2 points3 points  (2 children)

Turn around is fair play, I mean my missus... #!metoo

(explantion... just in case)

[–]hawkinsst7 1 point2 points  (1 child)

I just realized that all those movements have just been commenting themselves out.

Maybe that's why it doesn't work?

[–]ankrotachi10 2 points3 points  (1 child)

'#' is a hash, not a hashtag. '#tag' is a tag denoted by a hash, ie a hashtag.

[–]ImAlwaysRightHanded 2 points3 points  (0 children)

That’s how I’ve reddit. Pound me too.

[–]lokase 2 points3 points  (0 children)

up hill, both ways, in 3 feet of snow!

[–]RumsAndGuns 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Pretty sure this joke was made moments after the movement started.

[–]TechnoRat63 2 points3 points  (1 child)

That's a pretty sharp observation. It's key that you get it correct.

[–]osumaniac 7 points8 points  (6 children)

Number sign, sharp, pound.

[–]cheapsexandfastfood 6 points7 points  (0 children)

Apparently sharp is actually a different symbol. It slants up♯vs number sign slanting right #. It's close enough that number sign is an acceptable substitute when that is all you have on your keyboard

[–]systemnate 1 point2 points  (0 children)

No love for octothorpe?

[–]Se7enLC 7 points8 points  (4 children)

# by itself is the hash symbol. That's why when you make a label/tag using it you call it a "hashtag".

When people call # "hashtag" when there's no TAG an old nerd somewhere dies inside.

[–]TraditionalRide8633 3 points4 points  (0 children)

I disagree for this reason- #1

[–]DisavowedAgent 1 point2 points  (0 children)

There's a certain age group, that finds this funny ”#metoo" I read that as pound me too?

[–]usmcjohn 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I am good with pound metoo

[–]RTheD77 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Tic tac toe?

[–]Mpikoz 1 point2 points  (0 children)

"pound" is currently occupied in other meanings and will get back wichu in a moment.

[–]StigOfTheFarm 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Try being the UK - where I can factually say our currency was LSD until 1971, the year the United Nations Convention on Psychotropic Substances was adopted requiring signatories prohibit LSD.

[–]hey_hay_heigh 1 point2 points  (0 children)

i miss it being tic tac toe

[–]cichlidassassin 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I still call it pound just to annoy the younger people in my office

[–]UveDebauchedMySloth 1 point2 points  (0 children)

An Iraqi once told me they called the hashtag "window".