France Says 'Non' to 'Hashtag'
But some complain new term 'mot-dièse' not right word
By Mark Russell, Newser Staff
Posted Jan 31, 2013 10:23 AM CST
French language officials have said "non" to the word "hashtag." From now on, they want French speakers to call the Twitter symbol a "mot-di?se."   (Shutterstock)

(Newser) Au revoir, "hashtag." French language cops are striking the English word from their lexicon in favor of the francophone mot-dièse, reports the Local as picked up by Time. The Commission Générale de Terminologie et de Néologie is tasked with preserving the language, and similarly banned "email" in 2003—Frenchies are supposed to use courriel. However, many French folks are complaining that mot-dièse (aka "sharp word") is not the mot juste. And the twitterverse is snarking: "Why don't they use 'ashtag - zis is veery French & we would undérstund. ," tweeted one user. Dièse is actually the French word for a musical sharp; the "#" symbol is a croisillon, reports the New York Times.

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Showing 3 of 23 comments
Feb 3, 2013 1:57 PM CST
Never heard anyone in the US say now push the hash tag on your phone. "Hit the pound key when you are done."
Feb 2, 2013 4:31 AM CST
Dear Mr. Russell, I don't know if you are a journalist, but you certainly are an "imbécile" (no need to translate that, I suppose). "Dièse" is also the word for the "pound" key on a phone handset for instance (The Brits call it "hash sign"). So translating "hash tag" as "mot-dièse" (literally, "pound word" or "hash sign word") totally makes sense. Maybe next time you should check a basic French-English dictionary before making a fool of yourself on the Internet.
Jan 31, 2013 9:30 PM CST
They don't like anything. First Euro Disney, then Big Macs, and now the hashtag. Is nothing sacred?