I’m very interested in the motivation behind uses of hashtags on Twitter — I have a feeling that they are more created than searched.
I would be very interested to see Twitter Search stats — to see how many people actually look at collections hashtagged content rather than just pump them out because it seems part of etiquette. This hypothesis brewed when I saw how hashtag use breaks down of during real big events (World Cup, election) — as people already know the context, I am thinking that they are used more as a shorthand for context than searched or monitored.
Without much hope of getting that valuable data, I have created a very short questionnaire to get some feeling for use of hashtags. Due to the responses being self-selecting I am assuming that the results will be biased towards experienced Twitter users, but we’ll see. That this may be compounded due to my network containing a lot of social media profesionals is also a worry, so I would appreciate if you would spread it as far as you can.