Memes, hashtags, and very short video clips: The top digital trends of 2013

CINCINNATI - Remember these big moments in social and digital media? We’re recapping some of the events that are sure to go down in the history books.

Real-time responses. As brands become more comfortable in the social and digital sphere, we saw a lot more, umm, sassiness this year. We also saw some of our favorite brands react to topical situations quickly and cleverly. Who can forget the Super Bowl delay and how, regardless of the final score, Oreo was the REAL winner ?

#HashtagNation. Much like suburban residents like to keep up with the neighbors, social platforms like to keep up with each other. So, it was no surprise when Facebook decided to keep pace with Twitter and roll out the hashtag . The news was met with wide array of responses, from, “finally!” to “seriously?!” No matter how you felt when you saw those blue highlighted boxes on your news feed, it doesn’t look like we’ll be saying bye to the Facebook hashtag in 2014.

Twitter goes public. Facebook went public in 2012; so, this year, it was Twitter’s turn . In November, the social media giant priced its IPO at $26 a share and closed its first day at $44.90 a share – up 73 percent.

Google+ breaks a billion. Facebook still reigns supreme in the social media landscape, but 2013 was the year Google+ took its place at the table too. The social platform reached 1 billion registered users in September.

Vine-tastic! “Wait, I want to get this for Vine!” was probably an expression that would have left you scratching your head like crazy in 2012. The 6-second video sharing app entered the playing field this year, purchased by Twitter and promoted as the next “big thing” that would rival Instagram. Which, at the time, didn’t have a video option…

then Instagram added video. I remember downloading the Vine app, posting my first video, and betting anyone around me that “Instagram’s gonna roll out video next.” Sure enough, in June, Facebook-owned Instagram said it would add a video-sharing feature so users wouldn’t just be limited to still photos. Many saw this as a way to maintain dominance against the quickly-growing Vine app; Instagram even one-upped Vine by making sharable videos more than twice as long: 15 seconds.

Instagram also added a direct sharing option in December, allowing you to share photos and videos with only certain friends. But you can do the same thing via Facebook message or, you know, a text message--so I’m still scratching my head over that one.

Meme crazy. Is it just me, or did memes just blow up this year? I couldn’t get on the Internet without seeing Boromir point out that, “one does not simply” [insert action here] or Ned Stark directing you to “Brace yourself” for something. I mean, we even found a John Matarese meme while browsing Google this year.

All hail the meme.

Justin Timberlake brings MySpace back. He brought sexy back in 2006, and in 2013, he brought one of the originals back. If you had a MySpace account “back in the day,” you know the history: it was cool, then it was creepy, then Facebook happened and MySpace got kicked to the curb and served as the butt of most social media jokes. With Timberlake at the helm, though, the platform got a makeover and a re-launch with a focus on music and bringing fans closer than ever to their favorite artists.

What were your favorite--or most cringeworthy--digital moments of 2013?

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