What Does HT Mean?

This modern acronym refers to an old-fashioned gesture

An image of a man tipping his hat.
Bernd Vogel/Getty Images

You might come across the acronym "HT" followed by a person's name. Here's what it means.

HT stands for:

Hat Tip

A hat tip is a traditional gesture from the 19th and early 20th century, typically between two men. A man would use his index finger and thumb to "tip" the brim of his hat toward another man. Alternatively, he might have lifted his hat entirely off his head to exaggerate the hat tip.

The Origin of the Hat Tip

Traditionally, a hat tip was used as an expression of gratitude or acknowledgement. It was also a gesture used to greet someone upon meeting them.

How HT Is Used Now

People no longer physically tip their hats to one another these days, but they certainly use the reference of the gesture in certain situations online. The most common place you'll typically see HT is in news articles and blog posts.

HT is typically used to give credit to the individual or source of a fact or piece of information. A news writer or blogger might include HT followed by the name of the person or source with an optional hyperlink to their social profile, blog or website. This credit is usually put directly after the fact or piece of information is stated, sometimes in parenthesis.

Other places you might see HT is used include anywhere on social media, such as Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. Virtual hat tips are great to use on social media because you can usually tag the user who you're crediting, so they receive a notification that they've been tagged or mentioned.

Another variation of HT is H/T, with a forward slash between the two letters. The letter may or may not be written in uppercase.

Examples of How HT Is Used

Example 1

Celebrity news article: "Mick Jagger officially stated that he will not be going on tour at this time due to necessary medical treatments. (HT: US Weekly)"

In this first example, a celebrity news site shares a breaking story development about Mick Jagger, as heard first from and confirmed by US Weekly. So the article writer gives appropriate credit to the original source by using HT and putting it in parenthesis at the end of the sentence.

Example 2

Blog post: "If you're creating a list post for your blog, summarize that list in an image graphic and post it to Pinterest. Those types of pins do really well. Ht PinterestMarketingBlog.com"

In this second example, a blogger shares a Pinterest marketing tip with other bloggers that they originally learned from a different blog. To give credit, the blogger simply puts "Ht" at the end followed by the name of the blog and perhaps even a link to it.

Example 3

Facebook post: "To everyone who's in tomorrow morning's psych 101 class, you should know that it's probably going to be cancelled. h/t Brian Simpson"

This last example shows how someone might use HT in a social media post. A Facebook user gets word that a class is likely going to be cancelled and notifies everyone in that class, but not without crediting the person they heard it from first. Perhaps they even tagged Brian Simpson in their post.

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