A year ago today I had run out of patience with the #MR hashtag on Twitter. While it had a thriving community of researchers, it was also full of spam, drive-by tweeters and nonsense.

Tongue planted firmly in cheek, I wrote a pastiche of the U.S. Declaration of Independence calling for market researchers to formally secede from the #MR hashtag: #MRX Hashtag Community’s Declaration of Independence from #MR.

Yesterday I checked the 100 most recent #MR posts and found that researchers had in fact seceded. Only 1 post of the 100 was related to market research – and it was also tagged #MRX. So #MR is dead as a research hashtag. Long live #MRX!

Back in that first week using #MRX, participants shared 157 unique links (unique in their short-URL format, that is). This month has seen an average of 923 unique links a week, a 487% increase from that modest beginning and a sign of the continued health of the #MRX community.

A perennially popular link, which I typically leave out of my top 5 retweets of the week, is The #MRX Daily. First set up by Ole Andresen of Confirmit, it provides a newspaper-style view of the links being discussed on #MRX each day:

In its first year, #MRX certainly went further than I ever intended.  Some people have even taken to using MRX as a general acronym for the research industry itself!

And it inspired me to create a short-lived comic strip about the adventures of Mr. X, a time-traveling market researcher.

Not that is has all been fun and games: there are posts for #MrX, a mystery employee of the Pasaraya department store in Jakarata, and for weather alerts for Morristown, Tennessee. Jim Longo recently complained “Sometimes the #mrx stream seems like one big echo chamber” to which Reg Baker concurred, tweeting, “Only sometimes?” Yet the average number of retweets per link is low: in one recent week, 43% of links were never retweeted and the average number of retweets for the rest was 2.3. This really is a long tail of content being shared with others.

To me, #MRX truly is a community, one I learn a lot from and am thankful for. If you haven’t stopped by yet, check out http://search.twitter.com/search?q=#MRX. Here’s to a successful and informative Year 2 in the #MRX world!