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A Tweet Chat is a discussion on Twitter happening at a specific time on a specific topic that uses a hashtag to keep all the tweets in the discussion organized into a single stream of questions, comments and answers. What's a hashtag? Here's a good explanation.

USA WEEKEND has had tweet chats on food and pets, and we have designated hashtags for each: #usawcooks and #usawpets. Our discussions center around an expert in their field who answers questions posed by USA WEEKEND (the moderator) and our readers who are participating. Questions and comments, even your own expert suggestions are welcome!

You don't need a Twitter account to follow a tweet chat discussion, but to contribute to the conversation you will need a Twitter account. Here's the link to sign up.

We've found the easiest way to follow or participate in a tweet chat is to use the website tweetchat.com. The video below is quick and informative for learning how to use Tweetchat.com if you have a Twitter account. If you don't have one and just want to follow along, you can go to Tweetchat.com and without signing in, put the hashtag in the search box at the top of the page. You'll see the tweets as they are posted in real time.

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