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While for PR pros using ###, -30-, or sometimes even –END-, is habit, many of us don’t know why or where it originated.

There are several theories––from the Civil War era when Western Union 92 Code of telegraphic shorthand was used to signify the end of a transmission to a time when stories were written in longhand and X marked the end of a sentence, XX the end of a paragraph, and XXX the end of a story (XXX=30 in Roman numerals).

You may have missed them, but pop culture has also seen references to “-30-.” The finale of the TV series The Wire, which concerned the media, was called “-30-“; an episode of Law & Order about a poisoned reporter was also titled “30,” Bugs Bunny even stutters, “That’s -30- for today” in a cartoon.

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