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Ken
08-26-2008, 09:29 PM
back in the old days newspaper journalists used to type a 5-digit number at the conclusion of their articles instead of "The End." Would anybody know the number? I searched about the internet to no avail.
Advanced thanks :-)

Shadow_Ferret
08-26-2008, 09:32 PM
I thought they just typed

-30-

I'm not sure what the 5 digit number was.

Ken
08-26-2008, 09:39 PM
thanks SF.
Googled "the end or 30" and came up with lots of hits verifying this:

At the end of the story, drop three spaces and type "The End" or "-30-".
www.writers.ns.ca/shortfic.html

Finally, the –30– question: Old-school journalists used to type that at the end of their stories, to signal the conclusion of their stories for the folks on ...

Still sorta remember there being a 5-digit one, but I guess not.

DeleyanLee
08-26-2008, 09:41 PM
Oh, good. I thought it was -30- also (that's 4 digits, if you count it up).

Back in the days of typewriters, I saw a lot of fiction writers putting -30- at the end of the mss also. Confused me to no end until someone explained where it came from.

Phaeal
08-26-2008, 09:43 PM
Shoot, I thought they just ripped the last page out of the typewriter with a resounding whoop, then rushed into their editor's office to torture the poor sod.

Guess I've been watching too many Kolchak reruns.

Tish Davidson
08-26-2008, 09:54 PM
Some also used ### on a separate line

alleycat
08-26-2008, 09:55 PM
Shoot, I thought they just ripped the last page out of the typewriter with a resounding whoop, then rushed into their editor's office to torture the poor sod.

Guess I've been watching too many Kolchak reruns.
They had to also scream, "I've got a scoop!"

johnnysannie
08-26-2008, 09:57 PM
back in the old days newspaper journalists used to type a 5-digit number at the conclusion of their articles instead of "The End." Would anybody know the number? I searched about the internet to no avail.
Advanced thanks :-)

Old days? Old days? ;)

I ended with - 30 - for the college newspapers, all the papers I've worked for, and still end my column with it each week when I send it to my editor.

Ken
08-26-2008, 10:02 PM
30 it is, then.
Thanks everyone.
ps Wonder how 30 came to stand for the end?

IceCreamEmpress
08-26-2008, 10:12 PM
30 it is, then.
Thanks everyone.
ps Wonder how 30 came to stand for the end?

It's from the Phillips Code, developed by a commercial telegrapher named Walter Phillips in 1879. This article (http://www.deadmedia.org/notes/25/257.html)talks about it and other telegraphing codes, but commits the common error of saying the Phillips Code was created in 1859.

johnnysannie
08-26-2008, 10:15 PM
There are several theories. I was taught - in journalism class - that it was a signal to the typesetter to leave a space.

Here's what a link I found says:http://saila.com/journalism/thirty/

Ken
08-26-2008, 10:23 PM
neat.
Thanks for the links.
Articles like this always interest me.
Will return after reading them.

"Its origins have long been the subject of after- hours discussion among news people, but Harnett leans to the most accepted theory == that '30' was borrowed from a telegraphers' code adopted by Western Union in 1859. In that code, many numbers were assigned a term. '73' meant best regards; '95' preceded an urgent message; and '1' meant very important.

http://www.deadmedia.org/notes/25/257.html

a Roman numeral translation of the XXX symbol put at the end of “very early, handwritten news items”;

http://saila.com/journalism/thirty/

"XXX" is still in use, though for somewhat of a different purpose, these days ;-)

73 everybody :-)