The History of the & tag
This started on (or possibly before) the Otherkind-Hosts email list on Yahoogroups!
Before we became "The Crisses" we'd sign off our emails differently every time: "Criss & Co." "Criss & Collaborative" "Criss & Compendium" "Criss & Consortium" .... ad nauseum lol. At some point we finally came up with Crisses, but by then a multi had become abbreviated simply as their name with an & symbol i.e. "Criss&" short for "Criss & Company"..... ta da Smile
From Otherkind-Hosts list - July 23, 2003
Question: How would you mark a system or group affiliation within a system?
The proper way is personal choice, I think.
I use numerator/denominator at times: Frank/Crisses (like in math....) which would be pronounced "of" as in a ratio. Similarly I use "of" as a conjunction: Frank of Crisses, which is the same thing, only in English instead of math terms.
Frankly, "to the Nth power" could work too...although I might put it the other way around [Edited: Crisses^Star ....Crisses to the Star power :) ] heh....but that's personal preference, again. The less confusing it is for others to pick up, the better.
On bodyname stuff
"Crisses" is already plural. When people's [system] names are plural, we don't bother with anything else...i.e. Doltaghey House, The Crew, etc.
I use "&" as an abbreviation for &-company for multiple system names (Lucy&, George&, Sarah&) to make it clear that a normal usename or birthname is all-inclusive of the system rather than that-person-specific [….] Only in the cases of [when the individual named exists in the system] do I pronounce it -- and it's the suffix "and" to the name verbally. I also have been known to use this for subsystems in my own head: Aliessa&, Star&, Christina&...
Those are my personal conventions. I started the & Company thing a long time ago and it got abbreviated and just pronounced as "and" because I got tired of having to come up with a new C-word every time I wrote something ;) (Criss & Crew. Criss & Consortium. Criss & Cacaphony. Criss & Coconspirators, Criss & Companions, etc. thus it eventually became Criss& :) --- it took in the community. Then I had to go be different *AGAIN* and become "The Crisses" :) )
Further back, 3/28/2000, Otherkind-Hosts email list
[…]We used to have a Body-Name convention online of calling people by the given name with an "&" after it (meaning "main host and company" or "body and everyone inside it")...at that point I/all was Criss& --and I still use that convention for subsets of myselves like Star&, or Christina& […]
Current usage 15 years later (2018)
& is often appended to a host name or body name to depict the whole system, when there's no system name known. It can also be appended to a gatekeeper or veil name of a subsystem to denote the entire subsystem. When used aloud it's usually a trailing "and". Criss& is "Criss-and" but in live conversation sometimes people say "and company".
/ and ^ are used interchangably to separated Headmate from System Name. Thus Star/Crisses or Star^Crisses can be used interchangably. Usually just spoken as "of".