1. Encore Careers, which helps baby boomers make the switch from midlife work to "encore careers," uses a semicolon to elegant effect in its logo:
The website's home page reinforces the concept with a headline:
Here's how the organization's newsletter explains it ("What's Up with That Semicolon?"):
Between Then and Now is a semicolon, the pause that represents the transition, the time to rest, reflect and retool for a new stage of life and work. The new Encore.org is focused on that transition.
2. Encore isn't the first brand to use the semicolon creatively. Wit, the play by Margaret Edson that won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 1999, was published in book form with this cover:Wikipedia entry,
On the cover of the published book of the play, the use of a semicolon in place of the letter i gives W;t as one representation of the play's title. In the context of the play, the semicolon refers to the recurring theme of the use of a semicolon versus a comma in one of John Donne's Holy Sonnets.
3. In "Learning to Love the Semicolon," Visual Thesaurus Executive Producer Ben Zimmer documents some recent "rumblings of appreciation for the semicolon," from New York to Paris. I love the New York subway sign that correctly employs the semicolon in its admonition to newspaper discarders: "Please put it in a trash can; that's good news for everyone."
I also have some sad semicolon news to report. According to a Hubspot study published earlier this week and reported in Fast Company, there are "nine scientifically proven ways to get retweeted [have your message forwarded to a new set of followers] on Twitter." Using a semicolon is not one of them; indeed, Fast Company summarizes this finding as "Semicolon = Satan." Hubspot's viral marketing scientist,* Dan Zarrella, goes so far as to call semicolons "the only unretweetable punctuation mark."
Of course, there's more to life—and communication—than Twitter. (Hat tip: Steve Silberman. Via, um, Twitter.)
Graph: Fast Company.
* File that one under "job titles that didn't exist when you graduated from high school."