Some significant historical dates are expressed in numerical shorthand: 7/7, 9/11, 8888. (The last number represents Burma’s People Power Uprising, also known as the 8888 Uprising, which peaked on 8 August 1988.) But the riot at the US Capitol that took place on January 6, 2021, is widely known by a different abbreviation: J6. Where did this unusual contraction come from, and how did it spread?
The source is not an official one. The full name of the governmental entity looking into the insurrection is the Select Committee to Investigate the January 6th Attack on the United States Capitol,; the URL is january6th.house.gov.
Nor did “J6” originate on Twitter, although the abbreviation has proved useful on that 280-character platform, where it pops up across the political spectrum.
(By the way, it’s spelled un-American. Thank you, Jonathon Owen.)
Nor did I find any evidence that any media outlet invented “J6.”
Instead, it appears that the “J6” abbreviation originated from within the insurrection.