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spray-painted less than three

{ x : x ∈ R ∧ x < 3 }

<3 is primarily used by 16-year-old girls to express to their e-pals on livejournal that they are still friends with each other, despite having a huge fight over who got to date some retarded basement-dweller, or to express their great happiness at not yet having been smote by their malevolent God for living such pointless existences.

Given that the internets are filled with mega ultra super geniuses and fat nerds, it was only a matter of time before it was discovered that a "less than" symbol and a numeral three looked, if one had blurry vision and an hyperactive imagination (see fanfic), vaguely like a on its side. Note that if turned onto the other side, it resembles a nutsack, as does the ♥ symbol if flipped. Leading experts do not believe that this is a coincidence.

This simple little gesture can lighten the day of even the saddest basement dweller. The fact that it is often used ironically is completely missed on desperate freaks.

In order to express even greater desire, more numeral threes are added. Some new users speculate that "<333333" is a stronger predicate than "<3", but it is in fact logically weaker, since everything that is less than 3 is also less than 333333, whereas some things are less than 333333 but fail to be less than 3 (for example, the number 9001).

A new phenomenon as documented on NPR etc...

haha, they're so clever, aha ha

Teens using their right hand to form a sideways less than sign and their left hand to form a sideways three and bringing them together to create said symbol.

The Evasion of Dreams, and Ideals Shattered to the Core of Being

</3 AKA less than some number divided by 3, Due to the lack of number we have to assume that it is one. < 1/3 = < 0.33...

Yes, now there is a new and exciting variant of our good friend, less than three. For it was only a matter of time until the denizens of the Internets needed a way to express their inner anguish, the twisting, all-consuming, woe of their very soul to their fellows. Lo and behold, just such a symbol offered itself for that very purpose: less than three, with some sort of stick thingy in the middle.

Despites its potentially dramatic origins, this lovable variant is now most often employed in sarcasm. Perhaps someday the angst of the internet shall reach fever-pitch, and our faithful little friend shall make a glorious return.

More <3 Faggotry


It's a ballsack, gentlemen. Nevar forget!

See also

Less than three is part of a series on Language & Communication
Languages and DialectsGrammar, Punctuation, Spelling, Style, and UsageRhetorical StrategiesPoetryThe Politics of Language and CommunicationMediaVisual Rhetoric
Click topics to expand