For context: see http://stackoverflow.com/questions/24295183/is-there-a-way-to-pass-a-column-family-containing-colons-to-the-shells-scan-com
For commands that have a -c option (e.g. InsertCommand, GrepCommand, ScanCommand), there is currently no way to specify a column family that contains a colon as it is interpreted as the delimiter between the column family and column qualifier 'cf[:cq]'.
It would be very simple to support a basic escape '\' character that would allow users to use column families which contain colons in the shell.
For example, to scan for the Key with a row of foo, a column family of person:information, and a column qualifier of name, I should be able to submit the following in the shell:
user@instance> scan -r foo -c person\:information:name
foo person:information:name  Josh