A tagging app (or whatever else is displaying the data) needs to pick a single short name. That presumably means there can really only be one primary short name per locale.
Not really, if there are multiple short names then I can use additional logic to use the one I want, I may always pick the first one sorted alphabetically, or the shortest one. But the point is at least I have a shortname, whereas without its not possible to consistently create one programmatically for the same reasons it is not possible to consistently create a sort name from the artist name.
That would also help tidy up the aliases because search hint is is being used for all different kinds of aliases at the moment
Search hints are intended to be untidy, though, as that’s where everything goes that someone (even misguidedly) might search for.
Any alias whatever its type is used by MusicBrainz search but there is a clear difference between a search hint which is a misspelling such as J. S. Bacj or J.S.Bash to help users who spell the name wrong and perfectly valid variations on the name such as Bach or J.S. Bach - it should be possible to distinguish between the two.
I almost can’t resist from adding WTF Bach alias to him!