Grammar for (Online Dating) Dummies

By Katherine Hahn for GalTime.com

Ever wondered why the cutie architect from Match never answered your message? Why the law student who liked fishing didn't take the bait with your Hinge opener? Well, really, who knows... the world of online dating is a crazy place. One thing is clear, though: If you are a crappy speller or even a worse grammar-er, it is time to up your game if you want to catch -- and keep -- your online crush. 

Dating site Zoosk recently conducted a survey, and a whopping 72% of respondents reportedly consider poor spelling and grammar to be a deal breaker.

YEP, nearly three-quarters will delete, ignore or swipe left if you are messy with your messages.

Is that you're biggest pet peeve to? ( The errors are killing us!)

Emily Bartz of NextAdvisor.com has studied patterns in online dating and says it makes sense .  "Poor spelling and grammar give off a sense of carelessness", she says. You may seem lazy, or like you don't really care enough to even proofread.  "While a few slip-ups may not seem like a big deal, online daters should remember that this is their first impression with a potential match, which means their match is likely paying attention to every last detail."

Digital body language
Bartz equates bad spelling and grammar to poor body language on a date. "You wouldn't sit across the table from someone with your arms crossed and your eyes down because it might give off the impression that you are uninterested or bored." 

Most common mistakes
According to Bartz, the biggest error is a lack of precision. "Just as in traditional, real-life dating, each comment and question you add to your conversation with a match should be thoughtful and well-crafted," she says. "Taking the time to form well thought-out questions and comments that specifically pertain to the person you're connecting with and editing them to the best of your ability will pay off in the end."

Battles of the (spell-checking) sexes
Is one sex judg-ier than the other? Only by a smidge. Grammarly reviewed 10,000 eHarmony matches, and 75% of men and 88% of women say they judge a person by their use of grammar; many rate grammar higher than confidence.   So, what to do if spelling is simply not your strong suit?  I mean, that doesn't mean you can't be a killer date, right?

Clean up your act
Spell-check is your friend. Um, you just have to actually use it! "Doing a quick run through of your profile and messages with a spell checker is a great way to make sure you haven't made any careless mistakes."

Skip 'text talk': Dump acronyms and any slang that may be negatively misconstrued.

Second opinions: Have a trustworthy friend look over what you've written to make sure it makes sense.

Talk to yourself:  Reading the messages out loud can catch pesky mistakes. 

Bottom line: No one is perfect, but you do have to get to the in-person date in order to show off your shining personality to its fullest. That means taking out a dictionary, thesaurus and calling your high school English teacher, if necessary, during those early chats. LOL.

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Emily Bartz is a writer at NextAdvisor.com who covers audiobooks, online backup, cloud storage, online dating, online college, people search, legal services, online stamps and remote desktop. Her research and writing have been featured in publications including the Los Angeles Times, Bustle, The Huffington Post and Boston Metro. She is a graduate of Sonoma State University, where she earned a bachelor's degree in English.