7 Reasons Why Spelling and Grammar are Important on Facebook, Twitter and other Social Media Sites
Before personal computers, the Internet, cell phones and tablets, the majority of casual communication was executed through spoken word. It wasn't vital to know how to spell, or even to know the proper way to form a sentence. But of course - times have changed. The predominant way of exchanging information in the modern age is through a thing called:
I have over 2000 "friends" on Facebook. Like many of its users, I know less than half of them in person. Some I've never communicated with in any form at all. So my only invitation into getting to know them better is by reading what they write.
I have to preface this by saying that I really do try to be forgiving. I know that some people are hurried, or typing on their phone with their fingernails and can easily slip up. But as a dedicated wall post reader, it's easy to identify certain patterns.
It may seem trivial to you, but there are indeed some ramifications to posting with little-to-no thought or care. What you write for anyone to see is kinda permanent, and you will be judged by anyone and everyone that reads it. Maybe "judged" is a little extreme, but you will certainly be characterized, especially by people that don't know you well or in-person.
You may be thinking: "So what?! I don't care what anybody thinks about me!"
That'll work for some folks. But for the rest of you, here are some pretty good reasons why you should take the time to spell check, use proper grammar and punctuation, and re-read what you've written before clicking "Post."
1. It makes you look smart
Let's cut right to it. If you can't form a sentence in writing, people will perceive you as dumb. You may be gifted in other respective areas, but it won't matter to anyone that doesn't actually know you in-person. The attention span of interneters is seriously limited. One quick glance at any careless rambling and you're instantly classified as an idiot.
Knowing how to spell and to convey an idea or thought with clarity is recognized by other Facebookers - even if they don't know or interact with you. They may not be interested in your topic(s) of choice, but they will still perceive you as intelligent if you take the time to write correctly.
2. People will understand you
Everyone's primary reason for posting on Facebook is to share something that they find interesting to themselves - and let's all be honest - most people want a bunch of "Likes" and some positive comments. But if your grammar and spelling is terrible, nobody is going to take the time to decipher your intended message.
3. It's Good For You
We all want attention and validation. If we didn't, we wouldn't post anything or even be on Facebook or Twitter at all. And if you've made the choice to share parts of your life and thoughts with the general public, then you obviously want someone to agree with and/or support your feelings or activities.
The likelihood of receiving positive feedback is exponentially increased by representing yourself as a person who knows what they're talking about. Your typed words are your "voice" - speaking to the rest of the world. If you write well - to the reader - you're speaking well, and you'll get a better response.
Stop for just a moment before you submit your typed entry and consider whether it clearly conveys what you want to say. You can then easily and quickly make any necessary corrections. It will amplify your confidence and subsequently make you feel good.
Do you proofread what you write before you post?
A 2012 poll conducted by careerbuilder.com found that 37% of employers check Facebook and other social media sites like Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube when considering potential candidates for an open position. One of the major criteria that they focus on is good communication skills.
It's not beyond the realm of possibility that in the near future, companies will require a once-over of an applicant's current and past internet postings in order for them to be hired. So even if you think just misspelling one or two words is no big deal, remember that your history online is an easily accessible public record of your character and tendencies.
If you're single, you'll always at least be aware of whether or not another person is someone you would date if you have the opportunity. Aside from the attractiveness of the potential love interest, your primary focus will be on what they say. If they can't form a proper sentence, you'll be less likely to believe them to be a suitable mate. People are going to view you in the same manner.
6. You'll have more "real" friends
There will be times when you meet someone in-person, only spend a little time speaking to them, but still end up becoming "friends" online. It's there where you'll really get to know them by reading what they post...and vice versa. If and when you see them again, you'll have more to talk about - and if you've been well spoken, they'll feel like they are talking to someone who has it together. If you have found some common interests, you'll have a new real-life friend.
7. You'll be respected
It's pretty much a given that everyone is not going to agree with your opinions. It's obvious that not everybody on your friend list is going to care about your thoughts or activities. However, if you can be articulate online, you'll be subconsciously respected by anyone that glances at your postings.
Your online identity is created and maintained solely by you. Anything you post can and will end up on search engines and websites - and will remain online as long as there is an internet. Whether you realize it or not, you are writing your own legacy. It's in your best interest to represent yourself as an intelligent human being. Take the time and care to be your best. In the long run, you'll be happy that you did.
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