We all have that one friend who can’t help themselves but to point out every little grammar mistake that we’ve made. Heck, it may even be you, yourself! From missing apostrophes, to misspelling their and they’re, Grammar Nazis can be quite annoying at times through casual texts. Even though we personally think it’s always best to use proper grammar!
Well, if you’ve felt the frustration before, don’t worry because you’re not the only one! Because an actual study has been conducted on such behaviour previously.
In a research done from the University of Michigan in 2016, it proved that a person who constantly points out grammar mistakes may be a jerk!
Source: Hollywood – Improv
The research studies the relationship between reading a stranger’s grammar mistakes or typos and the person’s character – so basically, it’s to see if the impulse to correct someone’s writing has a connection to their personality. A total of 83 people participated in this research and what they had to do is read an email and then complete a 10-item evaluation scale for each message.
The email deliberately had some major spelling mistakes including “teh” instead of “the” and grammar errors like “its” instead of “it’s”. After participants read through the emails, they were asked to judge the sender on their “perceived intelligence, friendliness, and other attributes.”
One of the questions had them judging the writer based on certain perceptions. They included the following:
- I think I would be friends with this person
- The writer would be a good housemate
- The writer seems a lot like me
- The writer seems friendly
- The writer seems more sophisticated than most of my friends
- The writer seems less intelligent than most of my friends
- The writer seems conscientious
- The writer seems considerate
- The writer seems likeable
- The writer seems trustworthy
Participants were even asked if they spotted any grammatical errors or typos and how much it actually irritated them.
Source: Project Conquest
Results from the data collected showed that extroverts are more likely to not pick at someone’s mistakes, as opposed to introverts with a higher tendency to do that. Researchers alleged that this may be due to extroverts usually view a person’s mistake separately from their core self, whereas introverts may closely connect the two.
It was also found that if you’re a Grammar Nazi, you’re more likely to be close-minded as well.
This study comes after the increasing prevalence of social media means that we often encounter written language characterized by both stylistic variation and outright errors. So researchers wanted to know how does the personality of the reader modulate reactions to non-standard text? Well, I guess it just means if you have the impulse to correct someone’s spelling, then you’re more likely to be an asshole!
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