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Alexis Jane Torre Headshot

Why I'm Not a Grammar Freak

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Nowadays, it seems that more and more people are calling themselves "grammar Nazis" or "grammar police," meaning that they are more than willing to correct someone using the wrong kind of "your" or not adding a comma where it's needed, especially on social networking and blogging sites. Even though I understand where they're coming from, I'm just not a grammar freak. If you post a comment on a band's video on YouTube saying "their great," I won't call you out on it. If you comment on my Facebook status with "thats funny," I won't remind you about the rules of contractions needing apostrophes. And, even if you text me, "Your still able to hang out today, right?" I'm more than likely to respond with "Yeah!!!" because I'm not that concerned with your use of the wrong "your" and frankly, I just really never reject offers to hang out and like using exclamation points in text messages.

Maybe it seems like I'm just a lazy teenager who doesn't want to double-check what they write before they send, post or tweet it. But that's not the case. In academic and professional settings, I definitely understand the importance of good grammar. You should strive to be grammatically correct when writing an English essay, but, in my opinion, not when texting a friend. And I don't necessarily think there's a clear and direct connection between someone's academic and professional grammar skills and their grammar in a casual setting. Just like it's a pretty fair assumption that you're much more formal when writing something for school or work than you're just texting a friend or commenting on their picture, I think it's safe to assume people are much more careful with their grammar when writing a lab report or filling out college applications than when they're just asking if you can go catch a movie or wondering where you took your profile picture. So should it be expected that essays, reports, and all that good stuff have correct grammar? Most definitely. But should texts, tweets, posts, comments and whatnot be held to the same standard? In my opinion, nope.

My biggest reason for not being a grammar freak is that a grammar error has never really stopped me from understanding what's being said. If someone asks me, "How is you're day going?" I'm not actually going to be confused if they're wondering how good/bad my day is or if for some reason they are actually saying that I'm a day. If someone says "Let's go get food than go bowling," I'm not going to think that they're trying to make the comparison that going out to eat would be more fun than going bowling. Plus, I get that eating is necessary and all, but could you really make the argument that it's better than bowling? Even if someone texted/posted something like "Me and you should go to mall some other time. Its gonna be super busy today. They're will be so many people there!" I still will get the message despite three grammar errors (and the use of "gonna," which isn't really even a word). Basically, it comes down to the simple fact that incorrect grammar doesn't create some kind of communication barrier. Language is meant for people to be able to communicate and connect with one another, and if improper grammar doesn't get in the way of that, I really can't find a reason to freak out about it.

Personally, I'm not a grammar freak and probably never will be. Do you feel the need to correct others' grammar, even in casual conversations with a friend, or does incorrect grammar not bother you? Has incorrect grammar ever really hindered your ability to understand what someone's saying? Let me know by leaving a comment!