Two Spaces After A Fullstop Could Reveal Your Age

Double Spacing After a Period Could Reveal Your Age

Depending on your age and where you went to school, you may have learned keyboard skills on a typewriter rather than a computer. Those of us who learned on a typewriter were usually told to type two spaces after a fullstop. Try single spaces on your resume and emails if you want to avoid some unintended age discrimination.

Photo by Seth Morabito

Career counselor Marc Miller wrote a LinkedIn Post covering some tips to avoid appearing older than you want to be when applying for a job. He recommends single spaces after a fullstop in all communications:

I am going to go out a limb and declare that putting two spaces after a period is obsolete. It is how most of us were taught to type on a typewriter. Therefore, most of us who do this (I have taught myself to stop putting two spaces after a period and it was hard) are over 50 years of age.

Over the years, I have heard that this has been used as a method of screening out older candidates.

We've covered the single vs double space debate before and its history from the typewriter days (though some dispute the original source of the double space). Whatever the reason, consider it the next time your write a potential employer.

5 Things On Your Resume That Make You Look Old [LinkedIn via Business Insider]


Comments

    I'm not even 30 yet (29) and I double space after a full stop. Although way back when in primary school we did (try) to learn typing on electric typewriters. But I didn't actually bother to learn to type until much later, and even then it was on computer, I guess I picked it up from my teacher.

    Or, you know, that they're very well versed in APA referencing, which calls for 2 spaces after every full stop as well...

      With today's software, wouldn't it just be better to use a single space, and have a full stop render some extra space behind itself?

        That's exactly what LaTeX does. Much better than using a word processor once you get used to it. Check out https://www.sharelatex.com

    It does not show age, it actually demonstrated correct use of grammar and punctuation.

      Letter spacing is not a grammatical function. It's purely stylistic.

        Letterspacingisnotagrammaticalfunction?It'spurelystylistic?

      I thought single spacing was now correct.

    Almost 30 here, and I learned this from my parents. I guess they learned it from using typewriters though.

    "Must have good written communication Skills". Count the number of spaces after this sentence.

    I'm 35 and have always used a double space after a full stop. It's how I was taught and it's what I'll continue to do.

    I'm 35 and double space after periods.. I'd have thought that "most being over 50" is a bit of a stretch - I can't imagine that I would have started doing it had I not been taught that way at school.

    Last edited 14/11/14 9:05 pm

    35yo here too and can't handle single dots. Makes it hard to read, especially for text to be read aloud. Maybe its a good thing to be perceived to be older than I am!

    I'm 35 and was taught at school to always use 2 spaces after a fullstop. Other comments seem to indicate the same thing, and the "over 50" comment isn't right.

    I always use double spacing after a period. It's grammatically correct and makes long prose easier to read. Unfortunately, HTML renders double spaces as a single space. Seriously, I don't think that people will make decisions based upon whether or not you double space. They should, because if you single-space, you're wrong.

    "This has been used as a method of screening out older candidates". What a load of rubbish. Honestly what employer is looking at anything like this?

    The letter "s" is missing from the pangram in the image - it should be "dogs" rather than "dog", or "jumps" rather than "jumped".

    I'm 51 and I use a single space after a full stop. I used to use two, but since the current consensus is to use a single space, that's what I do. I don't find text any harder to read. If any company is that picky and using this technique to filter applicants, it's probably not a great place to work.

    Gee, I'm old too, and have never used double spaces. Always struck me as affected and unnecessary.

    I'm a bit surprised that anyone at Lifehacker knows what a typewriter is. Now where did I leave my daisywheel for my electric Olivetti?

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