Jennifer Gauthier/Metro A driver writes text messages while he drives a car.

In today’s fast-paced dating world of liking and swiping, poor texting habits can be an immediate deal-breaker.

According to a recent Digital Flirting Rules survey by Omlet — a new open messaging app developed by Stanford students — both men and women ranked informal spelling and funky abbreviations as their No. 1 turnoff when it comes to mobile messaging.

Multiple exclamation points, poor punctuation and grammar, all lower case words and acronyms (IDK, BRB, WTF) also ranked high on the list of chatting pet peeves among young adults.

Who knew we were so formal?

I guess ur cre8tive msgs might not B werking 4 u after all.

A ubiquitous array of free and monetized apps and dating sites have radically changed the way we seek out and communicate with our potential romantic partners.

Even if you actually manage to connect with a stranger IRL (in real life), followup flirtations are bound to happen between your devices. Which means early on in the relationship, your touchscreen courtship skills are just as important as in-person chemistry.

So if poor sentence structure and truncated words are irritating texting turnoffs — are we doing anything right?

Typing LOL after every sentence or using multiple exclamation points might come across as desperate (and annoying!!!), but research shows that cutesy emoticons are actually surprisingly lovable in reasonable doses.

According to Omlet’s survey, 31 per cent of men and 38 per cent of women prefer to receive chat and text messages with multiple emoticons and emojis.

So feel free to pepper your correspondence with a casual thumbs-up or a flirty wink-face — just don’t go overboard.

Excessive emojis are acceptable when swapping stories among friends, but you should probably resist the urge to spell out your first-date plans in a hieroglyphic paragraph of beer glasses and ramen-noodle bowls.

It’s also advisable to avoid employing symbolic hearts to express real emotion, unless you’re an eight-year-old.

Ultimately, timing is everything when it comes to digital communication. Frequency, followup speed and time of day are important considerations for both men and women who are pursuing a new relationship via their smartphone. And if you’re really interested in someone, you should be taking the time to spell out your words and punctuate your sentences correctly.

And for goodness sake, let’s all give up the Y2K-era textspeak; even the most lacklustre romantic prospect deserves better than a lazy and dated “c u l8er.”

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