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Typos in your online dating profile can make you seem less attractive, study finds

first_imgShare Having language errors in your online dating profiles can make you appear less attractive as a romantic partner, according to new research published in the Journal of Social and Personal Relationships. The research also suggests that people associate different types of language errors with different personality attributes.“We were interested in the (negative) effects of language errors on the impressions people form of the attractiveness of a dating profile owner,” said study author Tess van der Zanden, a PhD student at the Department of Communication and Cognition of Tilburg University.“Various online dating sites recommend their members check their spelling and grammar before publishing their profile online. An example was found on a blog at OkCupid, which recommended to their members to proofread the profile text, as 75% of the people say they are less likely to respond to someone whose profile has spelling mistakes.” “How they got to these numbers is not really known, and they seem to be based on answers given in large general surveys among site members. However, the extent to which language errors do negatively affect perceptions of attractiveness was not yet empirically investigated. If a person indicates in such a survey that (s)he will be turned off by language errors, this does not necessarily mean that this person rates a profile owner as less attractive once encountering a profile with language errors.”In their first study, 373 Dutch dating app users viewed and rated two online dating profiles — one which included language errors and one that did not. The researchers found that online dating profiles with language errors were rated as less socially and romantically attractive than those without errors.But this effect was mostly driven by the 33.5% of participants who reported noticing the errors. “Apparently, most people do not observe language errors in online dating profiles, but for those who do, the errors severely damage the profile owner’s dating potential,” the researchers said.Next, the researchers examined if the type of language error mattered. “Previous studies that investigated the effects of language errors in other (online) environments differed in the type of language errors they included in their studies, and revealed differential effects on impression formation,” van der Zanden explained.“One of the reasons for this may be that different language errors types are often attributed to different personality traits. In the second study of this paper, we therefore included different language error types, which are all attributed to particular personality attributions.”The second study, which included another 365 Dutch adults, compared mechanical language errors — such as writing “teh” instead of “the” — to rule-based language errors — such as using “me” instead of “I.” The researchers also examined the use of informal language, such as emoticons, abbreviations, and expressive punctuation.The researchers found that mechanical errors were perceived as a signal of inattentiveness, while rule-based errors were perceived as a signal of lower intelligence. Inattentiveness and lower intelligence, in turn, were linked to lower attraction and dating intention scores. The use of informal language, meanwhile, was associated with reduced interpersonal warmth.The findings highlight that people should “try to avoid language errors in your profile text,” van der Zanden told PsyPost.“If you are yourself not so sure about the occurrence of language errors in your profile, ask another person to proofread your profile. Even though we found that a lot of people did not notice or did not know whether they had been presented with profiles with language errors, you just want to prevent people from attributing you false personality traits (e.g. that you are lacking intelligence or that you are not attentive), and that your profile is therefore immediately discarded just because of some language errors.”“You should not blame someone for doing this because people have only limited information on a dating profile to form a quick initial impression on and to decide whether there is interest in pursuing contact with the profile owner or not. All small pieces of information that are available can thus influence the impression others form of you,” van der Zanden said.“Information that is unintentionally provided by the profile owner is of high value because it ‘leaks’ information that is less regulated or controlled by the profile owner. Especially in an online dating context, where it is known that most profile owners are likely to present their best and most attractive self in the dating profile, by avoiding certain bad habits and emphasizing positive traits, such uncontrolled information is therefore assigned greater weight.”But the study — like all research — includes some limitations.“An advantage of this study is that we had a large sample of actual dating site users as participants in this study. However, it is important to notice that participants were on average 55 years, and the results are thus mostly based on perceptions of older adults,” van der Zanden explained.“Our sample may therefore not perfectly mirror the site’s overall user demographic, and the demographic of the online dating audience in general. It may be the case that younger adults are less attentive to language errors or consider them as less negative.”“Moreover, effect sizes in our study were all somewhere between small and medium. This is not surprising considering that language errors are but one of the cues that people pay attention to when forming impressions. Other available pieces of information, called cues, such as the profile text content and the profile picture, are considered for impression formation, and the observed effects of errors on impression formation are therefore not trivial,” van der Zanden noted.“Finally, a surprisingly high number of participants did not notice or did not know whether the profiles they saw contained language errors or not. This raises the question which individuals are prone to notice language errors.”The research also provides new insights into how people evaluate different aspects of online dating profiles.“Another interesting finding of this study is that it seems that people use different dating profile components to form impressions about different aspects of attractiveness,” van der Zanden explained.“Inferences about physical attractiveness seem to be made based on profile picture information and characteristics of profile texts are likely to affect impressions of a profile owner’s social attractiveness, which is also paramount to find in a romantic partner. This indicates that people are specific about which cues they use to form impressions and need different cues in the profile that fit specific dimensions of impression formation.”The study, “Impression formation on online dating sites: Effects of language errors in profile texts on perceptions of profile owners’ attractiveness“, was authored by Tess Van der Zanden, Alexander P. Schouten, Maria B. J. Mos, and Emiel J. Krahmer. Share on Facebook Share on Twittercenter_img Pinterest LinkedIn Emaillast_img read more


NM Sports Hall Of Fame Induction Banquet Postponed

first_imgCourtesy/NMHOFNMHOF News:The 2020 New Mexico Sports Hall of Fame celebration weekend, including the annual induction banquet, has been postponed until April 2021, due to the uncertainty surrounding New Mexico’s reopening from COVID-19.The NMHOF Board of Directors unanimously voted on the move. The Charity Golf Classic is scheduled for April 10, 2021 at Twin Warriors Golf Club with the banquet slated for April 11, 2021 at the Albuquerque Convention Center.“The safety and health of our attendees in our main priority,” Board President Dick Johnson said. “We also want to make it the best event possible, and there is still much to be determined as to future guidelines. We will make it special for our seven inductees – Holly Holm, Carolyn Thompson, Danny Romero, Rob Evans, Jimmy Collins, Alan Branch and Nick Pino. We will also honor the 2019 Annual Award winners.”Johnson said it is possible Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham may limit the size of the induction banquet, which could change future ticket prices. But all previously purchased tickets and/or tables will be honored for the amount paid, with no price increase. We will keep you updated with any further changes.Thank you very much for your support, and know that we — like New Mexico — will be back stronger and better than ever!last_img read more


Letter To The Editor: Keep Dark Money Out Of Politics (When It’s Convenient)

first_imgBy MARLENE K. SCHWALIESanta FeDespite a CD3 candidate’s convoluted efforts to keep voters in the dark, dark money is NEVER OK. OpenSecrets defines dark money as “political spending meant to influence the decision of a voter, where the donor is not disclosed and the source of the money is unknown”, regardless of whether the ad is scathing or glowing. DM is not to be conflated with independent expenditures from groups with known agendas who have endorsed a candidate. Even corporate PACs have some degree of transparency.A candidate doesn’t get to selectively decide that dark money is bad when it’s ugly but OK when beneficial. I expect consistency in the candidate who will get my vote for CD3 – NOT convenience.And I wonder: where are the leaders of the county and State Democratic party on a value that used to define us – keeping dark money out of politics?last_img read more


Shelter from every storm

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Resi auctions’ 85% show

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Schlumberger, ION in Mexico 3D seismic program

first_imgSchlumberger’s WesternGeco and seismic firm ION Geophysical have announced a new 3D multiclient reimaging broadband program offshore Mexico, which uses Mexico’s National Hydrocarbons Commission (CNH) data library.The Campeche 3D reimaging program comprises three survey areas covering approximately 82,000 km2 in the Bay of Campeche offshore southern Mexico.The program will be processed using a combination of custom technologies and techniques from both WesternGeco and ION, that the companies say will maximize data quality and offer geological insights for upcoming licensing rounds.According to a statement by ION Geophysical, the use of broadband preprocessing coupled with high-resolution steep dip reverse time migration (RTM) and Kirchhoff imaging algorithms will produce data ideal for prospect identification and exploration.ION President and Chief Executive Officer, Brian Hanson, said: “We are pleased to be collaborating with WesternGeco on such a large project offshore Mexico, where we anticipate continued strong client interest. The Campeche 3D reimaging program area is in one of the most challenging, yet prospective regions offshore Mexico where we have significant processing experience and expertise.”Maurice Nessim, President, WesternGeco, said, “We are confident this collaboration will bring value to our customers through the highest quality imaging, which will improve their understanding of the complex subsurface geology in this area. We expect to see a significant improvement in subsalt and above-salt imaging to better inform our customers through their licensing rounds and development decisions.”The program is fully supported by industry funding. Fast-track data are available now for Round 1.4 deepwater bid preparation decisions.last_img read more


Fight fire with sprinklers

first_imgStay at the forefront of thought leadership with news and analysis from award-winning journalists. Enjoy company features, CEO interviews, architectural reviews, technical project know-how and the latest innovations.Limited access to industry news as it happensBreaking, daily and weekly e-newsletters Get your free guest access  SIGN UP TODAY To continue enjoying, sign up for free guest accessExisting subscriber? LOGIN Subscribe now for unlimited access Subscribe to Building today and you will benefit from:Unlimited access to all stories including expert analysis and comment from industry leadersOur league tables, cost models and economics dataOur online archive of over 10,000 articlesBuilding magazine digital editionsBuilding magazine print editionsPrinted/digital supplementsSubscribe now for unlimited access.View our subscription options and join our communitylast_img read more


Tribasa grouping takes Sureste

first_imgTHE MEXICAN government on July 1 awarded a 50-year concession to Triturados Basalticos y Derivados SA to operate the 1 479 km Ferrocarril Sureste in the southeast of the country. Also included in the package is an option for the Mayab line, connecting Coatzacoalcos with Merida in Yucatan (RG 4.98 p212). According to Deputy Transport Minister Aaron Dychter, the southeastern lines carried 12·7% of Mexico’s rail freight in 1996. Together they serve sugar mills producing 70% of the country’s output, five cement plants, several large petrochemical complexes including two refineries, and major coffee plantations. A subsidiary of the giant Grupo Tribasa SA construction company, TBD bid 2·9bn pesos for the Sureste, more than twice the amount offered by a rival consortium that included two large Mexican industrial firms and Illinois Central. IC had a 49% stake in the venture, as it planned to integrate its US routes with Mexico via a train ferry between Mobile, Alabama and the port of Veracruz. However, IC says it still plans to inaugurate the ferry service, which should substantially increase traffic on the Sureste routes from the Gulf ports of Veracruz and Coatzacoalcos to Mexico City. Tribasa Chief Executive says TBD will invest 2·5bn pesos in modernisation of the network over the next 10 years, including the purchase of new locomotives. It is backed by Banco Inbursa and the Kingsley group, with Denver-based short line specialist Omnitrax providing the rail expertise. The deal brings the proportion of FNM freight traffic transferred to private control to 97%, and lifts the Mexican government’s earnings from rail privatisation to over US$2bn. olast_img read more


Tentative steps towards the private sector

first_imgMilestones to flotation1994. Start of German railway reform processOctober 8 2002. Railway Advisory Council established to look at concluding the reform process.June 15 2004. RAC recommends a stock market listing of DB AG ‘as an integrated company’ during 2006.September 21 2007. Government bill for partial privatisation has first reading in the Bundestag. Mid-February 2008. Government proposal collapses after Länder reject plans to give the part-privatised railway exclusive control of the state-owned infrastructure.March 31 2008. DB announces third successive annual profit in 2007 results. April 13 2008. Transport Minister Wolfgang Tiefensee reaches agreement with SPD coalition partners reducing proportion of sale from 49% to 24·9%April 28 2008. Chancellor Angela Merkel confirms that a government committee had approved the sale of a 24·9% stake. The plan was endorsed by the cabinet two days later.May 15 2008. DB Supervisory Board approves restructuring to form holding company, with operations grouped in DB Mobility Logistics AG. New structure takes effect from June 2.Early October. International roadshow to attract investors, followed by bookbuilding exercise to set share price for the flotation.October 28 or 29. Share price announced.November 5. IPO completed; DB ML shares start trading on Frankfurt Stock Exchange.DB business unitsDB AG (holding company)DB NetzDB Energie GmbHDB Stations & Service GmbH Executive boardsDB AG Hartmut Mehdorn (Chairman)Diethelm Sack (Finance)Stefan Garber (Infrastructure & Services)Otto Wiesheu (Economic & Political Affairs)Norbert Hansen (Purchasing) DB Mobility Logistics AGDB Fernverkehr AGDB Regio AGDB Stadtverkehr GmbHDB Vertrieb GmbHDB Dienstleistungen GmbHDB (UK) Logistics Holdings LtdDB Automotive Rail (Spain) SLDB Gastronomie GmbHDB Magnetbahn GmbHDB Schenker RailDB Schenker Logistics PRIVATISATION: After much debate and two false starts, the partial flotation of DB is now moving ahead.,If all goes according to plan, the long-anticipated partial privatisation of Germany’s national railway will finally come to fruition by the end of this year. A 24·9% stake in the newly-established operating business DB Mobility Logistics AG is due to be floated on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange.Target date is Nov­ember 5, although there have been suggestions that this might have to be delayed because of the weakening German economy and the global credit crunch. Nevertheless, Federal Transport Minister Wolfgang Tiefensee and Deutsche Bahn AG Chairman Hartmut Mehdorn are pressing ahead. Tiefensee, in particular, is keen to get the sale completed well ahead of the national elections scheduled for September 2009. Mehdorn has long advocated taking DB into the private sector, and he welcomed the government’s formal approval of the flotation plan on May 30 as ‘a good day for customers, taxpayers and workers’, adding that the decision would ensure ‘the future of the business and its 237 000 employees’ and help to strengthen the German economy.A tight timescaleAround 30 banks are understood to have expressed interest in organising what is expected to be one of the most prestigious IPOs in Europe this year. Following a joint selection process with the government, DB AG announced on May 27 that it had selected Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley and UBS as global co-ordinators to lead the flot­ation. According to reports in Handelsblatt, the government will meet the cost of organising the sale, which it puts at €75m compared to a market estimate of €100m. The actual flotation is predicted to generate between €5bn and €8bn, depending upon the final share price. Mehdorn is due to launch an international roadshow in early October to canvass support amongst potential investors, and this will be followed by a bookbuilding exercise to establish the sale price. The price may not be announced until October 28 or 29, barely a week ahead of the date when the shares are due to start trading. Reports suggest that both DB and the government are anxious that the flotation is not postponed into early 2009, and both would be willing to accept a lower price in order to push the sale through quickly. According to the government, the majority of shares are likely to be bought by institutional investors, although there are suggestions that some other railway operators might welcome the chance to take a stake in DB. So far the only player to have confirmed its interest publicly is RZD, although President Vladimir Yakunin admitted that it was up to the Russian government to decide whether the railway would be allowed to bid.Asked to comment on the flotation process, a Federal Transport Ministry spokesman explained on August 19 that the government was ‘pleased that investors will be able to bring their ideas and visions into DB ML’. However, the ministry is concerned about the degree of influence that the investors would have over railway strategy, such as whether or not ‘services are given priority over profit expectations’. Pointing out that it would not be right for the investors to have control over employment terms, as an example, the ministry insisted that ‘we want to have partners on board who can take a long-term perspective, but we want to prevent them from interfering with the business in a way that would be bad for DB ML’. Long road to flotation The total or partial privatisation of DB AG was always seen as the ultimate objective of Germany’s railway reform process launched in 1994, although this took a lower priority than dealing with the backlog of maintenance and productivity issues inherited after the merger of DB and DR. With modernisation and renewals well underway, a Railway Advisory Council of leading industrialists, academics and economists was established in October 2002 to look at completing the reform process. Following a study by Morgan Stanley, the council recommended in June 2004 that DB AG should be listed ‘as an integrated business’ during 2006. The council believed that a partial privatisation would enable DB to compete more effectively in an increasingly liberalised market, although it flagged up that the flotation would be dependent upon agreement between the railway and government over infrastructure financing.The timescale proposed by the council was immediately rejected by the Bundestag, which argued that it would be better to wait until DB had demonstrated its profitability for a number of years before launching the flotation. It also called for a study into floating DB without the infrastructure (RG 7.04 p381). Infrastructure has indeed proved to be one of the major stumbling blocks in the development of the privatisation proposals, and in particular the degree to which the management of the national rail network should be separated from DB’s train operations in line with European Union policy. Mehdorn’s often-expressed preference had been to see DB floated as an integrated business, which he said would make the company stronger and better able to compete on the international money markets. However, there were strong political objections to handing over control of state-owned infrastructure assets. After extensive studies, a compromise was proposed in the draft legislation which the government presented to the Bundestag in September 2007. This envisaged that the infrastructure would remain state-owned, but DB would have an enshrined right to manage the network. This proved unpalatable, and even a compromise suggesting a long-term infrastructure management contract was rejected, leading the government to withdraw its entire proposal for ‘reconsider­ation’ earlier this year. Restructuring in haste The result was a switch to a ‘holding company’ model, which had widely been touted as the likely fallback. Moving rapidly to get the flotation underway ahead of the 2009 elections, the ruling Christian Democratic Union party finally struck a deal with its SDP coalition partner on April 13 to reform DB and only float the oper­ating businesses. It rejected SDP proposals to exclude regional passenger services, but did agree that the operating arm should be offered as a single entity, ruling out the sale of separate stakes in the inter-city or freight businesses.At the same time, the government conceded to an SDP demand that the proportion of the shares on offer should be cut from 49% to 24·9%. Despite this, both Tiefensee and Mehdorn hope to see the private-sector holding increased to 49·9% in the longer term. With the infrastructure remaining in state ownership, some commentators have suggested that the share of the operating company to be sold should be proportionately greater, although it seems unlikely that the government could get approval to privatise a majority stake.The revised plans were endorsed by the cabinet on April 30 (RG 5.08 p289). And barely two weeks later, an extraordinary meeting of the DB Supervisory Board approved the restructuring of the company to enable the flotation to proceed.This saw the existing subsidiary DB Mobility Logistics AG — which was already acting as an umbrella for the Railion, Schenker and Stinnes freight activities — expanded to form the new operating company, with the inclusion of the passenger businesses and other subsidiaries (right). Infrastructure business DB Netz, the power supply arm DB Energie and DB Stations & Service continue to report directly to DB AG, which will remain 100% owned by the German state. Enshrining the ministry’s wish to safeguard existing railway staff, DB signed an agreement with the Trans­net and GDBA unions on May 15 protecting pay and conditions and precluding any forced redundancies as a result of privatisation until the end of 2023. According to Transnet, this also commits DB AG to retaining an integrated business ‘and the employment market within it’.The new structure became operational on June 2, along with a three-way agreement between DB AG, DB Mobility Logistics AG and the federal government. This accord was retrospectively endorsed by the Super­visory Board on June 25, when its Chairman Dr Werner Müller insisted that all of the structural and legal conditions for the partial privatisation were now in place. European interventionDespite Müller’s optimism, the European Commission wrote to the German government at the end of June, expressing a number of concerns about the proposed structure. In particular, the Commission is worried about the lack of independence between the infrastructure manager and the operating business when both report to the holding company. If it decides to take these concerns to the European Court for clarification, this could put the whole flotation time­scale in doubt.Independent operators’ association Netzwerk Privatbahnen had already raised concerns over the lack of transparency in the DB structure, which it believed did not meet EU rules requiring an independent body to oversee path allocation and the setting of track access charges. And the degree of independence for DB Netz was one of the issues raised with the German government by the Commission when it launched infringement proceedings against 24 member states for various failures to implement correctly the requirements of the First Railway Package. Not least of its concerns is the ease with which management and staff are able to transfer between businesses in the DB group. The ministry insists that competition in Germany is stronger than in any other EU country, with many different operators ‘already jostling for freight traffic’. And in the regional sector ‘the number of private operators is also increasing. The Länder can contract out their regional operations, and private operators can bid on exact­ly the same terms as DB ML. So competition is already possible with the structure which we have – 100% state ownership of Deutsche Bahn AG. We have now a DB AG with a high quality of service, and that should remain in the future.’ European legislation will also impact on the use of the proceeds from the flotation. During the negotiations, Tiefensee had emphasised that the privatisation would provide much-needed funding towards DB’s ‘huge investment needs’. He envisaged that one third of the receipts would be allocated for investment in the infrastructure, one third would go to DB and the final third would be retained by the government. However, the German competition authorities have ruled that DB ML should not benefit directly from the flotation, suggesting that any payments to the operating business would fall foul of the recently-tightened EU rules on state aid. The ministry reiterated on Aug­ust 19 that ‘above all the railway’s customers should benefit from the receipts of the partial privatisation. We want to eliminate bottlenecks in the rail network, to modernise stations faster, and to improve noise protection.’ Investing for profitabilityDB will not comment officially, citing legal restrictions on making ‘forward-looking statements’ ahead of the flotation. However, Mehdorn has clear ambitions for DB to become a global transport operator, with aggressive expansion evident throughout his chairmanship. With the tacit support of its federal owner, DB has already built up stakes in freight operators from Denmark and the Netherlands to Switzerland and Italy. Moves to acquire control of EWS and Transfesa during 2007 have now given it access to the UK, France and Spain. Further afield, DB has signed joint venture agreements in Russia and China, operating experimental freight trains between Germany and China as well as over the Balkan route to Turkey and beyond. Outside the rail orbit, DB has acquired road, sea and air operations that now make it one of the world’s largest logistics companies. Mehdorn has certainly heeded the 2004 recommendation from the Bundestag that DB needed to demonstrate its profitability before any flotation. Announcing the 2007 results on March 31, he emphasised that DB had recorded an operating profit for the third year running. ‘Our strategy is clearly right’, he insisted. ‘DB is ?fit for the challenge, both at home ?and in Europe.’With turnover up by 4·2% on 2006 at €31·3bn, DB recorded an operating EBIT of €2·37bn in 2007. Net profit for the year was up by 2·1% at €1·7bn, despite gross investment totalling €6·3bn. As a result, the company had been able to reduce its long-term debt by more than €3bn to €16·5bn. Return on capital increased from 5·5 to 8·7%, which Board Member, Finance, Diethelm Sack said was in line with long-term plans. As in previous years, DB’s biggest revenue generator in 2007 was its regional services, which contributed €6 532m compared to €3 265m for long-distance passenger, €1 879m for urban and €3 878m for freight. However, it should be noted that €4 483m of this came through contract payments from the Länder to support regional operations. Barely a quarter of regional services in Germany have yet been put out to competitive tender, but the rest are due to be contracted out over the next 15 years. DB has won less than 50% of the services tendered so far, although it secured 70% of the 33 million train-km contracted in 2007, and says it will ‘defend its position’ vigorously in future bidding.Announcing DB’s first-half results on August 18, Mehdorn reported a further improvement in profitability. He said DB had recorded 941 million passenger-journeys in the first six months of 2008, up by 30 million on the same period last year. He attributed this to high fuel prices hitting car and air travel, noting that the total distance driven by German car owners in the six months had fallen by 1·5% year-on-year against a 1·4% increase in rail passenger-km.Freight traffic is continuing to hold up in the face of recession, although the rate of growth has slowed. The first results from EWS contributed to a 6·8% jump in total revenue to €16·2bn for the period. With profit for the six months rising by 5·4% to €915m, Mehdorn said DB ML’s full-year results should be better than 2007. This comes despite higher operating costs attributable to rising energy prices and huge wage increases after last year’s strike by train drivers. Despite the continuing uncertainties, Mehdorn is still convinced that a flotation is the right way to go. ‘The transport market in Europe is changing rapidly and radically’, he says. ‘DB AG needs to take its chances now, and that means we will need capital. And the government agrees that we need to finance much-needed infrastructure investment with the proceeds from the partial privatisation’. DB Mobility Logistics AGHartmut Mehdorn (Chairman)Diethelm Sack (Finance)Margret Suckale (Personnel & Legal)Karl-Friedrich Rausch (Passenger)Norbert Bensel (Transport & Logistics)last_img read more