Fiverr Community Forum

Don't call people "DEAR."

Good morning fellow Fiverrians and Fiverrettes.

I woke up a while ago, I logged in and realized I had a message. The message was one of those please-help-me messages so I had the usual “Oh here it comes again” reaction, but what reaaallly ruined my morning was that this person called me "dear."

I get it. They are trying to be friendly. I do. 98% of the time when I get a message, people use “sir,” because they assume I’m a guy. I am aware that some people do not like this and I can understand why, but personally I don’t mind. Some people say “Hello sir or ma’am”, others simply say "Hello zeus777."

I guess I don’t mind the “sir” personally because at least I get the feeling that the person was trying to be polite in a business manner. "Hello dear.“is not good. Maybe the person was trying the friendly approach, but it just doesn’t work, especially if the person is sending you a message for the first time.

Another word some people use is “friend.” Hi friend. Hello friend. Well guess what, I ain’t your friend.

True, people do use the word “dear” and “friend” all the time. I call my younger coworkers dear, sweetheart, etc.

When I went to a bakery yesterday, the nice old lady there called me dear, and I didn’t mind at all.

I have a repeat buyer who bought more than 30 gigs, and around the 15th time, he started calling me buddy, pal, and friend, and I didn’t mind.

Then why the heck would I mind if someone sent me a message starting with dear or friend?

I wish I could come up with a clear and better way to explain why it’s a bad idea, rather than just saying

"It’s unprofessional/inappropriate.” Someone help me out please! :stuck_out_tongue:

So a seemingly not so important, but a huge tip: Do NOT use the word dear!


Calling someone you don’t know well “dear” is condescending. If you are not a native english speaker look up the word.

If someone trying to sell me something on fiverr called me “dear” I would be wondering why they were trying to pretend to be close to me.


Reply to @jahidhasan240:
Stop spamming.


Thank you SO much for this post. My Granny called me dear and it was nice. If another buyer or seller calls me that, it’s weird. I don’t care for Sir but I agree that it is an attempt at professionalism. Another one that turns me off fast is “bro.” I’m not anyone’s brother, bro, or especially brah.


Thanks for your unique information . Great post …

It’s also worth noting that people should refrain from using sexist or objectifying language in their professional messages. I would think this would go without saying, but I had a buyer who constantly referred to me as “beautiful lady” in lieu of my name. I understand there are cultural differences, and I understand that he thought he was being polite. It’s still offensive, to me at least, to ignore the fact that I am a person, an individual with a name, and refer to me as “lady” or reference my appearance in a professional setting. /rant


I don’t know why, but the improper punctuation and capitalization of the greetings also turn me off really quickly. Why can’t it just be a proper “Hi,” or “Hello,”? Such messages leave a bad first impression to me.

For example,

i see your request…

hello sir
You need my service?..

i’m offering you…

dear sir/ma’am.
You want to have my service?? its on sale…


I know when I started studying English, I learned that “sir” and “ma’am” are for business. But when I actually do business, I rarely hear or use these, except calling my Japanese boss “sir”. (but then I switched to his name+san).

I rarely (“rarely”, not “never”) call my customer “sir” or “ma’am”, usually Mr. or Mrs. Maybe I haven’t been in a formal enough situation?

And the only time I recall hearing “sir” and “ma’am” is in restaurants or retail shops, where they don’t know who we are (our names, our position in the company…). I also remember when we introduce our names, they would switch to Mr. and Ms. too.

Finding these in Fiverr message does get under my skin. We have our user’s name here, like we have our real name in real life

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Maybe you are right!!!

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Dear fellow Fiverrites,
From the preceeding, I guess that it’s no longer OK to address someone as Dear (insert addressee’s name or title) when corresponding as has been the case for my entire life.


I frequently receive messages that have the greeting/salutation “Dear” or “Hello dear.” For example:


I have a project I wish to contact you about…


Hello dear,

I have a document that I need edited…

I’ve found that most times, those messages come from people who are not native English speakers or not particularly great at writing in English. In those cases, I’m not sure that they’re trying to be overly or creepily friendly with me by referring to me as if we are family. I think it may be more a result of not being familiar with standard letter/email structure and not understanding the usage of common English greetings. Probably the most common salutation is: “Dear (person’s name)” followed by a comma or colon when writing a letter or email. I think that for a lot of writers who aren’t particularly skilled in English, this somehow turns into “Hello dear” or the person’s name being left out altogether, leaving the recipient, who may be completely fluent in English, to feel slighted or like they’ve been somehow patronized.

So basically, my guess is that this salutation oddity is more often the result of lack of English fluency or familiarity rather than someone wanting to be your new best pal.


So true @nickih!

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Yes! The word “friend” should be reserved for people who are actually, you know, your friends.


Maybe I should edit the post and make it more clear…but yes, like fonthaunt and zeromark said, things like Dear sir, Dear ma’am, Dear Mr.Smith, is OK.

Hello dear, how are you?
Dear, I need a quote.
Yes dear, I need 3 samples

THESE are not OK.

nickih said: I've found that most times, those messages come from people who are not native English speakers or not particularly great at writing in English.
This is true, but I think that is people from Asia, especially India or Pakistan that say "dear". I'm not a native English speaker, and I've never called an unknown person "dear", and neither have I heard any European, regardless how bad English he has, saying "dear".

I am very curious to know why is that. English is also an official language in India and Pakistan, and maybe that use of “dear” is normal there. It’d be great if somebody from one of those countries could bring some light about this, because I automatically mistrust buyers or sellers that call me dear, it sounds creepy to me, and maybe is just an unjustified prejudice of mine.

belengarcia said: It'd be great if somebody from one of those countries could bring some light about this, because I automatically mistrust buyers or sellers that call me dear, because it sounds creepy to me, and maybe is just an unjustified prejudice of mine.
Very true, I'd like to know that too. From my experience, the ones that tends to use "dear" are people from certain areas, maybe in those countries it's normal. I'm sure those people mean no harm or disrespect, but I tend to creep out and not trust them, and I'm aware this is not fair for them. One little word, and they lose trust. That's pretty harsh.
zeromark said: Doubt that was the intention of the OP and it's definitely not mine either!
Thank you!!

I let things like this slide because often times, it’s because people are using translators or because it’s customary in a lot of languages. Like kissing on the cheek when greeting someone. There are so many bigger things to fret over.

My biggest peeve when it comes to messages is, guys messaging me only to hit on me. Whether it be commenting on my looks or even just flat out asking me if I have boyfriend or would like to their girlfriend. Um, what? That and people messaging me only to try and get me to buy their Gigs (impersonal sales pitch and all).


Dear oh dear, dear.

Would you like a nice cup of tea?


Of all the things to worry about on Fiverr you pick a quirk of dialect. I mean, really.

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