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When I view the profile of anybody that hasn't filled it's bio it says this:

Apparently, this user prefers to keep an air of mystery about them.

I think that it should say this instead:

Apparently, this user prefers to keep an air of mystery about it.

I've highlighted what I think that is a fail. However English is not my mother tongue.

I think that this may refer to the user and not to a bunch of users.

6

They/them/their is common when referring to the third-person singular for a person of unknown gender. It, on the other hand, doesn't enjoy similar popularity. It, to me, is for inanimate, inhuman or subhuman entities.

Related:

7
  • Ok, sorry, as I said, English is not my mother tongue. I didn't know this.
    – 0x2b3bfa0
    May 2 '15 at 12:52
  • Just to be pedantic about it the correct English for this would be Apparently, this user prefers to keep an air of mystery about there self
    – Mark Kirby
    May 8 '15 at 19:21
  • @markkirby assuming you meant "their self", I have never seen anybody say "an air of mystery about X's self" - it's always "an air of mystery about X", or "... around X".
    – muru
    May 9 '15 at 8:49
  • "Apparently, this user prefers to keep an air of mystery about their self" would be correct as a general statement but if you know the name it would be "Apparently, X prefers to keep an air of mystery about their self"
    – Mark Kirby
    May 9 '15 at 8:56
  • replacing their with him/her if you know the gender ie him self or her self.
    – Mark Kirby
    May 9 '15 at 9:02
  • @markkirby you're missing the point. "self" just doesn't belong in that phrase.
    – muru
    May 9 '15 at 9:02
  • "them" implies a multiple ie "did you see all of them today" "how many of them do you have", while "self" implies that a single person is doing this ie "this guy hurt him self" or "she did not want to talk about her self"
    – Mark Kirby
    May 9 '15 at 9:14

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