Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Not being boastful

In yesterday's Liberty Alliance eGovernment workshop, a representative of an EU government made a distinction between 'claim' and 'assertion' - the impression he gave was that the semantics of the latter are stronger, e.g. anybody can make a claim, but you'll want to be sure about your facts before you make an assertion.

The 'Castle Team' mulled on this over iced tea at the day's end.

While the group agreed that there actually was no such distinction (claim and assertion used interchangeably) our discussion did hi-lite what seems to be a gap in today's taxonomy - this being the distinction between 3rd party and self-asserted identity.

The feeling was that something so fundamental as the relationship of the actor making the assertion to the subject of the assertion warranted more than merely an adjective. Additionally, we felt that the nature of the assertion, (i.e. positive or negative) should be explicit.

We came up with the following taxonomy
  • brag: an assertion made by X in which some attribute(s) of X is enhanced or exaggerated
  • boast: an assertion made by Y in which some attribute(s) of X is enhanced or exaggerated
  • pity: an assertion made by X in which some attribute(s) of X is accurately described
  • slag: an assertion made by Y in which some attribute(s) of X is accurately described
Feedback is welcome. We will have a call to review any such comments. Who knows, we might even attempt to account for it.

2 comments:

George Fletcher said...

Ice tea was it... no wonder everyone was thinking clearly...

Robin Wilton said...

That will be the 'Swiss' variety iced tea which was on offer, I'll bet.

I'd like to offer the following term, for completeness:

bitch: an assertion made by Y in which some attribute of X is inaccurately disparaged.