Re: While we're on the topic of words . . .

Subject: Re: While we're on the topic of words . . .
From: Len Olszewski <saslpo -at- UNX -dot- SAS -dot- COM>
Date: Thu, 3 Feb 1994 09:36:48 -0500

Gregory Kushmerek airs a peeve:

> This is more a peeve than anything else: does anyone feel as I
> do about the word "pro-active?"

> I don't like that word; it's redundant for one, and the people I see
> use it are usually trying to sound more important than they really
> are.

I admit that I've used this word before. Please don't hurt me.

The connotation I understand for that word, which differentiates it from
the admittedly simpler, cleaner "active", is this.

To be "reactive", you wait for something to happen, then respond.

To be "active", you make something happen.

To be "pro-active", you anticipate that something will happen, and
act first rather than waiting for it to happen.

In other words, just as you react to a specific circumstance or event, you
"pro-act" in *anticipation* of a specific circumstance or event. You do
this to prevent it from occurring, to mitigate the consequences if it
does occur, etc.

Could be I'm out in left field here again. They have my name on a plaque
out here, so it wouldn't be the first time. ;-)

|Len Olszewski, Technical Writer |"It is not enough to succeed. Others|
|saslpo -at- unx -dot- sas -dot- com|Cary, NC, USA| must fail." - Gore Vidal |
| Opinions this ludicrous are mine. Reasonable opinions will cost you.|

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