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

Subject: Re: While we're on the topic of words . . .
From: Bonni_Graham_at_Enfin-SD -at- PROTEON -dot- COM
Date: Thu, 3 Feb 1994 09:21:00 EST

Greg notes:
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

After all, doesn't the use of "pro" in front of "active" somehow
assume that "active" does convey its meaning well enough? Does
this mean that by saying "I'm taking an active stance," someone
may think I'm sitting on my butt?"

I use "pro-active" only when I'm speaking officialese (i.e., to
my management) and I use it to mean "acting before I'm acted
upon". In that sense, "active" isn't really grabby enough to
them. Yeah, it's a little goofy, but I'll do what I have to to

My dictionary defines the prefix pro- as "a prefix of priority in
space and time having esp. a meaning of advancing or projecting
forward or outward" although it does not list "proactive" as a
"real" word.

It that defined sense, proactive _is_ given a higher priority
than "active".

For what it's worth. I don't much like proactive, but it doesn't
push nearly the buttons for me that "impact" used as a verb does.

Bonni Graham |
Technical Writer | Most software is run by
Easel Corporation, ENFIN Technology Lab | confused users acting on
Bonni_Graham_at_Enfin-SD -at- relay -dot- proteon -dot- com | incorrect and incomplete
President, San Diego STC | information, doing things
| the designer never expected.
NOTE: apparently my email address needs |
to be typed exactly as it appears here, | --Paul Heckel, quoted
punctuation and all, or the system gets | by William Horton
upset. |

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