Narrated Fact vs Opinion

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Narrated Fact vs Opinion (hereinafter, the Lectio) is the lesson part of Technical Report Essentials lesson that introduces its participants to technical report concepts. This lesson belongs to the CNMCT Entrance section of the CNM Cyber Placement.


The predecessor lectio is What Report Complete Is.


In linguistics, language modality conveys the purpose of the speech. Two categories of grammatical modes, irrealis and realis, can be found in all human languages including Arabic, Chinese, English, Hindi, Russian, Swahili, and Urdu.
Irrealis modes express desired, intended, irreal, possible, or uncertain actions or situations. For instance, imperative phrases such as Please compare! express commands or requests. Subjunctive phrases such as I wish you compared! express desires or wishes. Few of the other irrealis phrases include conditional, hypothetical, interrogative phrases. Grammatically, adverbs such as probably, modal constructions such as if you can, I can, verb auxiliaries such as could and should, and/or verb modes convey their modality type.
Grammatically, the realis mode shall convey real actions or situations. However, only factual statements express real events, state of affairs, or anything else that is worthy of reporting. These statements express something what is true, is known to be true, can be tested and proven true, and/or observed through direct experience. For instance, Grass is green.
On the contrary, opinion statements express one's feelings or beliefs, cannot be proven true or false, are false and just tried to be misrepresented as true, speculations about the future, and/or anything controversial or debatable.
For instance, Robert Mueller's report on Trump specified,

The Special Counsel states that while this report does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him.

After the report's release, President Trump tweeted,

Complete and Total EXONERATION.

The statement that Mueller's report exonerates Mr. Trump is not factual. Vice versa, this statement is false. President Trump probably expressed his opinion to misrepresent the report.
Both factual and opinion statements use verbs in the realis mode. Opinions may be expressed not only with verbs, but with other parts of speech. For instance, both statements Just 25 dollars and Excessive 25 dollars represent opinions, but they would be factual if words Just and Excessive are taken out.
No grammatical indicator exists to distinguish between factual and opinion statements. Only one's logic can separate opinions and facts.
Finally, normative statements describe how the world should be, how things are designed to be, how situations normally are, and so on. Grammatically, these statements may be expressed using constructions such as shall and have to of some irrealis modes.
Nevertheless, some normative statements may be also expressed in the realis mode. Product epics and product manuals are some examples; they don't take into consideration bugs and product changes. For instance, the statement,

The computing servers of CNM Cloud routinely report to WorldOpp Middleware

can be either factual or normative; to the best understanding of its writer, it was 100% factual only at the moment when it was written.

Key terms

Language modality, grammatical mode, irrealis mode, imperative phrase, subjunctive phrase, realis mode, factual statement, opinion statement, normative statement


Which of the following statements is an example of opinion:
  1. With fewer traffic on the road, there would be less air pollution
  2. Summer follows Spring
  3. Reafforestation is the only viable solution to environmental problems
  4. My house rent is $250 per month
  5. None of the answers is correct
  6. The successor lectio is What Tech Report Is.