Re: Is "proactive" really a word?

Subject: Re: Is "proactive" really a word?
From: Dianne Walsh <ldwalsh -at- VOICENET -dot- COM>
Date: Wed, 15 Oct 1997 19:21:49 -0400

At 02:54 PM 10/15/97 +0001, you wrote:
>> Dear Grammarians,
>> Is "proactive" a word?
>In fact it is a term stolen from psychology meaning exactly the
>reverse. To paraphrase from the dictionary I found it in:
>proactive: of a mental effect from a previous situation which is
>active in a subsequent activity, especially in learning theory, as
>'proactive inhibition', interference, the inhibition or interference
>with learning caused by effects that remain active from conditions
>preceeding that learning.

>This is exactly the definition (but in slightly different wording, that I
found in my dictionary (Webster's Ninth New Collegiate).

The 'other' definition of the word drives me nuts and whenever I hear it, I
cringe. 'Active' or 'positive' will usually do just as well without the
confusion over what proactive really means. Try telling that to some of our
overblown, verbose marketing folks, though.
Dianne Walsh
Documentation Manager
E-mail to: ldwalsh -at- voicenet -dot- com or: DianneW658 -at- aol -dot- com

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