Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Tabula Rosa Systems Blog Of 2/28/17 - Inferences, Assumptions, and Presumptions

The blog below is from my book, "Netiquette IQ . . . " that is referenced later. Many of us have only a vague idea of the differences among inference, presumption and assumption. This author hope that this brief excerpt will assist in providing a useful clarification to all!

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Inferences, Assumptions, and Presumptions

          “Dr. Livingstone, I presume.”

—H.  M. Stanley, 1871

        There is often confusion about the definitions for inferences, assumptions, and presumptions. When any of these are part of an email, each can create confusion enough to change the desired purpose of a communication. As stated previously in this book, any message written in haste can fail in its intent or even worsen a situation one is trying to correct.

        Here are some basic definitions:

        Inference—something we take for granted often because of a related observation or experience or something that is factually known; that is, an educated guess.

        Assumption is an accepted thing thought to be true but without proof—something taken for granted, an axiom or starting point in an argument or theory, a natural deduction. “You have to start somewhere.”

        Presumption Omnia praesumtur rite esse acta: Latin proverb that means “all things are presumed to be done in due form.” Taken to be the case, based upon reasonable evidence. An idea that has always been believed to be right, taken for granted, not likely to be wrong. Best possible guess or conclusion.

        Over-assuming is usually a guess based on unverified information; when inferences, assumptions, or presumptions are made, obvious risks are involved. Because of the inherent possibilities that email, by its structure, can evoke, even more misunderstandings are likely to occur. Faulty assumptions can be trivial or significant, but many can be avoided with Netiquette principles and practices. As the tools and technologies available become more sophisticated, their impact creates more assumptions[ . A good example of this is the MS Outlook grammar check.  Although helpful, it is far from infallible and can, at times, be off the mark quite considerably. This is evidenced by rationalizations that lower standards, which tolerate mistakes and due diligence, are all acceptable. The long-term trend of all of these factors—email structure, increasingly sophisticated technology, and lowering standards— increase the complacency about email senders being sub-par in communication skills.

        Perception—an experience from the senses or, at times, intuition. Not yet taken for granted.

        Thoroughness, clarity, and objectivity will greatly eliminate the gray  areas that inference, assumption, and presumption can create. All people make multiple inferences and assumptions every day, including what and how recipients of email will conclude and the degrees of the receivers’ reactions in reading the correspondence. To be skillful in effective email writing, it is necessary to not only employ Netiquette, but also to have a basic idea of those habits that can undermine one’s accuracy and effectiveness in communication.

Examples of inference and assumption

        The following list summarizes some common inferences and assumptions.
1.       A correspondence has been read or opened.
2.       Intended emotions have been understood.
3.       Specific urgency has been properly addressed.
4.       Privacy will be maintained.
5.       Any requests or demands will be honored.
6.       The recipient wishes to receive correspondence.
7.       An intended goal is accomplished.
8.       Recipients will have universal reactions.
9.       Schedules for meetings, calls or participatory events are open.
10.    Assumptions  concerning a recipients age, race, politics, marriage or religion
11.    The addressees will ask for clarification if emails are unclear to them.
12.    If replies are not either immediate, short-cycle  (i.e., responded to within a requested timeframe), or not replied to at all, the addressee is categorically rejecting the sender.

Good Netiquette And A Green Internet To All!  =====================================================================Tabula Rosa Systems - Tabula Rosa Systems (TRS) is dedicated to providing Best of Breed Technology and Best of Class Professional Services to our Clients. We have a portfolio of products which we have selected for their capabilities, viability and value. TRS provides product, design, implementation and support services on all products that we represent. Additionally, TRS provides expertise in Network Analysis, eBusiness Application Profiling, ePolicy and eBusiness Troubleshooting

We can be contacted at:

sales@tabularosa.net  or 609 818 1802.
In addition to this blog, Netiquette IQ has a website with great assets which are being added to on a regular basis. I have authored the premiere book on Netiquette, “Netiquette IQ - A Comprehensive Guide to Improve, Enhance and Add Power to Your Email". My new book, “You’re Hired! Super Charge Your Email Skills in 60 Minutes. . . And Get That Job!” has just been published and will be followed by a trilogy of books on Netiquette for young people. You can view my profile, reviews of the book and content excerpts at:


Anyone who would like to review the book and have it posted on my blog or website, please contact me paul@netiquetteiq.com.

In addition to this blog, I maintain a radio show on BlogtalkRadio  and an online newsletter via paper.li.I have established Netiquette discussion groups with Linkedin and  Yahoo I am also a member of the International Business Etiquette and Protocol Group and Minding Manners among others. I regularly consult for the Gerson Lehrman Group, a worldwide network of subject matter experts and I have been contributing to the blogs Everything Email and emailmonday . My work has appeared in numerous publications and I have presented to groups such as The Breakfast Club of NJ and  PSG of Mercer County, NJ.

Additionally, I am the president of Tabula Rosa Systems, a “best of breed” reseller of products for communications, email, network management software, security products and professional services.  Also, I am the president of Netiquette IQ. We are currently developing an email IQ rating system, Netiquette IQ, which promotes the fundamentals outlined in my book.

Over the past twenty-five years, I have enjoyed a dynamic and successful career and have attained an extensive background in IT and electronic communications by selling and marketing within the information technology market.

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