Opinion Definition

We express our personal inclinations, tastes and desires through opinion. Thus, the main characteristic of any opinion is its subjectivity. In this sense, it should be noted that the subjective is everything that depends on the criteria of each individual. On the other hand, what is objective is everything that is far from personal evaluations and, therefore, can be expressed with rigor and precision.

The word opinion it does not escape the situation of so many terms being commonly used by people to refer to various issues, then, depending on the context in which we use it, we will find various references for it.

In daily life

On a day-to-day basis, we issue judgments that are mere opinions, while others are not. If I say that I like blue, that I am a fan of a team or that I prefer meat to fish, I am expressing my personal vision about something. On the contrary, the truths of mathematics or the laws of nature are not debatable issues, but are subject to unquestionable principles and laws (for example, if I do a mathematical calculation when I go shopping, the mental process has no nothing to do with my subjectivity).

On the other hand, an opinion also turns out to be the reputation in which an individual or something is placed, such as a company, a place, a brand, among others. La Serenísima is an Argentine company that enjoys an excellent opinion among Argentines.

The doxa and the episteme, two forms of knowledge

Philosophers like Parmenides and Plato already distinguished between opinion and true knowledge. Both one and the other are ways of knowing reality. The doxa or opinion becomes a primary category of human understanding and through it we can express how we feel about something (we say that we like spring or that we dislike rainy days). The episteme is the true knowledge of reality and with it we indicate how things are with non-personal criteria.

For the child who has a magical thought, a ball can move because he wants to hide from other toys, but according to rational thought, the movement of the ball depends on mass, speed, friction or inertia, measurable issues that are considered as true.

Opinion in the journalistic world

A journalist who writes about events has to tell what happened, when, how and why. His approach to the news must be closer to the truth of the facts. On the other hand, if the journalist writes an opinion article, his words do not have to respect any objective criteria.

It involves one of traditional journalistic genres that are distinguished by the presentation of an approach on a topic of interest, by a personality or a media outlet that holds authority in the society to which they belong.

It should be noted that the leitmotiv of the opinion genre is find the causes that produce certain eventsIn other words, the important thing will not be what happened but the comments that some may make of the news. Since the last century, the opinion columns of the different media have been used to strengthen the editorial line of the media in question.

Any opinion article must have the following four elements: thesis, arguments, conclusions and the presentation of an image that depicts the subject on which the opinion is expressed.

For her part, the public opinion It is the concept that is popularly used to designate the thinking about certain matters of general interest with which the majority of individuals agree.

Not all opinions are equally valid and respectable

If I like blue and my friend likes yellow, both opinions have the same validity and it is not reasonable to say that one evaluation is better than the other. However, on certain issues there are opinions that do not seem very respectable (the defense of slavery or the justification of violence are two specific examples of opinions that have a highly questionable validity).