"Imply" vs. "Infer"

For those of us fascinated with the written word, Twitter and its 140 character limit presents serious challenges. Users often need to use multiple messages to be clear in conversation or debate. Sometimes they don’t manage it very well. For example:

There’s nothing clear about it. With this single message, what is being said?

From an author’s viewpoint, what is being implied?

@The stupid(ity of these people). It BURRRNNNNNSSSS (them)! Yes(, you fools). (Of course you would think) I created the algorithm at WordPress AND ReverbNation (because you are idiots). SARC It was ALL ME! /SARC #dopes

This could be the intent of the author sending this tweet.

But it may not be the message received by the reader.

The difference between what an author wishes to say and what the audience understands is the difference between implication and inference. What might a reader infer from the same message?

The beautiful thing about that answer is that it is bounded by nothing at all.

Except the reader’s imagination.

The stupid(ity leaking out of my brain). It BURRRNNNNNSSSS (ME)! Yes(, indeed). (In my spare time, and for no pay, which is quite important to me, because I’m dirt poor and everyone knows it,) I created the algorithm at WordPress AND ReverbNation. (Because I’m a GENIUS!!) It was ALL ME! You #dopes

What is the truth? Probably somewhere in between. But it’s so easy to vomit up a 140 character message that really doesn’t mean what you think means.

Interpretation can be SO subjective.


Now Here's Something To Consider


Maybe he doesn’t want you in jail. Maybe, like so many others, he just wants you to


And maybe, just maybe, he has finally realized that patience and grace and forgiveness and Christian charity are wasted on evil people. Maybe he has reached the conclusion that the only way to get you to


is to put you somewhere where you have no choice but to


We haven’t spoken on this subject, but if it were me, it wouldn’t have to be jail; a mental hospital would be just fine. A cabin in the mountains with no internet access would be fine, too. A nice, secluded island with a manual typewriter and an endless supply of paper would be all right. Someplace nice, with all the comforts of home except one – the electronic access that would force you to


is all that I would need.

But I won’t lie. Seeing you in jail would be FUN.


I Don't Have to Imagine, There's a Perfect Example Available



I mean, don’t you have to feel for a guy who’s so brain dead that he can’t recognize a fictional parody even when the piece is explicitly identified and labeled as such before the piece begins? And what makes it even worse (and by “worse” I mean MORE EPICALLY GOD DAMN RIOTOUSLY FUNNY) is that the same fool who missed (and by “missed” I mean IGNORED COMPLETELY IN ORDER TO CONSTRUCT A SPECTACULARLY FALSE SET OF ASSUMPTIONS TO JUSTIFY HIS “I JUST SAT ON A WHOLE CHRISTMAS TREE, VERTICALLY” CASE OF BUTTHURT) that fact so badly that he literally tried to make federal case of it, not once, but TWICE??

Imagine being such a dunce that you can’t tell the difference between the shitty (and yeah, that word choice is LOADED WITH PURPOSE) satire you write, produce and perform, versus someone else’s gigantic mockery of you and anyone else who thinks you have ever been funny.