Quick thought. Should creative briefs include provocations AND propositions?
I’m quickly coming to the conclusion that the term ‘proposition’ is actually pretty subjective; it is something both philosophers and mathematicians have yet to truly define.
A quick search on the not so robust Wikipedia gives a little insight into the complexity of the issue:
“In logic and philosophy, the term proposition refers to either (a) the ”content” or “meaning” of a meaningful declarative sentence or (b) the pattern of symbols, marks, or sounds that make up a meaningful declarative sentence. The meaning of a proposition includes having the quality or property of being either true or false, and as such propositions are claimed to be truthbearers.
The existence of propositions in sense (a) above, as well as the existence of “meanings,” is disputed by some philosophers. Where the concept of a “meaning” is admitted, its nature is controversial. In earlier texts writers have not always made it sufficiently clear whether they are using the termproposition in sense of the words or the “meaning” expressed by the words. To avoid the controversies and ontological implications, the termsentence is often now used instead of proposition to refer to just those strings of symbols that are truthbearers, being either true or false under an interpretation. Strawson advocated the use of the term “statement,” and some mathematicians have adopted this usage.“
Alternatively, here’s the Oxford Dictionary Online definition of the term ‘Provocation’.
Action or speech that makes someone angry, especially deliberately:you should remain calm and not respond to provocationhe burst into tears at the slightest provocation
Law action or speech held to be likely to prompt physical retaliation:the assault had taken place under provocation
The action of arousing sexual desire or interest, especially deliberately:walking with deliberate provocation, she struck a pose, then giggled
Pretty defined I’d say.
Now let’s imagine that instead of just propositions, we used both provocation and proposition.
Granted, provocations tend to incite rather than communicate. But in a world gone digital, where many campaigns want us to participate and get involved, should we not shift the onus to ‘what will get people to act?’, rather than ‘what are we trying to communicate?’.
OK, some briefs have a section for ‘what do want them to do?’ – but how many lazy planners just put ‘buy product X’?
To be honest, I could easily make the argument against this contention, but in the spirit of open Friday thinking I thought I’d put it out there as a thought starter.
Here is a slideshare from Patricia Macdonald that she delivered at the recent IPA Modern Briefing event.