Difference Between Fact and Opinion

Main Difference – Fact vs Opinion

It is always important to distinguish the difference between fact and opinion in order to discern the reliability and the usefulness of information. Sometimes information is presented as facts when they may be just an opinion. This article is going to examine the two concepts fact and opinion and analyze the difference between them. The main difference between fact and opinion is that fact can be proven as true whereas opinion cannot be proven as true.Difference Between Fact and Opinion - infographic

What is a Fact

A fact can be defined as a thing that is known or proved to be true. Fact can also refer to a piece of information presented as having objective reality. Fact can always be verified with proof or evidence. Facts are always objective and neutral. Given below are some examples of facts:

2008 Summer Olympics was held in China.

Oxygen is used in cellular respiration.

Sun rises from the east and sets from the west.

Autumn comes after summer.

Cast iron is an alloy made of Iron and Carbon.

You can observe that all these facts can be verified or proved by concrete facts. Some of them have been proved by scientific research whereas the general facts can be proven by records and data.

It is also important to note that facts can sometimes be influenced by opinions and biases, even in some academic and research fields. Thus, facts which are influenced by opinions are not objective.

Difference Between Fact and Opinion

Fact: The sun rises from the east.

What is an Opinion

An opinion is a view or judgment about something, i.e., what someone thinks about something. Opinions are not necessarily based on facts or knowledge. Since they are personal interpretations based on an individual’s knowledge and experience, they cannot be verified with concrete evidence. Opinions are always subjective.

When you are reading a text, it is always important to distinguish the difference between facts and opinions. Opinions can often be identified by the use of adjectives, superlatives, comparatives and first person point of view. Given below are some examples of opinions.

Dogs are better than cats.

Madrid is the best city in the world.

I think your answer is wrong.

The speed limit should be reduced.  

Everyone respects the principle of our school.

However, it is not always so easy to identify the difference between facts and opinions. For example, you can say that college A is better than college B. This is generally considered as an opinion. However, if you use evidence like survey results, ratings, comparison of facilities, etc. you may be able to present it as a fact.

Main Difference - Fact vs Opinion

Opinion: Sunset is more beautiful than sunrise

Difference Between Fact and Opinion

Meaning 

Fact is a piece of information that can be proved with concrete evidence.

Opinion is a view or judgment about something.

Evidence

Facts can be proved or verified with evidence.

Opinions cannot be proved by evidence.

Objectivity 

Fact is objective.

Opinion is subjective and personal.

Change

Fact does not change often.

Opinions may differ according to different people.

Image Courtesy: Pixbay

About the Author: Hasa

Hasa has a BA degree in English, French and Translation studies. She is currently reading for a Masters degree in English. Her areas of interests include literature, language, linguistics and also food.