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August 3, 2016
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In my opinion the difference in your example amounts to little more than personal preference, and is too subtle to mark down a writer. I too prefer 'provide' although I can't provide a good reason.
This is a phrase I've often seen in comment sections of blogs and videos. Those comment sections frequently degenerate into hothouses of abuse, in which a poster is likely to receive a venomous reply. I imagine that by concluding a comment with "I'm just saying" anticipates such a response and attempts to allay it. Which is to say, the phrase may be used to try to soften remarks that might be construed as criticism.
10 years on, and it's been getting steadily worse. Possible major contributing factor: the overwhelming exposure of vast numbers of internet users who lack basic English language proficiency to the comments and blogs of equally vast numbers internet users who also lack basic English language proficiency. In other words, a self-propagating culture of ever degenerating English language. This culture, owing to it's internet dominance, has come to define new norms via 'common usage'. To an old timer like me, the corruption is abominable; but I suppose I'm out-numbered - or should that be 'out-amounted'?
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