It's a pretty simple concept, which weighs more either in your opinion of a characters ability or when you debate in the battle forum; actual on panel feats or characters being talked up via other accomplished characters?
I would say both. But I lean more towards feats.
Words of mouth can be a lie, but feats can be PIS.
First bad examples of each.
Feats- If Captain America KO's the Hulk with a karate chop to the temple is it valid? Or is it PIS? We all know the answer. Same with Batman and Superman.
Word of mouth/statement- Conversely, Batman calling Wonder Woman the best melee fighter ever (or whatever he says) should not be taken on blind faith.
Now good examples of eac
A statement can be accepted if certain criteria are met. Example; Captain America or Batman saying they know a specific amount of martial arts Batman stated he mastered 127 different martial arts styles. Have they ever depicted him using all 127 martial arts styles in the comics? Would we know if the writers and artists acutally did? Same with Captain America being adept at all forms of H2H combat known to man. Given the histories and moral character of these two men I would think, it would be safe to assume that these two statements are factual. But you got to take into account their "integrity, if they are based on opinion or a "black and white" statement, example Batman has either mastered 127 martial arts or he doesn't there is no grey area. So therefore it couldn't be an opinion, it would have to be either a truth or a lie. Same goes for Cap's statement, he either does or he doesn't, he's either telling the truth or telling a lie. You got to take into account their integrity, Is Captain America a liar? You have to take into account the possibility, is it possible (within the world of comics) that Batman actually mastered 127 different martial arts styles, or that Captain America became that adept at H2H combat? One is a genius and a perfectionist, the other has his total body enhanced beyond what a normal human can do, so I would say it is possible to count these statements as evidence.
Nows on to feats. Captain America or Batman using their shield or utility belt resectively, to do feats that , are extraordinary, like Cap ricocheting his shield off of multiple thing to hit his target exactly where and even when he wanted to, or Batman pulling out some whacky gadget to use on an otherwise difficult foe is completely acceptable, due to their histories of performing such feat throughout their comics.
Really what it boils down to, is posters and debaters need to use common sense and good judgement to decide what statement or word of mouth is legit, and alsowhat feat is or isn't PIS.