George - I think what Michael meant by 'generic term' is that there are many different types of primary sources (i.e. news articles, birth certificates, death certificates, etc.) - which I think we all agree with here. However, without knowing what the OP is looking at, it is hard to give advice, because no example of a primary source has been given.
As an example:
- Birth Certificate lists DOB as 2 Jan 1928
- A small town newspaper has a 'Current Events' section and lists that Mr. and Mrs. XX just had a baby boy, born 3 Jan 1928.
In the examples above, even though they are both considered primary sources, it is easier to say to go with the Birth Certificate information, not the newspaper article based on the evidence and type of source given.
Now, it should also go without saying that there are obvious caveats; such as amended birth certificates. In my family line, even as recent as my parents and grandparents generation, official birth certificates were released with no child name. They would be documented as "Baby boy Harris" or "Baby girl Harris". After the child reached a certain age and was named, a birth certificate amendment would be filed.
Again, I don't think Michael was implying here that the term 'primary sources' is generic, but the use of primary sources in this particular thread is generic and does not provide enough information to provide a clear and concise answer.