There are a number of words that mean "generally believed to be true but not necessarily true" but their connotations differ tremendously.
Some examples of these are
So, if I wanted to say something like,
FOIA requests seem to be for the protection of the American public, but what is the government actually hiding?
I would intend it to imply something more sinister.
In the past, I always thought it was more appropriate to use the word ostensibly. Likewise the expression allegedly is also fine in the following because an allegation is often used when charging someone with breaking the law. For example, "The Plaintiff claims that Defendant broke into the home where he allegedly stole several items."
Whereas seemingly is reserved for more neutral statements: "The water is boiling seemingly because of the presence of steam."
Is there a generally accepted usage of these words that can be placed on a sort of continuum of connotation? Or do these words resist or defy any classification?