On Experian's website (and, I imagine, the other two bureau sites) we have the option to obtain a credit report and a credit score report. The credit report is the report that we can get through annualcreditreport.com - it's free and can be done once per year for each bureau.
A credit report is a soft inquiry.
Now, we also have the option to buy the report and the FICO score for a fee. Online searches for the answer to this question don't seem to make a clear distinction between the score and the report.
If I decide to obtain my credit score by paying Experian or any other bureau, does it count as a soft or hard inquiry?
Reference: http://www.experian.com/blogs/ask-experian/2012/07/04/checking-own-report-will-not-hurt-credit-scores/ (According to this, it looks as though a hard inquiry is only one that's pulled by a potential lender. Is this correct?)