I've heard things from lineraly rising potential to linearly rising force. Since the change is over distance.... which is it? If dF/dx is constant, then energy, being the product of force times distance, would increase at twice the exponential. That would mean that potential does not rise linearly with distance, assuming that there is only one correct definition of potential (which I think probably isn't the case). I just found a Wikipedia article which makes this apparent contradiction more visible: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Colour_confinement I see this problem in many places, even among university material, not just Wikipedia. Can anyone solve this condundrum?