Robert Comsol wrote:
To insist that adding the name to a class should have been a procedure in TOS is obviously retroactive continuity considering the actual readible ("Starship Class") and audible ("Class J starship") information.
How is that a retcon? The plaque says, "Starship Class". Not "Class Starship". Not "Class J Starship". And not "DY-100 Class" or "DY-500 Class" and certainly, not "NCC-1700 Class".
The simple view strictly looking at the plaque then it is a "Starship Class" which does suggest a USS Starship somewhere in the fleet. I would imagine a "DY-500 Class" would likely have a DY-500 somewhere in the fleet as well.
Whether the Enterprise is a "Class J" or "Class 4" starship, or whatever classification
that is being used by Starfleet, well, that's anyone's guess
Now, if you want to bring in information that is outside the universe, such as the artist's intent, or the producer's intent (via notes or scripts), or "approved" merchandising, go ahead but all you're doing is making something simple much more complicated, IMHO