Appeal to celebrity

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An appeal to celebrity is a fallacy that occurs when a source is claimed to be authoritative because of their popularity. It is the bastard child of an appeal to authority and an argumentum ad populum. The appeal to celebrity is especially common in advertising.

The fallacy is an appeal to authority and thus a conditional fallacy.

Contents

[edit] Form

P1: Famous person X supports Y.
P2: (unstated) Famous persons are correct.
C1: Y is correct.

[edit] Examples

[edit] Problems

Popularity is irrelevant to truth. The only minor exception occurs when the cited celebrity is popular because of their expertise (e.g., Richard Dawkins, Stephen Hawking, and Neil deGrasse Tyson), which merely shows (in this case) that said persons are good at explaining science, not necessarily doing it. Similarly, Michael Jordan may be an authority on basketball shoes, but because of his expertise at basketball, not because of his popularity.

[edit] See also

[edit] External links


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