Appeal to authority: The fallacy of relying on the opinion of someone deemed to be an expert
who in fact is not an expert.
Background information: The large collection of very well-supported beliefs that we all rely on
to inform our actions and choices. It consists of basic facts about everyday things, beliefs based
on very good evidence (including our own personal observations and excellent authority), and
justified claims that we would regard as ‘common sense’ or ‘common knowledgeable‘
Expert: someone who is more knowledgeable in a particular subject area or field than most
others are. Indicators are:
Amount of education and training
Experience in making reliable judgments
Reputation among peers
Personal Experience: We accept a great many claims because they are based on personal
experiences – our own or someone else’s. Factors that give good reason to doubt:
Gambler’s fallacy: The error of thinking that previous events can affect the probabilities in the
random event at hand.
Fooling ourselves: When we:
Three most common mistakes are:
Resisting contrary evidence
Looking for confirming evidence (confirming bias)
Preferring available evidence (availability error)
Appeal to common practice: The fallacy of arguing that a price is ethical or wise merely
because a substantial number of people do it. Appeal to emotion: The fallacy of using emotions in place of relevant reasons as premises in
Appeal to ignorance: The fallacy of arguing that a lack of evidence proves something. In on
type of this fallacy, the problem arises by thinking that a claim must be true because it hasn’t
been shown to be false. In another type, the breakdown in logic comes when you argue that a
claim must be false because it hasn’t been proved to be true.
Appeal to popularity: The fallacy of arguing that a claim must be true merely because a
substantial number of people believe it.
Appeal to the person/ad hominem (appeal to the person): the Fallacy of rejecting a claim by
criticizing the person who makes it rather