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Style over Substance

 

Disciplines Argument > Fallacies > Style over Substance

Description | Discussion | Example | See also

 

Description

Presenting something in an attractive way makes it more right.

Dress well. Speak well. Use props, pictures and powerpoint. Use panache, verve, flair and elegance. Wow the crowds with your style and they may not notice that your content is not so hot. Use elaborate language that sounds good and fills up the space you have, covering the fact that you may actually have very little to say.

Example

Good ladies and Gentle men, let me first welcome you to this auspicious occasion...

[Arrive to sound of trumpets] Thank you folks. Well, I don't want to blow my own trumpet, you know...(laughter)

Well, how can I disagree with such a smart young man.

Discussion

Just because something is attractive does not make it right.

If people like you, then they will bond with you and will be unwilling to criticize what you say, or even think ill of you -- to do otherwise would cause cognitive dissonance.

Classification

Distraction, Relevance

See also

Bonding principle, Cognitive Dissonance

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