Logical fallacies/douchebaggery in commercials.

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Re: Logical fallacies/douchebaggery in commercials.

Postby Luthen » Sun Jan 18, 2009 9:56 pm UTC

Wakapeeja wrote:smooth-talking condescension

I think this about sums up the world of advertising.
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Re: Logical fallacies/douchebaggery in commercials.

Postby Peripheral_Epiphany » Mon Jan 19, 2009 3:35 am UTC

I really don't like the little timers that appear at the bottom of infomercials that supposedly show how long you have before some special offer (like a useless double of the same product or an unrelated piece of crap that they can't sell on its own) expires. I guess it's supposed to intimidate people into buying something before looking into it on the internet, but seriously, sweeten the deal with something better than just two times the Mighty Putty. And anyways they don't keep track of when the commercials air...the whole concept irks me.
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Re: Logical fallacies/douchebaggery in commercials.

Postby '; DROP DATABASE;-- » Mon Jan 19, 2009 5:02 am UTC

Yeah, how exactly can they tell you "offer expires 30 seconds from now" when they're not even keeping track? It seems like false advertising.
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Re: Logical fallacies/douchebaggery in commercials.

Postby Mighty Jalapeno » Mon Jan 19, 2009 5:31 am UTC

'; DROP DATABASE;-- wrote:Yeah, how exactly can they tell you "offer expires 30 seconds from now" when they're not even keeping track? It seems like false advertising.

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Re: Logical fallacies/douchebaggery in commercials.

Postby Jebobek » Mon Jan 19, 2009 3:52 pm UTC

Howabout the chevy truck commercials where the guy gets out and points out the flaws of other people's trucks while mentioning the 21MPG. Then the other guy feels embarrased about his truck. Much of it is seen during the football games. Dammit, we're giving you all this bailout money and you turn around and piss me off with these douchebaggery commercials.
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Re: Logical fallacies/douchebaggery in commercials.

Postby Quillpaw » Mon Jan 19, 2009 4:18 pm UTC

Are you kidding me? That's all commercials ever really do- they point out how much better it is than other product. Car commercials are just the only ones with the guts to do it by brand name.
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Re: Logical fallacies/douchebaggery in commercials.

Postby Jebobek » Mon Jan 19, 2009 4:26 pm UTC

True, but these commercials seem to take that extra step to emasculate the "other guy." Usually in car commercials, they have one car driving faster than the other car, or pulling more heavy stuff, or whatnot. Something about these specific commercials bothers me more than others.
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Re: Logical fallacies/douchebaggery in commercials.

Postby Mighty Jalapeno » Mon Jan 19, 2009 4:33 pm UTC

And if you still don't feel superior to the other truck driver, you can get TruckNuts!

Seriously... it's a car, people. Or a truck. It's a vehicle. It's a machine. It's an appliance. The post-World War II car-love period is over. Find a better way to spend $57,000.

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Re: Logical fallacies/douchebaggery in commercials.

Postby SecondTalon » Mon Jan 19, 2009 4:34 pm UTC

"Hi. You live in a city, work in an office crunching numbers or whatever all day and you're buying a truck capable of towing a bulldozer. Just how small is your penis anyway?"
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Re: Logical fallacies/douchebaggery in commercials.

Postby Chfan » Mon Jan 19, 2009 5:09 pm UTC

SecondTalon wrote:"Hi. You live in a city, work in an office crunching numbers or whatever all day and you're buying a truck capable of towing a bulldozer. Just how small is your penis anyway?"


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Re: Logical fallacies/douchebaggery in commercials.

Postby benjhuey » Tue Jan 20, 2009 8:04 am UTC

Paraphrasing a local Harley-Davidson dealership radio commercial: "There's only one guarantee these days: that there are no guarantees. Except for this: <announces their guarantee, later revealed as the 'Ride Free Guarantee'>."

Oh, shut the fuck up, you!
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Re: Logical fallacies/douchebaggery in commercials.

Postby '; DROP DATABASE;-- » Thu Jan 22, 2009 1:07 am UTC

Not really douchbaggery, but I found it funny. A local cab company has the slogan "always just minutes away." Always? "Where are you guys?" "Just minutes away!" *20 minutes later* "Still just minutes away!"
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Re: Logical fallacies/douchebaggery in commercials.

Postby emceng » Thu Jan 22, 2009 2:06 am UTC

Jebobek wrote:True, but these commercials seem to take that extra step to emasculate the "other guy." Usually in car commercials, they have one car driving faster than the other car, or pulling more heavy stuff, or whatnot. Something about these specific commercials bothers me more than others.


Or many times just emasculate 'the guy/husband/father'.

There were Dodge Durango commercials from a few years ago that made me want to punch people in the groin. They pretty much all involved the typical suburban husband doing something stupid. It didn't help that I saw the commercials about 1000 times.
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Re: Logical fallacies/douchebaggery in commercials.

Postby Sir_Elderberry » Thu Jan 22, 2009 2:10 am UTC

'; DROP DATABASE;-- wrote:Not really douchbaggery, but I found it funny. A local cab company has the slogan "always just minutes away." Always? "Where are you guys?" "Just minutes away!" *20 minutes later* "Still just minutes away!"


Units don't change just because the number of minutes is huge, after all.
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Re: Logical fallacies/douchebaggery in commercials.

Postby CVSoul » Thu Jan 22, 2009 2:39 am UTC

You know, I just saw a new Axe commercial that's extremely idiotic. The one where they put wigs on male supermodels, and then pose scenarios where they fail to pick up girls, and then say, "If THESE gorgeous guys can't pick up girls because of their hair, what chance could YOU possibly have?", and then make you buy Axe shampoo. That one. And the worst part is, there ARE guys out there that don't know enough women and will fall for it. Ugh.
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Re: Logical fallacies/douchebaggery in commercials.

Postby -KF- » Thu Jan 22, 2009 3:16 am UTC

'Book your vacation with this travel agency and save even more!'

...Than what?

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Re: Logical fallacies/douchebaggery in commercials.

Postby '; DROP DATABASE;-- » Thu Jan 22, 2009 6:33 am UTC

Whenever they compare to something unspecified like that, I always like to fill in "...than a tortoise."
30% faster! ...than a tortoise.
Now with 20% more calcium! ...than a tortoise.
Better <insert product here>, for less! ...than a tortoise.
Twice the processing power! ...of a tortoise.

BTW, find an Axe commercial that isn't completely retarded and doesn't basically outright exclaim "if you buy this, women will be highly attracted to you" and/or "you have no chance of ever getting laid without this". Good luck.

Sir_Elderberry wrote:
'; DROP DATABASE;-- wrote:Not really douchbaggery, but I found it funny. A local cab company has the slogan "always just minutes away." Always? "Where are you guys?" "Just minutes away!" *20 minutes later* "Still just minutes away!"


Units don't change just because the number of minutes is huge, after all.
The joke is they never actually arrive; they're always "just minutes away". Unless that's what you were saying. I'm tired, lemme alone.
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Re: Logical fallacies/douchebaggery in commercials.

Postby teh_gurkerer » Thu Jan 22, 2009 6:41 am UTC

My favourite one was: '19% of the Netherlands is illiterate, take action!', doesn't take a brain to realize they're counting kids who haven't learnt to read and write yet.

Also, the whole meaningless scientific terms that don't exist I love, 'Dermatologically tested' appears quite often on skin products here. Dermis is Latin for skin I recall and I assume they test it on what it's supposed to do, all it says is they they don't release some-thing on the market which wasn't tested. Or that one think which supposedly contained 'purified oxygen', thank Jesus H. Christ not a radioactive metal they decided to purify but instead some-thing that only has one isotope of relevance, but they showed 0^3 symbols in the CGI animation, not O_3, again a good thing to just put tripple nothing in it instead of ozone, kind of bad for your skin.

And the irony of the only place where 'Free' is put before 'gift', it generally isn't free.
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Re: Logical fallacies/douchebaggery in commercials.

Postby Luthen » Thu Jan 22, 2009 8:17 am UTC

I was somewhat stunned to see this ad on the TV this evening. So Obama's just been inaugurated and do you do? Use sound bites/mimic his voice to sell horrible gas guzzling cars.
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Re: Logical fallacies/douchebaggery in commercials.

Postby ParanoidAndroid » Thu Jan 22, 2009 9:07 am UTC

An extra large cheese pizza is $8.99. A medium cheese pizza and breadsticks is $8.99. However, they insist that the breadsticks are free of charge. So, are extra large pizzas and a medium pizzas are the same price?

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Re: Logical fallacies/douchebaggery in commercials.

Postby teh_gurkerer » Thu Jan 22, 2009 9:35 am UTC

Nononono, you don't understand, 'free of charge' there means, 'there is a part of the dish that if you don't take it we won't charge you less'.

Like, at McDonald's, sauce is not free of charge because you pay less if you don't take it, that's how it works, perfectly formalizeable you see.
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Re: Logical fallacies/douchebaggery in commercials.

Postby -KF- » Thu Jan 22, 2009 11:39 am UTC

'; DROP DATABASE;-- wrote:Whenever they compare to something unspecified like that, I always like to fill in "...than a tortoise."
30% faster! ...than a tortoise.
Now with 20% more calcium! ...than a tortoise.
Better <insert product here>, for less! ...than a tortoise.
Twice the processing power! ...of a tortoise.


That's a brilliant idea. :lol: My outlook on life just became 30% more optimistic...

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Re: Logical fallacies/douchebaggery in commercials.

Postby Chfan » Thu Jan 22, 2009 12:00 pm UTC

I hate the commercial for high-fructose corn syrup where the guy doesn't want the Popsicle his girlfriends giving to him because it has the dreaded sugar syrup inside. And I hate how the lady laughs at the end.

Attention corn company! Your product is BAD FOR YOU! Stop trying to prove otherwise!
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Re:

Postby Lóng the Dragon » Thu Jan 22, 2009 3:18 pm UTC

Azrael wrote:
Somnia wrote:Gah, me too. "Twice as much cleaning agent!" Twice what? Twice... half of what the product already has? Twice that found in the horn of a unicorn? And WHAT cleaning agent?!


My fig newtons now proudly advertise 100% MORE REAL FRUIT!


33% LESS FAT! Than... something.
I'm just being bilingually redundant.

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Re: Logical fallacies/douchebaggery in commercials.

Postby bonzombiekitty » Thu Jan 22, 2009 3:33 pm UTC

Sir_Elderberry wrote:
'; DROP DATABASE;-- wrote:Not really douchbaggery, but I found it funny. A local cab company has the slogan "always just minutes away." Always? "Where are you guys?" "Just minutes away!" *20 minutes later* "Still just minutes away!"


Units don't change just because the number of minutes is huge, after all.

But it does mean that they can never get to you. If it's "always just minutes away" that means it's constantly moving to stay at least two minutes away from you given your current speed and direction.
Last edited by bonzombiekitty on Thu Jan 22, 2009 3:35 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Logical fallacies/douchebaggery in commercials.

Postby Torvaun » Thu Jan 22, 2009 3:34 pm UTC

Orbital cab ftw!
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Re: Logical fallacies/douchebaggery in commercials.

Postby DaMullet » Thu Jan 22, 2009 4:47 pm UTC

Why am I reminded of the alt-text in this comic?
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Re: Logical fallacies/douchebaggery in commercials.

Postby rnew » Thu Jan 22, 2009 4:51 pm UTC

teh_gurkerer wrote:Like, at McDonald's, sauce is not free of charge because you pay less if you don't take it, that's how it works, perfectly formalizeable you see.
Ketchup is free in all the McDonalds I've been to. In fact they have it on tap with little pots.
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Re: Logical fallacies/douchebaggery in commercials.

Postby sparkyb » Thu Jan 22, 2009 6:00 pm UTC

Sir_Elderberry wrote:
'; DROP DATABASE;-- wrote:Not really douchbaggery, but I found it funny. A local cab company has the slogan "always just minutes away." Always? "Where are you guys?" "Just minutes away!" *20 minutes later* "Still just minutes away!"

Units don't change just because the number of minutes is huge, after all.


I think Sir_Elderberry's claim is the opposite of the original point. Besides the fact that it means they'll never get to you, he's saying that it is a vacuous claim. "Just minutes away" doesn't mean they are close because 1000 minutes away is still just minutes away. Although if you read it like that I suppose it could mean that they could actually get to you (at which point they'd be 0 minutes away).

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Re: Logical fallacies/douchebaggery in commercials.

Postby DaMullet » Thu Jan 22, 2009 6:13 pm UTC

sparkyb wrote:I think Sir_Elderberry's claim is the opposite of the original point. Besides the fact that it means they'll never get to you, he's saying that it is a vacuous claim. "Just minutes away" doesn't mean they are close because 1000 minutes away is still just minutes away. Although if you read it like that I suppose it could mean that they could actually get to you (at which point they'd be 0 minutes away).

By that interpretation, he could never arrive; In order to get from 2 minutes away to 0 minutes away, he'd first need to get 1 minute away. In order to get from 2 to 1, he needs to get 1.5 minutes away. In order to get from 2 to 1.5, he needs to get 1.75 minutes away, etc. Therefore, it takes him an infinite amount of time to get anywhere, and he could never arrive. Quad Erat Demonstrandum.
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Re: Logical fallacies/douchebaggery in commercials.

Postby Random832 » Thu Jan 22, 2009 7:00 pm UTC

DaMullet wrote:
sparkyb wrote:I think Sir_Elderberry's claim is the opposite of the original point. Besides the fact that it means they'll never get to you, he's saying that it is a vacuous claim. "Just minutes away" doesn't mean they are close because 1000 minutes away is still just minutes away. Although if you read it like that I suppose it could mean that they could actually get to you (at which point they'd be 0 minutes away).

By that interpretation, he could never arrive; In order to get from 2 minutes away to 0 minutes away, he'd first need to get 1 minute away. In order to get from 2 to 1, he needs to get 1.5 minutes away. In order to get from 2 to 1.5, he needs to get 1.75 minutes away, etc. Therefore, it takes him an infinite amount of time to get anywhere, and he could never arrive. Quad Erat Demonstrandum.


Actually, arguably a 'distance' of 1 minute (not being "minutes") is an impassable boundary - even without resorting to Zeno's paradox, it can never be reached; thus it can never be crossed.

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Re: Logical fallacies/douchebaggery in commercials.

Postby Klapaucius » Thu Jan 22, 2009 10:31 pm UTC

This is being overinterpreted. "Always minutes away" just means "never where you are".
500%!

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Re: Re:

Postby -KF- » Thu Jan 22, 2009 10:56 pm UTC

Lóng the Dragon wrote:
Azrael wrote:
Somnia wrote:Gah, me too. "Twice as much cleaning agent!" Twice what? Twice... half of what the product already has? Twice that found in the horn of a unicorn? And WHAT cleaning agent?!


My fig newtons now proudly advertise 100% MORE REAL FRUIT!


33% LESS FAT! Than... something.


Than a tortoise! :lol:

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Re: Re:

Postby Klapaucius » Thu Jan 22, 2009 11:10 pm UTC

-KF- wrote:
Lóng the Dragon wrote:
Azrael wrote:
Somnia wrote:Gah, me too. "Twice as much cleaning agent!" Twice what? Twice... half of what the product already has? Twice that found in the horn of a unicorn? And WHAT cleaning agent?!


My fig newtons now proudly advertise 100% MORE REAL FRUIT!


33% LESS FAT! Than... something.


Than a tortoise! :¡This cheese is burning me!:
If I ever become an advertising agent I'm just going to give everything a big round Wired-cover-neon orange sticker that reads 500%! Not even "500% more", because nobody really pays attention to anything after the excitingly big number.
500%!

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Re: Logical fallacies/douchebaggery in commercials.

Postby Mighty Jalapeno » Thu Jan 22, 2009 11:21 pm UTC

That's an old bit from Air Farce.

"Zantac 75 is proven to work. Just look at these numbers... 45%. 56%. 80%. That's right... 80%. And don't forget, Zantac backwards is Catnaz. Still not convinced? Remember... 80%!"

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Re: Re:

Postby phlip » Thu Jan 22, 2009 11:22 pm UTC

Klapaucius wrote:If I ever become an advertising agent I'm just going to give everything a big round Wired-cover-neon orange sticker that reads 500%! Not even "500% more", because nobody really pays attention to anything after the excitingly big number.

That's great... they should sell those stickers in the xkcd store, next to the "Actual Size" stickers... I'd buy them.

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Re: Re: Re:?

Postby Luthen » Fri Jan 23, 2009 1:01 am UTC

phlip wrote:
Klapaucius wrote:If I ever become an advertising agent I'm just going to give everything a big round Wired-cover-neon orange sticker that reads 500%! Not even "500% more", because nobody really pays attention to anything after the excitingly big number.
That's great... they should sell those stickers in the xkcd store, next to the "Actual Size" stickers... I'd buy them.
Should be a full range: 50%, 100%, 200%, 500%, 9001%
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Re: Re: Re:?

Postby Klapaucius » Fri Jan 23, 2009 1:06 am UTC

Luthen wrote:
phlip wrote:
Klapaucius wrote: 9001%
I see what you did there. THAT'S IMPOSSIBLE!
500%!

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Re: Re: Re:?

Postby Luthen » Fri Jan 23, 2009 3:19 am UTC

Klapaucius wrote:
Luthen wrote:
phlip wrote:
Klapaucius wrote: 9001%
I see what you did there. THAT'S IMPOSSIBLE!
I wish you'd said that it was madness.
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