Our infomercial was a dog food that made your pet love you more. We claimed that we took the chemical called phenylethylamine, found in chocolate, and put it into our dog food. Phenylethylamine is a chemical that triggers the body to release hormones into your body like serotonin and dopamine. These neurotransmitters are connected with love and infatuation (Nootriment Editorial Staff, 2015). By putting this chemical in our dog food we have created a way to make your dog love you more. This idea is completely absurd. The video showed many scientific and argumentative flaws in it.
In the video we keep referring to the research that has led us to believe that this product works. We never cite specific research it just says “my numerous research studies. ” If this was really science than the infomercial would have told you the specific number of studies that have been done for this product and what they involved. Also, the infomercial said fake statistics to go along with our research “My studies have shown that over 50% of dogs are unhappy with their owners. After feeding these unhappy dogs Love Potion K9, we saw 99. % improvement in the dog’s mood. ”
We made up a random number for the amount of dogs that are unhappy with their owners, and used 99. 9 percent for our other statistic because it seems like that is what all commercials have for their statistic. If this was actually science and not pseudoscience than there would have been actual studies to support the product and scientists would be able to present actual facts and statistics. It would have been able to present a hypothesis that had been proven through research, repetition, publication, and peer reviews.
The argument of the claim is that Love Potion K9 can make your dog love you more, be happier, and therefore live a longer life. The logical fallacy in this is that there is nothing to support the theory that is a dog is happy than they will live longer lives. Also, we are basing our science off of the assumption that dog brains react the same way to phenylethylamine as humans and that they react the same as humans to serotonin and dopamine. Furthermore, when David said that his dog died young because he was unhappy and full of hate he created another logical fallacy.
Animals do not die because they are unhappy there is always some other cause of death that can be directly related to depression or sadness, but their mood is never the actual cause of death. These are weak arguments because they make incorrect assumptions. One trick that we used in our infomercial to persuade the audience was to appeal to emotions. David said that his dog died and he did not want anyone to experience the loss and suffering that he had to endure. This is a good technique of persuasion because it produces sympathy for David and makes him more relatable, because most people have lost a pet at some point in their life.
Another, trick we used to persuade the audience is we used science terminology to make the infomercial seem convincing. We have no reason to believe that phenylethylamine will increase serotonin and dopamine in dogs. We also do not know if an increase in these neurotransmitters would increase the love that a person’s dog has for them. This is another persuasive technique because most people hear that it sounds complicated or that it uses science termonology and will be more inclined to believe that the product works. Furthermore, the infomercial contained a testimonial from David’s friend and from a fake doctor.
The expert endorsement made the ad seem more credible, but the expert was not legitimate. They said that they were a doctor, but they were not. Even if they had their doctorate they never specified that it was in, as far as the audience knows they could have their doctorate in astrology. This strategy makes it seem more convincing, though, because someone with a high degree endorses it. Most people in the public do not think to question if the doctorate is in a pertinent field they are convinced because of the doctorate.
Another trick that was used was when David did not really answer the question; he was asked if the product was safe and all he said was that the benefits outweighed the costs. With that same question he decided to use another way to distract from actually having to answer the question. After he made his initial statement he redirected the question by asking the interviewer a question, and distracting her from getting the answer she was looking for. This technique is effective because the audience thinks that the interviewee has answered the question when he actually has not.
The infomercial showed many different forms of evidence. It cited studies which is usually a strong form of argument, but in this case the ad did not tell you much other than there are studies that are looking into the effectiveness of or product. This makes this evidence weak. Usually citing studies is a strong source of evidence, because research can really only present what it has found. If research supports the product than there is a reason to believe that the product works. If the research does not support the product or hypothesis than it needs to be reworked and retested.
Also, anecdotal evidence was presented in the infomercial, a person was interviewed and asked about his experience with the dog food. Anecdotal evidence is unreliable at best. People can lie, be mistaken, or be experiencing something like the placebo effect. There are a number of other possibilities that could account for anecdotal evidence being unreliable and false. The infomercial also showed and explained a graph that was entirely made up. A graph of a study would be good evidence because it would display the outcome of the research that was done.
Since it is fake and the graph that we made did not make sense it is probably a weak form of evidence, in this case. Each one of us did specific things for the project. David and I brainstormed on ideas for the infomercial, but he was the one to come up with Love Potion K9. We all wrote the script together. David and Bailee were in the infomercial the most, but Thad to film everything. I also edited the video, Bailee and David helped find the extra clips that we put in the infomercial though. It was a lot of fun making the video and I really enjoyed the project.