Propaganda, along with fake news, can be considered the inflammables that light the fire of hate speech offline and online. How capable are we to recognize the different kinds of propaganda?
This Guide is not trying to overwhelm you with strict definitions and boring terminology! If you want to understand the different forms of propaganda along with examples of everyday life, take a look at the following table and feel free to use it as your personal guide:
A politician describes what the country would be like with crime within 2 years time.
People think of that image and believe that voting for him will reduce that threat.
Building a mental image
“Everyone else is doing it, and so should you!”
Common threads (religion, race, vocation) are appealing to many people.
Bill Clinton eating at McDonald’s.
Trying to appear to be “common folks” when you really aren’t.
Building false images
An ad shows a bloody accident.
People are reminded to wear their seatbelts.
A smiling actor explains how this product solved their problem.
Trying to sell relief and carelessness.
A president says that in order to reduce the deficit, we have to either tax the wealthy more or ask seniors to pay more for Medicare.
Two choices are offered as if they are the only two options.
Creating a false dilemma
“Their first injection was a vaccination” – campaign motto of anti-vaccine movement.
Trying to plant an idea by repeating it as a motto.
“Baseball, apple pie, and Chevrolet.”
Generating good feelings by the thoughts of certain goods and actions.
Appealing to tradition
For the film Live Free or Die Hard, Jack Mathews was quoted as saying: “Hysterically…entertaining.”
Real quote:“The action in this fast-paced, hysterically overproduced and surprisingly entertaining film is as realistic as a Road Runner cartoon.”
Taking a quote out of context and giving a false impression to the reader or listener.
“My opponent is an alcoholic.”
Falsely characterizing others.
“This is the best cavity-fighting toothpaste out there.”
Presenting a fact without any proof.