The Blog And Political Communication English Language Essay

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The name weblog was created by Peter Merholz in which they put the initials on blog sites in particular. It is further taken as common name for the blog until now. Before "blogging" became popular, digital communities using various formats including Usenet, commercial online service such as Genie, BIX and the early CompuServe, e-mail lists and bulletin board system (BBS) to create a blog-like column line. The use of blog is now widespread throughout the world with a number of blog users increases day by day. By the end of 2011, NM Incite (, a Nielsen/McKinsey company, tracked over 181 million blogs around the world.

Blog features

Blog contains information that reflects the interests, thoughts or opinions as well as the chronology of the latest information placed at the top. It is easily updated without the need for programming and allows readers to comment and review. Blog or better known as a personal electronic journal should be distinguished from the website. The role and function is a little different. There are several features of blogs. The first feature of blog is blog's title or blog's name. The title or name of the blog is a major introduction of a blog. Title will sometimes reflect the views and the identity of a blogger. Title will also be attractive and easy to draw. Sometimes the title of this blog can lead to controversy and to see support for a party that is supported. Second feature is profile. This is a space to be filled by the blogger. In this column blogger is free whether to disclose the true identity or not, or using a pseudonym. Third feature is post or entry. This is an important part of the blog (Miller & Shepard, 2004). Blogger will upload the articles written by them in this section. But there are bloggers who just upload the articles that they take from other blogs or news excerpts from the daily newspapers. This column will reflect the views of bloggers on an issue. It also demonstrates how bloggers analyze and influence their readers with their views. Fourth feature is blogrolls. Blogrolls is a space used by bloggers to put in their blogs. It provides a link between blogs, inter-connecting them (Blanchard, 2004). Blogrolls is crucial for the existence of the blogosphere. Blogrolls is also as recognition of bloggers to other bloggers in certain group they wish to belong. Fifth feature is comment column. This is the space filled by the readers and to leave a comment, readers must sign up for them to comment on the article read. Comment section is important for bloggers to find out the views of readers. It also creates opportunities for readers to react and respond, and participate in conversation (Lampa, 2004). Sixth feature is archive. An archive is a collection or storage of articles downloaded by reverse chronological order. The reader can choose any downloaded articles. This space is important to see the views of the blogger as a reference year.

Political communication

Meadow (1980) states that the term political communication refers to any form of exchange of symbols or messages to a certain extent influenced or affected

functioning of the political system. It is including all the process of delivering information-including facts, opinions, beliefs and so on (McQuail, 2005). According to Pawito (2009), a communication can be regarded as political communication depends on the character of the message and its impact on the political system. The clearer the message related to political communication and the stronger their impact on the political system, the more significant the communication is also rated as political communication. It can be concluded that political communication is the role of communication in the political process (Kaid, 2004)

Pawito (2009) added, in general, political communication is seen as a process of ongoing activity, meaning that what is happening now is a continuation of what went before. As a process, political communication involves at least five elements. The first element is actors or participants. Political communication actors or participants are all the parties who involved or take part in the process of delivering and receiving messages. Political communication actors or participants can be individuals, groups, organizations, institutions or governments. Second element is message. The character of political communication messages always have connectivity or contain political elements. Third element is channel. In political communication, channel is the path chose by the political participants so that the conveyed message can completely reach the receiver. There are various political channels can be choose such as mass media, organization or group of institutions, political parties and so on. Fourth element is context. Context or situation of political communication is the state and environment tendencies that surrounding political communication process. And the fifth element is effect. Message signs exchanges will occur between the actors or participants of political communication. These messages are then responded by parties who have an interest and certain effect will occur.

Blog and political communication

With the political climate nowadays filled with open and transparent competitions, politicians need a method that can facilitate them in marketing their political initiatives, political ideas, political issues, party's ideology, party leader's characteristics and the party's work program to the public (Firmanzah, 2007). In order to win in the election and make voters want to take part and vote, there should be a strategy to make them able to win in a political competition. This will be achieved if the politicians gain broad support from voters.

The using of political image as a positioning strategy can be one of the sources for political party in winning the competition with the other parties. Thus, the public will be easily to identify a political party through an image that embedded in their cognitive and belief system (Firmanzah, 2007). So in this case, the image can be used as tools for political parties to interact with the public, for example by making the party website or blog. In a more critical and more open society nowadays, the presence of mass media and ICT allow peoples to gather, analyze and make comparison about any issues or something that happened in their country to other countries. Moreover, with the blogs we can find out the latest information about what happened in the world. And even sometimes the mass media also make blogs as news sources. According to Davis and Owen (1998) internet has been used by the public to access news and political information that previously was difficult to obtained.

Internet becomes an effective media to spread messages and propaganda because of the nature of internet is free space and time. Through the internet, peoples are able to spread ideas without being influenced by the place and time. There are many facilities in the internet such as blogs that can be used as a means of exchanging information, ideas, and even private matters. Blogs is considered as an alternative media in communication because it is free and even anyone can have a blog. Blogs makes everyone as a journalist because it can present what they know and what they experience without limits or being censor. In the blogs, we can express our opinion without any pressure from any party. If the mass media still bounded by the journalistic code of ethics or sometime being "pressure" by capital owners, then the blogs are apart from such things. Verification of the information displayed on the internet is the responsibility of internet users. This make the blogs considered as one of the parts in the development of democracy.

In fact, blog contents previously originate with personal writings or diary in online form. But with over the time, the blogs began to be used as a medium to write or share the ideas and social criticism to the public. Therefore, the method of internet media campaigns through blog is a very good strategy because blogs offer a freedom of expression without any restrictions and it is easier for public to access regardless of their time and place (Firmanzah, 2007). Because of this, many politicians and political bloggers apply the persuasive rhetoric such as spread ideas, ideology, and make promises through acctractive writings on blogs in order to influence the public and voters.

Persuasive rhetoric

According to Fraunce (1969) and Hendrikus (2003), rhetoric is an art of speaking. However, in rhetoric, the art of persuasion is emphasized. Corax in (Dixon, 1991) states that rhetoric is a "skilled art in convincing people". According to Aristotle (1952) rhetoric may be defined as the faculty of observing in any given case the available means persuasion. The meaning of rhetoric that focuses on persuasion was also highlighted by Plato (1963).

Adler and Rodman (2000) define persuasion as the process of motivating, through communication, to change beliefs, attitudes and behavior. This view is also similar to that made ​​by Freeley and Steinberg (2009) who says that persuasion is a process that occurs when communicators influence values, beliefs, attitudes, or the lives of others. However, Hamilton (1996) had a different view of persuasion by define it as a communication process that intends to gain influence. This is because persuasion has two important aspects, namely: 1) persuasion was intentional; (2) persuasion involves influence, not control.

Bormann and Bormann (1986) view that persuasion is sometimes referred as a changer of life. However, it can also be defined as a process of changing the attitudes or beliefs, get friends, influence individuals, seek the cooperation, or sell a product or idea. An important reason to persuade our purpose is to change one's thinking about himself, other people, events, or issues. Communicators may want the audience to receive a new idea, change or delete a faith belief.

Sometimes, we need a persuasion to change a person's behavior, or to introduce new forms of treatment that will improve the lives and well-being. The goal of this persuasion influences someone to change their behavior in order to do things. Persuasive is also used to change the policy, aims to propose new solutions. The main thing in this kind of persuasion is to define the problem and the second thing is to express the solution process by explaining how this solution is able to correct the problems that exist.

In summary, persuasive rhetoric is an important process in the activities of everyday human communication. In most cases, people are more likely to use the power of persuasion either to change his mind, holding or other individual behavior, for example in the field of advertising, election campaigns or on an issue.

Classical theory of rhetoric

According to Kennedy (1991), Rhetoric, the works of Aristotle that have been produced in the year 330 BC have been compiled into three books. In the book I, Aristotle presented the difference between rhetorical communication and dialectical communication. Rhetorical communication is an interaction that involves public speaking, which contains an introduction, a description, and epilogue. Otherwise, dialectic communication does not contain elements of public speaking but evidence only. In dialectical communication, only logical arguments are acceptable while in rhetorical communication, speaker's behavior or personality and emotional reactions among listeners will be able to contribute to the effect of persuasion.

In the book II, Aristotle specified about listener properties, characteristics of ethics, and speakers emotion such as reliability, goodwill, confidence and sympathy (Kennedy, 1991). Reliability is the speaker's credibility in the eyes of listeners includes trust and honesty. Meanwhile, book III displays dispositions and rhetorical language style. Dispositions are include the introduction, body part, and the conclusion (Kennedy, 1991). The three components are making up the whole of a speech. Language style includes language clarity, precision of language, and the appropriateness of language in a speech pronounced by the speaker. With the three volumes of the book, Aristotle founded the Classical Theory of Rhetoric.

Aristotle had suggested three methods of persuasion to influence human behavior (Corbett, 1971). First, the speaker should try to convince the listener through wisdom or intelligence, known as logos or logic. Second, the speaker should touch the heart of listener through emotional factors such as hope, hatred, love, sympathy, confidence, anxiety, and so on. In other words, this stage involves the emotion or Pathos. Third, the speaker must demonstrate extensive knowledge in the areas to be discussed as well as having high credibility and respected status, known as ethos or ethics.

Logical appeal

Logical appeal or logos means that a speech or writing should be accompanied with reasons, evidence, or a clear causal and thus can be used as the basis of the argument. It is a reference to a rational approach to persuasion. According to Campbell's (1972) definition, the logical appeal or logos is the element of rational speech in which the element can show its persuasive power. However, Monroe and Douglas (1967) assume this logical appeal as a type of speech material used to reinforce and explain or prove a statement that it made ​​more visible or to convince the audience. Thus, the speaker's or writer's intellect can be strengthened through the use of logical appeals where its can test the ability of a speaker or writer in the use of evidence and reason. The use of logical appeals also can be a "sharp" rhetorical weapon if the speaker or writer could use a convincing argument and reasonable reasoning for the target audience or readers. Interpretation of evidence needs to be done logically and systematically so that listeners can follow the reasoning sequence or argument perfectly (Thonssen and Gilkinson, 1953). Other than the fact, logos classify two basic forms of reasoning, which are inductive reasoning and deductive reasoning.


Freely (1966) defines reasoning as the process of drawing conclusions from premises. According to Freeley, premises that used in reasoning consist of various forms of evidence. Soccio and Barry (1992) also provide the same definition as Freeley about reasoning. According to them, reasoning is the capacity to draw conclusions from the evidence. Overton (1990) stated that the reasoning is a thinking process that involves inferential where a conclusion arises and accepted from premises which are basically accepted. Blair and Pinto (1993) also view the reasoning as the process of drawing conclusions which according to them, reasoning is about drawing conclusion based on certain circumstances depending on clue, evidence, information from memory, indirect signs and assumptions. Thomson (2009), however, stated that the reasoning is a process or activity in drawing conclusion from facts, evidence, etc.

Kahane (1995) provide a brief reasoning definition important thing in solving a problem. Wilson (1999) views reasoning as an effort to answer the question by thinking the cause. According to him, cause is what we rely on it to support what we believe regardless of whether we consider what we believe is become a knowledge or it just a matter of opinion. Sprague and Stuart (2000) stated that the reasoning is a process where we understand something previously unknown through the analysis and integration of the things that we already know. However, Warrick and Inch (2010) provide a definition of reasoning in a different perspective which according to them, reasoning is the process by which the arguer linking the evidence with claims. Conway and Munson (1997) have submitted the following formula to describe the process of reasoning:

Reasoning = Premise + Conclusion

In clarifying the above formula, Conway and Munson (1997) gives a definitions of premise and conclusion. According to them, premise is a claim put forth as a reason for a conclusion. Conclusion is a claim meant to be supported by reasons offered in the argument. Thomson (2009) stated that the ability to make a good reasoning is a valuable skill to anyone who wants to understand and deal with the natural and social aspect. According to him, politicians need to give a good reasoning to make them implementing the right policies. However, we also need reasoning to find out if what was told and explained to them is true and acceptable. Based on the Thomson statement, hence there is a need for understanding and knowledge of relevant theories of reasoning which are the types of reasoning and structure of reasoning to build an effective reasoning.

Types of Reasoning

According to Larson (2004) inductive reasoning put forward specific cases first and then submits a general conclusion. For example, "people who suffering from heart disease need a lot of money for surgery, people who diagnosed with cancer need a lot of money to undergo chemotherapy and radiotherapy, people suffering from liver disease need a lot of money to undergo liver transplant surgery. Therefore, with the purchase of health insurance, it can help to solve their health problems". By submitting a clear specific example, logically, persuader can draw a conclusion easily.

The first type of inductive reasoning is reasoning by example. Freeley and Steinberg (2009) have defined reasoning by example as a reasoning process that involves drawing conclusions from specific cases. Grice and Skinner (2001) states that through this kind of reasoning speaker will say what is true in some circumstances is true in general. Some of this state is referred to as a case or example in the argument.

Case 1

Case 2 Conclusion

Case 3

Sometimes only one case is used to make conclusions or generalization. But usually, many cases are used to make a conclusion. Freeley and Steinberg (2009) stated that this type of reasoning involves either sign reasoning or causal reasoning because the cases given are a causal or a sign for the conclusion that being made.

The second type of inductive reasoning is reasoning by analogy. Reasoning by analogy involves a comparison of two similar cases and concluded that what is true in the first case is also true in the latter case (Freeley and Steinberg, 2009). According to Larson (2004) persuader will use a comparison as a logical reason to make a conclusion. An example will be analyzed and explained and conclusions will be made on that example or situation. Persuader then will compare that example with another example or situation, show its similarity and give a reason why the conclusions for that example can be applied to other situations that being compared.

We can often see reasoning from analogy in the ads. For example, a product compared with other products in terms of cost, effectiveness, and safety. In this type of reasoning, something familiar or commonly seen will be use for to demonstrate something unusual or complex. Grice and Skinner (2001) states that through this kind of reasoning speaker say what is true in one case will also be true in other similar cases.

According to Freeley and Steinberg (2009), analogy can be divided into literal and figurative. An analogy is literal when the cases are being compared in the same classification. While figurative analogy refers to the cases being compared in different classifications. Literal analogy is used to produce the high degree possibilities. Figurative analogy is used to produce emotional evidence or ethics, to clarify a matter and give impact on the audience feeling.

Larson (2004) also divided this type of reasoning into literal and figurative analogy. An example for literal analogy is, we compare the war in Yugoslavia and the war in Vietnam. We note that in both case, guerrilla warfare and corrupt government occurs. Figurative analogy is comparing a common but not linked and easy to something unusual and complex. For example, political competition compared with horse racing competition with the use of such terms as 'front-runners', 'early starters', 'late comers', and 'dark horses'. However, Larson thinks that receiver itself can make a judgment if the comparison or analogy made ​​by the persuader is appropriate. Like reasoning by examples, this type of reasoning is an inductive reasoning where the factors in analogy are either are a causal or a sign for the conclusion that being made.

The third type of inductive reasoning is causal reasoning. Causal reasoning requires speakers concluded that certain factors cause something to happen or consequences (Freeley and Steinberg, 2009). Through this kind of reasoning, speakers will say an action or condition is causing or will cause an effect or result.

This type of reasoning can be either cause-to-effect or effect to cause and usually it involves a generalization. For example, the meteorological has reported that there is a low pressure area and other phenomena (cause) and predict that it will rain next day (effect). Based on this sample, Freeley and Steinberg (2009) stated that we are often encountering the things with possibilities because we can not provide certainty in many things concerning ourselves. Causal reasoning also influence our thinking in matters of personal. For example, student going to the university because he or she saw a university education is a reason to which is expected to produce the desired results in their future life. According to Freeley and Steinberg (2009) the same process can occur otherwise. If an unknown effect arises; it is caused by a reason.


(Known) (Inferred)


(Inferred) (Known)

According to Larson (2004), cause-to-effect reasoning is powerful in our culture and our spoken language also depending much on this type of reasoning. For example, "the ball was thrown out of the window and the window was broken". This verse is a passive sentence. So even if we build an active sentence: "Bob threw the ball and cause the window to broken". We often put reason first and let it creates its own consequences. Persuader often uses cause-to-effect reasoning to identify events, trends, or fact that has caused consequences. This shows that if a reason exists, then we can predict the consequences. If the consequence is a bad thing, then we will try to avoid it. This type of reasoning is often used in the advertising. For example, there is an advertisement which shows that the reason obesity is excess fat. Advertisers then recommend a solution to overcome these problems and get the desired effect by using their products.

According to Larson (2004), effect-to-cause reasoning is the type of reasoning that is rarely used. Persuader firstly addresses the consequence which has been known and then tries to address the reasons. For example, in poor countries we can see the hunger problem occurred. Children have to work and some other have to beg. Many of its people are suffering from diseases and the mortality rate is high. This all shows the consequence of a cause. Persuader then will address the reason is the ruling government is selfish and their leaders are corrupt. This type of reasoning is also used in the advertising to persuade the audience. For example, "want to remove stains on clothes?... use this product".

The fourth type of inductive reasoning is sign reasoning. According to Freeley and Steinberg (2009) sign reasoning is a reasoning process that involves drawing conclusion by associating or correlation of two variables. Persuader argues that these two variables are closely linked even the existence or absence of the first indicates the existence or absence of a second (Letteri, 2002).



Attribute is a part or feature of substance / totality. In sign reasoning, advocate make reasoning either from attribute to substance or from substance to attribute. Sign reasoning involves reasoning by analogy, reasoning by example or effect-to-effect reasoning. Sign reasoning example, leaves fall from the trees indicates that the incoming winter.

According to Larson (2004) persuader will identify a series of symptoms or signs and then try to conclude something from it. For example, a politician in his campaign address that the current situation is worse under the rule of the opponent's party rather than when his party rules the government - higher unemployment rate, rising crime rate, and a recent poll shows that the people have lost confidence in the ability of the ruling party. The persuader hopes that the people / voters will choose his party and put the blame to the opposition from the signs described.

According to Freeley and Steinberg (2009), if the first variable is indicative of the second variable, the relationship is reciprocal. If the first variable is indicative of the second variable but the second variable is not indicative of the first variable, the relationship is non-reciprocal. For example, if a person is a president of United States, this gives an indication that he is at least 35 years old. However, we can not assume that a person aged 35 years old is an indication that he is the president of the United States of America.

Other than inductive reasoning, speakers also use deductive reasoning in presenting the arguments. Larson (2004) define that deductive reasoning is reasoning from the general case to the specific case. However, this type of reasoning has a weakness. Recipients who think negatively of the general case described by persuader will lose interest and do not focus on the specific case which is the substance of the issue. This type of reasoning also give space to criticize by others easily before the persuader had the opportunity to provide further information about the case.

According Letteri (2002) there are two forms of deductive reasoning which are syllogism and enthymeme. Freeley and Steinberg (2009) defines syllogism as systematic arrangement of reasoning consisting:

A major premise - proposition stating a generalization ("all A's are B's").

A minor premise - proposition stating a specific instance related to the generalization ("C is an A").

A conclusion - necessarily must follow from these premises (''Therefore, C is a B").


Major premise: All UPM lecturers (A) are wise (B)

Minor premise: Dr. Mua'ti (C) is a UPM lecturer (A)

Conclusion: Dr. Mua'ti (C) is wise (B)

However according to Freeley and Steinberg (2009), in the actual arguments, we rarely hear such a statements because in everyday life people do not talk in this way. Syllogism is useful for advocate to make the right analysis of reasoning, and can verify the validity of the reasoning that being made. By using syllogistic structure, the advocate can make the appropriate formal validity tests to the reasoning if he found that there is a problem to the reasoning of his own case and the opponent case.

According to Freeley and Steinberg (2009), the first type of syllogism is categorical syllogism. The categorical syllogism is a syllogism in which the major premise is an unqualified proposition such as all, every, each, or any. There are 7 conditions to test the categorical syllogism.

The categorical syllogism must have three terms that may be represented by the letters A, B, and C. Major term: B, Middle term: A, and Minor term: C.


Major Premise: All politicians (A) are corrupt (B)

Minor Premise: Khairy (C) is a politician (A)

Conclusion: Therefore, Khairy (C) is corrupt (B)

Every term must be used twice

A term must be use only once in any premise

The middle term (A) must be used in at least one premise in an unqualified or universal sense.

Example of invalid syllogism:

Major Premise: Some politicians (A) are corrupt (B)

Minor Premise: Ali (C) is a politician (A)

Conclusion: Therefore, Ali (C) is corrupt (B)

A term may be distributed in the conclusion only if it has been distributed in the major or minor premise.

At least one of the premises must be affirmative. No valid conclusion can be drawn from two negative premises.


Major Premise: No PAS senators (A) will vote for this bill (B)

Minor Premise: Najib (C) is not a PAS senator (A)

Conclusion: Therefore, Senator Najib (C) will ______?

If one premise is negative, the conclusion must be negative.


Major Premise: No PR senators (A) will vote for this bill (B)

Minor Premise: Anwar (C) is a PR senator (A)

Conclusion: Therefore, Senator Anwar (C) did not vote for this bill (B)

The second type of syllogism according to Freeley and Steinberg (2009) is disjunctive syllogism. The disjunctive syllogism is a syllogism in which the major premise contains by such words as either, or, neither, nor, but, and although, either expressly stated or clearly implied. There are 3 conditions to test the disjunctive syllogism.

The major premise of the disjunctive syllogism must include the entire possible alternative.

The alternatives presented in the disjunctive syllogism must be mutually exclusive.

The minor premise must affirm or contradict one of the alternatives given in the major premise.


Major Premise: The government must either raise the salaries of civil servants or reduce prices of goods.

Minor Premise: The government will not raise the salaries of civil servants

Conclusion: Therefore, government will reduce prices of goods

The third type of syllogism is conditional syllogism. This type of syllogism is also referred to hypothetical syllogism. The major premise deals with uncertain or hypothetical events that may or may not exits or happen. The conditional syllogism is usually indicated by if, assuming, supposing, or similar terms, either expressly stated or clearly implied (Letteri, 2002)

Major premise contains an antecedent statement which shows that conditional or hypothetical events and consequent statement which shows the event that is maintained as necessarily following the antecedent.


Major Premise: If I studying at the university, then I will get hire.

Minor Premise: I will study at the university.

Conclusion: I will get hire.

There are 2 conditions to test the conditional syllogism.

The minor premise must affirm the antecedent or deny the consequent. If the minor premise affirms the antecedent, the conclusion must affirm the consequent. If the minor premise denies the consequent, the conclusion must deny the antecedent.

Example 1:

Major Premise: If the interest rate of government bonds increases, then more of these bonds will be purchased.

Minor Premise: The interest rate of government bonds will increase.

Conclusion: Therefore, more of these bonds will be purchased.

Example 2:

Major Premise: If the United States does not conduct nuclear testing, other countries will not become a nuclear power.

Minor Premise: Other countries will become a nuclear power.

Conclusion: United States will conduct nuclear test.

If minor premise denies the antecedent or affirm the consequent, no valid conclusion can be drawn.


Major Premise: If the interest rate of government bonds increases, then more of these bonds will be purchased.

Minor Premise: The interest rate of government bonds will not increase.

Conclusion: ???

According to Freeley and Steinberg (2009) enthymeme has 2 definitions. The first definition of enthymeme is the enthymeme is a shortened syllogism in which one of the premises or the conclusion is not stated. Statement by Freeley and Steinberg is similar to what has been said by Letteri (2002). We might hear this argument: "This project costs a lot of expanses and is undesirable."


Minor Premise: This project costs a lot of expanses.

Conclusion: Therefore, this project is undesirable.

The second definition is the enthymeme is a modified form of syllogism that deals with probability rather than with certainty. The enthymeme may or may not omit one of the premises.


Major Premise: All plans which will cause inflation should be rejected.

Minor Premise: This plan may cause inflation.

Conclusion: Therefore, this plan should be rejected.

Aristotle in Ross (1994) stated that states that the function of rhetorical enthymeme is to encourage recipients to find missing thought by the speaker. However, Larson (2004) states that conditional syllogism use the "If A, then B" only. According to Larson, syllogism is valid, but the premise used is not necessarily true. Validity is dependent on the general rule of reasoning rather than on the truth of the premises. Larson also believes that conditional syllogism has similarities with cause-to-effect relationship.

For categorical syllogism, Larson (2004) explained that this syllogism involves part and the whole or a set and subset. Both major premise and minor premise is related to membership or non-membership in one of two categories. The conclusion made is to make category connection from the two premises and lead it to a decision or a new discovery.


Major Premise: All men are included in the included in the class of immortal creature

Minor Premise: John is included in the class of human being

Conclusion: Therefore, John is an immortal creature

For the disjunctive syllogism, Larson (2004) stated that this type of syllogism have the basic form which is "either A or B is true". According to Larson (2004) most of disjunctive syllogism has the disadvantage where a lot of situation deals with "either..or" even in cases that involving life or death. Rigorous use of "either..or" reasoning is to be disregarded in the belief system or when there are more than two alternatives in a situation. Therefore, Larson (2004) believe the persuasion that uses "either..or" reasoning to find an alternative or distinguishing belief system is not an effective way.

Kahane (1998) give a different view compare to Larson and Freeley about the disjunctive syllogism by providing a syllogism structure:

Major Premise: If 'A' then 'B'

Minor Premise: If 'B' then 'C'

Conclusion: If 'A' then 'C'


Major Premise: If I read (A) then I'm hardworking (B)

Minor Premise: If I'm hardworking (B) then I will success (C)

Conclusion: If I read (A) then I will success (C)


Evidence is the use of raw materials in the argumentation consisting of facts, opinions, and objects that are use to generate proof (Freeley and Steinberg, 2009). Larson (2004) correlates evidence with reasoning in his definition. According to Larson (2004) evidence is the process of connecting the sufficient proofs by reasoning so that the audience can be influenced to believe what is conveyed by the speaker. Warnick and Inch (2010) defined evidence as facts or circumstances that can be observed objectively, beliefs or premises that are generally accepted as true by the audience or, previously accepted conclusion. Apart from that, according to Ross (1994) states that the evidence is information that has been used to support or proof and it's usually contains facts such as examples, statements, statistics or testimony from a source other than the speaker. Evidence supports the claim that was built by the speaker from his/her experience or other authority (Rieke, Sillars and Peterson, 2005). However, Larson (2004) stated that the used of evidence is depending on the context and situation. In some situations, the use of statistics is effective enough to persuade. Maybe in other situation, the use of pictorial is more effective, and in other circumstances, experience recounted is very effective to deliver a persuasive message.

Types of evidence

Larson (2004) stated that the evidence can be divided into two forms in general which are rational evidence and dramatic evidence. Rational evidence is evidence that appeal our logical process which is not in the dramatic but intellectually oriented Larson (2004). An example of rational evidence used is, the persuader understands that we have a premise in our mind about the costs and benefits. Therefore, to develop reasoning and thus to persuade, persuader shows that rewards to be derived from the specified matters to be greater than the cost. In addition, rational evidence also includes scientific evidence, testimony by expert, and statistics. However, persuasion on the logical process depends on the pattern of reasoning such as 'the past is a guide to the future' or 'every effect must have a reason' and so forth. According to Larson (2004), dramatic evidence depends on the human tendency to structure the lives and events that occurred in the form of narrative or story. Dramatic evidence allows the audience to project themselves into the situation or context described by the persuader which is to feel of what the others feel or think of an issue together. In this context, persuader will produce a dramatic situation and audience will be 'invited' to imagine. Indirectly, this evidence stimulate the audience to 'co-create' the persuaders' reasoning. If the evidence that has been used is quite dramatic or emotional, the audience is no longer to be persuaded.

First type of evidence is testimonial. Testimonal is an opinion, evaluation, assessment of a fact or event or belief (Waever II, 2001). Testimonal may consist of expert or lay evidence. Expert evidence is provided by persons with special training, knowledge, or experience in the matter under consideration (Freeley and Steinberg, 2009). Experts have credentials such as academic degrees or position titles that indicate their area of expertise and they gain their expertise through working in a field long enough to know it very well (Verlinden, 2005). According to Koch (2001) expert statement will give more credibility for speakers. Lay evidence is provided by persons without any special training, knowledge or experience in the matter under consideration (Freeley and Steinberg, 2009). This type of evidence is useful in a situation that does not require special qualification. Persuader will read the eyewitness account or stating his personal experience (Larson, 2004). Loftus (1980) in Larson (2004) who is a psychologist states that there is a controversy about the accuracy of evidence where it caused confusion in the courts and judges will not allow the expert to confirm the reliability on the testimony of the witness because it might confuse the jury that their task is to evaluate what they hear. Witnesses will often hear and see what they want to hear or see, and often give an "idiosyncratic" testimony (like celebrities who use the product and give a good testimonial about the product not because they love the product, but because they are being paid).

Second type of evidence is facts. Fact is a description of event, object, person, or place that is empirically verifiable (Wilbanks and Church, 1991). Empirically verifiable means that they could be confirmed through observation including simply looking, measuring, using scientific instruments to observe something that cannot be observed using unaided senses, reading historical artifacts, and so on (Verlinden, 2005). Facts may consist of reports and description, statistics, or artifacts. Reports and description are non-numerical or narrative accounts of some object or occurrence (Warnick and Inch, 2010). Statistics are fact and figures that have been systematically collected and ordered so as to convey information and artifacts are physical evidence that helps to prove an argument. Letteri (2003) stated that statistics are any measure or set of measurements which explain or describe an object. It can consist of aggregate, average, ratio, percentage, correlation, or any form of quantitative information. An artifact is simply a physical object that a speaker might use to prove a point (Warnick and Inch, 2010).

Third type of evidence is narrative. According to Larson (2004) narrative is dramatic evidence in the form of story. Examples of the narrative are myths, legends, ballads (used during the ancient times), poetry, novels, and short story. In terms of technology, the other forms of narrative are radio programs, movies, cartoon, opera, documentary, news, game shows, talk shows, and so on. Most of orator, preacher and politician are storyteller that they could use a good narrative. The narrative is used to attract attention or interest of the audience and bring them to the topics that be raised Larson (2004). Sometimes, narrative is enhanced with other types of evidence and this made a speech could be remembered in a long-term by the audience. Shaw (1997) states that narrative can provide a clear overview because of the characteristics mentioned can be seen in the form of action. The narrative provides a rich source of referential and evaluative evidence about the target (Shaw, 1997). The effectiveness of the narrative as a persuasive tool is also because of it is the practice in daily human life. This can be prove by Bauman (1986) and Lengellier (1989) statement in Shaw (1997) which stated that in everyday life, in every social practice, people talk to each other as a tool to develop and discuss about social identity.

Fourth type of evidence is example. According to Rieke, Sillars and Peterson (2005) example may refer to undeveloped instances used in an argument by generalization. Examples can tells us about something and, like a story, help us visualize how that something occurs (Hill and Leeman, 1997). This statement also supported by Willbanks and Church (1984) in Verlinden (2005) which state that examples can describe individual events, persons, objects, or places. Typically, examples perform two argumentative functions which are to demonstrate to the audience that something has in fact happened and to illustrate an argumentative point (Hill and Leeman, 1997). Example may consist of serial example and extended example. According to Hart and Daughton (2004) the function of serial example is to give comprehensive strength to the statement by presenting variety patterns of different occurrences for the same phenomenon. An extended example, or illustration, usually means extended instances that illustrate a general principle (Perelman and Olbrechts-Tyteca, 1969) in Rieke, Sillars and Peterson (2005). According to Hart and Daughton (2004), the function of extended example is to give strength to the statement by providing a detailed picture of a concept or event.