What it is:

An appeal to authority can be spotted when one argues that something must be true because an authority figure says so.

Our brains like to take shortcuts and this is a good example of how we are set up to  quickly make judgments about new information.


How to address it:

Although we can make assumptions about an authority figure’s reliability based on our past
experiences, to avoid this fallacy we should really evaluate each claim individually regardless of where it’s coming from. In practice, that’s not really possible. If I don’t feel equipped to evaluate the research on a topic, it’s absolutely okay to look to established experts and scientific consensus statements.



"Well, Dr. Oz says..."