Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Appeal to novelty
The appeal to novelty (also called argumentum ad novitam) is a logical fallacy in which someone claims that his or her idea or proposal is correct or superior because it is new and modern.
- "Hovercars are the wave of the future! You should invest all your money in Hovercar stocks." (Hovercars may be futuristic, but that does not necessarily make them a sound financial investment.)
- "This computer was made in 2003, therefore it is far superior to that computer made in 2001." (Although computer speed is increasing, one should consider actual specifications rather than mere date-of-construction.)
Appeals to novelty are often successful in a modern world where everyone is eager to be on the "cutting edge" of technology. The so-called "Dot-com bust" of the early 2000s could easily be interpreted as a sign of the dangers of na´vely embracing new ideas without first viewing them with a critical eye. Also, advertisers frequently extoll the newness of their products as a reason to buy.
The opposite of an appeal to novelty is an appeal to tradition, in which one argues that the "old ways" are always superior to new ideas.
See also: radicalism
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