June 2015

26 Jun 15
Knocking down a false, weak or misleading characterization of your opponent's argument is to engage in strawmanning. This kind of argumentation fallacy "requires that the audience be ignorant or uninformed of the original argument" to be successful.

The opposite of strawmanning is steelmanning:

You know when someone makes an argument, and you know you can get away with making it seem like they made a much worse one, so you attack that argument for points? That’s strawmanning. Lots of us have done it, even though we shouldn’t. But what if we went one step beyond just not doing that? What if we went one better? Then we would be steelmanning, the art of addressing the best form of the other person’s argument, even if it’s not the one they presented.