Social Psychology - Spin Doctoring

Topics: George W. Bush, Al Gore, Global warming Pages: 4 (1280 words) Published: April 9, 2011
Social Psychology
Week 4
“Spin Doctoring”

1.Which path(s) to persuasion is/are present in the global warming case?
I believe that both central route and peripheral route paths to persuasion are used in the global warming case.
Central route persuasion is evident in global warming because people are more globally conscious and aware of the issues concerning our planet than they were decades ago. People are more concerned now about protecting our planet and better informed, thus, global warming, its causes, and ways to reduce our carbon footprint are of great concern to the public.

The hydrocarbon producers, one of the communicators, credibility is lessened against other communicators such as Greenpeace, because many in the public realm view them as big business, just out to make money. They are perceived as untrustworthy and less credible.

On the other hand, Greenpeace, the Suzuki Foundation, and Al Gore are perceived by most to be trustworthy. Al Gore has been deemed an expert on environmental issues despite the fact that he has no formal educational background in environmentalism. This perceived expertise, coupled with his two runs for President and his previous position of Vice President, give him much credibility and trustworthiness. His Nobel Peace Prize win certainly sealed his expert title.

Peripheral route persuasion is shown in the public’s admiration of Al Gore; he is an attractive gentleman, has good family values and shares most American’s concerns with saving the planet. Most approve and believe him.

The message of hydrocarbon producers is they are using technology to produce cleaner and greener fuels as a method of putting a good spin on their involvement with CO2 emissions.
Greenpeace and other environmentalists and organizations use peripheral route persuasion in their emotional appeal to end global warming such as the use of fear-arousing ad campaigns. Central route persuasion is also used with the use of global warming facts...

Cited: Dean, J.W. (1999, May 23). Spin doctoring 101. The New York Times, Retrieved on January 24, 2010 from
Myers, D.G. (2008). Social psychology. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill. (2008, December 1). Bush: intelligence failure on iraq. Retrieved on January 24, 2010 from bush/2008/12/01/id/326860
Philip Morris USA. (2010). Retrieved on January 24, 2010 from
Saad, L. (2009, March 11). Increased number think global warming is “exaggerated”. Retrieved on January 24, 2010 from global-warming-exaggerated.aspx
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