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The "Yeah, Whatever" Meme

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Joined: 20 Mar 2006
Posts: 1273
Location: Kent (East Hill), WA

PostPosted: Sun Jan 10, 2010 11:20 pm    Post subject: The "Yeah, Whatever" Meme Reply with quote

One of the most infuriating yet effective counter arguments in almost any Internet debate is the response of the form "yea, whatever". It can take a few forms but what it does is effectively isolates the previous poster from the group. It can be benign, as in "okay, Einstein, I guess so..." as in, you're so smart (and correct) and I have no answer, so I'm make you into a nerd that people will not really listen to.

A more evil version of this involves trying to argue before a relatively ignorant crowd. At the point that your opponent knows he can no longer win, the "yea, whatever" argument is basically an ad hominem attack of the form that yes, I know you're right, but these people are too stupid to know it, so I'll cast myself with them and seem like the winner.

It's very effective. It also can be used when someone even wants to soften an argument, by maybe throwing out a joke. The person who has lost the argument will then continue as if the response was not a joke with the "yeah, whatever".

I guess the end result of this is that intellectuals should only argue in colleges and universities and stay off the Internet. At least until we can counter meme the "yea whatever" argument.
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