Ad Hominem

The artifact attacks the person or organization instead of addressing the argument.

Ad hominem or argumentum ad hominem, literally, “argument against the man,” is a “fallacious argumentative strategy whereby genuine discussion of the topic at hand is avoided by instead attacking the character, motive, or other attribute of the person making the argument, or persons associated with the argument, rather than attacking the substance of the argument itself” [1].


The Ad Hominem flag should be applied when the subject journalist or content creator initiates or responds to an argument or debate with personal attacks or other personal statements intended to diminish the adversarial party’s perceived authority, veracity, or trust. Whether such personal statements are true or false, deserved or undeserved, they do not address the argument and are therefore considered fallacious and irrelevant.