Ethos, Pathos, Etc.

Slogan Standoff
From New York to Georgia, letters were exchanged between Ira C. Herbert, representing Coca-Cola, and Richard W. Seaver, representing Grove Press. The slogan, “It’s the real thing”, was being used by the two companies in 1969-1970 for advertisement of their products to the public. Herbert was the first to write, asking Seaver to discontinue his usage of this slogan. He made several true and influential statements in hope that Seaver would concede and begin using another slogan. In Seaver’s reply, he held firm to his position and refused to surrender. Both men made use of rhetorical themes; however, one man was much more successful in utilizing these themes.
The element that is dealt with when making the connection between speaker and subject is logos. Logos includes appeal to reason, support, and dealing with a counterargument. Herbert appeals to logos when he says “’It’s the real thing’ was first used in advertising for Coca-Cola over twenty-seven years ago to refer to our product.” He uses facts to support and strengthen his argument, attempting to convey that his company has priority. Herbert uses the same approach, almost repeating himself in greater detail, in lines nineteen through twenty-three. The finest example of appeal to logos, however, is in Seaver’s letter when he concedes sarcastically, and continues to disassemble Herbert’s argument further with a refutation. Seaver says, “…I can fully understand that the public might be confused by our use of the expression, and mistake a book by a Harlem schoolteacher for a six-pack of Coca-Cola.” This bizarre remark is a clear use of sarcasm and makes Herbert look ridiculous. The refutation that follows in lines thirty through thirty-two states that Seaver does not plan on ceasing usage of the slogan “It’s the real thing.” They stick up for their First Amendment rights and “will defend to the death your right to use ’It’s the real thing’ in any advertisement you care to” (“you” referring to...