Argumentum ad captandum
readers, is an unsound, specious argument designed to appeal to the emotions rather than to the mind. It is used to describe
“claptrap or meretricious attempts to catch popular favor or applause.” The longer form of the term is ad captandum
vulgus (Latin, “to ensnare the vulgar” or “to captivate the masses”); the shorter and longer versions of the phrase are synonymous. The word
“vulgus” in Latin was a contemptuous reference, implying a rabble or a mob.The ad captandum approach is commonly seen in
political speech, advertising, and popular entertainment. The classic example of something ad captandum
vulgus was the”bread and circuses” by which the Roman emperors maintained the support of the people of Rome.