- 2015年05月11日16:53 来源：小站整理
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The following appeared in an editorial in a business magazine:
"Although the sales of Whirlwind video games have declined over the past two years, a recent survey of video-game players suggests that this sales trend is about to be reversed. The survey asked video-game players what features they thought were most important in a video game. According to the survey, players prefer games that provide lifelike graphics, which require the most up-to-date computers. Whirlwind has just introduced several such games with an extensive advertising campaign directed at people 10 to 25 years old, the age group most likely to play video games. It follows, then, that the sales of Whirlwind video games are likely to increase dramatically in the next few months."
This editorial concludes that a two-year decline in sales of Whirlwind's video games is about to reverse and that, further, sales will increase dramatically “in the next few months”. To justify this conclusion the speaker cites a survey in which video-game players indicated a preference for games with realistic graphics. The editorial then points out that Whirlwind has just introduced several such games alongside an advertising campaign, which, the speaker reasons, are clear indicators of fast approaching success. The argument is based on several unproven assumptions.
本段采用了标准的Argument开头段结构，即：C – E - F的开头结构，首句概括原文的C(Conclusion)。接下来的一句话概括了原文为了支持他的结论所引用的E(evidence)。最后尾句中给出开头段到正文段的过渡句，指出原文在逻辑上存在F(Flaw)。
First, the statistical reliability of the survey quickly comes into question. Unless the survey's respondents are representative of the overall population of video-game enthusiasts, the author should not rely on it to make forecasts about future earnings.
Secondly, the argument relies on the assumption that the two-year decline in company sales is attributable to a problem that the introduction of its new games and ad campaign will solve. It is entirely possible that the decline was due to other factors: pricing and distribution strategies, poor management, and so on. Consider, for example, if the advertising agency was actually the cause for sagging sales over the past two years. An additional, albeit ramped up effort, by the same failing tactics is not likely to cause a reversal.
本段作为正文第四段，攻击文章犯的主要逻辑错误：错误因果(无理由假设)。作者认为原文中没有关于“销售趋势”的具体介绍。进一步，作者提出其他可能性来反驳原文的结论，例如：很有可能刚发布的新游戏前几个是low sales period。
To strengthen it the author must provide clear evidence that video-game enthusiasts, 10-25 years of age, would be interested in Whirlwind's new games and that they could afford to buy them. To better assess the argument the audience would need to know (1) what caused the two-year sales decline to begin with, and whether Whirlwind's new strategy eliminates that cause; (2) what competing products might challenge earnings over the next three months; and (3) general information about video game sales trends.