A quotewall is an 'argument-from-authority' debating tactic used by paranoid conspiracy theorists and similar people which they believe lends credence to their ideas. It consists of a group of quotations, typically between five and fifteen, from eminent-sounding names (usually with impressive sounding qualifications) who appear to support the idea that the conspiracy theorist is advocating. On closer inspection though, while some quotations may be honest representations of fact and of the opinion of the quotee, it is more common that the quotations are taken out of context, or purposefully misinterpreted, or intentionally maliciously edited to make it appear that the quotee is supporting the conspiracist's view. It also regularly happens that the quotee has insufficient understanding, or no understanding at all, of the topic to be able to pronounce upon it with any authority in the first place.
Sheesh! Did you see that Professors of Medieval English Literature quotewall which claimed that the 9/11 attacks were carried out by hobbits?
by robindch September 23, 2010