Explicit Vs. Implicit Argument
Fig 1A Fedex truck with explicit argument.
In this advertisement, the delivery company Fedex is making an explicit argument. The first half of the truck is painted like a standard Fedex delivery truck with the text, “ALWAYS FIRST” printed on it. The back half of the truck is painted like a second truck from an unnamed delivery company. The words ALWAYS FIRST are making an explicit statement that Fedex is always first. The paint job of the truck is an attempt to demonstrate that Fedex is “leading” the unnamed delivery truck. The argument is explicit because the truck says exactly what the audience is supposed to take away from the advertisement, which is that Fedex will always be first, meaning you should choose them to deliver your packages.
Fig 2. Fedex truck with an implicit argument.
Figure 2 is an example of an implicit argument being made by Fedex Delivery Company. The truck itself does not have any text to suggest what the audience is supposed to think about the advertisement. However, it is being implied that Fedex is better than UPS because the Fedex truck is painted to look as though it is carrying UPS trucks. The truck does not specifically tell the people who see the truck what to feel or how they should react, but rather it allows the viewers to make their own assumptions about the companies based on the fact that one is “delivering” another one. The message must be interpreted by the viewers, meaning it is possible that people unfamiliar with either company would have little frame of reference on how to take the advertisement. This seems fairly unlikely, considering that Fedex and UPS are two of the most well-known delivery companies in the United States.