The essence of any written or oral material is to relay some information or generate certain feelings from the target audience. Multimodal texts help authors and speakers effectively communicate to their audience. Multimodal texts combine two or more modes to convey meaning to the reader or audience (Fillmore, 2016). These texts range from news articles and music to websites. Hence, analyzing such a text would mean identifying the various modes utilized by the author and how they interact to communicate effectively to the reader. However, simply combining modes is not enough. The author needs to utilize ethos, pathos, and logos appeals to convince or persuade the reader of their cause. Ethos appeals to the audience’s ethics, logos to their logical reasoning, and pathos to their emotions (Cruthers & Fernie, 2019). Save Now Tigers Website utilizes various modes to define its cause and relay the message, making it a multimodal text. This paper will attempt to answer how the images, photography, and writing from the Save Tigers Now website work together, using the appeals of ethos, pathos, and logos to convince readers that the issue is important and worth supporting, thus gauging its effectiveness.
As previously stated, pathos attempts to appeal to the emotions of the audience in which they try to evoke an emotional response, hence convincing or persuading them. In the Save Tigers Now webpage, the author meticulously uses words and a photograph to appeal to the audience emotionally. Using the word “protect,” the author implies that the tigers are in danger and helpless. Hence, the author feeds into the empathetic feelings of the audience and stimulates their urge to protect the helpless tigers. Similarly, by using the photograph of a calm tiger lying on the dry grass, the author further cements the image of helplessness and the need for protection (Help WWF Save Tigers Now, 2022). Therefore, the author strategically uses visual and linguistic modes to appeal to the readers’ emotions persuading them to donate money to protect the tigers.
Similarly, the webpage uses logos to appeal to the reader’s rationality. Right after heading, the author provides findings of a 2022 survey done in Nepal, indicating an increase in the population of tigers by about 190% since 2009. The percentage serves as evidence to indicate that the donations go into good use and aid in protecting the tigers, which has resulted in their increase in “critical sites” such as Nepal (Help WWF Save Tigers Now, 2022). It also motivates the donors t keep up with the good work since it is yielding results.
Dissimilar to logos which appeals to readers’ logical reasoning, ethos tries to establish credibility to make the audience believe in the author’s cause. By the author putting an image of the World Wildlife Fund logo at the top left of the webpage right before the words, they introduce an experienced figure in the field of animal and environment conservation (Help WWF Save Tigers Now, 2022). This serves as an authority figure which further convinces the reader of the competency of the cause.
Additionally, the logo establishes the cause’s credibility and makes the readers trust the webpage and the information given. Trustworthiness is essential as the message aims to persuade the readers to donate money for the cause; without earning people’s trust, there will be no donations. World Wildlife Fund, founded in 1961, is recognized as an international leading conservation organization, and hence by outlining its logo, both credibility, and trustworthiness of the cause are established (WWF – Endangered Species Conservation, 2022).
In conclusion, the author uses words, a photograph, and an image to appeal to the readers’ emotions, logical reasoning, and establish authority. The three work together to persuade readers to donate money to protect tigers. For instance, the words complemented by the tiger photograph emotionally appeal to the reader by portraying the animal as helpless. The logo image, on the other hand, establishes authority and also gains the reader’s trust. Hence, the website, through using the three rhetoric appeals and combining visual and linguistic modes, effectively convinces the reader of the urgency and credibility of the cause.
Cruthers, A., & Fernie, B. (2019). Persuading Your Reader. In Business Writing For Everyone. Pressbooks.
Fillmore, A. (Ed.). (2016). Multimodal Communication: Writing in Five Modes. In Open English. Open English @ SLCC.
Help WWF Save Tigers Now. (2022). World Wildlife Org. https://support.worldwildlife.org/site/Donation2?df_id=12391&12391.donation=form1
WWF – Endangered Species Conservation. (2022). World Wildlife Fund. https://www.worldwildlife.org/