People who receive unsolicited advice from someone whose advantage would be served if that advice is taken should reg...

on September 25, 2019

Confused on this question

I really have no idea concerning the answer to this question. If someone could explain the whole question and the answer choices I would greatly appreciate it.


Irina on September 25, 2019


The principle in the stimulus is saying that a person that receives unsolicited advice from someone who would benefit if this advice is followed, should regard such advice with skepticism, unless there is a good reason to believe that the interests of the advise giver and receiver coincide. The question then asks us which of the following situations reflects the application of this principle.

Let's look at the options:

(A) Floyd writes to Harriet recommending an investment in a company that he owns. Harriet should reject his advice.

Incorrect. Even though Harriet's investment in his company would arguably benefit Floyd, the principle is saying that the person receiving an unsolicited advice should merely regard it with skepticism not outright reject it as this answer choice suggests.

(B) Ramon is approached by a salesperson who tells him not to buy the least expensive refrigerator model. Salesperson receives a commission based on price, so Ramon should not reject the least expensive model based on this advice.

Correct. This scenario involves a salesperson that arguably benefits from Ramon following his advice, and Ramon should be skeptical about this advice - not reject the model based solely on the advice.

(C) Mario wants to bring pastry to Yvette's party and when he consults her, she asks for chocolate brownies. He should consult others before following this advice.

Incorrect. In this scenario, Mario specifically sought out advice from Yvette, whereas the principle in the stimulus only applies to unsolicited advice.

(D) Sara overhears Ron talking about a course and recommends a textbook. They each wrote a chapter of the book. The editor is her personal friend. Ron should investigate further before taking her recommendation.

Incorrect. This scenario involves an unsolicited advice but the interests of the parties arguably coincide - they each wrote a chapter of the book. The other issue with this answer choice is that it is not clear Sara stands to benefit from Ron picking the book from his course even though the editor is her friend - friend might be the only one who benefits.

(E) Mei is buying fish. A store owner is suggesting a less expensive fish. Since it is against his interest to give this advice, Mei should follow it.

Incorrect. The principle in the stimulus only applies to situations where the advice benefits the person giving advice, and only in this cases should the advice be regarded with skepticism. The principle never tells us anything about a case when the advice is to the detriment of the advise giver.

Let me know if this makes sense and if you have any further questions.

Avi on June 4, 2020

Thanks for the explanation on why D is incorrect. It is a tricky one. I missed B as an option because the wording in the end threw me off.