Here is Wikipedia's description of the straw man fallacy:
A straw man is a common form of argument and is an informal fallacy based on giving the impression of refuting an opponent's argument, while actually refuting an argument that was not presented by that opponent.
The example provided is
- Nobody likes Vanilla Ice Cream.
- Indeed polls show that 80% of all people prefer strawberry over vanilla ice cream.
Assuming the second statement is true, which seems doubtful, the problem with the first statement is that it might be too broad. If the second statement is true, then 20% do prefer vanilla ice cream and so claiming "nobody" does is inaccurate.
Bo Bennett has a couple pseudo-logical fallacies that might describe this situation better than "straw man argument":
Too Broad: The definition includes items which should not be included. This is more of an error of fact than reason.
Weasel Wording: Using ambiguous words in order to mislead or conceal a truth: “Save up to 50% or more!” This is more of a marketing gimmick than a fallacy.
The question is:
Can this be classified as a straw man fallacy (even if you are not misrepresenting someone else's arguments)?
Wikipedia further states:
This technique has been used throughout history in polemical debate, particularly in arguments about highly charged emotional issues where a fiery "battle" and the defeat of an "enemy" may be more valued than critical thinking or an understanding of both sides of the issue.
Without having an opponent to defeat there does not seem to be any point in calling the argument a straw man when other terms, such as "too broad" or "weasel wording", would be more descriptive even if they aren't considered more than "pseudo"-logical fallacies.
Bennett, B. "Pseudo-Logical Fallacies" https://www.logicallyfallacious.com/tools/lp/Bo/LogicalFallacies/6/Pseudo-Logical-Fallacies
"Strawman" Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Straw_man