Ben Hanson ParadigmLast changed 1/11 1:18P EST
Last Updated for: Sunvite 2020
Background: 4 years of PF debate at duPont Manual High School in Louisville, Kentucky. Qualified for TOC my senior year, competed at NSDA 3 times. Currently compete in NFA-LD (1-person policy), impromptu and extemp at Western Kentucky University (2nd year).
Current Affiliation: Potomac, Montgomery Blair
Past Judging Affiliations: University School (OH), duPont Manual, Ames, Theodore Roosevelt, The Blake School
TL,DR: Tab judge, will vote on anything if it's well explained. I try to be as hands off as possible in the round. Do what you're comfortable doing, but make sure that we're on the same page by the end of the round. I've bolded the important parts of each paragraph to save time if you're reading this right before the round. Feel free to ask specific questions before the round.
New For Sunvite 2020 (PF) ~ probably should read too
1. I haven't seen a lot of GREAT signposting in speeches this year. As such, many of my flows have become messy because teams aren't telling me where to write down arguments. In attempt to remedy this, I've decided to begin flowing PF like you'd expect someone to flow policy/LD. I'm going to begin keeping every contention on its own sheet (don't worry about the environmental impact of this, it'll still be in excel). What this means for you, if I'm judging you, is that I need you to clearly tell me when you're switching contentions (or flows) AND what sheets to make cross applications on or I'll most likely miss your arguments and they might not make it into my RFD. Also, when giving your offtime roadmap, don't just say "our case then theirs" or vice versa, tell me the order you'll be addressing the contentions in your speech. That allows me to order my sheets correctly, and will most likely benefit you in the round.
2. I've given a good number of extemp speeches on Venezuela this year, meaning I know a decent amount about this topic. Don't worry too much about explaining background information to me (ie. what's going on with Venezuela's political crisis) and focus more on developing link stories to your specific arguments.
3. Extra speaks for:
a) reading real cards instead of paraphrasing AND an email chain in the round (yes, both).
b) Full disclosure and a well organized wiki (show me after the round).
4. If your opponent calls for your evidence, I expect you to be able to find it in 45 seconds or less. If it takes you longer than 45 seconds to find a card I'm striking it from my flow and I'm not evaluating it.
I try not to intervene unless either (1) one side says something blatantly offensive or (2) both sides did such a poor job in the final speeches on key areas of clash and I have to intervene to decide my ballot. Generally, I will try my best to listen to any argument you feel comfortable reading and defending, but I'm not super well read on some positions so if you're going to run those you might need to slow down and get a bit more deep for me to vote on them. Don't expect me to look up from my computer much throughout the round, I'll most likely be flowing/making notes on the ballot from the moment the debate begins. Overall, here's how I feel about debate, regardless of what format I'm judging:
Speed: Go as fast as you want.
Weighing: I evaluate the debate however debaters in round tell me to. Weighing at the link level is just as important as weighing at the internal link/impact level! That being said, whatever the round ends up collapsing to, be prepared to go in depth on that issue, rather than just repeat the same thing over and over again.
Tech v Truth: Tech always comes first, but truth is still important in close debates.
Evidence: Include me on the email chain if there is one (email@example.com) or give me the speechdrop code. PLZ PLZ PLZ use speechdrop if you know how to. For PF, I will call for any evidence that seems sketchy or if a team tells me to. When I call for evidence, I generally try to evaluate which side had a more accurate interpretation of the evidence read, rather than form my own. I'm unwilling to call for evidence that isn't warranted well in speeches and will not make your evidence say things you don't say it says.
Speaker Points: I give higher speaks to people who debate the flow the best. I'm not a "speaker point fairy", so don't expect a 30 from me unless you do something miraculous. I don't necessarily have a baseline for speaker points because I think that every round is different.
Theory/T: I'll listen to any silly theory argument you want to read, but there needs to be well articulated standards for me to vote on it. In terms of topicality specifically, I look for debaters to compare visions of the topic and explain why one is preferable to the other. TVA and a topical case list are super helpful in T debates - you should probably give them. I won't say I'm unwilling to vote on potential abuse, but there needs to be well articulated standards for me to vote on it. It's probably an uphill battle for you to win here. I would much rather vote on proven abuse if that's possible. RVIs are probably a no-go but you can try if you want.
Disclosure: It's undeniably good for clash and education. Disclosure us
I never competed in high school LD, but I have a year and a half of experience at the college level. If you're reading my paradigm and trying to figure out how to pref me, here's what I would recommend -
1 - LARP/Policymaking/Util
2 - T/Theory
3 - Ks
4 - Phil
5/Strike - Trad LD, jerks
1) I have a pretty high threshold to vote on theory debates. I'm most comfortable listening to T, vagueness/spec, and disclosure arguments. Anything beyond this is something i've never run or debated against before, so while I could vote on something else, it's less likely than one of those. Any 1AC or 1NC positions you've read before should be on the wiki, please don't make me vote disclosure. For tricks, I'll listen to them, but you'll need to use super clear ballot directing language in the 2NR/2AR because I've never run them myself and haven't had a lot of hands-on experience debating against them.
2) I think philosophy is neat, but I'm not super well versed on it. Framework debates are fine and encouraged if that's your jam, but you might have to do more explaining anything beyond basic util to me.
3) K affs need a strong defense against framework. You probably want to spend more time answering limits arguments in the 1AR in front of me than you would with other judges in the back of the room. Also, I think the neg should present a TVA in the 1NC and that a lot of the FW debate should be centered around whether or not a topical version of the aff exists.
1) I'm fine with speed and can flow spreading. However, I'm not a fan of people competing in PF using speed as a way to squeeze 30 paraphrased cards into a speech. If you're going to spread, I prefer that you read full cards. I won't drop or intervene if you go quickly and paraphrase, but it might be hard for me to keep up with tags, author names and dates so make sure as you're super clear on those things.
2) Overviews are alright out of the rebuttal, but not encouraged. I think that far too often people use overviews as an excuse to read more offense out of rebuttal to make up for a lack of defense on case. If you are going to read new offense out of the rebuttal, it needs to be backed up by VERY solid case defense in the latter half of the speech. I will most likely call for your defense cards and if they're crumby, generic cards, I will most likely give the ballot to the team that encouraged clash the most, rather than just making the round a race to the bottom to see who can read the most arguments. Also, if you're going to read a long, offense-heavy OV out of the rebuttal, tell me in your roadmap that it'll be "one off then case" so that I can keep my flow relatively clear.
3) I like speeches to respond to what was said in the speech before. That means I like frontlines in second rebuttal, defense in first summary, so on and so forth. THIS IS ESPECIALLY IMPORTANT NOW THAT THE SUMMARY IS THREE MINUTES LONG. If something isn't mentioned in the next speech, I assume it's a drop and am less willing to vote on new articulations of that argument later in the round. Word economy is key.
4) I'm not a big fan of teams handing each other full PDFs instead of cut cards. Citations and quotes in context should be readily available if another team asks to see that evidence. I dislike PDFs because I think it encourages poor research practices and they're harder to analyze in a timely manner. If you don't have cut cards, I'll probably dock your speaks, but I won't evaluate it as a voting issue in the round unless there is a REALLY good argument made against it in the round (see my notes on theory above).