Suraj Jagadeesh ParadigmLast changed 2/17 1:37P PDT
I debated all four years of high school, graduating from Harker in 2016. In general, I’m a flow judge, but my no means should you spread. *EDIT* flowing skills are down the drain so I'd prefer a slightly slower than average speaking style!
I have a decent amount of preconceived notions about the way public forum debate should operate, so I’ll just list a few.
First about speeches and what they should address, I believe that the second 2nd speaker doesn’t necessarily have to address what the first 2nd speaker said, but they have the option to do so. For the most part, summaries should address your own case, combatting the rebuttals your opponents put on your case. You don’t need to necessarily respond to every response, but rather just respond to every response on the contentions you are pushing through summary and final focus. I hate when teams blindly extend through ink, so make sure to address relevant responses. In addition, don’t silent extend args into FF, if you want me to evaluate it at the end of the round it has to be in summary and FF. Case turns have to be talked about in summary to be extended into FF. At the same time, I still evaluate unextended defensive responses at the end of the round, but if there is an important response, for clarity’s sake please try to extend it or I may forget it.
Secondly, I don’t believe in tabula rasa in debate rounds. If a response or argument doesn’t make sense to me, I’m just not going to evaluate it. It’s on you to explain your responses and arguments well and make sure they are relevant.
Thirdly, while I’m a big proponent of rebuttal overviews, tell me where to flow it. It’s also important to distinguish offense from defense. Defensive arguments are not a reason to vote for you, but rather lessen the reason to vote for the other team. Try to focus on offensive args in the FF.
Fourthly, for crossfires, I would say keep them clean, but that usually never happens. Instead, try to entertain me instead of pissing me off. Witty crossfires are an easy way too earn an instant 30 speaks (but not required by any means!). Moreover, important concessions in crossfire should be explained in speeches, I’m not flowing crossfire. Also, please please please don't talk to your partner during crossfire, that's a surefire way to lose speaks!
Fifthly, in terms of speaker points, just being entertaining and in general “a good debater” is the easiest way to earn high speaks. Be confident, know what you’re talking about, explain things well, and you’re good to go. Crossfire honestly influences my perception of speaks a lot, so if you get destroyed in a crossfire – don’t expect high speaker points. In addition, while I don’t want you to kiss up, being just generally nice and kind is a good way to inflate your speaks. Also I’m not going to penalize you for cutting your speeches short, but you should typically talk for the whole time unless you are winning so hard there’s nothing more to say, which rarely happens.
Sixthly, I heavily value warrant analysis. People throw around empirics a bunch in public forum, not explaining the warrants behind them. Winning the warrant debate is more important than winning the impact debate. At the same time, you still need to pair impacts to your warrants, just pushing the warrant isn’t enough.
Lastly but most importantly, impact framing is key. If you don’t tell me which arguments are more important I’m just going to arbitrarily choose. Framing which impacts and which arguments are more crucial is the most helpful thing in deciding my ballot.
p.s. if you're here from Emaad's paradigm, god help you. He'll give you 30 speaks if you give a minute of prep time to your opponent. Good luck, have fun with the judge screw :)