NPDL Tournament of Champions CANCELLED
2020 — Lafayette, CA, CA/US
See Article XII of the NPDL Legislative Code
SECTION 2. Round Definition
A*. A team consists of two debaters.
B*. A round consists of one Government team debating against one Opposition team.
C. The Government team proposes a case to uphold the resolution. The Opposition team opposes the Government team’s case.
D. A round shall consist of the preparation time and the debate.
E. The debate shall begin when the first speaker begins their speech and shall end when the last speaker ends their speech.
SECTION 3. Resolutions
A. Resolutions will be announced by the tournament at the start of preparation time.
B. A different resolution will be used each round.
C. Over the course of the tournament each team may be assigned to uphold either side of the resolution in any given round.
D. A tournament may choose to use topic strikes or pre-announced topic areas.
SECTION 4. Ballot
A. The judge should award a win to the team that did the better debating. The judge should award a loss to the other team.
B*. The judge may not confer with anyone when making their decision. The exception is that the judge may communicate with the tournament director or designee(s) to clarify round rules.
SECTION 5. Definition of ‘Speech Time’
A. Except for roadmaps, speech time begins as soon as the debater begins speaking. Thank-you’s count toward speech time.
B. Roadmaps may include content warnings.
Roadmaps do not count toward speech time, so long as:
- The roadmap is not argumentative in nature;
- The roadmap does not exceed 15 seconds. This can be extended to no more than one minute if one’s opponent or judge asks for a repeat or clarification of the roadmap.
C. The judge shall not factor into their decision anything said by the debaters outside of their allotted speech time.
SECTION 6. Debate Format
A. Prime Minister Constructive (PMC): 7 minutes, given by the first Government speaker
B. Leader of Opposition Constructive (LOC): 8 minutes, given by the first Opposition speaker
C. Member of Government Constructive (MGC): 8 minutes, given by the second Government speaker
D. Member of Opposition Constructive (MOC): 8 minutes, given by the second Opposition speaker
E. Leader of Opposition Rebuttal (LOR): 4 minutes, given by the first Opposition speaker
F. Prime Minister Rebuttal (PMR): 5 minutes, given by the first Government speaker
SECTION 7. Preparation Time
A*. Debaters shall have 20 minutes of preparation time between the time the resolution is announced and the time debaters report to their judge(s) in the room in which they are debating.
B*. The two partners may communicate with each other. Opposing teams may communicate with each other. Debaters may communicate with their judge(s), but only when the opposing team is present. Debaters are also allowed to communicate with tournament officials to clarify tournament logistics. Other than that, debaters are not allowed to communicate with anyone by any means during preparation time.
C. During preparation time, debaters may consult both physical and electronic copies of any material, including both prepared notes and published sources. Debaters may use computers and the internet to store and to retrieve this material.
SECTION 8. Restriction of Communication during the Debate
A*. A debater shall not communicate with anyone by any means other than with that debater’s partner, the opposing debaters, and the judge(s). This rule shall not prohibit speakers from addressing the entire room, including observers.
B. A debater is allowed to communicate with their partner, both verbally and in writing, while they or their partner have the floor. The judges may not consider any argument that is orally delivered by a debater who does not have the floor. The exception is that judges may consider Points of Information and Points of Order.
C. A debater is allowed to communicate with their partner, both verbally and in writing, while their opponent has the floor, so long as this does not disrupt their opponent’s speech.
SECTION 9. Debate Rules
A. There is no preparation time between speeches. The next speaker must begin their speech (or their roadmap) within 20 seconds following the end of the preceding speech.
B*. Debaters are not allowed to access computers and other electronic retrieval devices during the debate.
C*. The exception to sub-section B is that debaters are allowed to use timers during the debate. Cellular phones/smart phones may be used during the debate for the exclusive purpose of functioning as a timer. The phone must be put into airplane mode, and be incapable of receiving or sending correspondence. Debaters must make all phones used as timers available for inspection by judges and/or tournament officials upon request.
D*. During the debate a debater may access notes that were handwritten on paper by the debater or their partner after the resolution was announced. The debater may also access notes that were handwritten on paper and given to them by the opposing team after the resolution was announced. Other than that, the debater may not access any written material during the debate.
E. Judges should disregard new arguments (including new responses) during rebuttal speeches, regardless of whether a Point of Order was raised. The exception is that the PMR may respond to new arguments made in the MOC. Rephrasing or new analysis of prior arguments is allowed in rebuttal speeches.
SECTION 10. Points of Information
A. A Point of Information (POI) is a single short question addressed by a member of the opposing team to the debater who has the floor. The debater shall raise a POI by raising their hand or standing up.
B. The debater who has the floor may accept or decline each POI at their discretion. The debater may decline the request verbally or by not responding to it. Follow-up POIs are only allowed if separately accepted by the debater who has the floor.
C. POIs come out of the speech time of the debater who has the floor, so time should not be stopped for a POI. Each POI may not exceed 15 seconds.
D. POIs are only allowed in constructive speeches. Debaters may not raise POIs during protected time, which shall be the first and last minute of any constructive speech, unless invited to do so by the debater who has the floor.
SECTION 11. Points of Order
A. A debater may raise a Point of Order if they believe that the opposing team is bringing up a new argument (see 9.E) in a rebuttal speech. Points of Order may not be used for any other purpose.
B. Points of Order are not allowed during constructive speeches but are allowed at any time during rebuttal speeches.
C. To raise a Point of Order, the debater shall state “Point of Order.” Time should then be immediately stopped. The debater then has 15 seconds to explain why the argument in question made by the opposing team is new.
D. The opposing team then has 15 seconds to respond to the Point of Order. Once the response is finished, time should immediately resume.
E. Debaters may interrupt their opponent’s speech only for the purpose of a Point of Order.
F. Debaters should not use Points of Order as a tactic to disrupt their opponent’s speech.
G. Judges may choose whether to announce their rulings on Points of Order during the round. If there is a judge panel, judges may not announce their rulings on Points of Order during the round.
SECTION 12. Evidence
A. Debaters should primarily rely on logic and general knowledge. Reference to published sources is allowed but should be limited. Published evidence, such as specific statistics, is not a requirement for an argument to be accepted by the judge.
B*. A debater may refer to information from a published source during their speech. The debater must write down the citation and must say the citation during their speech. To the extent that these are provided by the original source, the citation should include the name of the primary author, the source title, and the publication date.
C*. The team which refers to information from a published source must show the opposing team the sheet of paper containing the citation if requested. The request can be made during a POI, immediately after the speech, or immediately after the end of the debate round.
SECTION 13. Enforcement
A. During the debate, the rules in this article shall be enforced by the judges. Judges should not direct students to deviate from these rules or encourage students to violate them.
B. The sub-sections of this article that shall be enforceable by the Protest Committee are:
2A, 2B, 4B, 7A, 7B, 8A, 9B, 9C, 9D, 12B, and 12C.
The Protest Committee shall be allowed to overrule judge decisions when enforcing these sub-sections.
Sub-sections enforceable by the Protest Committee shall be marked with an asterisk in these rules.
C. Violations may be reported to the Protest Committee only by the coaches of the teams involved or by tournament officials.
D. In ruling on protests for violation of rules set forth in this Article, the Protest Committee shall consider the total facts and circumstances associated with the violation including whether it
- was intentional or unintentional,
- was unethical and/or dishonest,
- would be considered abusive
- was intended to obtain an unfair advantage in the debate
- whether, based on conversations with the judge(s), the violation appears to have affected the round outcome
- violates the purpose behind a rule in addition to its express language, and the degree of prejudice resulting to the opposing team from the violation.
E. The Protest Committee is empowered to impose any of the following consequences:
- warning and/or reprimand, including a statement of consequences for a repeated violation
- require the round be repeated under terms considered fair and just by the Committee
- impose a loss on the team in violation
- disqualification from the tournament
SECTION 14: Accommodations
A. The tournament director may make exceptions to any of the rules in the article in order to accommodate students with disabilities or other needs.
B. Any such accommodation(s) should be requested in advance.