Middle School TOC hosted by UK
2018 — KY/US
Public Forum Paradigm ListAll Paradigms: Show Hide
University of Kentucky 2018/Assistant Debate Coach for UK 2018-2019
Northwestern Law 2022
email@example.com - put this one on the chain for high school debate
firstname.lastname@example.org - put this one and the above on the chain for college debate. Label the subject line as: Tournament - Round # - Aff Team vs Neg Team
*UPDATE For UK Tournament 2021*
I have been removed from the debate community since 2019. I have never participated or judged a virtual debate prior to this tournament. Take that as you will, but make sure to place an emphasis on clarity.
I find that while judging, if the debaters can isolate and clearly articulate the nexus questions of the round, it becomes easier to judge, regardless of any predilections. While I try to adopt the ideology of a 'tabula rasa' I find that it is not entirely successful. Some arguments can be more persuasive to me than others, and I will try my best to avoid any intervention on my part, and I feel that you as a debater should do what you feel is best. If you have good cards to substantiate your args that goes a long way and matters for me. Explain how you want me to evaluate the debate.
I like T when it is debated well. That means good impact analysis, good explanations of standards and how I should evaluate each team's vision of the topic.
Theory: I resolve these debates much like topicality. The impact level needs to be clearly articulated, especially by the affirmative if you want my ballot. I feel that counter interpretations are largely self serving (not a reason to not make one) and that interpretations on theory debates are much more persuasive when your offense is centered around your interpretation, which I feel has become largely lacking (ex. teams read the same conditionality block regardless if they have read one or four conditional options). I believe strongly in technical debating, but a conceded blimpy theoretical objection won't be a reason to reject the team. Rather, I will just reject the argument if the theoretical objection is well argued and explained. This is because most of these scenarios are where the theory "arguments" are not arguments. See ex. vague alternatives are a voting issue.
I think K affs tend to lose more of these debates when they adopt a middle ground perspective in which they try to do something with the topic but not affirm the entirety of the resolution. It makes it easier in my mind for neg teams to win that the resolution is compatible with the aff's offense and that resolutional debates are good as the aff is already half of the way there. I think teams are more successful at impact turning framework, and making reasons why only the aff's model of debate is beneficial.
I prefer these debates to clash about what model of debate is best, to conduct impact comparison, and to tell me what matters and how to evaluate certain arguments. Debate it like a t debate with violations, standards, and impacts.
Love them. The more specific to the aff the better and helps drive competition.
There is zero risk of a disad, and it happens. I feel that the impact level of disadvantages (as well as advantages) are way to often the focus of the debate, and I find that debates about a solid link defense/turn or internal link defense can win a round more often than other things.
With that being said, I feel that a disadvantage with a lot of explanation of how it accesses case, why I should prefer it, and why it comes first are persuasive, but I don't feel that its an automatic negative ballot if the 1AR just drops them because they sat on another argument on the flow. The status squo I feel has become a debate that is less willing to be had and I think that a good case/disad debate can be very strategic at times.
Make the debate about the aff, and contextualize it, or I think it is easier for the aff to win a perm. Doing this doesn't necessarily mean reading new aff specific cards, but it does mean doing the work to contextualize your generic 1nc args to the specifics of the aff.
I am not entirely well versed in a very broad scope of the literature, but as long as you aren't too out there and can explain it I should be fine. You should be well versed enough in the literature to explain your argument to those not in the lit base, just like you should be able to explain a complex counter plan to someone who hasn't done the research on it.
Email chain: email@example.com -- please add me to the email chain
Always feel free to email me after the round and ask specific questions -- my goal is to help you learn as much as you can.
General Bullet Points
I love case debates -- I have no problem voting neg on presumption if you thoroughly destroy or turn the affirmative case.
I am very flow centric and will vote based on your arguments in the debate. I tend to fall on the tech over truth side of the spectrum, however the most compelling arguments are true arguments debated well. If you take care of the tech, and your arguments are solid, you're golden. A few good analytics will serve you far better than another card.
I am reasonable with prep-time, bathroom breaks, etc. Cross-ex should start within a few seconds of the speech ending. Prep ends when you're done prepping your doc. As long as you're not obviously stealing prep -- if it looks like you are, I will watch you closely and dock speaker points.
All rebuttals should close doors. There is a big difference between new explanation developing in rebuttals and brand new arguments. I hold the final rebuttals to a high standard of no new arguments.
Please make tags and switching between flows clear so that I can flow every argument you make. "And/next," and a bit slower for tags, and label flows with a slight pause when switching between them. Going off your road map is fine as long as you signpost. With that, if you tell me you're going to signpost, please signpost.
I don't make a habit of flowing cross-ex, but if something seems like it could become key later in the debate, or you clarify something that I found confusing, I will make a note of it on my flow.
I like assertive, opinionated, entertaining debaters, but there is a line between being assertive or funny, and being rude. Please don't cross that line. If it gets out of hand I will dock speaker points.
I tend to grant reasonability as the framing mechanism for close Topicality debates—a “good is good enough.” However, you still have to win the T flow for me to give you that framing.
I will vote on T-spec if it is done well, but it needs to be contextualized correctly in terms of what it does for debate and what it means for the effectiveness of their policy.
The K needs to win a specific link to the aff, and weigh their impacts against the aff. Not the impacts of the K in general, but the impacts that the aff uniquely causes. I find contextualized serial policy failure arguments persuasive. If your strat is to confuse the other team, I will probably be confused as well. Assume I don’t understand—bring your theory down to its most basic level and what that means in the context of the aff.
To beat it, tell me explicitly why it is most important for my ballot in that particular debate to do. That means why what you are doing is good, and why it belongs in debate and should receive my ballot. Show me what debate looks like in your world and I can feel comfortable voting for it.
To win it, tell me explicitly and contextually why your interpretation should be preferred, and if you are arguing that it is a prior question, why I should view the round that way. The more arguments and examples specifically contextualized to the round, the less chance you have of coming across as a whiny policy debater.
*firstname.lastname@example.org for speech doc*
I debated for 4 years at Poly Prep and was relatively successful on the national circuit.
I now coach PF for Edgemont Jr/Sr HS in New York.
You know how you debate in front of a classic PF flow judge? Do that. (Weighing, Summary and final focus extensions, signposting, warrants etc.)
That said there are a few weird things about me.
0. I mostly decide debates on the link level. Links generate offense without impacts, impacts generate no offense without links. Teams that tell a compelling link story and clearly access their impact are incredibly likely to win my ballot. Extend an impact without a sufficient link at your own peril.
1. Don't run plans or advocacies unless you prove a large enough probability of the plan occuring to not make it not a plan but an advantage. (Read the Advocacies/Plans/Fiat section below).
2. Theory is important and cool, but only run it if it is justified.
3. Second summary has an obligation to extend defense, first summary does not.
4. I am not tab. My threshold for responses goes down the more extravagant an argument is. This can include incredibly dumb totally ridiculous impacts, link chains that make my head spin, or arguments that are straight up offensive.
5. I HATE THE TERM OFF TIME-ROADMAP. Saying that term lowers your speaks by .5 for every time you say it, just give the roadmap.
6. You should probably read dates. I don't think it justifies drop the debater but I think it justifies drop the arg/card.
7. I don't like independent offense in rebuttal, especially 2nd rebuttal. Case Turns/Prereqs/Weighing/Terminal Defense are fine, but new contention style offense is some real cheese. Speak faster and read it as a new contention in case as opposed to waiting until rebuttal to dump it on an unsuspecting opponent.
- Don’t extend through ink. If a team has made responses whether offensive or defensive they must be addressed if you want to go for the argument. NB: you should respond to ALL offensive responses put on your case regardless if you want to go for the argument.
- Collapse. Evaluating a hundred different arguments at the end of the round is frustrating and annoying, please boil it down to 1-4 points.
- Speech cohesion. All your speeches should resemble the others. I should be able to reasonably expect what is coming in the next speech from the previous speech. This is incredibly important especially in summary and final focus. It is so important in fact that I will not evaluate things that are not said in both the summary and final focus.
- Weighing. This is the key to my ballot. Tell me what arguments matter the most and why they do. If one team does this and the other team doesn’t 99/100 times I will vote for the team that did. The best teams will give me an overarching weighing mechanism and will tell me why their weighing mechanism is better than their opponents. NB: The earlier in the round this appears the better off you will be.
- Warrants. An argument without a warrant will not be evaluated. Even if a professor from MIT conducts the best study ever, you need to be able to explain logically why that study is true, without just reverting to “Because Dr. Blah Blah Blah said so.”
- Analysis vs. Evidence. Your speeches should have a reasonable balance of both evidence and analysis. Great logic is just as important as great evidence. Don’t just spew evidence or weak analysis at me and expect me to buy it. Tell me why the evidence applies and why your logic takes out an argument.
- Framework. I will default to a utilitarian calculus unless told to do otherwise. Please be prepared to warrant why the other framework should be used within the round.
- Turns. If you want me to vote off of a turn, I should hear about it in both the summary and final focus. I will not extend a turn as a reason to vote for you. (Unextended turns still count as ink, just not offense)
- Speed. Any speed you speak at should be fine as long as you are clear. Don't speak faster than this rebuttal https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pg83oD0s3NU&feature=youtu.be&t=1253
- Advocacies/Plans/Fiat. I grant teams the weakest fiat you can imagine. The aff is allowed to say that the action done in the resolution is passed through congress or whatever governing body we are discussing. That is it. This means that you cannot fiat out of political conditions (i.e. CUTGO, elite influence, etc.) or say that the resolution means we will increase infrastructure spending by building 20th century community learning facilities in the middle of Utah. If you want to access plans and still win my ballot, you must prove a rock solid probability of the advocacy occurring in the real world.. (Note the following is just a guideline, other forms of proving the following are ok as long as they actually successfully prove what they say will occur.) In an ideal world that means 3 things. First, you prove that there is a growing need for such action (i.e. If you want to run that we should build infrastructure in the form of low-income housing, you need to prove that we actually need more houses.). Second, you prove that the plan is politically likely (Bipartisan support doesn't mean anything, I want a bill on the house floor). Finally, you need to prove some sort of historical precedent for your action. If you are missing the first burden and it's pointed out, I will not by the argument on face. A lack in either of the latter 2 can be made up by strengthening the other. Of course, you can get around ALL of this by not reading any advocacies and just talking about things that are fundamentally inherent to the resolution.
- Squirrley Arguments. To a point being squirrely is ok, often times very good. I will never drop an argument on face but as an argument gets more extravagant my threshold for responses goes down. i.e. if on reparations you read an argument that reparations commodify the suffering of African Americans, you are a-ok. If you read an argument that says that The USFG should not take any action regarding African Americans because the people in the USFG are all secretly lizard people, the other team needs to do very little work for me to not evaluate it. A simple "WTF is this contention?" might suffice in rebuttal. NB: You will be able to tell if I think an argument is stupid.
- Defense Extensions. Some defense needs to be extended in both summary and final focus, such as a rebuttal overview that takes out an entire case. Pieces of defense such as uniqueness responses that are never responded to in summary may be extended from rebuttal to final focus to take out an argument that your opponents are collapsing on. NB: I am less likely to buy a terminally defensive extension from rebuttal to final focus if you are speaking second because I believe that it is the first speaker's job to do that in second summary and your opponent does not have an extra speech to address it.
- Signposting/Roadmaps. Signposting is necessary, roadmaps are nice. Just tell me what issues you are going to go over and when.
- Theory. Theory is the best way to check abuse in debate and is necessary to make sure unfair strategies are not tolerated. As a result of this I am a huge fan of theory in PF rounds but am not a fan of in using it as a way to just garner a cheap win off of a less experienced opponent. To avoid this, make sure there is a crystal clear violation that is explicitly checked for. It does not need to be presented as the classic "A is the interpretation, B is the violation, etc." but it does need to be clearly labeled as a shell. If theory is read in a round and there is a clear violation, it is where I will vote.
I give speaker points on both how fluid and convincing you are and how well you do on the flow. I will only give 30s to debaters that do both effectively. If you get below a 26 you probably did something unethical or offensive.
I may call for evidence in a few situations.
- One team tells me to.
- I can not make a decision within the round without evaluating a piece of evidence.
- I notice there is an inconsistency in how the evidence is used throughout the course of the debate and it is relevant to my decision. i.e. A piece of evidence changes from a card that identifies a problem to a magical catch-all solvency card.
- I have good reason to believe you miscut a card.
I encourage teams to ask questions about my RFD after the round and for teams to come and find me after the round is over for extra feedback. As long as you are courteous and respectful I will be happy to discuss the round with you.
Contact info: email@example.com
Conflicts: American Heritage Plantation, Poly Prep Country Day
Background: I competed for Okoboji (IA) and was at the TOC '13 in LD. I also debated policy in college the following year.
General: Debate rounds are about students so intervention should be minimized. I believe that my role in rounds is to be an educator, however, students should contextualize what that my obligation as a judge is. I default comparative worlds unless told otherwise. Slow down for interps and plan texts. I will say clear as many times as needed. Signpost and add me to your email chain, please.
High theory: 1
K: I really like K debate. I have trouble pulling the trigger on links of omission. Performative offensive should be linked to a method that you can defend. The alt is an advocacy and the neg should defend it as such. Knowing lit beyond tags = higher speaks. Please challenge my view of debate. I like learning in rounds.
Framework: 2013 LD was tricks, theory, and framework debate. I dislike blippy, unwarranted 'offense'. However, I really believe that good, deep phil debate is persuasive and underutilized on most topics. Most framework/phil heavy affs don't dig into literature deep enough to substantively respond to general K links and turns.
LARP: Big fan but don't assume I've read all hyper-specific topic knowledge.
Theory/T: Great, please warrant extensions and signpost. "Converse of their interp" is not a counter-interp.
Disclosure: Not really going to vote on disclosure theory unless you specifically warrant why their specific position should have been disclosed. If they are running a position relatively predictable, it is unlikely I will pull the trigger on disclosure theory.
Speaks: Make some jokes and be chill with your opponent. In-round strategy dictates range. I average 28.3-28.8.
Other thoughts: Plans/CPs should have solvency advocates. Talking over your opponent will harm speaks. Write down interps before extemping theory. When you extend offense, you need to weigh. Card clipping is an auto L25.
PF Paradigm: I am a flow judge. Offense should be extended in summary and the second rebuttal doesn't necessarily need to frontline what was said in first rebuttal (but in some cases, it definitely helps). Weighing in Summary and FF is key. I'll steal this line from my favorite judge, Thomas Mayes, "My ballot is like a piece of electricity, it takes the path of least resistance." I have a hard time voting on disclosure theory in PF. Have fun and be nice.
Debated at Kentucky ‘16-‘19.
AFFs must read a plan. NEG teams must either say the plan does something bad or is not topical.
Bad for T against policy AFFs unless it’s egregious.
Yes judge kick.
Presumption goes to the side that advocates less change. Unbelievable that I have to say that out loud, but alas…
No “inserting” anything, you have to read it.
Conditionality is fine.
I like people who cut a lot of cards and know things about the world. If you show me you are one of those people; you will do well. The best debates have lots of case debating, lots of author indicts, lots of re-highlighting the other team’s evidence, and lots of evidence comparison.
Stating something that contradicts what your opponents have said isn't debating; it's disagreeing. AKA implicate your responses and don't repeatedly extend through ink.
I look for the path of least resistance when I'm deciding a round.
If you misrepresent evidence, I will drop you.
Theory: Generally, I don't think theory belongs in PF debate. I think PF is unique in the sense that accessibility is an integral part of the activity and in my opinion the speed at which debaters often have to speak and the evidence cited in theory shells are simply not accessible to the public at large. That being said, I understand the value of theory with respect to protecting competitors from abuses in round and out of respect for all debaters and arguments alike I will listen and flow theory and evaluate it in the round. I've even voted for a team who ran it once. All I'll say is the only thing worse than running theory is doing it badly. If you don't know what you're doing and you don't actually have a deep understanding of the theory that you're running and how it operates within a debate round, I wouldn't recommend that you run it in front of me. Lastly, if you're going to run theory you should know that I really value upholding the standard that you run in and out of rounds and across all topics.
Debated in PF during all four years of HS for Bronx Science, dabbled in Policy for a year at Emory.
Judged various forms of debate since 2013.
Please add me the to email chain: firstname.lastname@example.org
Experience: Currently an Engineering Student at UK. Did debate throughout high school and went to some national tournaments but I haven't judged since the last UK season opener.
Preferences: Debate how you want. Since I haven't been too involved with the debate community, it would be nice if you went at a slower pace. I really would like summary to start condensing the round, especially since y'all have 3 minutes now. Feel free to ask me more specific questions before round. If you're reading my paradigm and want to ask questions in-case you want to strike me, just message me on facebook (Brendon Bultman).
I would say I'm pretty flay at this point.
Harvard 2022- I'm being put in to judge last minute so consider me super, super lay. I haven't judged in ages and I'm not super familiar with the topic.
Background: I'm a coach at Ivy Bridge Academy. I coach Novice and beginners. My students are typically on the younger side, so I'm generally familiar with the main arguments on a topic, but might not be super familiar with something more obscure. That doesn't mean you should shy away from running those arguments, just be sure to explain them.
Case: I personally enjoy theory and kritiks (as long as they are somewhat relevant and not totally abusive towards your opponent) so feel free to try out these kind of arguments when you have me as a judge. But with that, don't run them just for the sake of running them. If you feel like you have a good case even if it's more standard, that's probably your best bet. The popular arguments are usually popular for a reason.
Crossfire: It's customary for the team that speaks first to ask the first question, so go with that. I enjoy heated crossfires, so I don't mind a bit of aggression, but read the room if you're going to do this. If your opponent is matching your level, you're fine. If they seem timid and on the verge of tears, back down a bit.
Response speech: The first speech obviously just needs to respond to your opponent's arguments and elaborate a bit more on your own. For the second speech, I don't require you to frontline, but I think it will serve you better if you do. That way you have an extra layer of defense against your team. It's strategically wise.
Summary: My expectation is that the first speaker will give me an overview of their case, respond to their opponent's responses, extend their partner's responses, and if time allows weigh. Second speaker should do mostly the same, but like I said with the response, you're better off if you frontline.
Final Focus: This is your last chance to explain exactly why you've won this debate. I want to hear not only why you've won, but why your opponent has lost. Weigh your case against theirs. Is there something you want me to judge based off of? Tell me. If you tell me exactly what my RFD is, you up your chances of winning spectacularly.
Flowing: I'll flow the debate, but generally not crossfire unless something really sticks out at me.
Time Keeping: If it seems like I need to keep time, I will, but if it seems like I don't, I won't. You should always make it a practice to keep your own time. :)
Speed: I'm generally okay with speed, buy policy-style spreading might be a bit much.
Paraphrasing: I think it's fine, as long as you have the cards cut and available upon request. I hardly ever call for cards, but if something sounds sketchy I will. If your partner calls for a card and you don't have it, I won't consider your 'evidence.' A link to a website isn't a cut card.
Voting: I generally take a more holistic view of the debate, and consider everything when making my decision. I wouldn't say I'm a diehard tech> truth judge, but if I'm having to do too much reasoning on my own, then you haven't done your job and that's not a good thing. I do want to see you play offense and defense. I want to hear what's good about your case and what's bad about your opponent's case. If you want me to vote based on a certain criteria, tell me. Like I said in the final focus section, if you tell me exactly why you've won and your partner lost, you up your chances of winning.
Speaker Points: I think I'm pretty fair in this. 26 is the lowest I'll go, and that's generally only if you seem woefully unprepared or if you are overtly rude to your opponents or me more than once. I don't think I've ever given a 30 out at a big tournament, but I'm not against it. Generally you'll see a 26.8- 29.3 range.
Feedback: I usually give more oral feedback than written feedback, because Tabroom wants ballots ASAP. If you want feedback on something specific, ask me before the debate so I know to look out for it and gather my thoughts. I'll assume you want me to disclose the winner, unless you tell me not to.
I think that should cover most questions, but if you need further clarification, feel free to ask!
I competed in policy on the national circuit in high school. After college, I coached policy for a high school circuit team. I have been coaching PF for the last three years. I think everything that happens in a debate round is fair game for debate. I'll evaluate the round how you tell me to. I do not want to do work for you on the flow. Please impact out your args and explain why your framing matters most.
I am a lay judge. I do follow the flow, but I don't judge exclusively on that;
You may sit or stand to present but both teams will do the same. If the room is cramped, it’s better you stay in your seat;
If you are going to speak quickly, your elocution needs to be good enough for me to understand you;
I do not run a clock on time, track your own time and keep your opponents honest about theirs;
If you are relying on an electronic device to make your speeches and it goes down, I will run your prep time until it is corrected. If you run out of time, I expect you to continue without it. If you can’t, I will consider that a forfeit;
I have a thorough knowledge of statistics so making arguments that go off the deep end (speculative) or citing sources with a statistically insignificant sample size, or "cherry-picked" data or conclusions will diminish the impact of your card.
Misrepresenting cards will cost you, whether done intentionally or not;
You may use an off-time road map to state the sequence of your argument but do not use it to make your case.
I have an engineering background and work in the heavy construction industry. I am swayed by facts, data, logic, and reason and do my best to avoid emotion in decisions at it mostly leads to failure or disaster in the realm of the physical sciences where I work.
My hobbies include history, particularly military history, automobiles, woodworking, outdoor sports, and evolutionary behavior/genetics.
For the email chain and any contact you need - email@example.com
I flow debater's speech performances and not docs, but may read evidence after speeches.
I graduated from Liberty University in the spring of 2011 after debating for 5 years. Before that I debated 1 year of LD in high school. Since then I worked as a debate coach for Timothy Christian High School in New Jersey for 6 years, traveling nationally on both the high school and college circuit. Currently I am the Associate Director of Poly Prep.
I view debate as a forum to critically test and challenge approaches to change the world for the better. I prefer in depth debate with developed material that you look like you have a grasp of. I will always work hard to evaluate correctly and with little intervention, especially if you are putting in hard work debating.
Learning debate from within the Liberty tradition I began by running conventional policy arguments with a proclivity to go for whatever K was in the round. However, during my final 3 years my partner and I did not defend the resolution and our 1nc looked very similar to our 1ac. Personally, I’m a believer and coach for advocating liberatory and conscious debate practices. However, there will certainly be a gap at times between my personal preferences and practices and what I vote on. I’m not going to judge from a biased perspective against policy arguments, and although tabula rasa is impossible I will try to evaluate the arguments presented with limited interference.
Ultimately, do not let any of this sway you from debating how you prefer. Doing what you think you are the best educator on will probably be your greatest option. If any of this is unclear or you have questions that I have not address below please feel free to ask me before a round. Have fun, debate confidently, and be genuine.
Last updated 1/10/2020
PAPERLESS and prep time (LD and Policy specific):
Prep time ends approximately when the speech doc is saved and you remove the jump drive. An overall goal (for both paperless and traditional teams) is to be prepared to begin your speech when you say end prep.
Speaking mostly to HIGH SCHOOL students:
Everyone involved in the round should be able to have access to any read piece of evidence once it has been presented. This means that if you are reading off of a computer you are responsible for providing your opponents with either a jump of what you are going to read or a physical copy before you start your speech. We shouldn’t be unreasonably fearful of people ‘stealing’ ‘our’ evidence, as source information should always be provided, and also because it’s certainly not really ‘ours’. You may, however, respectfully require your opponents to delete anything you provided them with during the round.
SPEAKING STYLES and speaker points:
I’m certainly open to (for lack of a better word) alternative and non-traditional approaches to your speech time. Passion, ethos, and emphasis are things that are usually underutilized by most speaking styles and debaters, and should be present in both constructives and rebuttals. After all, debate is at its core a communication activity. Cross-ex is a great time to exhibit this as well as advance your arguments. I may call clear once if it is an issue, however it is your responsibility to be an effective communicator during your speech. Being a jerk, unnecessarily rude, offensive, stealing prep, and not being helpful to the other team during cx or prep time are all things that will negatively effect your speaker points outside of the quality and delivery of your arguments.
HIGH SCHOOL LD SPECIFIC:
Yes, I am fine with speed, but that does not give you an excuse to be unclear. I may call clear once if it is an issue, however it is your responsibility to be an effective communicator during your speech.
I have experience to evaluate theory, but certainly prefer substantive theory (topicality, NIBs, parameterizing are all examples) as opposed to frivolous theory. You should probably slow down when reading your shells if you want me to be able to write down the nuances of your argument. Due to my background in college policy there may be a few preconceptions that I have that you should be aware of. Theory is not automatically an RVI, and I probably take a little more convincing on the flow than most judges in this area. You need to explain to me why a violation has resulted in abuse that warrants either voting down the other team or rejecting a specific argument. Simply claiming one to be true is not enough work here. When answering theory, showing how the abuse can be solved by rejecting a particular argument can make the violation go away.
Conceded and dropped arguments are considered true on my flow, unless they are morally repugnant or blatantly false. An example of the latter is even if your opponent drops a theory shell, if the team clearly does not link to the violation your accusation does not make that true. Conceded arguments must still be extended, warranted, and argued, but you should focus more on their implications.
Please read the paperless / prep time and the speaking style / speaker points sections of my philosophy located above.
PUBLIC FORUM SPECIFIC:
A quick overview statement: It seem that circuit PF is going through a growing period where it is solidifying some norms and practices. As a result of this, I will default to the understanding of the debaters in the round. I am also open to different interpretations as long as they are defended.
Concerning defense in summary: As indicated above, this is something that I am going to let the debaters determine / debate for themselves. However, if at any point the defense has been front-lined / responded to (either in 2nd rebuttal or 1st summary), then these arguments need to be answered and the defense needs to be extended for it to be available in final focus.
The rest of my philosophy is not specific towards ld or policy, high school or college, and it may do you benefit to read it as well, especially if some of your arguments tend to look like policy arguments.
FRAMEWORK (when run by the neg):
I think that negatives have the ability to and should engage with affirmatives that don’t defend a normative implementation of a plan. Even if the aff doesn’t defend the resolution there are still many substantive things that they will defend that provide ample ground. Although this ground might not be as predictable as your interpretation on FW calls for, it is still predictable enough to meet the threshold that you should be prepared for it.
Having said that, I think I’m one of those few sick individuals that will actually enjoy listening to framework debates as long as they are well developed on both sides. Granted, I will most likely be a harder sell than most, but I don’t think this should dissuade you from going for it if you think it is your best option. You will need to make inroads to the aff’s arguments by articulating ways traditional debate solves for their impacts. If you lose the impact turn to politics you will not win FW debates. You need to make arguments to the effect of traditional policy debate being key to a better form of politics and articulate net benefits to your interpretation from this. I think that the type of education we foster in debate far outweighs the preservation of the game in the strictest sense. That is to say that fairness claims alone are not the way to persuade me on FW. You should instead use claims of fairness to hedge against the impacts from the aff.
However, the main substance of FW debates (for both sides) should be about the competing benefits to the type of education and scholarship different traditions lead to.
For affirmatives concerning framework strategies, your greatest offense will be specific to your particular argument. I will be more easily persuaded if your aff is connected to the topic. I don’t appreciate aff’s that are written that hide their purpose or are exclusively constructed to impact turn FW. While I prefer some kind of relationship to the topic, I don’t think it is necessary. However, you do lose the ability to make an important strategic argument that other plan-less aff’s should employ, which is that your aff is important to topic education. More developed, this argument should be that your aff is necessary to topic education and that without it the debate ground that is left leads to bad forms of scholarship. That is to say that you aff is essentially topical. This argument is both inherently offensive and also provides the ability to make defensive claims against the neg’s offense.
This is the type of debate that I am most familiar with and have the largest literature base with (I was a philosophy major). However, messy and poor K debates are probably the worst. The key to winning this kind of debate is making the general link and alternative cards as specific as possible to the aff. I am not saying that the key is reading the most specific evidence (although this would be nice, however most of our authors here don’t write in the context of every affirmative), but that you need to find ways to apply the generic concepts to the specifics of the aff. Without this it is easier to be persuaded by the perm.
Teams are responsible for the discourse and performances in which then engage in given the context of the world we are situated in as well as the argument style the team engages in.
Aff’s have a wide range of arguments they can deploy, and are probably best sticking with the ones they are most comfortable with while doing a good job showing how they relate to the critique.
Concerning the perm, it is usually not enough work to simply show how the two different advocacies could work together. At this point it becomes easy to vote on the alternative as a purer form of advocacy without the risk of links. Aff’s should articulate net benefits to the perm to hedge against residual links and different DA’s to the perm itself. Case should be one of these net benefits, but aff’s need to watch out for indicts to foundational assumptions (concerning methodology, epistemology, ontology etc.) behind your impact claims.
Concerning framework: when was the last time a relatively moderate judge decided that the neg shouldn’t be able to run their K? The answer is probably a long time ago. The majority of these debates are compromised in the 1ar by allowing the K given that the aff gets to weigh their impacts after a lot of wasted time by both teams. I can hardly think of a situation where I would be persuaded to only evaluate the plan verses the status quo or a competitive policy option that excluded the alternative. However, I can envision certain ways that this debate goes down that convinces me to discount the impacts of the aff. In general, however, most of debate is illusory (somewhat unfortunately) and these framework questions are about what type of education is more important. If you chose to run framework with you aff you should keep these things in mind concerning your interpretation for debate.
PERFORMANCE or project verses a similar style:
These debates are some of the most important and essential ones for our community, particularly as more and more teams are participating in this form of advocacy. We need to debate and judge in light of this fact. These are also some of the most difficult debates to have. There are several reasons for this, one of the most poignant being the personal nature of these debates combined with the close relationships that most people amongst this insular community have with one another. We need to realize the value in these opportunities and the importance of preserving the pureness of our goals for the debate community. That might mean in some situations that conceding and having a conversation might be the best use of a particular debate space, and in others debating between different competing methodologies is a correct rout to go. In either case we need to realize and cherish common goals. In light of this it isn’t a bad thing to agree with large portions of your opponent’s speeches or even advocacy. Instead of reproducing the gaming paradigm of traditional debate, where competition is valued over advocacy and winning over ethics, we should instead choose to celebrate the areas of alignment we find. Conceding every round where this happens, however, is not a good idea either. This would send a message to the debate community that debate dies under this framework. That doesn’t mean there isn’t a possible time and place for it though.
When both teams largely agree on certain foundational framework questions efficacious debate can still happen. While making distinctions between advocacies and methodologies is essential for this kind of a debate, you should probably not manipulate and create links that are artificial. Distinctions that are made out of an in depth knowledge of the issues are far more beneficial and consistent. Traditional debate might look at these kinds of rounds as two ships passing in the night, but I think there can be a different metaphor – one where the teams are two ships starting at the recognition that the resolution and the debate community is flawed and that the round can be decided upon which team provides a better methodology and performance to get their ship further in the direction of what we should be as a community and culturally aware individuals.
I am undecided as to whether the aff should be allowed a perm and this should probably be debated out. However, I think that the aff should always have the ability to point out when a negative advocacy is the same as theirs.
THEORY / T:
Any bias I have towards theory will probably result in placing a burden on the team that reads the violation to prove that it should result in a voting issue. However, I don’t like shady stuff done only to be obnoxiously strategic. Don’t do it.
One thing that I definitely do not like is when teams read multiple conditional strategies that contradict each other. This will usually call into question the solvency of the critique if the aff takes advantage of this.
I don’t think that I have a bias concerning reasonability or competing interpretations, but I will probably default to competing interpretations until the aff is shown to be reasonable and from there it is up for debate.
COUNTERPLANS / DA’s:
I am probably liberal concerning counter plan theory, and aside from the question over conditionality most other theory arguments are probably reasons to reject the cp. Aside from traditional theory answers, showing why a certain CP is justified given the specific aff is a good response.
PICS that are specific to the aff are great, however word pics should probably just be articulated as links to the K.
Uniqueness controls the link only if a particular side definitively wins it.
I generally evaluate from an offense / defense standpoint, but it doesn’t mean anything if the CP links less than the plan does to a DA if the CP still meets the threshold for triggering the link. In that world there isn’t greater offense to the CP.
Homewood Flossmoor High School 2011-2015
Pomona College 2015-2019 (not debating)
The more work you do, the happier you will be with my decision. By this I don’t just mean that I reward smart strategies, research, etc. (I do), but rather that the better you explain and unpack an argument and tell me how to evaluate it, the less likely my own biases and preferences will affect the decision. With this in mind, there are a couple takeaways
- Framing is important. At a certain point, this seems redundant to say (obviously impact calc is important), but all too often debaters fail to “tie up” the debate in a way that is easy to evaluate. What impacts matter? What arguments should I look to first? How should I think about making decisions? Leaving these calls up to my gut may not work out well for you. Do not assume that I will put together the pieces of your argument in the way that is most favorable to you, or the way that you they should be viewed. Your best bet is to do this for me. As a general rule of thumb, your likelihood of picking up my ballot is directly proportional to the number of “even if” statements you make.
- truth and tech are both important and the divisions between them are far more arbitrary and vacuous than it is usually given credit for. That being said, it is up to you to give me a metric for evaluating what claims are true. What types of evidence should I look to? Should I view that evidence through a certain lens? How should I treat dropped/under covered arguments? Obviously I have some personal proclivities that may be harder to overcome than others
o I will always tend to evaluate dropped arguments far less than extended arguments. This does not mean that dropped arguments are automatically “true” or that truth claims made earlier in the debate are suddenly gone (that may well require more work on my part), but it does mean that I am less likely to give these arguments weight.
o Although they can be important parts of a speech, I am not inclined to give as much weight to solipsistic narratives as evidence. This is not a hard or fast preference, and some smart framing arguments about the way I should evaluate narratives will go a long way, but do not assume I will immediately evaluate a narrative as evidence in its own right sans an evidenced claim that I should evaluate them this way.
o Make smart analytic arguments, these can often be better than reading yet another terrible uniqueness card on the politics disad. The more I see you thinking for yourself and making creative and smart arguments in a debate, the better speaks you will get.
I appreciate creative and innovative strategies, maybe more than others. If you want to bust out that weird impact turn or super cheating counterplan or sweet ass new K, you should do that. You will always be better at doing what you do best. Please don’t feel deterred from reading a strategy in front of me because the community has generally frowned on it (spark, death good, etc.), I’m down to hear things outside of the norm. That being said, I included a few notes about how I feel/debated like in high school, you can take these preferences however you want, they are subject to change within a round.
As a caveat, Debate should be a space where everyone feels welcome. Please do not read racist/sexist/anti-queer/ableist/ or otherwise offensive arguments in front of me.
Please add me on the email chain: Jacob.firstname.lastname@example.org.
I debated both sides of this extensively in high school. I will not “penalize” you for reading framework; I think it is a smart and strategic argument. Similarly, do not assume that because you read framework you have my ballot, I am very middle of the road on these issues. You should treat this as any other K/CP strategy you have read. Too often teams miss nuance in these debates and read a bunch of state good/bad evidence while neglecting the smaller moving pieces, I tend to think those are important, and the more you address the internal link level of the debate, the better off you will be.
Affirmatives should find ways to leverage offense against the negatives interpretation. Playing some light defense and reading some reasonability blacks is not going to win you my ballot. I generally tend to default to competing interpretations. Furthermore, teams need to treat this debate more like disad, you should do impact calc, read impact, link, or internal link turns, explain why your interp solves a portion of their offense, etc. I greatly enjoy smart T debates and will reward you handsomely in speaker points if you execute it well.
Absolute defense (or defense to the point where I should cease to evaluate the disad outside of the noise of status quo) is a thing and far too few debaters go for. 90 percent of disads are absolute garbage and you shouldn’t be afraid to point that out. More broadly, Offense defense tends to be a heavily neg biased model of debate and contributes to a lot (in my eyes) to the denigration of the activity towards the most reality-divorced hyperbolic impact claims, and I will not default to it. Obviously this is subject to change in a given round, but you should be conscious of the weight I tend to give to defensive arguments. In general, I think link controls the direction of uniqueness, but I can easily be persuaded otherwise
Please, if you have it, read something different than politics. I don’t hate the politics disad, but it is an often overused strategy and I will reward your innovation with speaker points
Any argument is legitimate until it is not, don’t hesitate to read your cheating counterplans in front of me, but be ready to defend them. Theory debates are good and valuable, but I do not want to listen to you read your blocks at 400 words a minute. Slow down, make smart arguments, and go for what you’re ahead on. Less is often more in these situations. I actually very much enjoy good theory debates and find them quite interesting. You should treat these like any other type of debate, you should do impact calc, flesh out internal links, etc.
I have a reasonable familiarity with most mainstream critiques and greatly enjoy these debates. In high school, I would most often read the security or the cap K, but this should not be interpreted as an exclusionary list. You do you and I’ll likely jive with it. I will reward innovation, reading a tailored critique is far more interesting to me than rereading the same Spanos block your team has had for the last 8 years. The one caveat here is that my familiarity with certain “high theory” authors (Bataille, Deleuze, etc.) is rather passing. I am more than certainly open to hearing these arguments and don’t have any prejudices against them (I debated on the same team as Carter Levinson for 3 years), but this does mean that you may need to take extra time to unpack arguments and contextualize them in terms of the debate.
I have not worked on the China Topic, for you this means you probably want to slow down on, and possibly explain, acronyms the first couple times.
Ethic violations are deliberate, not accidental. Missing a few words or accidentally skipping a line isn’t a big deal, but repeatedly doing that or doing it in a way that is clearly intentional is. If you believe that someone has committed an ethics violation, please start recording the round, I also reserve the right to do this. If I think you are clipping, I may start a recording of my own, I will also try read along in the speech docs whenever possible. If I do determine you’ve committed a violation, you will lose the debate and receive 0 speaks, I will also speak to your coaches. Clipping is a serious offense and I will treat it with the attention it deserves.
University of Kentucky ‘20
add me to the email chain: genevieveelise1028 at gmail dot com
Currently a part time coach at the University of Kentucky. I know very little about the topic so please take that into account.
I don't like it. That is obviously not your fault, but to help be 5% slower and 50% clearer than you might usually be. I find it more difficult to flow when I can't see you talk as easily as an in-person debate, so you should take that into account and really adjust accordingly.
I am frustrated by the number of teams who have given orders, started speeches, etc without checking to make sure I am there. I am trying my best by keeping my camera on & only turning it off when I leave the room, and occasionally I even leave the camera on when I leave the room to make it particularly obvious that I am not present (even though I *really* don't like leaving you staring at my room) and people are still doing this. I know online debate is hard, but please! make sure I am here! I want to hear what you have to say!
Disad and case is awesome, more case analysis that is smart will be rewarded in points. I think smart and specific counterplans are cool. The more specific and in grounded in the literature your CP is, the less likely I am to care about theory.
I think a limited topic is good and care immensely about the comparison of one version of the topic to another when it comes to T. If you cannot explain coherently what the difference between the two topics are, I am much less likely to care about your very abstract appeals to the notion of limits or ground.
I judge K's as I would any other argument - I think they need to have a clearly explained link, internal link, impact, and alternative. I default to being a policymaker unless I am convinced I should do something else. Being more specific about the topic is far better than some random backfile check about Baudrillard. You should explain your arguments clearly vs using buzz words because I be much more likely to understand what you are trying to communicate.
I have found myself voting both ways in framework debates, but am usually persuaded by the benefits of clash, procedural fairness, etc. However, I think I find myself voting aff most often when the aff has a well articulated impact turn to the resolution that beats the topical version of the aff. I generally find that if you defend that the direction of the resolution is a good idea, having a very concrete defense of why defending the resolution itself is bad is going to be the crucial focal point of the debate. Clash is a terminal impact.
Misc Quirks/Things that could impact points:
I think conditionality is good. I very much believe proliferation is bad (whether or not it might occur due to the plan is a different question!).
Be efficient about your time: don't waste time between ending prep and giving a speech
Time your own speech and prep
My facial expressions are likely unrelated to the things you are saying.
Evidence ethics (out of context? straw-person? lied about quals? cut in middle of paragraph?) should be debated out like any other theory argument. Claiming you said words you did not say is an L.
Being racist, sexist, violent, etc. in a way that is immediately and obviously hazardous to someone in the debate = L and 0. My role as educator > my role as any form of disciplinarian, so I will err on the side of letting stuff play out - i.e. if someone used gendered language and that gets brought up I will probably let the round happen and correct any ignorance after the fact. This ends when it begins to threaten the safety of round participants. Where that line is is entirely up to me.
I have been in the debate world for 7 years as a head coach, a public forum debate and forensics speech student, a judge, and a state board member.
In a round I prefer road mapping (organized speech pattern), evidence, and follow-through. DO NOT road map outside of speaker time. You are in public forum, not policy, don't steal extra time. If you do a road map outside of the speaking time, I will take speaker points. Don't scream in the crossfire, be nice to each other. Please keep track of your own prep time- I will only give you an indication as to when you have used all of it. Framework is for policy, you shouldn't need it in pf unless it's paramount to your case (hot tip: it's not).
During crossfire be civil. Per NSDA rules, judges are not supposed to be voting based on crossfire, so I will only take comments in crossfire into consideration if it is brought up during a timed speech before the final focus. (Exception to this would be statements from grand crossfire.)
I hate writing down my RFD's so I will likely just do it verbally. I am a scientific and statistical judge- that being said you have to follow through with impacts to win. Laying down 5 warrants and pieces of evidence and not following through on why it should matter to the judge will NOT win you the debate, be sure to ALWAYS bring through your impacts and weigh them against your opponents.
Hello, I’m Skyler (They/She) (email@example.com) - I coach and judge both Policy and LD debate.
About me: Debated in HS, TOC qualled, debated in College for a bit (Policy).
(2017-2019) Futures RA - 2 TOC quals and deep elims at every tournament including the TOC.
(2019-2020) Oak Hall KZ - TOC qualled, deep elims at every tournament + several tournament wins
(Currently) Bellarmine EG
Coached multiple policy teams as well, but focus on LD season-long.
I’ve worked with all styles of debate/literature, and I enjoy judging all styles of debate.
I love this activity and think it holds immense value, please be respectful to one another and please have fun.
How I think about debate:
Debate is a game.
There is no tech vs. truth, there is only the truth which is produced by tech.
Technical debate is good debate, and if debate is not technical it is probably awful.
Strategic maneuvers, well placed theory arguments, etc. are integral to every style of debate.
I only adjudicate the round I am watching, please leave your personal qualms, along with things that have happened out of the round, out of the round. Each debate is a new, hypothetical world in which students test theories, methods, and strategy against one another
“Real World,” “Out of round spillover” claims are pretty ridiculous and nonetheless, counterproductive. That being said, as debate is a site of method testing- all impacts are illusory, and will be evaluated based on the level of impact comparison and warranted explanation done by the debaters. I am VERY sympathetic to the argument that believing debate directly influences actual real world policy = serial policy failure. I am also VERY sympathetic to the argument that believing K debate directly influences actual real world structures = ressentiment/reality denial/bad activism/delusional pseudo-intellectuals.
"Fiat" is the idea that __X__ happens when I vote for a certain argument, it is not intrinsically tied to role-playing, policymaking, etc. It is a mechanism that every style of debate relies on.
I believe that using personal experiences as evidence under the guise that debate is a “space for real world change,” is quite awful, and unnecessarily uncomfortable.
However, I believe that personal modes of communication (poetry, music, dance, etc.) can be effectively used for strategic benefit in the context of debate as a winnable game.
Debate is not a site for "subject formation," nor should it ever be. The belief that it is, in my opinion, is harmfully delusional.
For all K debaters - I believe that “armchair philosophers” such as Baudrillard/Bataille, can accurately explain instances of gendered/racialized/etc. violence. I am not a fan of view-from-nowhere-esque indicts/arguments.
---> Please don't make the "Non-Black people shouldn't read AfroPess" argument in front of me, nor should you make arguments that non-black people reading blackness arguments is some form of cooption or fetishization. I will deadass give you 20 speaks. Stop this, you are ruining the activity.
---> There seems to be a trend in debate where people believe their identity allows them to bypass fair disclosure practice. If you aren't breaking a completely new aff, it needs to be open sourced. If not, you are cheating and you should lose. Once again- stop this, you are ruining the activity.
—-> Facts > your feelings.
For all Debaters: I feel that debate is lacking creativity - Whether you're reading a counterplan or a criticism, I think that creativity, paired with technical execution and good strategy is what separates good from great. The value of debate is found in technical execution, as well as spontaneous adaptation and strategic maneuvers that change over the course of a debate. I reward debaters who adapt.
****** Specifics for LD Debaters *******
Policy/Larp Stuff: Love it, always super proud of debaters who read Aff Scenarios, CP's, DA's etc. that are well-researched, creatively strategic, and recent. In Larp vs. Larp T debates you must win that the Aff justifies a world of debate that is bad for education/clash, otherwise I'm sympathetic to reasonability.
The K vs. Larp: I love the K, not the biggest fan of judging it. I have an extremely high threshold for voting for them and think they are rather useless if not executed with a heightened level of technical efficiency. Links must be to the 1AC, not the status quo. I think that debaters should be able to fiat the metaphysical impacts of a K/K aff, but only after meeting a VERY HIGH threshold of explanation. This also means, that if you don't meet that threshold, you will probably lose to extinction outweighs.
K Affs: Should be topical. Simply affirming the resolution and then reading random K cards that talk about a K thesis isn't being topical. I think Non-topical K Affs are bad for education and make K debate vacuous. If you try this, I'll be sympathetic to Neg teams reading Generic Disads to the topic and going for extinction outweighs, I will also have a low threshold for voting on T.
^^^ If there is no internal link between the substance of the topic and your K advantages/impacts, you should lose on presumption.
K v K debates: Love em
Underviews in LD: usually unflowable, usually useless
CREATIVITY gets you high speaks
Feel free to ask me anything, I love education, creativity, and a drive to become better.
Once again, remember to have fun!! Win or lose, life goes on and you will continue to be a bright individual. Stay calm, composed, and just be cool how you be cool.
Policy Debate- I am a very flexible judge. I am willing to listen to anything as long as it is impacted well. I am open to K affs, but if it is not explained well enough I will vote you down. I would rather not call for cards, but I will if I have to. Another thing, I really want to hear impacts. I do not like debates that are like two ships passing by in the night. It turns into who I think did better, but as debaters you should write the ballot out for me. Please try to keep email chains and or flashing time to a decent time. If it takes too long I will start taking prep away unless, there are tech issues. Clipping cards is not okay with me, if I catch you clipping card I will vote you down. If you steal prep I will take away a lot of speaker points. Please be clear if you are spreading!
LD- My experience is mainly in policy debate. I don't mind how fast that you read, but make sure that you are reading loud and clearly. I also evaluate things based on the flow pretty much. Make sure things are extended and analyzed well. Also, make sure there is clash in the round! I cannot stand under views -_- There is no reason to have one because you spend so much time in it and never go back to it in the round. That analysis can be done somewhere else like in one of your other contentions or adding a whole new contention. Impact analysis is something that is very important to me! You should be writing my ballot for me and much as possible!
Phoenix Military Academy 16
University of Kentucky 20
I measure a debate based off of how well you interact with one another. Clash is important and if you’re not engaging you’re opponent you’re not debating. The more evidence comparison the better.
You should do your best to frame the debate round for me. Tell me how I should sign my ballot.
I don’t take time for flashing, and yes, put me on the email chain: firstname.lastname@example.org
Except consult and process CPs. These counterplans are infinitely regressive to the point where you can just say "Consult my neighbor then do the plan." If you want to go for one of these CPs you have to have pretty great cards saying why your specific process is detrimental to the success or failure of the aff. I will vote on it but very rarely.
The weirder they get the more explanation you’re going to have to give. I am accustomed to the more mainstream identity and anti-state Ks such as: Eco-fem, Neolib, Anthro, and Wilderson.
I will not kick an alt and use it as a DA toward the case. If you want to win on a K you have to win why the alternative is a better option than the aff.
I will most likely always grant you a link, but you have to properly contextualize it the aff.
Clash is important, and I’m docking your speaks if half of the 2NC is an overview.
Aff Ks are cool. You need to show me how your aff interacts with the neg as well.
If it follows the rez: cool
If it doesn't defend anything: cool
If it does defend things: cool
If it doesn’t follow the rez: You need explain why your model of debate is a better than the resolution. In other words, why should I evaluate your form of the debate? You also need a reason as to why it can’t be done under the resolution.
Usually not convincing
You have to go all in for me to vote on it, but keep in mind 17 DA’s are as shitty as 3 CPs/Ks
Clipping will be dealt with accordingly
Any hurtful comments referring to (but not limited to) gender, sexuality, or race is not going to be tolerated.
My name is Stephani not judge.
My pronouns are she/her.
Puns are highly encouraged. Here's my favorite: Why did the bicycle fall over? Because it was too tired! Hah Also Ill boost your speaker points if you reference My Hero Academia as I am currently obsessed with it.
If you have any questions or want more feedback about a round shoot me an email!
Hey I did speech and policy in high school. Started off with the straight-up style but got to college and saw the rest. I'm better suited for K-style feedback but go with your heart on w.e you want.
I'll evaluate every argument. The debate room can be a fun place so feel free to throw some humor into your speeches. Videos and dank memes are cool.
On an unrelated note, bringing granola bars or some snackage would be appreciated. I don't care much for soft drinks though. In other words please feed me nice food because in-round picnics make everyone's day. <--
What you care about:
Please don't make judges do the work for you on the flow. If you don't do the line-by-line or clearly address an argument, don't get upset if I reach an unfavorable conclusion. Reading me cards without providing sufficient analysis leaves the purpose a bit unclear.
Aff- reasonabilty probably has my vote but I can be persuaded to vote for creative and convincing non-topic-related cases.
Neg- Get some substance on the flow. T should not be a go-to-argument. I hate arguments dealing with "should", "USFG", etc and you should too. Impact out the violation. Simply stating that the team is non-topical and attaching some poorly explained standards will not fly or garner support. On K affs remember you can always go further left as an option.
Theory- Typically a pretty boring discussion but if it's creative I'll approve. If you notice yourself thinking "I wish I were reading something else" then it's a clear sign I wish you were too. Remember to slow down on those analytics though- hands cramp.
Being able to cite authors and point to specific cards = speaks. (same for neg)
Throw some case defense at the end of your 1nc after you do your off-case arguments. Aff has to answer them but you already know that. Reading through aff evidence and showing power tags or misuse is great.
Aff- if you can turn this in some way then you'll be fine. Point out flaws in the Link story when you can. Figuring out a solid internal link story might be a good idea.
Internal links will only help you. Let's avoid generic stuff.
You need to show that it's noncompetitive and you can perm or that their argument just sucks.
Show a net benefit and how you solve the impacts. Furthermore show how your cp is awesome.
Explain: how case doesn't link, perm, or alt doesn't solve or do anything. Weigh your impacts if appropriate. If the neg is misinterpreting an author and you sufficiently illustrate his/her message, then you'll be doing well in the round.
I like K's a lot. Hopefully will know what's up. Just explain your story clearly (seriously). Stunt on em.
Side note for everyone: In round actions are easy performative solvency to weigh btw
It's going to come down to how well you can explain the impact you are addressing with your performance and the solvency story under framework.
I suppose you can do framework or T if you have nothing else but try and interact because the aff team will be prepared. Or if you want to go down this route it's cool. Swayed by creativity though.
Yes, I want to be on the email chain: email@example.com
I will not be following along on the speech doc, but I will be checking periodically to make sure extensions of cards are consistent with the actual evidence.
I debated for Fresno State for three years. I started off in traditional policy debate, but then made my way into K debate. I do not have a preference; I am just as likely to vote for T as I am to vote for a performance K. It all comes down to how persuasive your arguments are, and I evaluate that based on three criteria:
1) Your ability to explain the thesis of your argument. Even if I am familiar with the literature, it is still your responsibility to thoroughly explain your methodology. Relying on buzz words is bad for education and hurts your growth as a debater. I will never make extrapolations of arguments for you. If I’m left wondering what your policy/advocacy/alternative does by the end of the round, then you are at a severe disadvantage.
2) Your explanation of why the argument you are making matters, and why it should be presented in this space. Having a good idea/theory is awesome, but why do it here? Why should I care about the discussion of policies, identity, power structures etc. that you decided to forefront?
3) Your overall ethos and presentation. This last point is supplemental to the two more substantive points listed above, but it is still extremely important. Whether you speak quickly or at a conversational pace, you should make sure that your speeches are engaging.
1. Respect is mutual. I expect you to respect each other by not engaging in unnecessarily rude behavior. I understand that cross ex can get heated, but make sure you do not let this interfere with the fact that debate is an educational activity.
2. I will respect you by listening to you and devoting my attention to making a carefully thought out decision. When I am giving my RFD, it is your turn to reciprocate that respect by actively listening. I will not tolerate excessive post rounding and being rudely interrupted. Questions are highly encouraged but arguing with me will not change the outcome of the debate. If you are angry with my RFD, I recommend that you write down your concerns with the decision, talk with your coach, and if there is still an issue, take time to cool down before approaching me again to talk about the round.
1. Prep ends when you send the doc. If you send the wrong doc or it is missing cards, you are responsible for taking prep to send it to the other team.
2. Stealing prep will lead to a deduction in speaker points.
3. Clipping cards and misrepresenting evidence are very serious issues and threaten the integrity of the activity. I take these two issues very seriously.
1. I expect both teams to provide me with a way to frame the round. You do not get access to your arguments unless you win the framing question, or you prove that you are still ahead through the other team’s method of framing the round.
1. I think topicality arguments are very interesting. Make sure you give specific contextual examples of what ground was lost, as well as why that ground is uniquely valuable.
2. That being said, I think there are very valid justifications for not being topical. Do not assume that my preference for Ks as a debater will mean that you have a low threshold for proving that you do not need to be topical.
1. I enjoy current and relevant example of why engaging in the state is essential or unproductive.
2. If you are arguing policy making/political engagement good, you must prove that it is net better for everyone, regardless of their identity.
3. Saying, “The USFG is racist” or “policy making is rooted in patriarchy” is not a sufficient response to framework. It is not that I don’t agree with you, but you need to elaborate more on these phrases that get tossed around. Your arguments will be much more persuasive if you go beyond reading cards and pre-made answers and contextualize and elaborate on these claims.
1. Performance debate is great and very creative. However, you still need to explain what your method is and what you have accomplished at some point in the debate. It needs to be purposeful.
1. You need to clearly highlight the abuse in the round and make a convincing argument about why this creates a bad model for debate beyond this round.
Alex McVey - Director of Debate at Kansas State University
Yes Email chain - j.alexander.mcvey at gmail
Online things - Strong preference for Camera On during speeches and CX. I'm willing to be understanding about this if it's a tech barrier or there are other reasons for not wanting to display. But it does help me a ton to look at faces when people are speaking.
If I'm physically at a tournament and judging a debate with one online and one in-person team, I'm always going to try to be in the same room as the in-person team, if the tournament permits. Within those parameters, Zoom teams should let me know if there's anything I can do to make myself more present for them in that space. I respect what online debate has done to increase access for some teams, but I value in-person connection with debaters too much to go judge from an empty classroom or hotel room.
I flow on paper. I need pen time. Clarity is really important to me. I'll always say "clear" if I think you're not being clear, at least 1-2 times. If you don't respond accordingly, the debate probably won't end well for you.
I tend to be expressive when I judge debates. Nodding = I'm getting it, into your flow, not necessarily that it's a winner. Frowny/frustrated face = maybe not getting it, could be a better way to say it, maybe don't like what you're doing. I would take some stock in this, but not too much: I vote for plenty things that frustrate me while I'm hearing them executed, and vote down plenty of things that excite me when first executed. All about how it unfolds.
The more I judge debates, the less ev I'm reading, the more I'm relying on 2nr vs 2ar explanation and impact calculus. If there are cards that you want me to pay attention to, you should call the card out by name in the last rebuttal, and explain some of its internal warrants. Debaters who make lots of "even if" statements, who tell me what matters and why, who condense the debate down to the most important issues, and who do in depth impact calculus seem to be winning my ballots more often than not.
Debating off the flow >>> Debating off of speech docs (ESPECIALLY IN REBUTTALS). I'd say a good 25% of my decisions involve the phrase "You should be more flow dependent and less speech doc dependent." Chances are very little that you've scripted before the debate began is useful for the 2nr/2ar.
My experience and expertise is definitely in kritik debate, but I judge across the spectrum and have been cutting cards on both K and Policy sides of the legal personhood topic. Run what you're good at. Despite my K leaning tendencies, I’m comfortable watching a good straight up debate.
Don't assume I've cut cards in your niche research area though. I often find myself lost in debates where people assume I know what some topical buzzword, agency, or acronym is.
Theoretical issues: Blippy, scatter-shot theory means little, well-developed, well-impacted theory means a lot. Again, pen time good.
I have no hard and set rules about whether affs do or don't have to have plans. Against planless/non-topical affs, I tend to think topicality arguments are generally more persuasive than framework arguments. Or rather, I think a framework argument without a topicality argument probably doesn't have a link. I'm not sure what the link is to most "policy/political action good" type framework arguments if you don't win a T argument that says the focus of the resolution has to be USFG policy. I think all of these debates are ultimately just a question of link, impact, and solvency comparison.
I tend to err on truth over tech, with a few exceptions. Dropping round-winners/game-changers like the permutation, entire theoretical issues, the floating PIC, T version of the aff/do it on the neg, etc... will be much harder (but not impossible) to overcome with embedded clash. That being said, if you DO find yourself having dropped one of these, I'm open to explanations for why you should get new arguments, why something else that was said was actually responsive, etc... It just makes your burden for work on these issues much much more difficult.
Be wary of conflating impacts, especially in K debates. For example, If their impact is antiblackness, and your impact is racism, and you debate as if those impacts are the same and you're just trying to win a better internal link, you're gonna have a bad time.
I intuitively don't agree with "No perms in a method debate" and "No Plan = No Perm" arguments. These arguments are usually enthymematic with framework; there is an unstated premise that the aff did something which skews competition to such a degree that it justifies a change in competitive framework. Just win a framework argument. That being said, I vote for things that don't make intuitive sense to me all the time.
I like debate arguments that involve metaphors, fiction, stories, and thought experiments. What I don't understand is teams on either side pretending as if a metaphor or thought experiment is literal and defending or attacking it as such.
A nested concern with that above - I don't really understand a lot of these "we meets" on Framework that obviously non-topical affs make. I/E - "We're a discursive/affective/symbolic vesting of legal rights and duties" - That... doesn't make any sense. You aren't vesting legal rights and duties, and I'm cool with it, just be honest about what the performance of the 1ac actually does. I think Neg teams give affs too much leeway on this, and K Affs waste too much time on making these nonsensical (and ultimately defensive) arguments. If you don't have a plan, just impact turn T. You can make other defensive args about why you solve topic education and why you discuss core topic controversies while still being honest about the fact that you aren't topical and impact turn the neg's attempt to require you to be such.
RIP impact calculus. I'd love to see it make a comeback.
RIP performance debates that actually perform. My kingdom for a performance aff that makes me feel something.
Affs are a little shy about going for condo bad in front of me. I generally think Condo is OK but negatives have gotten a bit out of control with it. I'm happy to vote for flagrant condo proliferation if the neg justifies it. I just don't think affs are making negs work hard enough on these debates.
Negs are a little shy about making fun of 1ac construction in front of me. Ex: K affirmatives that are a random smattering of cards that have little to do with one another. Ex: Policy affs where only 2 cards talk about the actual plan and the rest are just genero impact cards. I feel like negative's rarely ever press on this, and allow affirmatives to get away with ludicrous 2AC explanations that are nearly impossible to trace back to the cards and story presented in the 1ac. More 1nc analytical arguments about why the aff just doesn't make sense would be welcome from this judge.
In a similar vein, many affirmative plans have gotten so vague that they barely say anything. Negatives should talk about this more. Affs should write better plans. Your plan language should match the language of your solvency advocate if you want me to grant you solvency for what is contained in said evidence. I'm going to be trigger happy for "your plan doesn't do anything" until teams start writing better plans.
Debaters should talk more about the lack of quality the other team's evidence and the highlighting of that evidence in particular. If you've highlighted down your evidence such that it no longer includes articles (a/an/the/etc...) in front of nouns, or is in other ways grammatically incoherent due to highlighting, and get called out on it, you're likely to not get much credit for that ev with me.
Be kind to one another. We're all in this together.
Debate is a game. Choose the arguments you know best and go for those. I am open to being persuaded to vote for whatever you run if you explain it well and tell me why I should vote on it. If you can explain why the plan is a good or bad idea better than your opponents then you are that much closer to a ballot.
If you go for a K, I need to have a clear understanding of the alt; don't morph from speech to speech.
I come into debates as a blank slate.
Time yourselves and keep track (I will too - so don't steal prep).
If you want to know something then ask me.
Sure, be aggressive in CX if you're making a point, but don't be rude.
Email chain? Yes: firstname.lastname@example.org
Background: 1yr of speech & debate at Leland High School; Speech&Debate Aide/Coach since February
Experience: Not a whole lot of professional experience in speech & debate
Judging: Since February, judged a few rounds in semi-finals to elims in a couple of tournaments
RESOLUTION!!! All the topics you bring up during your speech & debate, make sure to tie it in to the resolution since that is what you need to convince our judgement on
DON'T RUSH! If you speak too fast you will lose your audience if your audience is not experienced in speech & debate like me
DON'T USE FILLER WORDS! It looks bad when you use too much of filler words. You should've practiced more and been more prepared to prevent using filler words during your debate
EXPLAIN! If you use abbreviations or not a common term than don't assume all judges will know what your talking about. It will help if you give at least one sentence to briefly explain what a word/term/group/etc. is
DON'T BE RUDE! Having some sass during cross is fun, but be mindful and respectful to everyone
EVIDENCE! Provide solid proof
Niles West High School '14
University of Kentucky '18
Northwestern University Coach 18-21
Chicago-Kent Law School '24
Coach at the University of Kentucky
Put me on the chain email@example.com
I decide debates by re-organizing my flow around the issues prioritized in the 2nr and 2ar, going back on my flow to chart the progression of the argument, reading the relevant evidence, then resolving that mini-debate. Tell me what I should care about in the final speeches. Use the earlier speeches to set up your final rebuttals.
I try not to consider personal biases when judging policy or k debates. Debates hinge on link, impact, and solvency questions that have to be argued whether its plan/cp, perm/alt, fw/advocacy.
I believe the most important skill a debater should have is the ability to do good comparative analysis.
I'll read evidence during and after the debate. Evidence quality influences my perception of the argument's strength. Bad evidence means there's a lower bar for answering the argument and vice versa.
When trying to resolve questions about how the world works, I defer to expert evidence introduced in the debate. When trying to resolve questions about how the debate in front of me should work, I defer to the arguments of the debaters.
The debates I enjoy the most are the ones where students demonstrate that they are active participants in the thinking through and construction of their arguments. Don't be on auto-pilot. Show me you know what's going on.
Have an appropriate level of respect for opponents and arguments.
I would strongly prefer not to judge debates about why death is good that may force an ethical debate about whether life is worth living.
There is a place in debate for affirmatives that don't affirm the resolution. I will not vote for or against framework in these situations based on ideological preferences alone. I wish we had clearer rules for what we considered fair game in terms of links to negative offense/competitive advocacies against affs that don't affirm the resolution/read a plan text because I enjoy debates over specifics more than rehashed abstractions. But I am sympathetic to neg arguments about how the aff precluded those good debates from occuring, depending on what the aff defends in the 1ac.
I would prefer neg teams only go for topicality when the aff is very clearly attempting to skirt the core premises of the resolution. Going for silly T arguments against super core affirmatives is a waste of everyone's time.
I feel similarly about theory. It's hard for me to take theory arguments seriously when they're not in response to some seriously problematic practice. Debate is supposed to be hard. People are way too quick to claim something made debate 'impossible'.
When the neg is going for a kritik, I find the framework debating from both sides largely unnecessary. The easiest and most common way I end up resolving framework debates is to allow the aff to weigh their advantages and the neg to weigh their kritik. You'd be better served spending time on the link/impact/alt.
When judging process counterplans, I'm most interested in whether there are cards a) tying the counterplan to the resolution b) tying the net benefit to the plan. This is what usually pushes me aff or neg on theory and perm arguments.
I usually think the link is the most important part of an argument
Lay judge but fluent in english. Experience judging several tournaments.
Over warranting everything and explaining overexplaining arguments clearly will win you the round. I like true arguments that are tied to real world scenarios.
I debated public forum throughout high school and judge in local circuits. I just finished my freshman year at Vanderbilt University.
My preferences are pretty standard across the board. I don't have any strict policies regarding what you must do inside the debate and I'll weigh everything throughout the round. I typically won't vote off technicalities; Public forum should encourage well-rounded, persuasive debating. My final decision comes down to the impacts of both cases.
Links should be clear/well-supported.
When a question is asked during cross-fire, I expect a direct, clear response.
Strong impacts are extremely important to me in order to weigh arguments as offense for each side.
Final speeches of any debate should emphasize voting issues. Tell me how I should weigh the round and explain which key arguments I should vote for.
Tech > truth
Please learn2framework (presumption is filter not layer unless specified)
as tab as I can possibly be
cool with: speed, k, t (boring), theory, performance, bribes
not cool with: you wasting my time to pre flow, in round abuse, equity violations, the USA
I don’t care what’s real outside the round, I’ll only vote on things said in round. Something is true until you tell me it isn’t true. Don’t be boring and also don’t be bad thank you
Do all of your weighing for me. I will not weigh anything on my own.
If its not in summary I wont evaluate it in final focus.
2nd rebuttal does not need to frontline/case defense, definitely still can though
Presumption is neg in any instance that demands intervention, risk of solvency arguments fair game for the aff.
signposting saves lives
Picky about extensions:
An extension is NOT reading an authors last name. An extension is NOT telling me your opponents drop something. Telling my hand what to do on a piece of paper does not equal you winning an argument- much less analyzing, crystallizing, or in any way convincing me to vote for you.
An extension is:
Extend Author 97 who our opponents fail to respond to
->What author 97 tells you is warrant/analysis
->What this means is we access Impact 1, which wins us the round because of X.
Only god, in her infinite wisdom, can forgive me now.
In memory of those radicalized:
tech > truth
tech tech tech tech tech tech tech
***Updated Berkeley Day 2*****
Y'all have really pushed me to my limits ): and now I'm not even feeling entirely tab as a paradigm because no weighing is being done for me. I WILL GO NEG ON PRESUMPTION IF PRO DOESN'T DO ANY WORK. IM TIRED OF HAVING TO DO YOUR WEIGHING FOR YOU.
An extension is NOT reading an authors last name. An extension is NOT telling me your opponents drop something. Telling my hand what to do on a piece of paper does not equal you winning an argument- much less analyzing, crystallizing, or in any way convincing me to vote for you.
An extension is:
Extend Author 97 who our opponents fail to respond to
->What author 97 tells you is warrant/analysis
->What this means is we access Impact 1, which wins us the round because of X.
If you don't really get this by now you're probably gonna lose the round.
Like many judges I try my best to be tabula rasa, like all of them, however, I fail. I'm comfortable with just about any argument at any speed. I like good K debates and long walks on the beach. Tech comes before truth for me until I'm told otherwise.
Thats like 2 or 3 years old^
In reality nowadays I'll probably beg you to spread or read something kritikal or perform or do anything (fun).
^Thats old too now
Tech > truth
Tech tech tech tech tech tech tech
THANKS TO ALLEN ABBOTT I WONT EVEN CALL FOR CARDS TO AVOID ANY INTERVENTION
I ONLY INTERVENE IN ONE WAY: IF I DONT SEE IT IN MY FLOW FOR THE SUMMARY I WONT VOTE ON THE EXTENSION IN FINAL FOCUS REGARDLESS OF WHO TELLS ME TO DO IT OR WHY I SHOULD DO IT
UNLESS YOU HAVE SOME WILD THEORY ARGUMENT ABOUT WHY I SHOULD ALLOW IT OR NOT INTERVENE ON IT IN WHICH CASE PLEASE HMU WITH THAT ID LOVE TO HEAR IT.
Whitney Young ‘15
University of Kentucky ‘19
Cornell Law '23 and coaching UK
I will reward smart teams that can effectively and efficiently communicate their arguments to me. Engaging with your opponent, having a well-thought out strategy, and demonstrating that you’re doing consistent, hard work is what this activity is about.
Slow down a bit - remember we are debating online
I'm pretty expressive when I'm judging so I would look up every once in a while to know how I feel about particular arguments.
First things first- Everyone is always so angry and doesn’t want to be in these debates. No one ENJOYS clash debates. Please be nicer. Substance wise, I really do believe that affs should have a tie to the topic and should be in the direction of the topic. I am not the judge for an aff that has a couple cards that say a theory and then pretend to say something about the topic. I also believe that debate is an inherently good activity so indicting the entirety of the activity we participate in is not great for me. I think this matters a lot for the way some teams answer framework so be cognizant of this. The only thing that my ballot decides is the winner.
Links should be causal, specific and about the plan. They NEED to be contextualized to what the aff actually did. I have too often judged debates where a team presents a theory of the world but have not explained what the aff has done to implicate that. Explanation is key. That applies to all Ks cause if you are just spitting jargon at me and the other team, you aren’t gonna have a good time. I am not persuaded by arguments that the aff just doesn’t get fiat.
Love them. Obviously better the more specific to the aff they are
I default to judge kick unless expressly informed not to
There can be zero risk of a DA
Conditionality is good.
Random Policy Things
You can insert a re-highlighting of a card- you shouldn’t have to waste time re-reading a card if they suck at research
Impact turn debates are some of my favorite
Ethics violations (ex. Clipping, a card being cut in the middle of the paragraph, etc.) should just have the debate staked on it. It is a bad form of education and should be rejected. No point in drawing it out.
Further questions- email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
OK here's the deal. I did policy debate for 4 years in high school and two semesters in college (once in 2007 and recently in 2016 in Policy Debate)
. Judged Tournaments up until probably 2008 and have not been judging since. I also judged Lincoln Douglas Debate a few times at some of the national tournaments throughout california but it was not a debate I did in high school. For me my philosophy is simple, just explain what you are talking about clearly. That means if youre going to spread, be clear. If you are going to spread in front of me right now, do not go too fast as I have not judged in awhile so I may have hard time catching certain ideas so please slow down on your tags and cites.
Public Forum: please make sure Summary and final focus are consistent in messaging and voters. dropped voters in summary that are extended in final focus will probably not be evaluated. I can understand a bit of speed since I did policy but given this is public forum, I would rather you not spread. talking a bit fast is fine but not full on spreading.
I am not fond of the K but I will vote for it if explained properly. If I feel it was not, do not expect me to vote for it I will default to a different voting paradigm, most likely policy maker.
-IF you expect me to vote on Theory or topicality please do a good job of explaining everything clearly and slowly. a lot of times theory and topicality debates get muddled and I just wont look at it in the end. EDIT as of 1/28: I am not too fond of Theory and Topicality debates as they happen now. Many of you go too fast and are unclear which means I don't get your analysis or blippy warrants under standards or voting issues. Please slow the eff down for theory and T if you want me to vote on it.
I will vote for whatever paradigm you tell me to vote for if you clearly explain the implications, your standards and framework.
-I know you guys spread now like Policy debaters but please slow down as I will have a hard time following everything since its been awhile.
I guess LD has become more like policy and the more like policy it sounds, the easier it is for me to follow. Except for the K and Theory, I am open for all other policy arguments. Theory and K debaters, look above ^^^^
UPDATE FOR LD at Golden Desert and Tournaments moving forward. I don't think many of you really want me as a judge for the current topic or any topic moving forward. My experience in LD as a coach is limited which means my topic knowledge is vague. That means if you are going to pref me as 1 or 2 or 3, I would recommend that you are able to break down your argumentation into the most basic vocabulary or understanding of the topic. If not, you will leave it up to me to interpret the information that you presented as I see fit (if you are warranting and contextualizing your points especially with Ks, we should be fine, if not, I won't call for the cards and I will go with what I understood). I try to go off of what you said and what is on your speech docs but ultimately if something is unclear, I will go with what makes the most sense to me. If you run policy arguments we should be fine (In the order of preference, policy making args including CPs, DAs, case turns and solvency take outs, Ks, Topicality/Theory <--these I don't like in LD or in Policy in general). Given this information please use this information to pref me. I would say DA/CP debaters should pref me 1 and 2. anyone else should pref me lower unless you have debated in front of me before and you feel I can handle your arguments. Again if its not CP/DA and case take outs you are preffing me higher at your own risk. Given many of you only have three more tournaments to get Bids (if that is your goal for GD, Stanford, Berkeley) then I would recommend you don't have me as your judge as I would not feel as qualified to judge LD as I would judging most policy rounds and Public forum rounds. Is this lame? kinda. But hey I am trying to be honest and not have someone hate me for a decision I made. if you have more questions before GD, please email me at email@example.com
For all debaters:
clarity: anunciate and make sure you are not going too fast I cannot understand
explain your evidence: I HATE pulling cards at the end of a round. If I have to, do not expect high speaker points. I will go off what was said in the debate so if you do not explain your evidence well, I will not consider it in the debate.
Something I have thought about since it seems that in Public Forum and even in other debates power tagging evidence has become an issue, I am inclined to give lower speaker points for someone who gives me evidence they claimed says one thing and it doesn't. If it is in out rounds, I may be inclined to vote against you as well. This is especially true in PF where the art of power tagging has taken on a life of its own and its pretty bad. I think something needs to get done about this and thus I want to make it very clear if you are in clear violation of this and you present me with evidence that does not say what it does, I am going to sit there and think hard about how I want to evaluate it. I may give you the win but on low points. Or I may drop you if it is in outrounds. I have thought long and hard about this and I am still unsure how I want to approach this but given how bad the situation is beginning to get with students just dumping cards and banking on people not asking questions, I think something needs to be done.
anything else feel free to ask me during the round. thanks.
I love a well-executed impact turn debate . If you can give me this your speaks will show my joy
Frame the ballot for me in the 2NR/2AR. Don't just extend a bunch of cards and highlight concessions, but be explicit about why a particular argument or collection of arguments wins you the debate.
Evidence quality may become important in close debates but is a secondary concern to persuasion within the debate. This is not to say that I won't read your evidence after the debate because i probably will, but I won't evaluate warrants that are in your cards or make judgments about evidence quality unless they were fleshed out adequately in the constructives/rebuttals.
- You should assume that I am not up on the literature you have read. You should not expect me to know every acronym or all the latest developments in your DA scenario, nor should you assume that I understand all of the jargon in your K. Err on the side of ,at least, briefly explaining a concept before jumping into the intricacies of your argument.
- Defense can win debates and I have no problem pulling the trigger on presumption. I can be compelled that there is 0% risk of solvency to an affirmative case, or that there is no internal link within a DA. "There's a 1% chance that we're good for the world" is not a sufficient justification unless you provide a reason for why the opposing team's defensive argument is false or simply mitigates your claim (rather than taking it out terminally).
- I have a tendency to be somewhat expressive. If I find something stupid happening within a debate, I will likely face-palm, and/or shake my head; if I didn't understand you, I will give you a quizzical look. You should look up occasionally and take hints from the visual cues that I am sending. I won't make verbal interjections within a debate unless you're being unclear in which case i will say clear twice
- There is a fine line between being assertive and being rude. Don't cross it. If you don't know the difference, just watch for how I react
Some specific concerns:
Topicality-- I default to competing interpretations . To make these debates even close to enjoyable for me this requires an explicit list of what specific cases your interpretation permits and why this is beneficial for the activity. As for "Kritiks of T": I tend not to view these as RVIs, but instead as counter-standards that privilege an alternate debate curriculum that is more important than traditional conceptions. Negatives that plan on defending T against these criticisms should not only maintain that the 1AC does not meet what they view as fair and educational debate, but also need to go into a more specific discussion that impacts why their vision of a fair and educational debate is good and why the negative's alternate curriculum is worse in comparison.
Theory-- pretty similar to T debates but the one difference is that I will default to "reject the argument, not the team" unless given a reason otherwise. I have been known to go for cheapshots, but these require fulfilling a high standard of execution (a fully warranted and impacted explanation of your cheapshot, and closing the doors on any cross-applications the aff can make from other flows). Stylistically speaking, slowing down in these debates will help me put more ink on your side of the flow--otherwise I may miss a part of your argument that you find important. Additionally, a well-thought out interpretation and 3 warranted arguments regarding why a particular practice in debate is bad is significantly stronger than a blippy, generic re-hashing of a 10-point block.
Straight-up Strategies-- My favorite strategies often involve more than one or more of the following: an advantage counterplan, topic specific DA(s), and a solid amount of time allocated to case turns/defense. I am obviously open to hear and evaluate more generic arguments like politics, dip cap, delay counterplans, and process counterplans if that is your thing, and you should obviously go for what you are winning.
K and Performance Strategies-- I enjoy philosophy and have spent a significant chunk of my free time reading/understanding K and performance arguments. My familiarity with this style of debating makes it a double-edged sword. I will be very impressed if you command significant knowledge about the theory at hand and are able to apply them to the case through examples from popular culture or empirical/historical situations. On the other hand, if you fail to explain basic theoretical ideas within the scope of the K or fail to engage particular points of contention presented by the affirmative, I will be thoroughly unimpressed. Similarly, when opposing a K or performance, I am much more interested in arguments (analytics and cards) that not only substantively engage the K but thoroughly defend why your theorization of politics and interaction with the social should be preferred, rather than a generic 50 point survey of claims that are made by positivist thinkers. This is not to say that generic "greatest hits" style arguments have no value, but they certainly need to be backed up with a defense of the conceptual framing of your 1AC (eg, if the negative wins that the kritik turns the case or a no v2l claim, I'm not sure what "predictions good" or "cede the political" does for the affirmative). In terms of a theory/framework debate, I am much less likely to be persuaded by generic "wrong forum" claims but will be more likely to be compelled by arguments pointing to abusive sections of the specific K that is being run (eg, the nature of the alt).
It's also important to defend your impacts thoroughly. My favorite straight up affirmatives to read when I debated had big hegemony advantages. My favorite K authors to read are Wilderson (Afro-Pessimism) and other forms of Black liberation startegies. As a result, I am unlikely be swayed or guilted into voting for you if the only argument you make is a moralizing reference to people suffering/dying. This is NOT to say that I won't vote for you if you choose a strategy that relies on these impacts. However if these impacts are challenged either through impact turns or comparisons, I will not hack for you; I require an adequate refutation of why their impact calculation or understanding of suffering/death is false/incomplete and reasons for why I should prefer your framing. In other words, if the opposing team says "hegemony good and outweighs your K" or alternatively, reads a "suffering/death good" style kritik and your only comeback is "you link to our arguments and people are oppressed" without much other refutation, you will lose. When your moral high ground is challenged, own up to it and refute their assumptions/explanations.
I've been out of debate for about a decade. That means I'm a bit slow, and, while everything is slowly coming back to me, it is in your best interest to keep this bit of information in mind. Be loud and clear or you risk losing me. Do what you're comfortable with, and I'll do my best to accommodate you, but, especially with regard to T and theory (debates on which I never much cared for anyway) my muscles are somewhat atrophied. If given the choice between a debate about the practical implications of public policy and one concerning the underlying epistemological assumptions of the plan, I will usually opt for the second option. My academic background is in critical human geography and my upbringing in the field is highly tied to various strains of social theory (particularly, numerous critical understandings of race, sex/gender, and other axes of social exclusion). With that said, since returning to debate I find myself voting against the K with a fair amount of regularity. Don't pretend to be something you're not. If you're into a more traditional understanding of policy debate then live your truth. I actually really enjoy watching big clash of civilization debates. I love to watch the 2AC spend a lot of time impact turning the K. I think it's fun. I don't necessarily 'hate' traditional policy debate, I just happen to think that our seemingly collective fantasy regarding the existence of the internal link to the politics disad is boring. Entertain me. Go crazy. Be evil. Just be able to defend that strategy. If you really feel like you MUST include framework as a part of your strategy against K teams, my preference is for less of a focus on debate theory and more of a substantive defense of policy making.
To be continued...
Northside College Prep '16 - University of Kentucky '20
Hello! Northwestern is the first college tournament I am judging after being completely removed from debate for two topics. Full disclosure: This morning I asked what the topic was... so... Please extend some grace to me. I am currently a Research Professional at UChicago doing economic research.
I like being on e-mail chains! firstname.lastname@example.org
I will always reward smart teams that can effectively and efficiently communicate their arguments to me. Engaging with your opponent, having a well-thought out strategy, and demonstrating that you’re doing consistent, hard work is what this activity is about. Please be respectful to both your partner and your opponents and give it your best!
I like them a lot. There is such a thing as zero risk of a disad and there can be no link. Do impact calculus, have a clear link to the affirmative. Quality evidence is appreciated, though it's not the only thing! Being able to communicate what your ev says and why your ev matters is key!
Conditionality is good.
I am okay for critical strategies. However, I didn’t debate these so make sure to explain your authors to me. Affirmatives that do little engagement with the critique alternative are likely to lose. Critiques that do little engagement with the affirmative itself are likely to lose. Explain your links in the context of the AFF and your AFF in the context of the alternative. The perm is not always the best strategy and that is okay.
I am willing to vote either way on framework. I should be able to tell that you know and understand what the affirmative is if you are reading it. Framework is best when it engages with the methodology of the AFF and questions the state’s role in activism. I like topic education arguments.
Make an argument in your interp, and I’ll be happy.
I have been a PF debate coach at Ivy Bridge Academy for the past 7 years and I also did policy debate at Chattahoochee High School and UGA. Here are things that are important to me in debates and will influence my decision:
1. Debate is fundamentally about winning arguments, so make good arguments. I will do my best to evaluate your argument as objectively as possible but make sure contentions are well developed with clear warrants, evidence, and impacts. The more unrealistic the argument, the less likely I’ll vote for it, but I do also believe it is the burden of your opponent to clearly articulate why the argument is wrong.
2. Frontlining - while not doing this isn’t technically against the rules, I highly encourage it and will reward teams that do it effectively with better speaker points. I don’t consider something dropped in the 2nd rebuttal, but I do expect teams to cover everything you plan on extending. I also like teams condensing to one contention in the second rebuttal if it makes strategic sense.
3. Summary - condensing down to a few key voting issues is important to me. If you don’t do weighing in rebuttal, then it should start here. Anything, including defense, must be in the summary if you want me to evaluate it. Don’t drop responses or contentions in these speeches. I will reward summary speakers who make good strategic decisions and manage their time well.
4. Final Focus - Clear voting issues and weighing is important to me. I will only evaluate arguments extended in the summary here. Having a clear narrative and focusing on the big picture is important, as well as answering extended responses. This is also your last chance to win key responses against your opponent's case. Make sure to not just extend them, but explain them, answer the summary, and what the implications are if you win x response.
5. Paraphrasing - I’m fine with it, but you need to be able to produce either a card or website if asked. If you can’t produce it in time or deliberately misrepresent the evidence, then I will ignore the argument, and in extreme cases, vote the guilty team down.
6. Weighing - this is important to me, but I think debaters overvalue it a bit. The link debate is more important in my opinion and realistic impacts are as well. Try and start the weighing in the rebuttal or summary speeches. Comparison is key to good weighing in front of me.
7. Crossfire - any argument established in crossfire must be brought up in the subsequent speech for me to evaluate it. I will reward creative and well thought out questions. Please don’t be rude or aggressive in the crossfire. That will definitely hurt your speaker points. Civility is very important to proper debate in my humble opinion. You can sit or stand for the grand cross.
8. Speaking - I will give higher speaks to passionate speakers who are good public speakers. I did policy, so I’m fine with speed, but I don’t like spreading unless you absolutely have to to cover. Please clearly signpost which argument you are responding to and when you are moving into the other side of the flow or weighing.
9. Prep - I will do my best to keep track of it, but please, both teams should also be tracking the time.
10. References - any well executed Biggy, Kendrick, Logic, Drake, or Childish Gambino reference will be rewarded. Don’t overdo it though and I reserve the right to decrease points if it’s way off point.
11. Speech docs - if you share your case with me, then it will help me flow, understand your arguments, and I won't have to call for ev, so I will give both speakers 2 extra points if they do so.
University of Wyoming
Last updated: 9-12-22
Email chain: email@example.com
In-person COVID note: please wear a mask, including while speaking.
Feb 2022 update: If your highlighting is incoherent gibberish, you will earn the speaker points of someone who said incoherent gibberish. The more of your highlighting that is incoherent, the more of your speech will be incoherent, and the less points you will earn. To earn speaker points, you must communicate coherent ideas.
If you want to read far more than necessary on my judging process: https://wyodebateroundup.weebly.com/blog/reflections-on-the-judging-process-inside-the-mind-of-a-judge
I put a pretty high premium on effective communication. Too many debaters do not do their evidence justice. You should not expect me to read your evidence after the round and realize it’s awesome. You should make sure I know it’s awesome while you read it. I find many debaters over-estimate the amount of ideas they believe they communicate to the judge. Debaters who concentrate on persuading the judge, not just entering arguments into the record, will control the narrative of the round and win my ballot far more often than those who don’t. I have tended to draw a harder line on comprehensibility than the average judge. I won’t evaluate evidence I couldn’t understand. I also don’t call clear: if you’re unclear, or not loud enough, I won’t intervene and warn you, just like I wouldn't intervene and warn you that you are spending time on a bad argument. Am I flowing? You're clear.
Potential biases on theory: I will of course attempt to evaluate only the arguments in the round, however, I'll be up front about my otherwise hidden biases. Conditionality- I rarely find that debaters are able to articulate a credible and significant impact. International actor fiat seems suspect. Uniform 50 state fiat seems illogical. Various process counterplans are most often won as legitimate when the neg presents a depth of evidence that they are germane to the topic/plan. Reject the arg not the teams seems true of nearly all objections other than conditionality. I will default to evaluating the status quo even if there is a CP in the 2NR. Non-traditional affirmatives- I'll evaluate like any other argument. If you win it, you win it. I have yet to hear an explanation of procedural fairness as an impact that makes sense to me (as an internal link, yes). None of these biases are locked in; in-round debating will be the ultimate determinant of an argument’s legitimacy.
Clock management: In practice I have let teams end prep when they begin the emailing/jumping process. Your general goal should be to be completely ready to talk when you say ‘end prep.’ No off-case counting, no flow shuffling, etc.
Cross-x is a speech. You get to try to make arguments (which I will flow) and set traps (which I will flow). Once cross-x is over I will stop listening. If you continue to try to ask questions it will annoy me- your speech time is up.
Pet-peeves: leaving the room while the other team is prepping for a final rebuttal, talking over your opponents. I get really annoyed at teams that talk loudly (I have a low threshold for what counts as loudly) during other teams speeches- especially when it’s derisive or mocking comments about the other team’s speech.
My name is Bill Thompson and I am currently the Director of Speech and Debate at NSU University School in Fort Lauderdale Florida. In college I competed in CEDA and NFA LD debate at Western Kentucky University. Since that time I have coached students in every form of HS debate and judged outrounds of all three at TOC and NSDA/NFL. I think all events have value and purpose and tend to reward debaters who think critically and provide analysis in addition to a litany of cards. As a general overview, I don't coach or judge policy or LD with great frequency any more but that may be to your favor. I am not burnt out on any arguments I just want you to explain them clearly inside the round and that will be where my decision is made.
Policy - I typically default to Policy Maker paradigm. I will vote on theory but need to see unique abuse to vote on T. Please do impact calculus in final speeches. Tell me where you want me to vote and I will look there first. The faster you go the better you structure & signposting needs to be. I also appreciate debaters who slow down a little for tags. Be as aggressive as you like, don't be rude. Your chances of winning significantly increase when last speeches start with "Even if..." statements
- I typically prefer topical Affs but I will listen to anything if you justify your approach and stick to it. I do believe in one old school premise and that is that the Aff has THE burden of proof. To that end it is possible (though not common) for the negative to win without offense. If the Aff doesn't fulfil their burden of proof then I have a hard time votin aff. That said they could win a DA turn, K Turn, etc... Just making sure you know I don't buy "Without offense on neg you must vote AFF"
- I don't want you to go for everything in last speeches. Pick your battles and pick them wisely. Depth is rewarded on my ballot
- DA's I like specific/unique link stories that also have have brightines and clear impacts. Generic arguments are not something I like
- K's are fine and I am open to hearing your arguments but I want a clear idea of how I evaluate the K. I also prefer K's that have specific links to the aff and not merely the world at large. I am NOT saying you can't run those K's, I just find that rounds where you show specific links to the Aff's advocacy have better ground for debate than rounds that argue about the general state of the world.
- Counter Plans - I like them. It may seem obvious, but after 20 years, I only ask you CP doesn't have the same issues you point out with the Aff's advocacy. I am not a fan of conditional Counter Plans and I urge you to be perm proof because I buy perms if the CP isn't Mutually Exclusive.
- T I will vote on it if you show unique abuse but I give Aff resolutional interp rights.
- Speed - I can flow speed but appreciate debaters who slow dow for tags the more complex and nuanced your argument the more you should consider taking a little time to explain the argument. Going fast to get out a lot of information is fine. Going fast to say the same thing over and over is a waste of time. speed is never a substitute for word economy
LD - I will vote on theory but please run it well. I like old school LD but I am also open to K arguments too. I don't go in to a round hoping to see anything in particular except clash. Please do impact calculus in final speeches. Tell me where you want me to vote and I will look there first. The faster you go the better you structure & signposting needs to be. I also appreciate debaters who slow down a little for tags. Be as aggressive as you like, don't be rude. Your chances of winning significantly increase when last speeches start with "Even if..." statements
- I typically prefer topical Affs but I will listen to anything if you justify your approach and stick to it. I do believe in one old school premise and that is that the Aff has THE burden of proof. To that end it is possible (though not common) for the negative to win without offense. If the Aff doesn't fulfil their burden of proof then I have a hard time voting aff. That said they could win a DA turn, K Turn, etc... Just making sure you know I don't buy "Without offense on neg you must vote AFF"
- In as much as LD doesn't have a standard structure I need some sort of Framework/Role of the Ballot in order to render my decision.
- Please collapse in the NR. If you go for everything your chances of losing increase exponentially.
- Unlike Policy, you have a small amount of time. Word economy and decision making (what to go for) is mandatory to win my ballot. I don't like blippy arguments I like developed arguments.
- Speed - I can flow speed but appreciate debaters who slow dow for tags the more complex and nuanced your argument the more you should consider taking a little time to explain the argument. Going fast to get out a lot of information is fine. Going fast to say the same thing over and over is a waste of time. speed is never a substitute for word economy
PFD - I am willing to let the debaters in the round determine how the debate is approached, but please explain your arguments clearly. Please do impact calculus in final speeches. Tell me where you want me to vote and I will look there first. Be as aggressive as you like, don't be rude. Your chances of winning significantly increase when last speeches start with "Even if..." statements
Dartmouth, ADL, TAS, Interlake
Add me: firstname.lastname@example.org
College people, add: email@example.com
Please include the tournament, round, and teams debating in the subject line of the email.
Key Things to Know
I will flow and vote based on the things you said. NEGs can say whatever but the more it says the plan is bad the better. Conditionality and judge kick are good. AFFs should be T and are likely to lose if they aren't. If you say death good you lose.
If my camera is off, assume I am away from my computer and don't start talking. If you start your speech while I am away from my computer you do not get to restart. That is on you. Unbelievable that this happens but checking if your judge is present before talking is pretty much the lowest possible bar.
I will probably vote quickly. This does not necessarily mean the debate was lopsided or bad; more likely, it is a sign that the teams clearly communicated the relationships between their arguments, allowing me to perform evaluations as the debate is happening. If I take a long time that means I was unable to do this, either because there was significant complexity in the debate or because communication was poor.
I STRONGLY prefer that all cameras be on whenever anyone in the debate is speaking, but I understand if internet or other considerations prevent this.
Here is how to successfully adjust to the online setting:
1. Inflect more when you are talking
2. Put your face in frame
3. Get a microphone, put it close to your face, talk into it, make sure there is an unobstructed line between it and your mouth
4. Talk one at a time
Tech determines truth unless your argument is an affront to obvious reality or it's death good. If you tell me to embrace death because life is bad I will vote against you even if you do not go for the argument. More broadly, all else equal, I strongly prefer to solve problems without resorting to violence or force, and my voting record reflects this.
Otherwise, unless my role as a judge is changed, I will attempt to write the least interventionary ballot. This means:
1. What is conceded is absolutely true, but will only have the implications that you say it has. I will not assume what is not obvious. For example, I will not cross apply arguments from one flow to another, will not assume impact D applies to impacts you didn't say it applies to, will not assume a CP solves something you didn't say it solves, etc.
2. I will intervene if there is no non-interventionary decision.
3. I am looking for ways to simplify my decision-making process. I would prefer to decide fewer issues instead of more. If something seems really hard to resolve without intervening, I will likely try to see if I can vote without resolving that thing.
For whatever reason the stats say I really like the NEG.
The following are my inclinations - if you don't like them you can change them.
The best DAs clash with the AFF. The bar for getting me to care about fake politics arguments is high.
I care about the DA turning the case a lot.
"Framing pages" where you say "DAs are bad" are bad.
CP'ing in offense is underrated.
I can appreciate strategic plan vagueness but things are getting out of hand. I would like it to be possible to tell from your plan text that you do the thing your solvency evidence wants. If your plan is just the resolution and you want the ability to permute alternative approaches to security cooperation, you'd better have some great normal means evidence that whatever nonsense you have written in the plan text would likely take the form your advocates support.
If no one says anything I will assume I can judge kick. It is very hard to use theory to stop me from thinking about the status quo. Nothing but conditionality is a voting issue.
Competition is better than theory against process things. Theory arguments that logically presume you have won a competition argument are a waste of time - just win the competition argument and you will be fine.
Functional competition + explaining what your plan does + definitions + reasons to prefer your definitions >>>>> anything involving the concept of textual competition. This concept is mind poison that corrupts any competition model it touches and makes it stupid.
Pretty NEG on most theory, except fiating out of your own straight turned offense.
I might reject a vague CP because it lacks a solvency advocate to remedy the AFF's inability to discover more details about the CP's mechanism before the 2AC. Depends on the case.
I like judging good T debates. I really don't like judging bad ones. What sets these apart is specific application of broad offense to interpretations and impact debating that is specific to internal links, grounded in a vivid vision for debates under your topic.
Many parts of a T argument can be enhanced with cards - e.g. link to limits, claims of AFF/NEG bias in the literature, predictability via prodicts/indicts. I am unlikely to care about a cardless T 2NC.
Argue by analogy and comparison to other affs, especially in CX.
OK for specific Ks on the NEG, bad for random backfile slop, bad for K AFFs, death good = L.
If your K is secretly a DA, refer to the DA section. If your K is not a DA then yes, you need framework and you need an alternative. Whatever your framework says is most important should be the same as what your link, impact, and alternative are about. Not doing this will cause perm losses.
AFF - if your AFF is built to permute, if you beat the NEG's framework you are likely to win. The best way to do this is to explain why the way of thinking about the world that the NEG is proposing is bad. If your AFF is not built to permute, then don't force a permutation, defend your AFF.
If the NEG's framework is correct and the debate is about something broader than the plan (epistemologies, ideologies, political orientations, etc.) then it is not "intrinsic" to permute the plan, alt, and additional policy actions that are a natural extension of the AFF's epistemologies, ideologies, political orientations, etc.
I do not judge many framework debates involving nontraditional AFFs. The biggest hurdles to voting AFF for me are usually: 1) why can't the AFF be read on the NEG, 2) why is the AFF's offense inherent to resolutional debate or to voting NEG on framework instead of some avoidable examples, and 3) how do I reconcile the AFF's vision of debate or the topic with debate's inherently (even if not exclusively) competitive nature.
I am open to different understandings of what it means for things to compete if there is no plan.
The only effect of my ballot is to decide the winner.
I think my points are slightly below average.
Strong strategy, being fun/engaging to watch, being smart, being classy, being clear = higher speaks. Making wrong strategic choices, being underprepared or ignorant about substance, making CXs annoying/pointless, making bad arguments, being needlessly mean, being a mumbler... = lower speaks.
Other arg stuff
Evidence ethics (out of context? straw-person? lied about quals? cut in middle of paragraph?) should be debated out like any other theory argument. Don't see why any of that would be an auto-VI in a world where paraphrasing with footnotes or excerpting poetry is commonplace and accepted.
Clipping - claiming you read words from evidence that you did not read - is an L.
Being racist, sexist, violent, etc. in a way that is immediately and obviously hazardous to someone in the debate = L and 0. My role as educator outweighs my role as any form of disciplinarian, so I will err on the side of letting stuff play out - i.e. if someone used gendered language and that gets brought up I will probably let the round happen and correct any ignorance after the fact. This ends when it begins to threaten the safety of round participants. You should give this line a wide berth.
I am a lay judge that looks at the team that speaks the most clearly. Speak slower as I value clarity over speed. As long as you explain your arguments in an understandable way, I will be able to take note of it. Teams that present themselves in a more confident and concise way will end up getting my vote.
Harker 2013-2017 (debated policy all 4 years, 2A for the last 3 years). Currently a senior at Rice University (not debating).
Updated before ASU 2021 to gear my paradigm more towards LD now that I rarely judge policy.
please put me on the email chain - molly dot wancewicz at gmail dot com
I'll say clear once if I can't hear you but not beyond that because I don't want to miss even more of what you're saying. Record all of your speeches locally - if there's some kind of error/issue I will listen to the recording but will not allow you to re-give or re-do your speech. It would be excellent if you could have your camera on during the entire debate (at least CX and prep!) but I know everyone has different situations so if you can't/don't, I won't hold it against you. Please no prep stealing or other shenanigans that take advantage of online debate.
I think LD = short policy.
Theory - I have a higher threshold than most judges for voting on theory. I am not interested in hearing you throw out a bunch of random theory shells and see what sticks. There needs to be significant in-round abuse for me to vote on theory. Not wanting to engage with the aff is not the same thing as abuse. My threshold for abuse is probably slightly lower for cheating counterplans like consult, add-a-condition, object fiat, etc. I will literally never vote on an RVI.
Phil - I am not a good judge for a phil debate. I evaluate debates using the offense-defense paradigm, so I will be a much more effective judge if you read your argument as a kritik with an alt, or even as a DA, rather than as a traditionally-structured NC. At bare minimum you need to explain how your NC means that I should evaluate the debate and its offensive implications but I will be unhappy.
Framework - I default to util unless told otherwise.
Negative Strategy - Splitting the 2NR is almost never a good idea. Will definitely affect speaker points.
DAs and Case - I will be really really happy if this is the debate I'm judging :) Everything is fair game - politics and spinoffs, elections, topic-specific DAs, etc. Technical case vs. DA debates are great and proficiency here will have a significant positive impact on speaker points. I have a higher threshold on voting for neg arguments that aren't contextualized to the aff.
Nontopical affs - I will admit that I'm neg-leaning in the nontopical aff (k aff) vs. topicality (framework) debates. I find topical version of the aff arguments very persuasive. Fairness is a less compelling topicality/framework argument to me, but I would still vote on it as a net benefit to the TVA. I think k affs need to have an advocacy of some sort and be related to the topic.
Kritiks - I am reasonably familiar with the basics (security, cap, colonialism, etc) and a lot of identity arguments. I am much less familiar with high theory/postmodern stuff. Regardless of the author, though, contextualization to the aff is extremely important to me in the kritik debate - at the very least, the 1NC should include one specific link card. I find generic kritiks that aren't contextualized very unpersuasive. I think most k alts are implausible/prohibitively vague and/or don't solve the link - I find CX pressing the plausibility and details of the alt really effective. In addition, I am often very willing to vote on case outweighs and/or case solves the K given that these arguments are well-explained in the 2AR.
Counterplans - Need to have a solvency advocate. I like specific counterplans and I think DA+CP is a great 2nr, but I'm not a fan of cheating CPs (see theory) and I'm pretty aff-leaning on the theory question for these.
Topicality (vs policy affs) - I’m willing to vote on T. Even if your violation is bad, I’ll vote on tech in the T debate (within reason obviously)
Don't be rude - If you're mean to your opponent or partner (if applicable) your speaker points will reflect that.
If I happen to be judging PF:
Impact comparison is really important at the end of the debate - please don't make me do it for you.
I debated for Loyola High School for 4 years (policy), Wake Forest University for a semester (policy), and El Camino College for two years (parli). I now coach PF at the Harker School.
I've debated both traditional and nontraditional forms of debate. There really isn't an argument that I won't hear. I have a higher threshold for theory, and rarely vote on potential abuse. But beyond that I do not have any serious predisposition to any arguments you read. Or at least I shouldn't... Blatantly offensive arguments, like impact turning racism or etc, probably will lose you the round though. Just be smart.
Speaker point break down - I'm pretty fair about speaker points (though I don't think there will be a judge who will tell you they aren't fair about speaker points) but I'm quick to catch on to things on general impoliteness vs sass (love sass). Just be a good person and speak well etc etc. Y'all should be mature enough to know what that means.
PF -- "paraphrasing" your evidence is not evidence and will result in a loss.
I've competed in and taught speech and debate for 25 years in a number of formats, so feel free to run whatever you'd like. I enjoy old school case arguments as much as Ks, performance, and theory, but expect strong link and impact work regardless of the argument. I am very high flow, so shouldn't have an issue with speed or tech, but will try and get your attention if I'm having trouble following you. Specificity through good research wins positions, generally. Comparative weighing is a must. Feel free to ask before the round if there's anything specific you'd like to know about and have fun.
Please speak slowly so I can clearly understand you. Please focus on / reemphasize your main points and rebut other side’s main arguments instead of flooding me with information about everything. Depth than breadth. Sometimes less is more :)
Speak very slowly.
State the resolution, as that is what is being debated
Explain everything. Don't assume that I know what a K is. Because I don't. Don't assume I know what anything else is either. I probably don't.
Speak very slowly.
Explain what the big arguments are and why the opposing side is not winning.
Be nice to each other.
Give me a reason to vote for your side. Or more than one.
Be entertaining, thoughtful, logical, organized.
Don't go too fast, especially when competing in virtual/recorded tournaments, but this is important in others as well.
Be entertaining. Try not to steal minutes from your audience's life (especially mine) by being boring. Try and pretend this stuff is fun.
Be real, or sometimes in HI or humorous DUO, be so polished and perfect in your blocking, gesturing, and facial expression, that the hyperbole does not need realism.
Real acting is seen in the eyes. Are you believable? Is there anything about your performance that distracts?
I hate PC but I do my best to judge the performer not the script.
Experience: 5 years coaching middle school public forum debate, 4 years competing in Public Forum and Extemp
Speed: I’m fine with speed where it’s neccessary, but not at the cost of diction or persuasion . If you are attempting it and I can only understand every other word, you’ll lose points
I flow arguments very heavily so signposting will get you far. If you counter opponents points but don’t direct me which contention or sub point, it’s possible I won’t follow. Don’t make me do the work for you. Don’t argue framework too much, bring it up in final focus to frame contentions.
Try to cover as much ground as possible. Clashing and focusing on one argument the entire debate frustrates me, and I prefer if you provide counters for all parts of your opponents contentions rather than focusing on only one part.
I don’t flow cross examine, but I do pay close attention it. This is an excellent spot to make up some extra speaker points or solidify your lead.
It also goes without saying, but keep it civil. Yelling or rudeness will lose you huge points. I very much value a professional and confident debater rather than a bully or poor winner.