Lakeland Westchester Classic 2020
2020 — Shrub Oak, NY/US
PF Varsity Paradigm ListAll Paradigms: Show Hide
Public Forum paradigm
A few remarks:
- If it's important to my RFD, it needs to be in both summary and final focus, especially if it's offense. A few exceptions to this rule:
- Rebuttal responses are "sticky". If there's a rebuttal response that was unaddressed, even if it wasn't in your opponents' summary or FF, I will still consider it against you.
- If a central idea is seemingly conceded by both teams, it is true in the round. For example, if most of the debate is on the warrant level, and the impacts are conceded, I will extend the impacts for you even if you don't explicitly, because this allows you time to more adequately analyze the clash of the debate.
- Especially on framework, you have to do the work for me. I won't evaluate arguments under a framework, even if you win the framework; you have to do the evaluation/weighing.
- Warrants are extremely important; you don't get access to your evidence unless you give me warrants.
- If you are non-responsive, I am fine with your opponents "extending through ink" -- in order to get defense, you need to be responsive.
- Feel free to make whatever arguments you want.
I can be interventionist when it comes to evidence; I will call for it in three scenarios:
- You read evidence that I have also read, and I think you misrepresented the evidence.
- Your evidence is called into question/indicted.
- You read evidence that sounds really sketchy.
What matters, in rough order of importance:
- Ethical treatment of evidence, both yours and your opponents'. (I have given 20s to teams misusing evidence in the past, and I'll gladly do so again--don't tempt me.)
- The presence of weighing/narrative.
- Nuanced, well-warranted analytical argumentation.
- Well-organized speeches. (Road maps optional; Signposting non-optional)
- Appealing rhetorical style.
- In-round courtesy and professionalism.
school affiliation: acorn community high school (Brooklyn NY), NYUDL (new york urban debate league), stuyversant high school (New york, NY)
years debating: 4 years of high school, starting college debate
in a debate round i have done everything from cp and politics to performance
my first highschool topic was aid to south Africa, last one was reduce military (if that matters)
I will vote on whatever arguments win, this means I may vote on anything, it could come down to Counterplan-Disad, Procedurals, Kritiks, Affs with no plan text, to even performance. tell me what your argument is and what the ballot signifies (if it has a meaning)...i.e. policy maker etc...(...)
speaker points: be persuasive and make it interesting thin line between funny and ass hole at times may it be in cross-x or your speech you decide *background music* ...analysis/argumentation (don't lie about reading a hole card if u didn't,don't just read cards and tag~line extend ~_~ ) i will call for evidence if needed and i will hit you wit the world famous "cum on son" lol
impact your arguments (duhh)
Topicality: i like a good t debate, their fun and at times educational, make sure you impact it, and give a correct abuse story...
counter plans: have a good net benefit prove how they solve the case
dis ads: you can run them i vote for anything and am familiar with most scenarios
k: i was a k db8er for the better half of my db8 career so i'm pretty familiar with most k~lit u will read unless its like some deep
nietzsche, zizek, lacan type ish but i get it...and if you explain it give a good story and show alternative solvency i will vote for it...it is also fine if you kick the alt and go for it as a case turn just debate it out...
preformance: i did this too...explain what the round comes down to...i.e. role of the judge/ballot/db8ers...and if their is a form of spill over what this is and means in real world and debate world... block framework lol...and show me why your/this performance is key...may it be a movement or just you expressing your self...i like methodology db8s so if it comes down to the aff and neg being both performance teams be clear on the framework for the round and how your methodology is better and how the other may recreate these forms of oppression you may be speaking about...may it be the deletion of identity or whiteness etc...same things apply if your running a counter~advocacy against a performance team...(*whispers* solvency)...k vs performance rounds same as methodology prove the link and as for the alt prove the solvency... framework vs performance rounds i had a lot of these, boring but fun to see the way they play out depending on interp, vio, impacts and stuff...
framework: any kind is fine...same justification as Topicality...depending on how your spinning framework within a round... *yells* education =)
short & sweet
#swag...have fun...do you...debate =)
Hi! I'm Josefina.
You can reach me at email@example.com, please include me in the email chain.
I recently graduated from Binghamton University with a degree in biochemistry and a minor in soc.
I'm pretty new to debate, my experience has been teaching online policy style debate and judging at tournaments. I'm still learning, so I'm always open to feedback.
I am neither truth vs. tech. I believe that they're both integral to debate.
You can debate at whatever speed you feel comfortable.
What usually helps me make a decision:
- Case extensions with thoughtful warrants
- A clear path towards a decision. Let me know what I should be weighing, and impact out your arguments.
- Using the evidence to your advantage, just giving a card and a claim are not enough to be an argument.
- I consider both offense and defense in terms of your own argument and answer to opposing ones.
add me to the email chain: firstname.lastname@example.org
My "paradigm:" I try to judge
Here are the rules for debate: As a rule, unnecessary use of German never made an argument sound less insidious. If you don't know me - I'm Chris. I may not have been the best in the past, but like my school motto, ever better. The policydb8.com veg pledge is back now with a shiny new bifo file. I am no longer awarding points for people taking the veg pledge. The negative may choose to defend the status quo, or I can do the situational dropbox thing. Whatever. Regale me with your evidence.
2018 Update (Immigration):
I believe debate is valuable. I believe it teaches great critical thinking and research skills, but debate is MORE than that. Scientists always said there is no such thing as a soul. Now they are in a position to prove it. Also, my email and debate experience still stand... So I don't have any bias toward Aff or Neg-- in fact I'm the opposite, and enjoy plan-less debate immensely. I am very expressive, so take that into account, however sometimes I worry I'm too expressive. Does that mean I might vote on “warming good because it solves ice age” against a critical aff about object oriented ontology and the Anthropocene?
I come from a parliamentary debate background (high school & college) and have judged at PF tournaments sporadically for the past 6 years. The most important thing to me is weighing: tell me the most important point in the round and why it is the most important, not just why you won it.
Please explain terms (assume I don't know what something means) and avoid jargon!
Glenbrooks NB: this is the first virtual debate tournament I have personally judged. I value the time and energy you have invested in debate, and endeavor to be a thoughtful, attentive judge.
I am a teacher-librarian and did not debate in high school, but have significant experience with Public Forum judging, as the record indicates. Clarity and explanation of sources and their relationship to your arguments helps my understanding and decisions through S and FF, particularly as they contribute to a coherent narrative. How do your contentions bind and work together? What do sources explicate or reveal? I have heard the same case and contentions rendered very differently by different teams, and come to different conclusions, sometimes minutes apart...
Do not assume citation or argument recognition, in short-hand. I probably won't evaluate a tricky use of evidence with any depth or in context in good time at the end of a round, and shouldn't have to. Speed and word economy can cram a lot into a case and round, but if the debate feels like card ping pong, uses jargon repeatedly, or is dry as sand, you might lose me with critical points. A systematic analysis - or a fair attempt at one - is easier to vote for than slapdash impacts, however gargantuan or terrible. Knowing, engaging and re-evaluating sources is often compelling - particularly an opponent's.
Framework debates should set up some clash or weighing mechanism comprehensible to the general public. Invoking the purpose of the format and debating debate usually wastes other opportunities in the round. Alternately, scoffing at a kritik sincerely developed and delivered is a disengagement with your opponent, and could cost you my ballot.
Please be expeditious and honest with calls for evidence; pursue clarity and accountability, but the round must move along. I don't try to flow cross, but I'm listening and watching. Civility goes a long way in life, and makes better judgement easier. Leaving significant time in speeches or hogging crossfire is neither flattering or impressive. If things fall apart for you, keep trying, even when you feel lost! My written ballots are usually more explanatory than a spoken RFD; to think clearly and better record my evaluation of the round, I may not disclose, if the tournament allows.
Thank you for debating this weekend, and good luck!
I am a lay judge - make sense and I vote for you :).
Be kind and have a great debate.
Try not to spread because I won't be able to flow. If you don't see me flowing, you're probably going too fast.
Engineering grad and IT practitioner; have been judging debate since 2018. I did PF all through high school in Virginia.
1. I'm fine with speed; just speak clearly.
2a. Time yourself. When you run out of time, finish your sentence gracefully, then stop speaking.
2b. I will also time you. When you run out of time, I will silently stop taking notes on my flow and wait for you to finish. I will cut you off if you are egregiously over time. If I cut you off, it means I didn't listen to anything you said for the last 30-60 seconds.
3. I don't care if you sit or stand. Do whatever works.
I vote on terminal impacts. Use your constructive to state and quantify impacts that I as a human can care about. I care exclusively about saving lives, reducing suffering and increasing happiness, in descending order of importance. Provide warrants and evidence for your claims, then extend your claims and impacts through to final focus. In final focus, weigh: tell me *how* you won in terms of the impacts I care about.
0. Cut your cards in advance and be on the ball with finding and sharing them. If you can't find your card promptly we'll assume it doesn't exist and move on.
1. Please indict bad cards. Misleading claims, baseless speculation, "studies" that don't exist, that sort of junk: if you convince me it's bad, I'll strike it gleefully from my flow.
2. Be nice to each other in cross; let the other person finish. Cut them off if they are monopolizing time.
3. If you want me to consider an argument when I vote, extend it all the way through final focus.
Traditionally, I will vote for you if you convince me that your side has the most positive impact on the value-criterion for the value that I buy into in-round.
I am open to the possibility that you can run a K or (much less likely) T and I will like it and vote for it. Both my exposure and my receptiveness to them have been limited in practice. Generally, if you are accusing your opponent of abuse and asking me to sign my ballot on it, the abuse needs to be egregious, not just irritating.
I am a parent judge who has been judging for around 3 years and consider myself a flay judge. I'm trained as a scientist so logical argument supported by evidence is what I am looking for. I usually read up about the topic beforehand, so I have some knowledge about it.
I am more tech over truth but the argument needs to be believable for an easier win (I am a little more tech than you might imagine)
Please collapse and weigh your arguments against your opponents' arguments (Quality > Quantity)
I flow but I won’t flow if you’re too fast or hard to understand
I vote of the flow but good speaking always helps
I will call for cards usually if they are important for your case in the round. I take evidence very seriously and will drop you if I find it misconstrued.
Theory: I know nothing about theory or how to evaluate it. If you run it there is a high probability that I won't evaluate it.
Don’t be rude or offensive and don’t interrupt during cross or you’ll get dropped
I competed in Policy for three years in high school, and Parliamentary debate in college for three years. I've been judging PF since then.
Columbia University 2018
New York University School of Law 2022
It is your burden to make sure that your speech is clear and understandable and the faster you want to speak, the more clearly you must speak. I am generally fine with spreading.
I never time debates. That's not my job. Therefor, it is your job. Police yourselves and eachother. There is an art to this. Opposing teams can hold up their iPhones to indicate their opponent has run out of time.
I generally allow for a 15 seconds grace period to finish sentences.
Circumstances permitting, you must stand up, in a centralized spot, and face me during constructive arguments. This is preferred but not necessary during cross.
If you fail to call out bad evidence, it will be accepted as true for the round.
If there are any aspects of the debate I look to before all others, they would be impact analysis and weighing. Not doing one or the other or both makes it much harder for me to vote for you, either because I don't know how to evaluate the impacts in the round or because I don't know how to compare them. If you don't compare them for me, I will do it on my own and no one wants that.
The pro and the con have an equal and opposite burden of proof.
Take a deep breath in and out
Debate as hard as you can absent racist, sexist, homophobic, transphobic, classist and ableist arguments.
When you think about giving your last speech explain a clear reason you win and why the other teams loses . Compare and contrast concisely , engagement or clash is very important to me as well as Harm Analysis
why do your harms or impacts matter in the world of the current debate. So what if the pro isnt endorsed ? why is that bad ? why is the con the worst scenario in the context of your pro case ?
I do not call for cards or evidence. do your best to cite and remind me of what you were saying and why that means you win and they lose , again why they lose and you win with evidence comparison and offensive and defensive arguments
Slow down on main points
I’m a parent judge who has judged PF for four years. This paradigm was influenced by my son. I flow important points throughout the round.
Have both warrants and impacts backed up by evidence in your case. Carry them through the round if you want me to vote on them.
Do comparative weighing in summary AND final focus, this is important. Don’t use buzzwords.
If you want me to vote on an argument, it must be in summary AND final focus.
Don’t speak too quickly. If I can’t understand you, you won’t win my ballot.
Be respectful, especially in crossfire, or I will dock speaker points.
No new arguments in final focus, they will not be considered. Bring them up earlier in the round so your opponents can respond to them.
Have all evidence ready to show your opponents. Don’t take too long when evidence is asked for..
Signpost throughout your speeches. This also includes short offtime roadmaps. It makes it much easier to flow.
Clearly explain your arguments in each speech, do not just assume I have a prior understanding of every argument. I do some reading on the topic before the tournament, but I am by no means an expert.
Don’t run progressive arguments (Ks, theory), I don’t know how to evaluate them.
Speaker Points (adjusted based on division):
<26: Very poor OR offensive, rude, tried to cheat, etc.
26-26.9: Below Average
28-28.9: Above Average
I competed for four years in public forum debate at Lake Highland Preparatory School in Orlando, Florida. Please make my job easier and weigh. I, like most judges, will vote off of the clearest path to the ballot. With that being said you still need to warrant your weighing analysis.
Don’t read a new contention in rebuttal and present it as an “overview”. It's abusive and your speaker points will reflect that.
If you are the second speaking team you should frontline the arguments you plan on going for in summary and final focus in the second speaking rebuttals. I don’t require a 50/50 split between your case and theirs but you should spend some time rebuilding your own case. Don’t read new turns or a new weighing analysis in second summary if you want me to vote for it.
I’m fine with speed but be mindful that if you speak so quickly that I can’t understand what you’re saying it makes it a lot harder to vote for you.
I’ll call for evidence if I think it sounds interesting (or fake) but I’m not going to base my decision off the legitimacy of said piece of evidence. If you do want me to vote off of a piece of evidence you need to make that argument in round. I’m not going to intervene on either team’s behalf.
For speaks I consider 27 to be average, 28/29 to be above average, and 30 to be perfect.
If you have any questions please let me know and I’ll be more than happy to clarify.
Having only judged three tournaments—all some years ago—I'm still new to public forum debate and will be looking for debaters to convey their arguments in clear (and not overly fast) terms.
Hello debaters. I look forward to watching and judging your rounds. Rather than try to present a paradigm, I will just offer you some facts about myself and you can reach your own conclusions.
I am a parent of a debater who is now in 11th grade. I have been judging debate tournaments -- first in Parli then in PF -- for a full four seasons. I was never a debater myself; everything I know about debate I learned from watching you all. I now run the team at my son's high school, so I am judging at all the UDLNYC tourneys as well as about four National Circuit tournaments each year.
I am a professor of journalism at Hunter College, so I know well how to identify valid evidence, sound arguments and good writing. But this also means that I really value writing structure and organization; I want to be able to track -- or flow -- your arguments in each speech.
Ok, so I guess I do have some nit-picky preferences: I do not get anything from spreading (it just makes it harder for me to follow) and it bugs me when people give an off-time roadmap, especially since 99 percent of the time the debater does not follow it. If it is important for you to layout your plan (and I would argue it is), make it part of your speech. I also pay attention to the crossfires since I think it reveals a lot about the individual speakers more than the speeches do sometimes.
One thing for certain: I LOVE debate. Hats off to you for taking on all the work it requires.
Look at my good friend Will's paradigm. It is pretty much the same as mine and he managed to express it quite eloquently.
Here is a link to it.
Some additions and personal info:
I was a PF debater for 4 years at Byram Hills High School in NY. I'm now a junior at Binghamton University, a judge for Byram, and I'm the Tournament Director of the Byram Hills Invitational & RR. Obviously I will flow.
- Humor. Speaks will increase when humor is used appropriately. But don't make the entire round humor (unless MHL Blowout or you get special permission from me prior), because that's not debate. Make clever arguments and integrate a few jokes, but don't be silly. I will NOT tolerate racism, sexism, homophobia, bullying, or any other rude mannerisms.
- Gum. DO NOT DARE chew gum while you're speaking. I once judged a round with a gum-chewer and it made me angry enough to warrant a new section on my paradigm.
- In the end, BE NICE and HAVE FUN.
Args & Things:
- SIGNPOST. This is EXTREMELY IMPORTANT to me. If I can't tell which responses go to which points, you will not be happy. I need an organized flow in order to adequately judge the round.
- Evidence. I was a debater; if I know the topic, I will probably know the evidence (unless it's really unique). Therefore, do not BS or misconstrue the evidence because I WILL KNOW. If your opponent calls for evidence and there is a serious battle about it, I will call for it at the end of the round. I follow NSDA rules; this means no internet during the round (not even to retrieve the article), have the full PDF of the article if your opponents want it, context to the card, etc. You must have the full article if your opponents ask for it and are not satisfied with the card. If you make any evidentiary violations, I will drop you and if the infraction is significant enough I will go to tournament administration. This is non-negotiable.
- Warrants. Give me warrants. Don't read 600 cards trying to refute an argument and not give me warrants for any of it. You need to tell me WHY these things happen, not just that they do. In the end, clear logic and 1 card will trump no warrant and 40 cards.
- Consistency. Be consistent throughout the round. This means that you have to extend the argument through all speeches if you want me to vote off it. If your opponent drops an argument, you better bring it up in rebuttal, summary, and final focus if you want me to factor that offense into my decision.
- Timing. I have a timer and I will time the round. HOWEVER, make sure to keep track of your own prep; I'll try to do it but I always seem to hit the wrong button or have some other issue when I'm timing prep. Also, make sure to time your own speeches because I've had glitches in my timer before.
- I will not intervene in the round unless I am specifically asked to.
If y'all have any more questions about my preferences, don't be afraid to ask before round.
Hello, I am a second-year parent judge from Massachusetts.
A few small preferences/things to know:
- please speak slowly
- please give me the reasoning behind cards. Don't just dump them and expect me to know what to do with them.
- I will note down things from each speech so try to speak as slowly as you can. The faster you speak, the less I am going to understand
- please weigh. I want to know why I should prefer your impacts over your opponents
- Finally, Have Fun!
(My son wrote the first part of this based on what he thinks I know about debate)
I'm P.R. Goldstone. If you run stupid arguments then I will roast you in comments about how factually nonsensical they are, but if your opponents don't respond to them, then I will begrudgingly vote for you. (Threshold for responses to these args is very low).
I'm about 65% flow and 35% lay, don't go too fast. (I used to be 70-30 until my son found out that I flowed in one color and flowed cross.
I need parallelism. Extend any offense in summary that you want me to evaluate at the end of the round.
Don't be rude. If you make a good point, say it in a speech.
I have a history of giving out a lot of 28.5-29's.
I understand turns and will vote off them. If you use an oddly technical term, then remind me what it is. Ex: If you fiat something, say we fiat meaning "we let the resolution pass" I'm more tech over truth but need a lil truth in there.
Stuff P.R. Says:
I am at present a lawyer specializing in complex civil litigation, but my first career was as university researcher and faculty in international relations and national security policy. I have a strong interest, and background, in public policy, foreign and domestic policy analysis, and political history.
I won't vote off things omitted in final focus; if something is not brought forward in summary, it cannot be presented in final focus. Similarly, if a particular piece of proffered evidence seems implausible or unlikely, I will request to see the cite. I would strongly request that debaters weigh in round. Arguments that are clearly weak and made for the purposes of using up opponents' time in rebuttal will be accorded correspondingly little weight. Ideally, the best final focus essentially cogently writes the judge's ballot for him.
I can usually be seen wearing a bow tie, but do not favor participants on the basis of neckwear.
Debate History: I debated for Towson University & Binghamton University (4 years college).
First and foremost, I will not tell you how to engage in the debate. Whether it be policy or K affirmatives I'm open to debaters showcasing their research in any format they choose. However, I do prefer if debaters orient their affirmative construction towards the resolution.
When evaluating a debate I tend to weigh the impacts of the affirmative to any disadvantage or impact the negative goes for in the 2NR. Therefore, if the affirmative does not extend case in the 2AR it becomes more difficult for me to evaluate the debate unless you tell me the specific argument I should be voting on otherwise.
Next, is framework. I evaluate this before anything else in the debate. If you run framework in front of me go for decision making, policy research good, learning about X (insert topic related policy discussion i.e. warming, tech, economy, education, etc.) is good, clash or ground. I do not want to feel as though your framework is exclusionary to alternative debate formats but instead debate about its inherent benefits.
I also really enjoy case debate. If you are on the negative please have case turns and case specific evidence so that the debate for me is a bit more specific and engaging.
CP's and DA's are also arguments I evaluate but I need to have a good link for both or it will make it difficult for me to vote for them.
Please focus more on explanation of evidence and not on the amount of evidence introduced in the debate.
I tend to keep up on politics and critical literature so don't be afraid of running an argument in front of me. I will always ask for preferred pronouns and do not tolerate racism, white supremacy, anti-blackness, sexism, patriarchy, transphobia and xenophobia.
Oakwood ‘19 - debated 4 years on nat circ
Yale ‘23 (I don’t debate in college now)
Debate is an educational activity but too many times made inaccessible or an unsafe space for students and participants. Please don’t be an asshole to your partner or other speakers in round. I get it if you get passionate in round/in CX but please give respect and remember this is supposed to be fun.
Overall, I don’t have a preference for what you read (minus offensive, racist, homophobic, etc ), as long as you know what your reading and it clashes within the round.
Please be clear - don’t try to mumble spread 15 off-case if you are sacrificing clarity and articulation
On that note, I prefer in-depth nuanced debates over a few positions rather than debates where teams try to go for 12 blippy offcase in the 1nc and then try to shadow extend 6 of those in the block.
Line by Line is important - Doesn’t matter if your a traditional policy team or only run k and k affs. It’s incredibly frustrating if you go for a 4 minute overview and then blow through the line by line saying, “refer to the OV”. The most interesting debate comes from clash and specificity of arguments within the context of the round.
Topicality: Sure I’ll vote on it. The way look at T debates is 1) does the aff meet the neg interp 2) If it doesn’t why should I vote for the neg’s interpretation. It’s not enough for a neg team to say, “aff doesn’t meet”. You have to explain to me what debate looks like in the world of the Aff’s interp vs the world of the neg’s interp and why neg’s interp is better. Don’t just push out generic standards, but really go in-depth into issues of education/ground, etc in the context off the world that an aff interp/neg interp would generate.
Theory: SLOW DOWN: If you are giving rapid-fire theory args and not sending analytics, you better make sure that you are speaking with high clarity. Although a 5 minute 2ar on condo is not my favorite debate, I’ll vote on it as long as you warrant out why the other team should lose because of the argument.
Policy Affs: Sure. Ran mostly soft-left policy affs throughout high school with a heavy emphasis on framework. In general, Aff teams should know their case inside and out. I love case debate and think affirmative teams don’t use their case enough to their strategic advantage. It’s literally an entire 8 minutes of your speaking time so make it count.
Plan vs CP/DA: For affirmative teams, like I said above, don’t just answer the offcase positions, but use your 1ac to gain strategic leverage over the negative. You should know your case better than anyone else to the point where the neg should be behind on specific solvency/link issues on the CP and DAs.
Negative teams: I am sympathetic to teams that run generic politics/topic DAs. I was the only policy team at my high school and understand if your squad isn’t big enough to generate a bunch of new specific DAs for every plan on the topic. However, please try to form specific link and impact scenarios. Even if you don’t have a specific link card for every aff, you should be able to spin and create a persuasive story in the neg block.
Also, please to impact calc - you might be sensing a theme here but contextualization is key. Pay attention to aff strategy and adapt your neg strat to it.
Plan vs K: This goes for teams on both sides– specificity and contextualization of your arguments will be most rewarded in the round. Affirmative teams need to substantively engage in the literature of the negative team and use their own case strategically to hedge back against the K. This should come in the form of both carded and analytical evidence.
Ks: Love it. Personally, I found doing research for ks the most interesting and rewarding part of debate. That being said, don’t presume I know all the literature of your K and even if I do, I still put the onus on debaters to explain and contextualize the K. While I find the literature very interesting, it’s very frustrating when debaters throwing around buzzwords and “k tricks” without explaining and warranting out their arguments. I think its highly persuasive when neg teams not only flush out the theory of the k, but give empirical examples to prove the thesis of the k.
By the end of the round, as a judge, I should know a specific link story to the aff, not just to the squo. I am much less persuaded by generic USFG/state links and more persuaded by indicts to the aff itself. This goes the same for if you are going for the alt. While I don’t think an alt functions the same as a CP, I’m only going to vote on it if I have a clear understanding of how it works, and how it resolves the k’s links to the aff.
Also, don’t gloss over the fw debate. First, it sucks to lose to k tricks on the fw debate but also will help you a lot on the alt debate for both neg and aff teams.
For the most part, I think these debates are incredibly educational if debated well. Although I never went for planless affs, I think well developed and strategically written affs are incredibly persuasive. That being said, I do think they generally should have some relation to the topic. I generally don’t think that the ballot should be used as a survival strategy for the team, because the ballot should be about arguments, not people.
For T-USFG/FW: I went for this 9/10 in HS against planless affs. When going for it, please 1) engage with the aff and tailor your T blocks to the aff to garner offense on your model of debate. 2) Don’t go for so many impacts in the 2NR - just for one or two with strong internal links 3) Read a TVA 4) please get to the case debate and debate it substantively. Try to make your case arguements work cohesively with your t args
For the aff team: warrant and flush out clear arguments rather than generic state bad, rez violent, etc. Your aff was probably written with specific strategic advantages in mind so use them! Also, provide a C/I and actually explain what your world of debate looks like in comparison to the neg.
I am a graduate of Fordham University in the Bronx, and am very excited to be judging! I attended Nova High where, senior year, I founded and coached our Lincoln Douglas team, so I have a very extensive, but not completely exhaustive, understanding of LD. I am very well versed in debate events- freshman & sophomore year I competed in congress and junior year in PF. So I'm great at following logic- if you are going to run something tricky I'm totally capable to judge it, just make sure you explain it well.
Clear warrants and weighing mechanisms are extremely important to me. Please give me a means to evaluate what you are arguing. Keep my flow clean. Signpost.
I'm pretty much open to anything you wanna throw at me. With a few limitations of course. If you are at all sexist, racist, homophobic, or rude to your opponent, expect me to call you out and don't expect speaks higher than 25. I'm fine with speed to an extent- if you want to spread that's completely fine, just don't expect me to get every word down. If it's important, you better bring it up in your later speeches. I love to hear out of the box arguments - in high school, I ran a rage fem K - so I love to hear new and progressive ideas.
I'm sure I left out some things here so I'll be posting updates, but feel free to email me with any questions!
** Assume that I am a flow judge, but lay on the topic
If you want me to vote on an argument, it has to be in summary and final focus.
I appreciate world comparisons, weighing, and logically explained arguments.
I do not like speed. I will not flow your arguments if I do not understand what you are saying.
I will decide your speaks based on the clarity and content of your speech.
***Before you start your speech tell me which side of the flow you are starting on, and sign post clearly as you go along.
***Don't be a jerk.
***Please do not shake my hand.
I am a parent judge who has never judged a debate before. Explain everything to me as if I were five, and speak slowly. If I don't flow its because you're talking too fast.
PLEASE wear a mask in the room if I am judging you!!! pls it will make me so happy
Hi, my name is Noor (she/hers) and I am a grad student at The New School, where I debated for 3.5 years. I am studying heterodox economics (aka communist and historical econ not evil stocks econ), and my research focuses on social and economic development in the South Caucasus (particularly Armenia, where I grew up) in the context of omnipresent genocide.
I was a college novice at a super under-funded program. My partner and I were the first from our school to ever go to the NDT in 2022, and were the second from our school to ever break at CEDA in 2021 and 2022. It was said that my partnership's specialty was Marxism. This means I care a lot about research integrity and quality, and about debaters being smart about their choices (i am a little bit of a hypocrite on this second part). I value debate primarily as an educational activity, and as a community-building space.
- I would like to be on the email chain (newschoolBL@gmail.com).
- I am flow-centric, but not especially technical. I will vote on the flow, but some things are more convincing than others, so it is possible to convince me your impact is more important than a dropped argument.
- Please ask me for any accessibility accommodations you need before the round! I want to make sure the debate space is safe and equitable for you.
- I start docking speaker points SO fast if y'all don't let your female partners speak in CX.Obviously helping each other out is fine.
- Do not say anything racist, homophobic, xenophobic, or sexist in front of me. Egregious violations of this will be intervened on and immediately dropped.
- I am excited to be in your debate, especially so if you are a novice, and I would love to chat post RFD if you have questions! :)
- I think cap good is a violent argument and I will not vote on it unless the other team makes a huge mistake.
You, ideally (Policy):
- The topic is a suggestion. At the same time, I like hearing smart, well-debated T arguments and find them very interesting. However, I have very little experience running it myself, so I might not be the best judge to fairly evaluate it.
- Frame your impacts and tell me why they matter. I really actually care about the people whose surroundings are being altered by your arguments.
- Speak clearly, especially when reading tags and authors. 70% of top speed is comfortable for me. If I can't hear u I can't really vote for you.
- I think case debates are under-utilized, and a great way to get people in a trap.
- Tell me why your framework makes you win the other argument.
- For Ks, alts are "optional", links are not. I would like to see an alt explanation, but if that's not your thing, that's cool too (to be very clear this is not me being one of those people who's like haha ya ks are fine and then literally never votes for them, like u don't *have* to have an alt if you don't vibe w that I would just prefer it)
You, ideally (PF):
- Your Final Focus's main points should have shown up in your very first speeches.
- I care a lot about extension work, and drawing a clear line of thought throughout the debate. Otherwise, you do you!
- If you spread, you need to be very, very clear. If the other team can't understand what you are saying, they can't answer it, and that fairness issue outweighs the flow. I will call out clear up to twice then give up flowing.
- Please be as physically comfortable as possible! I do not care what you are wearing or whether you sit or stand. It will have literally zero impact on my decision and usually I genuinely don't notice.
- Try to not say things that are blatantly untrue (ie, "communist countries in the 21st century don't do trade")
You, ideally (LD):
See Policy section, but I don't know what a trick is, I do not care to know what a trick is, and if you do one I will probably get confused and then not vote for you.
Relatively new to debate
I am a parent judge
Please make your arguments clear and articulate
I will understand most arguments but sorry if my RFD is not too clear
Let me keep it short. I have never been a coach nor a debater. English is my second language.
I view a debater as a presenter to convince a graduate committee or a business team on why his/her thesis or project should be endorsed or prevailed.
No matter what topics are, I do not take any consideration of their Pro/Con or Aff/Neg.
I judge by the following:
- Clarity of your points to support your position is important. This incudes both information clarity and speak clearly.
- Whenever you state numbers and facts, I take particular attention to whether you have references. The party provides more precise and comprehensive references, I score the party higher on the specific point.
- I value your own thinking and work, such as your analysis of the information you collected and connecting the dots. I especially value if you can frame them in a way that I can follow and understand.
- I judge how you counter the other party’s points. Avoiding or missing the points is a deduction.
Please feel free to ask me questions anytime.
Director of Policy Debate @ Stanford University; Director of Debate @ Edgemont Jr./Sr. High School
(High School Constraints - Edgemont)
(College Constraints - Kentucky)
Email Chain: email@example.com
2020-2021 Update: Christmas Edition
Misunderstanding Tech over Truth: Those three words hurt my soul because they've become to only symbolize that a dropped argument is a true argument in most circles; however, it should symbolize that well-done technical debate overcomes the truthful nature of any argument. I want to see you technically execute an argument you've spent time learning and understanding and I'm willing to listen to any argument that shows me this was done. This is significantly different from "I will listen to anything."
Research->Knowledge->Execution: That's the order! I love when students do a lot of column A to make column C easy.
Clarity Trumps: Speed is irrelevant to me. I've been doing debate for a quarter-century and I've judged people at various speeds. The most important part of the debate is clearly communicating ideas to an audience. I speak very fast, so I realize it's inevitable; however, if you're not understood then nothing you do matters. Remember, what you think you said is not always what the other person hears you say.
Policy Debate: What happened to strategies? The trend is to read 3-4 counterplans in the 1nc, rather than debating the case. Fewer off-case positions, with more time invested in debating the case, is usually a more successful strategy to create pressure on 2a's helping you win more ballots.
2020-2021 PF Update: December 21, 2020
I want to see the best version of you debating! As you can tell my opinions on PF have changed dramatically in the past six seasons; however, I still enjoy judging debates when you're trying your best!!
Theory: I'm totally uninterested in PF theory. It's underdeveloped, not well explained, and has no foundational basis in the activity.
Evidence: If the tournament doesn't adhere to a specific set of evidence rules, I will default to NSDA evidence rules. Paraphrasing is allowed unless otherwise prohibited, but must follow the rules.
I will no longer ask for cases or cards before the debate. I do expect that if a piece of evidence or a card doc is requested that it can be produced in a timely manner. To expedite this process, I will allow the other team to prep during the transfer time for a card doc to be sent to the other team unless it's specifically prohibited by the tournament.
Wiki: I don't look at it. My personal preference is that teams would disclose if the other team asks but I am not policing these conversations. I personally believe that understanding the arguments you are debating (if they've been read before) produces better debate; however, am uninterested in listening to a debate about disclosure being good or bad unless something unethical was done during the disclosure process.
2017-2018 PF TOC Update: April 23rd, 2018
As you can see I used to have a very strong leaning towards how evidence needs to be presented during a debate. I've backtracked pretty substantially on this point. Therefore, I won't ask for your case ahead of time. However, I do still prefer evidence that is directly quoted and cited according to the rules of the tournament we are at. I do not like paraphrasing and will only accept paraphrasing as a logical argument to be made in the round and will not credit you for reading a qualified author.
I know a lot about debate, arguments, and the topics you are debating. I have an extremely competitive set of students that are constantly talking about the topic, I tutor students around the world in PF, and I generally like to be educated on the things that students will debate in front of me.
Beyond what I've said above, I'll give you an additional piece of advice: If you would strike Stefan Bauschard or Amisha Mehta then you'd probably want to strike me. I tend to fall somewhere in between where they are at in their philosophies.
Last but not least, I don't intend to steal your cards...we have more than we can use...however if it means you'll throw me up on a Reddit post that can get over 100+ responses then maybe I'll have to start doing it!
**Disregard the section about asking me to conflict you if you feel uncomfortable debating in front of me since I've judged minimally and don't have any experience judging any of the teams in the field more than once therefore, it doesn't apply to you**
2016-2017 Season Update: September 11, 2016
HS Public Forum Update: This is my first year really becoming involved in Public Forum Debate. I have a lot of strong opinions as far as the activity goes. However, my strongest opinion centers on the way that evidence is used, miscited, paraphrased, and taken out of context during debates. Therefore, I will start by requiring that each student give me a copy of their Pro/Con case prior to their speech and also provide me a copy of all qualified sources they'll cite throughout the debate prior to their introduction. I will proactively fact-check all of your citations and quotations, as I feel it is needed. Furthermore, I'd strongly prefer that evidence be directly quoted from the original text or not presented at all. I feel that those are the only two presentable forms of argumentation in debate. I will not accept paraphrased evidence. If it is presented in a debate I will not give it any weight at all. Instead, I will always defer to the team who presented evidence directly quoted from the original citation. I also believe that a debater who references no evidence at all, but rather just makes up arguments based on the knowledge they've gained from reading, is more acceptable than paraphrasing.
Paraphrasing to me is a shortcut for those debaters who are too lazy to directly quote a piece of text because they feel it is either too long or too cumbersome to include in their case. To me, this is laziness and will not be rewarded.
Beyond that, the debate is open for the debaters to interpret. I'd like if debaters focused on internal links, weighing impacts, and instructing me on how to write my ballot during the summary and final focus. Too many debaters allow the judge to make up their mind and intervene with their own personal inclinations without giving them any guidance on how to evaluate competing issues. Work Hard and I'll reward you. Be Lazy and it won't work out for you.
NDT/CEDA Update: I'm getting older and I'm spending increasingly more hours on debate (directing, coaching, and tabulating at the HS and College level) than I used to. I really love the activity of debate, and the argumentative creativity being developed, but I'm slowly starting to grow hatred toward many of the attitudes people are adopting toward one another, which in turn results in me hating the activity a little more each day. I believe the foundational element of this activity is mutual respect amongst competitors and judges. Without this foundational element, the activity is doomed for the future.
As a result, I don't want to be a part of a debate unless the four debaters in the room really want me to be there and feel I will benefit them by judging their debate. I feel debate should be an inclusive environment and each student in the debate should feel comfortable debating in front of the judge assigned to them.
I also don’t want people to think this has to do with any single set of arguments being run. I really enjoy academic debates centered on discussions of the topic and/or resolution. However, I don’t prefer disregarding or disrespectful attitudes toward one another. This includes judges toward students, students toward judges, students toward observers, observers toward students, and most importantly students toward students.
As I grow older my tolerance for listening to disparaging, disregarding, and disrespectful comments from the participants has completely eroded. I'm not going to tolerate it anymore. I got way better things to do with my time than listen to someone talk down to me when I've not done the same to them. I treat everyone with respect and I demand the same in return. I think sometimes debaters, in the heat of competition, forget that even if a judge knows less about their lived/personal experience or hasn’t read as much of their literature as they have; the judges, for the most part, understand how argumentation operates and how debates are evaluated. Too many debaters want to rely on the pref sheet and use it to get judges who will automatically check-in, which is antithetical to debate education. Judges should and do vote for the "worse" or "less true" arguments in rounds when they were debated better. Debate is a performative/communicative activity. It's not about who wrote the best constructive only. It's about how teams clash throughout the debate.
Therefore, as a result, I will allow any person or team to ask me to conflict them if they feel uncomfortable debating in front of me or feel that the current system of judge placement requires them to prefer me since I'm a better fit than the other judge(s). I won't ask you any questions and won't even respond to the request beyond replying "request honored". Upon receiving the request I will go into my tabroom.com account and make sure I conflict you from future events. I feel this way you'll have a better chance at reducing the size of the judge pool and you'll get to remove a judge that you don't feel comfortable debating in front of which will narrow the number of judges available to you and might allow you to get more preferable judges. My email is firstname.lastname@example.org. Please direct all conflict requests to this email.
2014-2015 Season Update: September 2, 2014 (The gift that keeps on giving!!)
The following are not for the faint of heart!
Some days you just can't get ready in the morning without being bothered. Then you just need to be cheered up and it fails or someone threatens to eat your phone.
However, when it's all said and done you can at least sleep having sweet dreams.
**On a more serious note. Dylan Quigley raised a point on the College Policy Debate Facebook group about what "competition" means when people are judging debates. Therefore, I'll go with this answer "Because this is an emerging debate with no clear consensus, I would encourage judges to let the debaters hash out a theory of competition instead of trying to create one for them. I think in an era where students are taking their power to mold the "world of debate" they debate in it is especially important for us judges to *listen* to their arguments and learn from their theories. No shade towards the original post, I just think it's worthwhile to emphasize the relationship between "new debate" (whatevs that is) and student's ability to create theories of debate on their own instead of choosing a theory that's imposed on them." However, in the absence of these debates happening in the round I will default to a traditional interpretation of "competition." This interpretation says the neg must prove their alternative method/advocacy is better than the affirmative method/advocacy or combination of the affirmatives method/advocacy and all or part of the negatives method/advocacy. Also in these situations, I'll default to a general theory of opportunity cost which includes the negative burden of proving the affirmative undesirable.
2013-2014 Season Update: December 25, 2013 (Yes, it's Christmas...so here are your presents!!)
If you love to debate as much as Sukhi loves these cups, please let it show!!
If you can mimic this stunt, you'll thoroughly impress me and be well rewarded: Sukhi Dance
And you thought you had a sick blog!!
Also, why cut cards when you can have sick Uke skills like these and these!!
To only be shown up by a 2-year-old killing it to Adele
Finally, we need to rock out of 2013 with the Stanford version of the Harlem Shake by Sukhi and KJaggz
2012-2013 Season Update: August 22, 2012
Instead of forcing you to read long diatribes (see below) about my feelings on arguments and debate practices. I will instead generate a list of things I believe about debate and their current practices. You can read this list and I believe you'll be able to adequately figure out where to place me on your preference sheet. If you'd like to read more about my feelings on debate, then continue below the fold! Have a great season.
1. TKO is still in play, and will always be that way!
2. You must win a link to a DA - if you don't talk about it I'm willing to assign it zero risk. Uniqueness doesn't mean there is a risk of a link.
2a. "Issue Specific Uniqueness" IS NOT a utopian answer to all affirmative arguments.
3. You must defend something on the aff - by doing so it also implies you should be able to defend your epistemological assumptions underlying that advocacy.
4. T is about reasonability, not competing interpretations. This doesn't mean every affirmative is reasonably topical.
5. Debate should be hard; it's what makes it fun and keeps us interested.
6. Research is good - it's rewarding, makes you smarter, and improves your arguments.
7. "Steal the entire affirmative" strategies are bad. However, affirmative teams are even worse at calling teams out on it. This means they are still very much in play. Therefore, affirmatives should learn how to defeat them, instead of just believing they'll somehow go away.
8. There are other parts to an argument other than the impact. You should try talking about them, I heard they're pretty cool.
9. Your affirmative should have advantages that are intrinsic to the mechanism you choose to defend with the aff. Refer to #6, it helps solve this dilemma.
10. Have fun and smile! The debaters, judges, and coaches in this activity are your lifelong friends and colleagues. We are all rooting you on to succeed. We all love the activity or we wouldn't be here. If you don't like something, don't hate the player, hate the game!
Clipping/Cross-reading/Mis-marking: I hear that this is coming back. To prosecute cheating, the accusing team needs hard evidence. A time trial is not hard evidence. A recording of the speech must be presented. I will stop the debate, listen to the recording, and compare it to the evidence read. If cheating occurred, the offending debater and their partner will receive zero speaker points and a loss. I'd also encourage them to quit. I consider this offense to be more serious than fabricating evidence. It is an honor system that strikes at the very core of what we do here.
An additional caveat that was discussed with me at a previous tournament - I believe that the status quo is always a logical option for the negative unless it is explicitly stated and agreed to in CX or it's won in a speech.
Newly Updated Philosophy - November 18, 2011
So after talking to Tim Aldrete at USC, he convinced me that I needed more carrots and fewer sticks in my philosophy. Therefore, I have a small carrot for those debaters who wish to invoke it. It's called a T.K.O (Technical Knockout). This basically means that at any point of the debate you believe you've solidly already won the debate, beyond a reasonable doubt, (dropped T argument, double turn, a strategic miscue that is irreparable by the other team) you can invoke a TKO and immediately end the debate. If a team chooses this path and succeeds, I will give them 30 speaker points each and an immediate win. If the team chooses to invoke this but it's unclear you've TKO'd the other team or in fact choose wrong, you obviously will lose and your points will be severely affected. Who dares to take the challenge?
Past Updated Philosophy - September 9, 2010
I am currently the Assistant Coach @ Lakeland/Panas High School, College Prep School, and Harvard Debate. I’m also involved with Research & Marketing for Planet Debate. This topic will be my 14th in competitive debate and 10th as a full-time coach. Debate is my full-time job and I love this activity pretty much more than anything I’ve ever done in my life. I enjoy the competition, the knowledge gained, and the people I’ve come to be friends with, and likewise I really enjoy people who have the same passion I have for this activity.
I last posted an update to my judge philosophy a number of years ago and think it is finally time I revisit it and make some changes.
First, I’ll be the first to admit that I probably haven’t been the best judge the last few years and I think a majority of that has come from pure exhaustion. I’ve been traveling upwards of 20+ weekends a year and am constantly working when I am home. I don’t get much time to re-charge my batteries before I’m off to another tournament. Then while at tournaments I’m usually putting in extremely late nights cutting cards and preparing my teams, which trades off with being adequately awake and tuned in. This year I’ve lessened my travel schedule and plan to be much better rested for debates than I was in previous years.
Second, since my earlier days of coaching/judging, my ideology about debate has changed somewhat. This new ideology will tend to complement hard-working teams and disadvantage lazy teams who try and get by with the same generics being run every debate. Don’t let this frighten you, but rather encourage you to become more involved in developing positions and arguments. When this happens I’m overly delighted and reward you with higher speaker points and more than likely a victory.
I debated PF in High School and coached in College. I judge on the flow most heavily on the last four speeches. Please weigh and give analysis beyond dropping weighing mechanism terms. The more effective your analysis and explanation of the round the more likely I will vote for you. I won't drop your arguments if you don't bring them up in every speech, but I will weigh and value them less because that indicates to me that it is not an essential argument to your case. Be kind to your opponents I will dock your speaks for being rude to anyone in the round.
Assume I know nothing.
Make it believable and accurate.
Don't tell me what to think, present evidence and clear and concise explanations to weigh in my final decision.
Former college policy debater and speech competitor. Been coaching speech and debate for the last 12 years.
A fan of clean, structured, easy to follow debates. I'm big on pre-speech road maps and internal signposting. Staying on track and explaining to me where you're going indicates to me that you are in control of the round and your performance within it. Debates that get muddled aren't fun for anyone, so keep it clear where you are cross applying and clashing.
I won't time anything in round. Keep tabs on each other.
I do prefer you extend thru summary if you have time so I know what you're going for.
Definitions only help us stay on the same page so when they are helpful, they are appreciated. Totally down with an overview.
Also fine with jargon. Competed in policy so speed shouldn't be an issue. I prefer it to be a little slower as this is PF, but if I can't understand you it's almost certainly an issue with articulation, not speed.
Impact weighing should be a primary part of your final focus. If I don't know what you impact out to then what are we even doing here and why does it matter? I do my best to leave my biases at the door, but that also means I will not intervene for you. Don't sprinkle a trail of bread crumbs and lead me down a path without actually ending up somewhere. Don't imply impacts or warrants, state them directly. You shouldn't make me work to follow you, it should be easy.
Speaker points for me are a function of your ability to logically break down and explain your points in a clear and concise manner. In my opinion it's not about how pretty you speak, that's what IE's are for (a stumble here or there means nothing to me in debate). Be clear, articulate, logical, and explain where you are going and you'll get high speaks from me. Be warned though: in 12 years of judging debate I have given out less than 10 perfect 30's. To me, 30 means perfection, as in you could not have done anything better whatsoever.
Framework is cool with me. Makes it easier to weigh the round.
Truth over tech.
Any other questions feel free to ask me before the round starts.
Debated for two years in Public Forum at Half Hollow Hills High School East. I'm currently a senior at Binghamton University,
I'm probably tech > truth, meaning I'm not going to vote on unwarranted and poorly contextualized arguments.
I should see your arguments properly extended in both of these speeches, that means both the warrant and the impact. Also, nothing you bring up in final is going to matter for my ballot if it wasn't also in summary (exception is that defense is sticky). I know some judges are ok with new weighing in final, but I'm personally not a fan of it.
Weighing arguments is the easiest way to win the round. I should at least be seeing discussion on magnitude, scope, probability, but introducing things like strength of link, clarity of impact, etc, will usually earn you my ballot and good speaks. Start this as early in the round as possible (ideally rebuttal), and do it in every possible instance. This means that in addition to seeing you weigh arguments, I want to see you weigh and implicate things like turns.
Pretty typical flay judge.
If you believe that something in the round is important, tell me. It also better be in every speech possible.
I’m okay with some speed, but remember that speed has a tradeoff with clarity. If I can’t understand you, I can’t flow you, thus I can’t vote for you.
Keep jargon at a minimum, Public Forum is meant to be accessible to the public. Using jargon does the opposite.
I am a parent judge, and have been judging for 2 years. Speak slow, and explain your arguments well.
Charlotte Slovin (she/her/they/them)
If there’s an email chain I’d like to be on it (email@example.com). Absolutely no to PocketBox or whatever other document uploading site.
I did National Circuit Policy for 4 years at Oakwood. I am now a sophomore at Barnard College.
I’ll disclose after the round so please stick around for a verdict and comments.
Conflicts: Oakwood (CA)
Debate is an educational activity but too many times made inaccessible or an unsafe space for students and participants. Please please PLEASE remember that your opponent is a person before they are a competitor. Don’t make this a space that breeds inconsiderate individuals. It is up to YOU to cultivate an activity where everyone can feel safe, have fun, and learn.
I generally have no preference for what you read (minus arguments that are offensive, racist, homophobic, etc.), as long as you understand what you’re reading and it clashes within the round.
It’s been a good minute since I’ve heard spreading so please be clear. Incoherence because of speed makes debate a useless activity.
More nuanced/contextualized debate on fewer positions >>>> your 12 blippy offcase and shadow extensions in the block.
LBL is important– doesn’t matter if you’re a traditional policy team or only run k and k affs. It’s incredibly frustrating if you go for a 4 minute overview and then blow through the line-by-line saying, “refer to the O/V”. The most interesting debate comes from clash and specificity of arguments within the context of the round.
(a lot of this is stolen from Hannah Ji’s paradigm because we share most of the same brain)
Topicality: The way look at T debates is 1) does the aff meet the neg interp 2) If it doesn’t why should I vote for the neg’s interpretation. It’s not enough for a neg team to say, “aff doesn’t meet”. Tell me what debate looks like in the world of the Aff’s interp vs the world of the neg’s interp and why neg’s interp is better (actually articulate the impacts of the T violation/contextualize it to the world of the aff).
Theory: SLOW DOWN!! If you are giving rapid-fire theory args and not sending analytics, you better make sure that you are speaking with high clarity. Although a 5 minute 2ar on condo is really not my favorite debate, I’ll vote on it as long as you warrant out why the other team should lose because of the argument.
Policy Affs: Ran mostly soft-left policy affs throughout high school with a heavy emphasis on framework. In general, Aff teams should know their case inside and out. I LOVE case debate and think affirmative teams don’t use their case enough to their strategic advantage. Good case debate can be magical— it’s literally an entire 8 minutes of your speaking time so make it count.
Plan vs CP/DA strats: For affirmative teams, use your 1ac to gain strategic leverage against the negative. You should know your case better than anyone else to the point where the neg should be behind on specific solvency/link issues on the CP and DAs. For negative teams, I am sympathetic to teams that run generic politics/topic DAs. I was the only policy team at my high school and understand if your squad isn’t big enough to generate a bunch of new specific DAs for every plan on the topic. However, please try to form specific link and impact scenarios. Even if you don’t have a specific link card for every aff, you should be able to spin and create a persuasive story in the neg block.
On that note, please do impact calc. Like,,, PLEASE.
Plan vs K: This goes for teams on both sides– specificity and contextualization of your arguments will be most rewarded in the round. Affirmative teams need to substantively engage in the literature of the negative team and use their own case strategically to hedge back against the K. This should come in the form of both carded and analytical arguments.
Ks: Can be seriously rewarding and meaningful. That being said, don’t presume I know all the literature of your K and even if I do, I still put the onus on debaters to explain and contextualize the K. It can be incredibly frustrating to listen to high schoolers give shallow and butchered explanations of their lit, so please know what you are talking about (read your authors, please). Please do not throw around buzzwords and K tricks without explaining and warranting out arguments. I think its highly persuasive when neg teams not only flush out the theory of the K, but give empirical examples to prove the thesis of the K.
By the end of the round, as a judge, I should know a specific link story to the aff, not just to the squo. I am much less persuaded by generic USFG/state links and more persuaded by indicts to the aff itself. This goes the same for if you are going for the alt. While I don’t think an alt functions the same as a CP, I’m only going to vote on it if I have a clear understanding of how it works, and how it resolves the k’s links to the aff.
Don’t gloss over the fw debate. First, it sucks to lose to k tricks on fw but also will help you a lot on the alt debate for both neg and aff teams.
Nontraditional/Planless Affs: For the most part, I think these debates are incredibly educational if debated well. Although I never went for planless affs, I think well developed and strategically written affs are incredibly persuasive. That being said, I do think they generally should have some relation to the topic. I generally don’t think that the ballot should be viewed or used as a survival strategy for the team. The ballot should be about arguments, not people, and I think opening this up has more negative implications than people realize.
For T-USFG/FW: I went for this 9/10 in HS against planless affs. When going for it, please 1) engage with the aff and tailor your T blocks to the aff to garner offense on your model of debate. 2) Don’t go for too many impacts in the 2NR - just for one or two with strong internal links 3) Read a TVA 4) please get to the case debate and debate it substantively. Try to make your case arguments work cohesively with your T args.
For the aff team: warrant and flush out clear arguments rather than generic state bad, rez violent, etc. Your aff was probably written with specific strategic advantages in mind so use them! Also, provide a C/I and actually explain what your world of debate looks like in comparison to the neg.
Most of the Policy stuff applies but email if you have questions. The more Policy-like you make the round the more likely I am to follow. I have substantially less experience in LD but here are my preferences based on things I have witnessed:
- disclosure is good
- fairness is a voting issue
- I will reward you for good and specific link chains
- tricks/spikes/blips/etc. hurt clash, and clash is good
I continue to be disappointed by the incredibly low standard of what is considered "evidence" in this activity. This is not to say that research is not being done (sometimes...hopefully), but that within a given round the "paraphrasing" of evidence that is accepted along with difficult access to the actual evidence is shameful. I am trying to come up with a system where debaters are held accountable for having their evidence accessible and while I know that this cannot be asked of every Public Forum debater I BEG of you to PLEASE have your evidence/PDFs on hand before the round starts. If it takes an egregious amount of time to find your ev I will run prep.
- Speed is fine but don’t do it just if you think it’s “cool” or you think you’ll get points with me. Incoherence because of speed makes debate a useless activity. Speak the way that is best for you and your strategy.
- The link chains in this form of debate are absolutely ridiculous in terms of how little evidence tends to back up arguments. If you articulate your scenarios and impact them out it will seriously benefit you.
- Please warrant and weigh your claims if you want me to evaluate them.
- Please signpost. It will help both of us.
- Theory is fine but I will take it very seriously. ONLY run it if there is serious and overt abuse but warrant it well if you want it to be a voting issue.
- When applicable please give an offtime roadmap/order
- Minus 0.1 speaks every time you pronounce nuclear as “nuke-you-lar” I am completely serious.
Hi! I am Selma Tabakovic (she/her pronouns) and I debated Public Forum in high school. I went to American University. Now I'm going to Brooklyn Law School. I coach PF for American Heritage.
Generally: Debate in a way that will make you feel most comfortable and confident within the round! I will be able to adapt to you and your style. My paradigm below is just some specifics about my preferences, but you should feel free to compete in your own style.
I definitely look at the flow to decide who wins the round, but if I think that something is not handled effectively on the flow (ex: really under-covered argumentation in response to major points in the round), I will likely vote on the truth of an argument.
What I like to see in the round:
Comparative weighing in FF is key! Tell me why an argument matters more than another. Comparing worlds to each other will make the round more wholistic. If I have to decide which argument matters more than another, it is technically intervening and I would prefer if I didn't have to do that.
If you want me to vote for an argument it has to be extended from Summary to FF. Please extend the warrants for your arguments from case that you want to go for. Please frontline in second rebuttal and collapse on the argument you want to win on!
I love hearing critical arguments in PF! Feel free to run any argument about imperialism/colonialism/etc within the PF topic. I think engaging with these types of arguments within a round makes debate more educational, impactful, and interesting.
What isn't necessary in the round:
Please do not give me an off-time roadmap unless you are running theory. I will be able to follow your train of thought if you sign post!
Please do not ask "I am first speaker, so can I have first question?" Please just assume that first speaker in the round has first question.
Please share me on the evidence exchanges -- firstname.lastname@example.org.
Evidence exchanges in the virtual space can be a little smoother. I think they are easier when a google doc is created. I would really appreciate it if you all could send each other speech docs to limit the amount of time for evidence exchanges. At the very least, I will follow NSDA rules and time you for 1 minute for each card you need to find and then use your prep time for the remainder of time it takes you to send the card. I do not like paraphrased evidence and would much rather prefer you read cut cards.
Hi! I am a PF Debater and debated at Wayland High School for three years.
Experience: Putting up with Sam Goldstone's shit and living by the grace of Kevin Wang.
If you manage to fit the correct pronunciation of falafel into your speech I'll give you 30s.
- I am tech over truth, so as long as you extend and weigh your arguments it's fine by me.
- If there is no offense in the round, I will default Con
- I do not take notes during crossfire
- I will only vote on something if it is in both summary and final focus. If you read an impact card in your case and it is not in summary, I will not extend it for you, even if the other team does not address it.
- No new responses is permitted in second summary (it's fine in first summary). The only exception I will make is if you need to respond to evidence/responses introduced in the first summary.
- First summary has to extend defense, turns, disads/etc, the extra minute gives you ample time.
- I will only ask to see evidence after the round in one of three scenarios. (1) I was told to call for a card in a speech (2) Both teams disagree over what the card says and it's never fully resolved (3) I'm curious and want to read it.
- I don't evaluate Kritik's, I think they are ruining the activity I love, however I am open to theory, but due to me not being well versed in Theory run it at your own digression.
- I reserve the right to drop you for offensive/insensitive language.
I was a public forum second speaker for three years at Randolph High School. Employee and coach with the NYCUDL for a few years now.
I flow the round but am overall pretty relaxed on technicalities. Make sure the things you want me to vote on are in summary and final focus.
No spreading please.
I am not very familiar with LD and have never competed it. Regardless, I will flow everything you say and do my best to make a fair decision. Don't get too fancy if possible. Thanks!
I've been debating and coaching teams across the country for a while. Currently coaching Dreyfoos AL (Palm Beach Independent) and Poly Prep.
I will make whichever decision requires the least amount of intervention. I don't like to do work for debaters but in 90% of rounds you leave me no other choice.
Here's how I make decisions
1) Weighing/Framework (Prereqs, then link-ins/short-circuits, then impact comparison i.e. magnitude etc.)
2) Cleanly extended argument across both speeches (summ+FF) that links to FW
3) No unanswered terminal defense extended in other team's second half speeches
I have a very high threshold for extensions, saying the phrase "extend our 1st contention/our impacts" will get you lower speaks and a scowl. You need to re-explain your argument from uniqueness to fiat to impact in order to properly "extend" something in my eyes. I need warrants. This also goes for turns too, don't extend turns without an impact.
Presumption flows neg. If you want me to default to the first speaking team you'll need to make an argument. In that case though you should probably just try to win some offense.
I like analytical arguments, not everything needs to be carded to be of value in a round. (Warrants )
Signpost pls. Roadmaps are a waste of time 98% of the time, I only need to know where you're starting.
I love me some good framework. Highly organized speeches are the key to high speaks in front of me. Voter summaries are fresh.
I love T and creative topicality interps. Messing around with definitions and grammar is one of my favorite things to do as a coach.
Try to get on the same page as your opponents as often as possible, agreements make my decision easier and make me respect you more as a debater (earning you higher speaks). Strategic concessions make me happy. The single best way to get good speaks in front of me is to implicate your opponent's rebuttal response(s) or crossfire answers against them in a speech.
Frontlining in second rebuttal is smart but not required. It’s probably a good idea if they read turns.
Reading tons of different weighing mechanisms is a waste of time because 10 seconds of meta-weighing or a link-in OHKOs. When teams fail to meta-weigh or interact arguments I have to intervene, and that makes me sad.
Don’t extend every single thing you read in case.
My email is email@example.com
I'm not gonna call for cards unless they're contested in the round and I believe that they're necessary for my RFD. I think that everyone else that does this is best case an interventionist judge, and worst case a blatant prep thief.
Skipping grand is cringe. Stop trying to act like you're above the time structure.
Don't say "x was over time, can we strike it?" right after your opponent's speech. I'll only evaluate/disregard ink if you say it was over time during your own speech time. Super annoying to have a mini argument about speech time in between speeches. Track each other’s prep.
Don't say TKO in front of me, no round is ever unwinnable.
Theory's fine, usually frivolous in PF. Love RVIs Genuinely believe disclosure is bad for the event and paraphrasing is good, but I certainly won't intervene against any shell you're winning.
I will vote for kritikal args :-)
Just because you're saying the words structural violence in case doesn't mean you're reading a K
Shoutouts to my boo thang, Shamshad Ali #thepartnership
Put Me on the Email Chain: Cjaswill23@gmail.com
Experience: I debated in College policy debate team (Louisville WY) at the University of Louisville, went to the quarterfinals of the NDT 2018 , coached and judged high school and college highly competitive teams.
Policy Preferences: Debate is a game that is implicated by the people who play it. Just like any other game rules can be negotiated and agreed upon. Soooooo with that being said, I won't tell you how to play, just make sure I can clearly understand you and the rules you've negotiated(I ran spreading inaccessible arguments but am somewhat trained in evaluating debaters that spread) and I also ask that you are not being disrespectful to any parties involved. With that being said, I don't care what kind of arguments you make, just make sure there is a clear impact calculus, clearly telling me what the voters are/how to write my ballot. Im also queer black woman poet, so those strats often excite me, but will not automatically provide you with a ballot. You also are not limited to those args especially if you don't identify with them in any capacity. I advise you to say how I’m evaluating the debate via Role Of the Judge because I will default to the arguments that I have on my flow and how they "objectively" interact with the arguments of your opponent. I like narratives, but I will default to the line by line if there is not effective weighing. Create a story of what the aff world looks like and the same with the neg. I'm not likely to vote for presumption arguments, it makes the game dull. I think debate is a useful tool for learning despite the game-structure. So teach me something and take my ballot.
Other Forms of Debate: cross-apply above preferences
I am a parent judge. I will judge based on a combination of the flow, general logic, strength of contentions and common sense.
Please do not run critiques in my rounds.
Please don't speak too fast. I can't appreciate your evidence if I can't understand it.
Be respectful to other competitors.
Good luck and have fun!
I'm a lay judge who can write flows - but consider my flow for 30% of the vote.
I don't judge crossfire, that's for you to ask clarifying questions on your opponents case.
I don't need an off-time roadmap, but if it helps you, feel free to to provide it.
Please make counterpoints with facts in the rebuttal and summary.
Your job is to convince me that the weight of your points / counter points is better than your opponents.
During the round if someone mentions that the sky is green, unless the other team refutes the point, then sky is green for the round.
We're here to learn and I provide verbal feedback on the decision at the end of the round as well as constructive feedback on your cases and rebuttals.
Please debate the topic as prescribed by the tournament.
I like clear, understandable speech and arguments. Please do not speak too fast, which is hard for me to flow through. Thanks!
I pay a lot attention on the evidences and resources. All arguments should be supported with clear evidence and the resources need to be credited.
Flow is the most important factor to me. Please show me how you connect all arguments.
Also, being polite and respect all team members during debate.