Nova Titan Invitational
2022 — Nova High School, Davie, FL/US
Public Forum Debate Paradigm ListAll Paradigms: Show Hide
Parent judge with experience judging humorous interpretation, impromptu, original oratory, public forum and Lincoln Douglas. I am ok with fast speakers, as long as you are clear and articulate in your argument.
I value confidence, respect for your opponent, and a clear speaking voice.
I volunteer to judge these events because I respect and value the time and dedication each student puts into their arguments.
Good Luck and have fun!
This is my first event as a debate tournament judge. I have been exposed to debating in the high school format from friends and nephews that have participated. Personally, my professional background of 26 years as a land use planner and analyst has exposed to public speaking in many forums and in different capabilities. These forums have included public workshops for consensus building, presentations to quasi-judicial board that result in votes for land use actions, and as a voting member of quasi-judicial boards that make recommendations to Commission/Council members.
My background in these different forums of public speaking would lend me to judge a debate tournament in the following ways:
1) the point of view should be clear and easy to understand;
2) the case presented should be laid out calmly and logically;
3) the demeanor should be professional, not bombastic and rude; and
4) arguments should be factually based and not be based on emotion.
I have judged a few debate tournaments in Public Forum over the course of the last four years. I am familiar with the structure of Public Forum rounds. My ask is simple: please try to avoid speaking too quickly while presenting your speeches. Best of luck to competitors!
I have previous experience in PF. I look for clash throughout the round, clear overviews (big picture analysis), and good weighing mechanisms.
Cypress Bay 2020
I've been with Champion Briefs since the 2020-2021 season
I'd like to be on the chain :) firstname.lastname@example.org
1 - K/Performance, esp high theory (but I also think T is true)
1-2 - Dense idptx positions
1-2 - Policy v Policy
3 - Phil you can explain well
4 - Theory heavy positions, besides T
5 - Dense phil you can't explain very well
Public forum stuff is near the bottom
Super duper short pre-round version: If you read Ks, I should be a high pref. If you read tricks and/or phil, I should be a low pref. I'm more familiar with the pomo side of Ks. I try to be as tabula rasa as possible. I say probably a lot. I generally don't flow author names, and I wasn't the best at flowing while I was competing. So... slow down on extensions a lil bit?
You can debate, really, however you want to debate. However, help me help you, and don't paraphrase your evidence. Reading essay style cases can also be hard to follow, so do with that information whatever you will.
Non T positions are cool, extra T and fxT are chill absent theory. I promise you can read whatever you want.
If that didn't help, you have questions, and you don't want to read my rambling, just shoot me an email. If it's before a tournament, I can't promise as to how quickly I'll answer, but at tournaments I have my email open 24/7.
Small 2023 update: I'm pretty okay with listening to phil/tricks positions, I think. However, you must be aware that this is not a branch of theory I think about often, or a form of debate that I coach or did while I was in high school. Phil v K debate is probably an uphill battle to win. You also must slow down when reading the big/abstract positions, and you should explain implications to me. If you read phil/tricks, I want you to explain it to me like I'm your younger sibling -I will not understand the phil buzzwords and jargon. ALSO, unrelated: 1AC theory makes me feel icky. You get infinite prep, you shouldn't have to read theory in your 1AC. Just debate. I believe in you.
The above is still true, especially the 1AC theory stuff, but after several months of doing prefs for my Cypress kids... there are a lot of people on the circuit now that are outright hostile towards phil stuff, or even tricks debate and this is kind of disappointing to me. Read the arguments that you want to read in front of me, but you should know that there are certain levels of explanation that you need to hit for me to vote on something - the brightline for voting on a dropped 1AC spike is going to be a lot higher for me than a fully fleshed out 1NC DA + case answers.
- Some of the judges/coaches who particularly influenced me and my debate style during my career include: Daniel Shatzkin, Alex Landrum, Aleksandar Shipetich, Allison Harper, Sawyer Emerson, Mitchell Buehler, Claire Rung, Rob Fernandez
- Defaults: Role of Debate > Judge > Ballot; comparative worlds first; competing interps; drop the debater; presume negative; reps/pre-fiat > literally everything else
- Background + my thoughts on the (negative) K: My career started at the Samford Debate Institute in the policy lab where I learned how to disad/counterplan/case debate. At my first tournament of the year, I turned around and read a death good aff and haven't turned back from the K since. In my senior year alone, I read: Anthro, Baudrillard (a few variations of this one), Dark Deleuze, Abolition, and Security. I don't think kritiks are really ever cheating unless they create a perfcon. I'm far more familiar with the post-modernism/high theory side of K debate over the identitarian side, though I have read a considerable amount of literature on both sides. Other Ks that I haven't read in round, but know the literature well enough include: Psychoanalysis, Afropessimism, Wake Work, settler colonialism, and queer pessimism, among others. You'll get +0.1 speaks if you use correct human/nonhuman animal rhetoric. Please don't read a K you don't understand just because I like Ks :)
- The (affirmative) K: I read these from pretty much day 1. There was only one instance in which I didn't (looking at you, UK), and that was a bit of a mess. Similar to the negative section, try not to read confusing (but fun) K affs just because I like them. It's more painful to listen to someone butcher a Deleuze aff than a hard right policy aff. I primarily read Fiction theory my senior year, and I love it more than anything, so you get brownie points if you also read these :)
- - - FW v K affs: It is often a true argument, and I will definitely vote on it. I think that TVAs are overhyped and to win on one, it should definitely solve at least 80% of the aff. That said, I think that affirmative debaters often just don't know how to beat back framework with their aff. You should leverage case v fw. You read six minutes of dense theory. You should use it.
- - - K v K affs: I think these are really cool. I don't really know if I know some of the identity lit well enough to judge something like afropess v afropess, but if you can explain the nuances well enough, then by all means go for it. The Baudrillard v Baudrillard debate was one of my favorites to be a part of in high school.
- - - Counterplans v K affs: I think these are often underutilized by debaters, myself included. The glitter bomb cp is legitimate. No questions asked.
- - - Plan affs - I like these. I think they're cool and very fun. Not really my style but that doesn't mean I hate them or won't vote on them. I think if you're gonna go for the policy option, you should just read a hard right plan with like a space-col advantage. I feel like the competitive advantage that soft-left policy affs traditionally got access to in HS Policy debate is kind of moot in LD because of the prevalence of both K debate as well as phil debate.
- - - Case debate: This is where the good stuff is. Also a great place to flex and/or show some personality and not be a robot. In my own words, "This inherency is awful 5head, cut a better card."
- - - CP/DA v Case: please don't say ceepee or deeaye, stop trying to be edgy and cool. Same thing goes for "arg" instead of argument. Just say the word pls. But yes these are cool. I like these. I didn't read these but I liked these a lot.
- - - Impact turns v Case: As long as it's not oppression/bigotry good, go for it. ffs i read death good lol
- - - T/th v Case: If there's an abuse, there's an abuse. If not wearing shoes is abusive to you, then we have different concepts of abuse. Do with that what you will. If you have to ask, "Is x shell frivolous?" The answer is probably yes. I probably don't think that T is really ever an RVI. The only feasible justification for an RVI on T that I can possible imagine is if you cross applied abuse from other shells. But eh who knows?
- - - K v Case: Yes please :) This was my favorite debate to have. I feel like there are the most potential layers to interact on. There's the case page itself, framing, the K, and anything else you might throw in there. "K bad judge help" isn't a legit argument. If the 1NC is one off, you shouldn't concede the entirety of the 1AC. I made this mistake a few times; it's not the move. Clash of civs is goated and I will not argue with you on this.
1. If I laugh I promise it's not at you
2. I enjoy it when two debaters clearly get along
3. Please don't be mean to younger debaters
4. R e s p e c t e a c h o t h e r
5. Do your own thing and do it well
6. Don't be afraid to ask questions
7. I have much less patience for frivolous arguments the farther we get into the tournament.
8. If you have any questions about the things that I read in particular, feel free to email me.
- Those Chart things because I think they're cool and fun
Condo ---------X------------------------------------Not Condo
Bowdreearrd X-------------------------------------------- Balldrilard
Ampharos X---------------------------------------------Literally any other Pokemon
A2/AT ------------------------------------------X-- A healthy, inconsistent mix in every file
A2 --------X------------------------------------ AT
Analytics in the doc -X------------------------------------------- A blank text file
Extending warrants ----------X---------------------------------- Extending authors
Jokes in the speech -----X--------------------------------------- Hello it's me, debate robot #6
I am a big meanie -------------------------------------------X- I am not a big meanie
Getting the shakes before a drop X-------------------------------------------- I don't understand this reference, grow up
Starship Troopers ----------X---------------------------------- Dune
The alt is rejection ------------------------------------------X-- Part of the alt might necessitate rejecting the aff
Defense ------------------------------------------X-- Offense
Please don't dodge questions in cross
I have a lot of feelings about this event. A lot of them boil down to, "If you want me to judge this round like a tech judge, you should probably follow the norms of technical debate." This means that I'll pull the trigger very easily on theoretical arguments that justify things that are "normal" in other forms of debate. Id est, disclosure and paraphrasing bad. It's possible to win disclosure bad or paraphrasing good in front of me, but it will for sure be an uphill battle.
I'm okay with speed.
I'm good with technical arguments.
Please don't read Ks or other "tech" arguments just because I like them. It's more painful to listen to them read poorly. That said, if you know the arguments, then feel free to read them.
If you have any questions, please feel free to ask them, I promise I'm not as mean as this paradigm likely makes me out to be.
Update Blue Key 2022
you're definitely going to have to do a lot to convince me that phil is worth voting on. it's not an argument that i spent or currently spend time thinking about. Probably leave the weird stuff at home, but you're even going to have to slow down and explain kantian arguments to me.
See update at the top:much of this is still true.
also; theory. Totally cool with topicality/framework, but theory debates get messy really easily for me. Please explain why your model of debate is actually net-better than the alternative.
This is perpetually going to get longer and longer as I see things that I need to address. I'll shorten it eventually,
Assistant Speech & Debate Coach at NSU University School
Last Update: November 2023---Thoughts on "Disclosure" and "Evidence Ethics" in PF added.
Please put me on the e-mail chain.
I actively coach and research policy and public forum debate. I enjoy technical, organized debates. I don’t think I have particularly controversial views, but have tried to be thorough where it matters for prefs/pre-round prep.
Policy vs. K---An argument is an argument, assuming it’s complete, warranted, and applicable.
Tech vs. Truth---Tech obviously informs truth, but if I have to decide between intuitive and well-explained arguments vs. terrible evidence, I’ll choose the former. There are few things I won’t vote on, but “death good” is among them.
Offense vs. Defense---This is a helpful paradigm for assessing relative risk, but risk can be reduced to zero.
Speed---Go for it, but at the higher end you should scale back slightly. I flow on a computer without much shorthand.
Evidence---I read it during debates. When referenced in CX, I’ll likely go to it. Quality is in the back of my mind, consciously or not.
Re-Highlighting---If small, I don’t think you need to re-read in speech. Don’t expect me to read a giant card to figure out if you’re right.
Digital Debate---Make sure everyone is present with confirmation before starting. Be reasonable about tech issues, as I will track tech time. If there are major issues, I’ll default to tournament procedures.
Decorum---Sass, snark, or shade are fine within reason. I’m not a good judge for hostile approaches, e.g. interrupting speeches.
“New” Arguments---The more late-breaking, the more open I am to responses. “Late-breaking” is relative to me catching the initial argument. Happy to strike 1AR/2NR arguments rightly flagged as “too new.”
Alternative Practices---I’m here to flow and judge a debate, awarding a single win. If you’re trying to do something different, I’m not the judge for you.
3---T vs. Plans
“Competing Interpretations”---This makes more intuitive sense to me than “reasonability,” but that's often because the latter isn't explained as a frame. Affs are still better off prioritizing offense.
"Fiscal Redistribution" Specifics---I was not at camp this summer, and at this point in the season still do not have strong views on most of the debated T issues like “FR = tax and transfer” or “FJ = no subsets.” From grad school studying health policy, "Social Security can be turned into single-payer health insurance" seems a bit absurd, but I’ll let evidence dictate decisions.
4---T vs. K Affs
Frustrations---These debates are often two ships passing in the night due to reliance on pre-written blocks. Please make judges lives easier by:
A---Have a robust defense of your model of debate, including roles for teams/judge, examples of how debates play out, net-benefits, etc.
B---Pick and choose your offense and compare it with what the other team has actually said.
"Affirmation"---At a bare minimum, affirmatives should have some relationship to the topic and “affirm” a clear advocacy. I am not sympathetic to purely negative arguments/diagnoses of power relations.
"Debate is a Game" vs. "Subject Formation"----Debate is a complicated space that's competitive, academic, and personal space. Arguments that assume it’s only one seem a bit shallow. Offense can be made assuming all three.
Terminal Impacts---“Fairness” or “clash” can be terminal impacts, though often teams don’t seem to explain why.
"Truth Testing"---I am less persuaded by these arguments because all argumentation seems to rely on some outside/unstated assumptions. I can certainly be persuaded that the structure of debate warps content and that could be a reason for skepticism.
"TVAs"---The 2NR needs to explain what offense they think the TVA resolves instead of expecting me to figure it out.
"T = [X Violent Practice]"---Feel free to impact turn the resulting curriculum, models, debates, etc. of an interpretation of debate, but its difficult to convince me reading an argument about the topic of discussion is analogical to policing/"stop and frisk"/"drone strikes"/other material violence.
Framework---I don't get middle grounds by default. I will resolve this debate one way or the other based on what is said, and then determine what remaining arguments count as offense.
Uniqueness---The alt needs to resolve each link, or have some larger reason that’s not relevant, e.g. framework. Affs are often in a better spot pressing poorly explained alternatives/links.
Competition---I presume affs can test mutual exclusivity of alts, whether against a “plan” or “advocacy.” Feel free to argue different standards of competition. The less the aff outlines a clear method, the more I’m persuaded by “no plan, no perm.”
Perm Texts---They are great. This can be difficult when alts are amorphous, but 1AR/2AR explanation needs to rise above “do both.”
Judge Kicking---If you want me to explicitly consider multiple worlds post-2NR, e.g. both CP vs. aff and/or status quo vs. aff, make an explicit argument. Saying the words “the status quo is always an option” in CX is not enough for me.
Theory vs. Literature---Topic literature helps dictate what you can persuade me is reasonable. If your only basis for competition is a definition of “resolved”/“should” and a random law review, good luck. If you have evidence contextual to a topic area and a clear explanation of functional differences in implementation, I’m far easier to persuade.
Solvency Advocates---CPs should have solvency advocates of “comparable quality” to the 1AC. If your Advantage CP plank cites 1AC evidence, go for it. If you’re making something up, provide a card. If you’re trying to make card-less “Con Con” a thing, I’m a hard sell.
Intrinsicness---Both the aff/neg need to get better at debating intrinsic/“other issues” perms. I'm an easier sell than others that these obviate many of the sillier CPs.
Framing---It's everything: impact calculus, link driving uniqueness or vice-versa, the works. Smart arguments and coherent narratives trump a slew of evidence.
Internal Links > Impacts---I find most "DA Turns the Case" / "Case Turns the DA" debates don't spend enough time on causation or timing.
Politics Theory---Most 2AC theory blips against Politics DAs aren’t complete arguments, e.g. “fiat solves the link” or "a logical policymaker could do both." Still, intrinsicness arguments against DAs are underutilized.
Conditionality---It’s difficult to convince me some conditionality isn’t necessary for the neg to be viable. Things can certainly change based on substantive contradictions or quantity. Negs should be clear under what conditions, if any, they can kick individual CP planks.
Other Theory Issues---It’s difficult to persuade me that most theoretical objections to CPs or perms are reasons to reject the team.
9---Public Forum Specifics
I am not a "lay"/"flay" judge.
A few views of mine may be idiosyncrasies:
Paraphrasing---I’m convinced this is a harmful practice that hides evidence from scrutiny. Evidence should be presented in full context with compete citations in real time. That means:
A---Author, Date, Title, URL
B---Complete paragraphs for excerpts
C---Underlining and/or highlighting indicating what is referenced.
D---Sending evidence you intend to read to opponents before the speech is delivered.
Purely paraphrased evidence compared to a team reading cut cards will be treated as baseless opinions.
A---You need to answer arguments in a coherent order based on when/where they were introduced.
B---You need to extend complete arguments, with warrants, in later speeches. If not in summary, it’s too late to bring back from the dead in final focus.
If neither side seems to be doing the needed work, expect me to intervene.
Disclosure---I generally think disclosure is beneficial for the activity, which is why our program open sources. However, I am not as dogmatic about disclosure when judging. It is difficult to convince me "disclosure in its entirety is bad," but the recent trend seems to be shifting interpretations that are increasingly difficult to meet.
Absent egregious lack of disclosure/mis-disclosure, I am not the best judge for increasingly demanding interpretations if opponents have made a good faith effort to disclose. For example, if a team forgot to disclose cites/round report for a single round, but is otherwise actively disclosing, it is difficult to convince me that a single mistake is a punishable offense.
While I don't want to prescribe what I think standard disclosure should be and would rather folks debate the specifics, I am an easier sell than others on some things:
A---The quality of debates is better when students know what arguments have been read in the past. This seems more important than claims that lack of disclosure encourages "thinking on your feet."
B---Debaters should provide tags/citations of previously read contentions. A doc with a giant wall of text and no coherent tags or labels is not meaningful disclosure.
C---Round reports don't seem nearly as important as other forms of disclosure.
Evidence Ethics---Evidence issues are getting egregious in PF. However, I also do not like some of the trends for how these debates are handled.
A---NSDA Rules---If an evidence challenge is invoked, I will stop the debate, inform the team issuing the challenge that the entire debate will hinge on the result of evaluating that challenge, and then consult both the NSDA rules and any tournament specific procedures to adjudicate the challenge. Questions of evidence ethics cannot be just "theory" or "off-case" arguments.
B---"Spirit" of Rules vs. Cheap Shots---I admittedly have idiosyncracies on specific issues, but if they come up will do my best to enforce the exact wording of NSDA rules.
i---"Straw" arguments where the cut section clearly does not represent the rest of the article, ellipses out of major sections, bracketing that changes the meaning of an article (including adding context/references the author didn't intend), and fabrication are easy to convince me are round-enders.
ii----A single broken URL, a card that was copy and pasted from a backfile incorrectly so the last sentence accidentally cut off a couple words, and other minor infractions do not seem worth ending a round over, but it's up for debate.
iii---Not being able to produce the original full text of a card quickly seems like a reason to reject a piece of evidence given NSDA wordings, though I worry this discourages the cutting of books which are harder to provide access to quickly during debates.
Director of Speech & Debate-Cypress Bay HS (2022-present)
Director of Speech and Debate-Cooper City HS (2018-2022)
Director of Speech and Debate-American Heritage Palm Beach (2017-2018)
Director of Forensics-Notre Dame San Jose (2009-2017)
Head Debate Coach-Notre Dame San Jose (2008-2009)
I’ve been a debate coach for the past 15 years, and Director of Forensics for 9 at NDSJ, one year as Director at American Heritage, 4 years at Cooper City HS and now at Cypress Bay High School. I primarily coached Parliamentary Debate from 2008-2017, including circuit Parli debate. I've been involved in National Circuit LD pretty extensively over the last 5 years, but have judged all forms of debate at all levels from local south Florida and northern CA to national circuit.
First and foremost, I only ever judge what is presented to me in rounds. I do not extend arguments for you and I do not bring in my own bias. I am a flow judge, and I will flow the entire debate, no matter the speed, though I do appreciate being able to clearly understand all your points. I consider myself to be a gamemaker in my general philosophy, so I see debate as game. That doesn't mean that there aren't real world impacts off debate (and I tend to be convinced by 'this will impact outside the round' type of arguments).
While I do appreciate fresh approaches to resolution analysis, I’m not an “anything goes” judge. I believe there should be an element of fair ground in debate-debates without clash, debates with extra topicality, etc will almost certainly see me voting against whoever tries to do so if the other side even makes an attempt at arguing it (that said, if you can’t adequately defend your right to a fair debate, I’m not going to do it for you. Don’t let a team walk all over you!). Basically, I love theoretical arguments, and feel free to run them, just make sure they have a proper shell+. *Note: when I see clear abuse in round I have a very low threshold for voting on theory. Keep that in mind-if you try to skew your opponent out of the round, I WILL vote you down if they bring it up.*
I also want to emphasize that I'm an educator first and foremost. I believe in the educational value of debate and it's ability to create critical thinkers.
+Theory shell should at minimum have: Interpretation, Violation, Standards and Voters.
Since quality of argument wins for me 100% of the time, I’m not afraid of the low point win. I don’t expect this to enter into the rounds much at an elite tournament where everyone is at the highest level of speaking style, but just as an emphasis that I will absolutely not vote for a team just because they SOUND better. I tend to stick to 26-29+ point range on a 30 scale, with average/low speakers getting 26s, decent speakers getting 27s, good 28s, excellent 29s, and 30 being reserved for best I’ve seen all day. I will punish rudeness/lying in speaks though, so if you’re rude or lie a lot, expect to see a 25 or less. Additionally, shouting louder doesn’t make your point any better, I can usually hear just fine.
If I gave you less than 25, you probably really made me angry. If you are racist, homophobic, xenophobic, misogynistic, ableist etc I will punish you in speaks. You have been warned. I will kill your speaks if you deliberately misgender or are otherwise harmful in round. I am not going to perpetuate hate culture in debate spaces.
I have no problem with speed, but please email me your case if you are spreading. I will call 'clear' once if you are going too fast, and put down my pen/stop typing if I can't follow. It's only happened a couple times, so you must be REALLY fast for me to give up.
PLEASE SIGN POST AND TAG, ESPECIALLY IF I'M FLOWING ON MY LAPTOP. IF I MISS WHERE AN ARGUMENT GOES BECAUSE YOU DIDN'T TAG IT, THAT'S YOUR FAULT NOT MINE.
Please explain why your argument is a-priori before I will consent to consider it as such. Generally I am only willing to entertain framework arguments as a-priori, but who knows, I've been surprised before.
Theory is great, as I mentioned above, run theory all day long with me, though I am going to need to see rule violations and make sure you have a well structured shell. I should not see theory arguments after the 1AR in LD or after the MG speech in Parli. I also don't want to see theory arguments given a ten second speed/cursory explanation, when it's clear you're just trying to suck up time. My threshold is high for RVIs, but if you can show how your opponent is just sucking time, I'm open to this. Also open to condo-bad arguments on CPs/Ks, though that doesn't mean you'll automatically win on this.
Small note for LD: Disclosure theory: I'm unlikely to vote on this if your opponent isn't reading something very strange. I think education and disclosure is good but that doesn't mean I think someone should automatically lose for not. Keep this in mind.
Most other theory I evaluate in round. I don't tend to go for blippy theory arguments though!
I love the K, give me the K, again, just be structured. I don't need the whole history of the philosopher, but I haven't read everything ever, so please be very clear and give me a decent background to the argument before you start throwing impacts off it. Also, here's where I mention that impacts are VITAL to me, and I want to see terminal impacts.
I prefer to see clash of ROB/ROJ/Frameworks in K rounds. If you are going to run a K aff either make it topical or disclose so we can have a productive round. Please.
In general I default to competing interp. If for some reason we have gotten to the point of terribad debate, I presume Neg (Aff has burden to prove the resolution/affirm. Failure to do so is Neg win. God please don't make me do this :( )
I like very clear weighing in rebuttals. Give me voting issues and compare worlds, tell me why I should prefer or how you outweigh, etc. Please. I go into how I evaluate particular impacts below.
I like clear voting issues! Just because I’m flowing doesn’t mean I don’t appreciate you crystallizing and honing in on your main points of offense.
I prefer voter speeches follow a: Main points of offense-->impact calc--->world comp model. If you just do impact calc I'll be happy with it, but I like looking on my voter sheet for what you feel you're winning on. It helps me more quickly organize my ideas.
I put a lot of emphasis on impacts in my decisions. The team with bigger/more terminal, etc impacts generally walks away with my vote, so go to town. This goes doubly true for framework or critical arguments. Why is this destroying debate as we know it? Why is this ___ and that's horrible? Translation: I tend to weigh magnitude heaviest in round, but if you can prove pretty big probable impacts over very low probability extinction impacts I'll likely go that direction.
You should be able to articulate how your contentions support your position/value/whatever. That should go without saying, but you would be very surprised. I don't vote on blips, even if we all know what you're saying is true. So please warrant your claims and have a clear link story. This goes doubly true for critical positions or theory.
Preferences for arguments:
If you want to know what I like to see in round, here are my preferences in order:
This doesn't mean I won't vote for a tricks case but I will be much sadder doing it.
About me: I'm Mr. Bravim. 25 yrs. in speech & debate. Competed, judged, and coached all over.
I favor a lot of clash, well-developed impacts and link analysis, and an aggressive style of debate. Indicting evidence with quality arguments on why it matters in the context of the round impresses me. I enjoy pointed crossfire and will flow any concessions and hold teams to them. Warrant everything. In PF, remind me of the big picture from summary to Final Focus.
Keep a consistent link story on your offense. If you have a particular lens (framework, observation, etc.) in which I should view the resolution, make sure it is well-warranted and extended throughout. I like clear framing mechanisms. I prefer a smaller # of voters (1 - 3) to many poorly-explained voters in FF. Weigh or risk judge intervention (I don't want to do it).
On Speed: Moderate, occasional, and strategic use of speed in PF is OK if the opponent team and all the judges can follow you. Never sacrifice clarity for speed. Don't bully your opponent with speed. That's not why PF was created. The vast majority of your speech should be understood by an ordinary person with no background in debate if you're doing it right. I much rather teams win 1 good argument than a bunch of smaller, less-developed arguments on the flow in which I struggle to follow why they matter at finding some sort of truth on the substance of the resolution as debated in the round.
Evidence comparison is critical and a good way to impress. Please make warranted arguments why I should prefer your card over your opponent's card. There are many ways to accomplish this, I'll consider any of them so long as they make sense. FYI: One relevant, high-quality card is often better than 2 - 3 generic cards that are not contextualized. Extend card tags on every speech.
On theory: I've heard my share of theory arguments and find the majority of those rounds dull and the arguments thin. I much rather you win on something else, but will listen if this is your thing.
You can go line-by-line or be more analytical. Anything that is unclear will not get extended or weighed on the flow. Never forget that debate is foremost a PERSUASIVE activity. If you cannot persuade the average person with your case, you aren’t debating effectively. Ways to impress me as a judge: Depth of Analysis, Topic Knowledge, Effective Advocacy, and a Clear Narrative. I value meaningful cross more than most judges. You can lose on CX, take it seriously!
A pet peeve of mine in PF is summary treated as a 2nd rebuttal speech. That is not the point of summary! Show me the most important issues and why they favor your side, we already had 2 rebuttal speeches and summary is more than a short rebuttal.
I'm best at adjudicating traditional LD rounds. However, I will consider any warranted argument presented in round. Please weigh clearly and effectively and lay out the big issues in the round/voters. Tell me the clearest path to the ballot! I do not want to intervene. I find a quality framework debate/clash VERY interesting. If it's getting debate on fw is circular and/or the differentiation is minimal, go for something else.
Slow down on card tags, warrants, weighing, and voters. If the framework clash is a wash, I'll default to evaluating contention-level offense via the weighing analysis given to me at the end of the round. If I don't understand what you're talking about (speed, lack of clarity, lack of explanation, or warrants), there is NO CHANCE I'll vote off it. Thus, explain the argument/warrants not only in case, but throughout the round if you want me to vote off of it.
Spend time contextualizing your card/s if you're relying on it to win the round. Even if it was already done in your constructive, it's a good habit to cover it thoroughly a 2nd time in case I missed something.
Don't drop warrants in your extensions. I may not have gotten it in case and even if I did, I like to be reminded. Will not evaluate any argument in which the warrant is missing or unclear.
--<< Logos / Ethos / Pathos >>--
Above all else, I favor clash and the resolution of clash by debaters with good overviews, weighing analysis, and expert topic knowledge.
In order of preference:
1.) Traditional/lay 2.) Plan/CPs 3.) Ks 4.) Theory
I find most theory debates dull, but will listen to them if that's what you want to do, do it well! Above all, the quality of argument matters more to me than the style of debate. I don't mind some speed used strategically, but please don't spread throughout the round. I'd much rather you win one good argument on the flow and weigh than 10 smaller ones that I struggle to follow because of speed/clarity issues.
I despise 1-sided debate. If there's no one left on the other side, call the previous question, table the bill, or deliver an impromptu/extemp speech on the other side. If I hear the same exact points made without specific references to the arguments presented by the other side, points will be low.
I love clash in congress. I like pointed, direct questioning. I'm impressed by tactical use of parliamentary procedure. I value the role of the P.O. more than most. Don't be shy about running for P.O. If you're good at it, do it and I'll rank you fairly!
Critical evidence comparison & strong topic knowledge impress me a lot. Creative and/or funny intros make me happy.
1. Taking too long to set up for debate. (Be ready, be punctual, be professional)
2. Taking too long to pull a called card from case (after 1 min. if the card doesn’t exist, drop the arg.)
3. Reading at top speed, close to top speed, or 200+ wpm for most of the round.
4. Boring me. Some debaters have forgotten that there is a performance aspect to ALL debate events and that if you seem apathetic, I will care a lot less about your argument than if you seem to have a stake in it. If you want me to vote for your argument, make the attempt to seem like you care about whatever you're running.
Note: I don't disclose speaker points. Don't ask. I will disclose my decision if the tournament permits it.
FOR FUN : D
Outside debate, I <3 multivolume narrative nonfiction, dystopian lit, retro video games (mostly 80s - 90s), and cats.
Good luck to all!
Hello my name Felipe Canizaez, I'm a lay Parent Judge.
Email chain please: email@example.com
PLEASE DO NOT PARAPHRASE YOUR CASE OR MISCUT EVIDENCE
1. CLARITY IS KEY!! That applies to speech, organization, signposting, etc.
2. Please warrant your claims and evidence once brought up, not later in the round or next speech (see point 1)
3. Speed is fine, I only judge what I can flow however, so I cannot say I am going to get everything down if you are spreading. With that said, if you want to spread make sure your opponent is okay with it. You shouldn't spread/speed in PF, it's in the rules and norms of the event. It is called PUBLIC forum for a reason.
4. I studied philosophy during my time in university. Please do not throw out theory or K's without having done the necessary background research to really know what you are talking about. The round will be messy because of it, which takes us back to point 1 on clarity.
1. Slow down, this isn't policy. You not only need to argue effectively, you need to persuade.
2. Principled arguments > specific examples and evidence. Not to say you shouldn't have specific evidence, but often the more philosophical grounds of reasoning get left out in favor of, basically, carded evidence
3. New arguments in the back half of the debate are unadvisable and don't allow the other side enough time to have a developed response.
4. Keep your eye on the screen for POI's, if you see one but are choosing to ignore it, indicate verbally or with a hand motion.
I am a trial attorney that has been practicing law since 2000. I never participated in speech or debate competitions as a high school or college student, but through the past twenty years and law school I have been actively arguing on behalf of my clients. I have two children with several years of speech and debate experience so I know the hard work and commitment that it takes to be prepared for these tournaments.
Important to Me
I want to understand your arguments. Do not speak super fast as I don't understand what you are saying. I would like for you to speak at a normal pace and provide the facts and resources that support your arguments. Simple vocabulary words are great. A 6th grade student should be able to understand your arguments and all the words you use. Listen to your opponents arguments and state specifically why you disagree with them. Do not restate your argument as a reply to the opponents positions. I want to feel like you believe in your argument and really understand it. I assume you have requested your opponents arguments prior to the round, and if you have not, then you should do so.
Relax and have fun. Assume, I don't know anything about your topic so I am looking forward to hearing about it. If you need help with timing, please let me know.
I am a trial attorney who has a little experience judging. I am impressed by persuasive arguments that are supported by competent evidence that can be validated. I want to be able to understand your position so please speak at a speed I can follow and understand.
Hi! I was on the Nova Debate team from 2010-2014. I competed and traveled the country in PF all four years of high school, so I am familiar with the event. Since then I’ve graduated college and law school- and it has been a while since I’ve judged. However, I will be flowing and paying attention to your arguments, responses to arguments, etc. I would also appreciate if each speech provides a clear road map at the beginning. While I do care about the arguments themselves I equally care about how you treat each other in the round. I hope to see engaged, intellectual and respectful crossfires. Do not lose focus of the points you are trying to make and go on irrelevant non-topical tangents. If you get flustered it is okay to take a moment to collect your thoughts. I would rather you do that than deliver an unorganized speech/thought.
I wish to see lots of creativity, enthusiasm, and hope you all have fun. Debate was the highlight of my high school experience - and I hope it can be enjoyable for you too.
Heyoo and Howdy, Its Jomi,
I have been Competing, Coaching, and Judging for going on 8 years now and I'm 21 so that says a lot about my wild amount of commitment I have towards this activity.
Mainly competed and coached extemp and congress so that is where my best critiques would come from since those are the events that I know the most about, however, I am proficient in knowing PF and LD since I have judged tons of elimination rounds for those events and have friends in the events so they teach me the game.
I would say no matter the event it always comes down to three solid principles for me
Logic without evidence
Quality of evidence
Speaking and execution of rhetoric
Logic without evidence meaning how solid on a logic understands deductive or inductive reasoning is the argument, to the point that at the least from a basic philosophical level can I consider that argument valid but not being true because that would require evidence.
Quality of evidence is what sets an argument to being a good argument because if your evidence is timely, relevant, and flows within the speech or case then that sets you apart from the round. Good evidence balances arguments, Bad Evidence breaks arguments
Speaking and execution of Rhetoric meaning simply how well are you conveying your speech and case in your delivery, even in Policy debate, if you want the judge to hear something import and round defining then you slow down and say it with conviction. How well do your voice and your inflections convey your narrative especially on the impact analysis which to me is the most important parts of arguments especially;y on a human level is to be important
Most of all, be respectful and courteous to your judges and especially to your opponents because if you are rude, condescending, sexist, racist, you know the deal if it's bad and I catch it, expect the worst result from me and expect for me to back it up. So just be a respectful person and we will be all good.
Debate is a fun competitive research game. Ask questions if you have them.
He, my name is Lisbeth! A few things to note:
- I am a parent judge
- I haven't done research on the topic, so make sure to explain any jargon!
- I'm going to try to be as objective as possible, but don't go too far off from reality
- Most importantly, have fun!
Public forum debate is for the PUBLIC. So I expect debate that is accessible and inclusive to all audiences.
The speaking rate can be moderate to moderately fast; however, I don’t think you serve yourself well or the community going any quicker than that.
All arguments must be made by summary, or I will not be able to evaluate them in the final focus.
I prefer debate to be polite. Be nice to all competitors. Using offensive language of any kind, including but not limited to racist/sexist/ableist, will result in low speaker points and an automatic loss.
I judge arguments based on the order they are presented. I will go from top to bottom of the flow at the end of the round to make my decision. Please address the speeches that came before in the round, and make sure you are responding to the other team.
Evidence is significant to me. I want you to include the author/organization and date. Feel free to email me and competitors to start a chain.
Ultimately, have fun. Keep it entertaining. And keep it debate!
Hello! I am a lawyer but am pretty new to debate. My daughter does PF at NSU. I have been trained, will take notes during the debate and have judged at several tournaments to date. It is a joy and privilege! I appreciate roadmaps and like when presenters compare impacts. Please feel free to ask questions prior to the debate beginning. Good luck!
Spencergrosso@gmail.com (Yes, I want to be on the chain)
Debated PF on the national circuit for 4 years
-Tech>Truth, debate is a game
-Speed is fine, I’ll yell clear up to twice in one speech, If you continue to be unintelligible after that, it’s on you. (I’m not yelling clear in online debate. Send me speech docs and be clear)
-Offense is offense and offense must be warranted and weighed. I don't care if it was brought up in case or rebuttal, i dont care if you called it a contention, turn, ad/disad, overview, whatever. If you give me a reason to vote for you, it must be weighed. I won't care about the "turn" you spent 10 seconds on and didn't implicate in any way just because your opponents dropped it.
-Any offense brought up in either 1st constructive or 1st rebuttal not responded to by second rebuttal is considered dropped.
-Defense doesn’t need to be frontlined until 2nd sum but its still smart to do it in 2nd rebuttal.
-Everything that you want me to vote on should be in both the final and the summary except I don’t require defense in first summary.
-I default to consequentialism/utilitarianism, but I’m open to looking at the round through a different lens if I am given a warrant as to why I should and I'm pretty good about that I've voted based off anti util framework many times.
-I tend to prefer strong, clear link chains over big sounding impacts that may or may not have a risk of solvency to them, but again if you do good meta weighing as to why I should prefer your 0.001% probability solvency for human extinction, I’m open to it.
-I heavily despise exclusion. If I can tell your opponents either have access problems or are like brand new to debate and you’re dumping 300+ WPM speech docs, reading something progressive, or debating in any way that is clearly designed to make your opponents unable to contest you, I'll doc speaks.
-The more evidence you send me, the better. If both teams are comfortable just emailing their full cases ideally with cards at the start, I like that. Same with rebuttal is awesome. I'll never look for holes in your evidence unless they are specifically pointed out to me by your opponents, so you lose nothing by giving me evidence.
-I’m generally lax with paraphrasing as long as I feel the literal words of the card are accurately represented by what you read.
Non Ad/Disad argumentation:
Be explicit on role of the ballot and why I prefer one type of argument versus another, if you don’t, I will default to: Policy/Framework>Kritik>theory>tricks.
-I’m open to them and I’m even kind to them as long as you’re clear with the link and the implication in every extension. I find a lot of debaters assume they’re winning a link on the K if it goes uncontested so they undercover it when extending it into later speeches. Just like any other argument, if you drop warrants, I drop you.
-It is my belief that theory needs to exist to prevent real abuse and encourage education, so I tend not to look too kindly on theory that I see as being brought into the round which sacrifices educational value for the sake of getting a win (dates, disclosure, paraphrasing etc.) that being said I’m open to all those shells, if you warrant it, win it, and weigh successfully why I should vote off it, I’ll vote off it.
-In PF, I don’t necessarily require responses to theory in the very next speech(if it’s read in 1st constructive, I don’t require a response until 2nd rebuttal) this is because I think theory should be normalized as typical argumentation so people feel more comfortable when it is run, so I treat it as a normal argument in terms of rules when responding to it.
-To win with tricks, you have to do the following:
1. Warrant why it gives you a path the ballot
2. Opponent must drop it
3. There must literally be no other offense in the round, I will quite literally evaluate any risk of any kind of offense before I evaluate your a priori.
-I don’t grant presumption on my own, u need to tell me to do it. I’m pretty open to the logic behind presuming 1st so if you argue that, I’ll probably grant it to u.
-The speaker point system is complete crap and I refuse to legitimize it. The way I see it, you start with a 30. Speaks are docked only for malpractice(rude, prejudice, debating in a way I deem as harmful) If you don’t commit any sins, you get a 30. If the tournament doesnt let me tie it, ill do 30, 29.9, 29.8, 29.7.
PLEASE FOR THE LOVE OF GOD TIME YOURSELVES AND TIME EACH OTHER. If anyone asks me to time them I will quite literally start crying and I'm an ugly crier so we all lose in that scenario.
Flow and respond to what the other team says.
I don't have the speech doc open so do things that make it easier for me to flow. Position yourself so I can hear you. Don't speak into your laptop or stand on the opposite side of the room. Don't read typed-out things like they are the text of a card. Slow down and change the intonation of your voice when you're speaking.
If I don't understand something, I will not vote on it even if it is conceded.
Corss-x starts right after the constructive speech ends.
Starting and stopping prep each time you need to use more prep time will cost at least 15 sec.
Very simply, if you have trigger warnings because the topics are more taboo then I am not the judge for you. If you can't explain it to your school administration or parents without them raising concerns then don't run it in front of me. Time and place are important.
Things I will not vote on (AUTO 25 Speaks):
Arguments that suggest students should engage in risky behavior.
Death is good.
Fear of death is bad
Aff's that don't defend the resolution.
Aff's that link to debate in general instead of the resolution.
Judge pref disclosure
Asking me to vote on something that happened before the debate round started.
Asking me to vote on something that happened after the debate round is over.
Vote for a team because they are part of a marginalized group.
In fact, it would be better if you just didn't run a K.
A Critique of Full Text Disclosure
A Critique of Disclosure
Vote only for women
This list will be ongoing. I will update it to let you know.
So what is left you might ask:
CP's that are not listed above.
Other things you might want to know:
1. Da's can have a zero-risk.
2. Aff adv's can have zero risk
3. Solvency can have zero risk
4. Substantial will be important in these types of debates.
5. The neg will get a healthy dose of presumption.
I really would like to listen to a debate about the resolution.
PF is different from Policy. PF shouldn't try and be policy. If you try to be policy in a PF then you won't be as successful. You don't need to spread. Few cards are better. Explaining good. Tagline extensions only are bad.
I have been judging lots of PF rounds. And here are some things you should know.
- I am more truth over tech.
- You might have evid on the world is flat. It doesn't mean it is true. The other team might not have evid on the world is round. I am still going to vote on the world is round, if they say it is round without evid.
- The more internal links you have to your impact. The less likely it is.
- Probability is more important than possibility.
- Having 20 cards with two-sentence each won't get you very far.
- Cutting evidence out of context is becoming a problem. Don't do that. Seriously, don't do that.
- The big questions on the topic matter.
- Common sense arguments are better than stupid arguments with cards.
- Saying the other team dropped an argument when they didn't will cost you speaker points! I am tired of hearing this and I would suggest you flow.
- I listen to cross-x. Cross-x is binding.
- Spreading in PF is not needed. Your time is better spent going for fewer arguments better than lots of arguments poorly. The whole point is to collapse and explain.
- When the timer goes off, I stop flowing.
Your evidence better match your claim. It is becoming a race to the bottom with evidence. If the evidence does not match your claim then I will not evaluate that argument. simple!
Maybe I am getting old. I like what I like. If you don't want to adapt to this judge then strike me. If you have me and don't feel the need to adapt then you take the risk on what happens at the end of the round, not me.
If you have questions before the round ask me.
UPDATE: 10/27/23---- Be on time! In fact, be early.
I enjoyed all aspects of the speech and debate rounds. Although, my favorites are LD, Policy, and Congress.
I have experience judging LD at the College and High School level and Public Forum at the High School level, but would be no means say I am an expert. These are some things to keep in mind with me.
Assume that I know nothing. This includes shorthand, theory, or K literature. Even if I do know something, I will pretend I don't to avoid intervening in the round.
Speed Kills (your ability to win the round). I want to be able to flow everything. To this end, I will say “clear” two times and then I am able to flow what I can flow: if I miss something because you’re speeding then it won’t be considered. I do not want to look at cards unless you or your opponent have a tiff about what they actually say.
Additionally, I think that spreading should be a tool to allow for deeper and more specific arguments as opposed to allowing for more short, blippy responses. If you're speeding through a response and that response was only a sentence or two to begin with, it probably doesn't register as that important to me.
Tech over truth except in extreme cases. Tell me what to vote on, tell me what to care about. Clearly weigh your impacts against your opponents do not assume I prefer one over the other without you giving me a reason to prefer.
I care about dropped arguments- you need to extend and that means more than just saying “extend.” Functionally reiterate your arguments or at least summaries of them.
CX- I often will flow this, but it will not factor into my decisions unless you bring it up in your speech. Don’t shoot yourself in the foot, DO use this time to clarify, NOT make new arguments.
I hate hate hate people being hyperbolic or lying about what their opponent said or did: Ex. “they dropped this point” when they clearly did not. Just know if you do it I will be inclined toward your opponent. If YOU misheard or misunderstood your opponent’s argument I get that, but pretending they didn’t respond to something they did is as good as dropping the arg.
-The most important things to me are delivery and content.
-If two people are very close on both these aspects content will be more important than delivery.
-I pay attention to questioning, but it is more of a tie breaker for me. If you ask a particularly good question I will note it and you will be ranked higher than someone with the same scores on speeches and no notes about questioning.
-Very important to my ranking of speeches is whether you are moving the round forward or introducing new ideas.
-I prefer evidence usage, though in some analytic cases it is not strictly needed.
-I very much like interaction with the other speeches that have gone (rebutting directly or adding more to a previous argument).
-Taking risks with content or delivery in ways which push the boundaries of the norms will certainly earn some bonus points in my head.
-I think that decorum is important- pay attention to what others are saying, don't engage in personal attacks or generally be rude.
Yes, email chain: sohailjouyaATgmailDOTcom
- Probably not the best judge for the "Give us a 30!" approach unless it becomes an argument/point of contestation in the round. Chances are I'll just default to whatever I'd typically give. To me, these kind of things aren't arguments, but judge instructions that are external to making a decision regarding the debate occurring.
- I appreciate adaptation to my preferences but don’t do anything that would make you uncomfortable. Never feel obligated to compete in a manner that inhibits your ability to be effective. My promise to you will be that I will keep an open mind and assess whatever you chose. In short: do you.
- Truth > Tech, but RELAX: All this means is that I recognize that debate is not merely a game, but rather a competition that models the world in which we live. This doesn’t mean I believe judges should intervene on the basis of argumentative preference - what it does mean is that embedded clash band the “nexus question” of the round is of more importance than blippy technical oversights between certain sheets of paper - especially in K v K debates.
Don't fret: a dropped argument is still a concession. I likely have a higher threshold for the development of arguments that are more intrinsically dubious and lack warrants.
- As a former coach of a UDL school where many of my debaters make arguments centred on their identity, diversity is a genuine concern. It may play a factor in how I evaluate a round, particularly in debates regarding what’s “best” for the community/activity.
Do you and I’ll do my best to evaluate it but I’m not a tabula rasa and the dogma of debate has me to believe the following. I have put a lot of time and thought into this while attempting to be parsimonious - if you are serious about winning my ballot a careful read would prove to serve you well:
- All speech acts are performances, consequently, debaters should defend their performances including the advocacy, evidence, arguments/positions, interpretations, and representations of said speech acts.
- One of the most annoying questions a judged can be asked: “Are you cool with speed?”
In short: yes. But smart and slow always beats fast and dumb.
I have absolutely no preference on rate of delivery, though I will say it might be smart to slow down a bit on really long tags, advocacy texts, your totally sweet theory/double-bind argument or on overviews that have really nuanced descriptions of the round. My belief is that speed is typically good for debate but please remember that spreading’s true measure is contingent on the number of arguments that are required to be answered by the other team not your WPM.
- Pathos: I used to never really think this mattered at all. To a large degree, it still doesn’t considering I’m unabashedly very flowcentric but I tend to give high speaker points to debaters who performatively express mastery knowledge of the subjects discussed, ability to exercise round vision, assertiveness, and that swank.
- Holistic Approaches: the 2AR/2NR should be largely concerned with two things:
1) provide framing of the round so I can make an evaluation of impacts and the like
2) descriptively instruct me on how to make my decision
Overviews have the potential for great explanatory power, use that time and tactic wisely.
While I put form first, I am of the maxim that “form follows function” – I contend that the reverse would merely produce an aesthetic, a poor formula for argument testing in an intellectually rigorous and competitive activity. In summation: you need to make an argument and defend it.
- The Affirmative ought to be responsive to the topic. This is a pinnacle of my paradigm that is quite broad and includes teams who seek to engage in resistance to the proximate structures that frame the topic. Conversely, this also implicates teams that prioritize social justice - debaters utilizing methodological strategies for best resistance ought to consider their relationship to the topic.
Policy-oriented teams may read that last sentence with glee and K folks may think this is strike-worthy…chill. I do not prescribe to the notion that to be topical is synonymous with being resolutional.
- The Negative’s ground is rooted in the performance of the Affirmative as well as anything based in the resolution. It’s that simple; engage the 1AC if at all possible.
- I view rounds in an offense/defense lens. Many colleagues are contesting the utility of this approach in certain kinds of debate and I’m ruminating about this (see: “Thoughts on Competition”) but I don’t believe this to be a “plan focus” theory and I default to the notion that my decisions require a forced choice between competing performances.
- I will vote on Framework. (*This means different things in different debate formats - I don't mean impact framing or LD-centric "value/value criterion" but rather a "You must read a plan" interpretation that's typically in response to K Affs)That means I will vote for the team running the position based on their interpretation, but it also means I’ll vote on offensive responses to the argument. Vindicating an alternative framework is a necessary skill and one that should be possessed by kritikal teams - justifying your form of knowledge production as beneficial in these settings matter.
Framework appeals effectively consist of a normative claim of how debate ought to function. The interpretation should be prescriptive; if you are not comfortable with what the world of debate would look like if your interpretation were universally applied, then you have a bad interpretation. The impact to your argument ought to be derived from your interpretation (yes, I’ve given RFDs where this needed to be said). Furthermore, a Topical Version of the Affirmative must specifically explain how the impacts of the 1AC can be achieved, it might be in your best interest to provide a text or point to a few cases that achieve that end. This is especially true if you want to go for external impacts that the 1AC can’t access – but all of this is contingent on a cogent explanation as to why order precedes/is the internal link to justice.
- I am pretty comfortable judging Clash of Civilization debates.
- Framework is the job of the debaters. Epistemology first? Ontology? Sure, but why? Where does performance come into play – should I prioritize a performative disad above the “substance” of a position? Over all of the sheets of paper in the round? These are questions debaters must grapple with and preferably the earlier in the round the better.
- "Framework is how we frame our work" >>>>> "FrAmEwOrK mAkEs ThE gAmE wOrK"
-Presumption can be an option. In my estimation, the 2NR may go for Counterplan/Kritik while also giving the judge the option of the status quo. Call it “hypo-testing” or whatever but I believe a rational decision-making paradigm doesn’t doom me to make a single decision between two advocacies, especially when the current status of things is preferable to both (the net-benefit for a CP/linear DA and impact for a K). I don't know if I really “judge kick” for you, instead, the 2NR should explain an “even if” route to victory via presumption to allow the 2AR to respond.
“But what about when presumption flips Affirmative?” This is a claim that I wish would be established prior to the 2NR, but I know that's not gonna happen. I've definitely voted in favour of plenty of 2ARs that haven't said that in the 1AR. The only times I can envision this is when the 2NR is going all-in on a CP.
- Role of the Ballots ought to invariably allow the 1AC/1NC to be contestable and provide substantial ground to each team. Many teams will make their ROBs self-serving at best, or at worse, tautological. That's because there's a large contingency of teams that think the ROB is an advocacy statement. They are not. Even more teams conflate a ROB with a Role of the Judge instruction and I'm just now making my peace with dealing with that reality.
If the ROB fails to equally distribute ground, they are merely impact framing. A good ROB can effectively answer a lot of framework gripes regarding the Affirmative’s pronouncement of an unfalsifiable truth claim.
- Analytics that are logically consistent, well warranted, and answer the heart of any argument are weighed in high-esteem. This is especially true if it’s responsive to any combinations of bad argument/evidence.
- My threshold for theory is not particularly high. It’s what you justify, not necessarily what you do. I typically default to competing interpretations, this can be complicated by a team that is able to articulate what reasonability means in the context of the round, otherwise I feel like it's interventionist of me to decode what “reasonable” represents. The same is true to a lesser extent with the impacts as well. Rattling off “fairness and education” as loaded concepts that I should just know has a low threshold if the other team can explain the significance of a different voter or a standard that controls the internal link into your impact (also, if you do this: prepared to get impact turned).
I think theory should be strategic and I very much enjoy a good theory debate. Copious amounts of topicality and specification arguments are not strategic, it is desperate.
- I like conditionality probably more so than other judges. As a young’n I got away with a lot of, probably, abusive Negative strategies that relied on conditionality to the maximum (think “multiple worlds and presumption in the 2NR”) mostly because many teams were never particularly good at explaining why this was a problem. If you’re able to do so, great – just don’t expect me to do much of that work for you. I don’t find it particularly difficult for a 2AR to make an objection about how that is bad for debate, thus be warned 2NRs - it's a downhill effort for a 2AR.
Furthermore, I tend to believe the 1NC has the right to test the 1AC from multiple positions.
Thus, Framework along with Cap K or some other kritik is not a functional double turn. The 1NC doesn’t need to be ideologically consistent. However, I have been persuaded in several method debates that there is a performative disadvantage that can be levied against speech acts that are incongruent and self-defeating.
- Probability is the most crucial component of impact calculus with disadvantages. Tradeoffs ought to have a high risk of happening and that question often controls the direction of uniqueness while also accessing the severity of the impact (magnitude).
- Counterplan debates can often get tricky, particularly if they’re PICs. Maybe I’m too simplistic here, but I don’t understand why Affirmatives don’t sit on their solvency deficit claims more. Compartmentalizing why portions of the Affirmative are key can win rounds against CPs. I think this is especially true because I view the Counterplan’s ability to solve the Affirmative to be an opportunity cost with its competitiveness. Take advantage of this “double bind.”
- Case arguments are incredibly underutilized and the dirty little secret here is that I kind of like them. I’m not particularly sentimental for the “good ol’ days” where case debate was the only real option for Negatives (mostly because I was never alive in that era), but I have to admit that debates centred on case are kind of cute and make my chest feel all fuzzy with a nostalgia that I never experienced– kind of like when a frat boy wears a "Reagan/Bush '84" shirt...
I know enough to know that kritiks are not monolithic. I am partial to topic-grounded kritiks and in all reality I find them to be part of a typical decision-making calculus. I tend to be more of a constructivist than a rationalist. Few things frustrate me more than teams who utilise a kritik/answer a kritik in a homogenizing fashion. Not every K requires the ballot as a tool, not every K looks to have an external impact either in the debate community or the world writ larger, not every K criticizes in the same fashion. I suggest teams find out what they are and stick to it, I also think teams should listen and be specifically responsive to the argument they hear rather than rely on a base notion of what the genre of argument implies. The best way to conceptualize these arguments is to think of “kritik” as a verb (to criticize) rather than a noun (a static demonstrative position).
It is no secret that I love many kritiks but deep in every K hack’s heart is a revered space that admires teams that cut through the noise and simply wave a big stick and impact turn things, unabashedly defending conventional thought. If you do this well there’s a good chance you can win my ballot. If pure agonism is not your preferred tactic, that’s fine but make sure your post-modern offense onto kritiks can be easily extrapolated into a 1AR in a fashion that makes sense.
In many ways, I believe there’s more tension between Identity and Post-Modernism teams than there are with either of them and Policy debaters. That being said, I think the Eurotrash K positions ought to proceed with caution against arguments centred on Identity – it may not be smart to contend that they ought to embrace their suffering or claim that they are responsible for a polemical construction of identity that replicates the violence they experience (don’t victim blame).
THOUGHTS ON COMPETITION
There’s a lot of talk about what is or isn’t competition and what competition ought to look like in specific types of debate – thus far I am not of the belief that different methods of debate require a different rubric for evaluation. While much discussion has been given to “Competition by Comparison” I very much subscribe to Competing Methodologies. What I’ve learned in having these conversations is that this convention means different things to different people and can change in different settings in front of different arguments. For me, I try to keep it consistent and compatible with an offense/defense heuristic: competing methodologies require an Affirmative focus where the Negative requires an independent reason to reject the Affirmative. In this sense, competition necessitates a link. This keeps artificial competition at bay via permutations, an affirmative right regardless of the presence of a plan text.
Permutations are merely tests of mutual exclusivity. They do not solve and they are not a shadowy third advocacy for me to evaluate. I naturally will view permutations more as a contestation of linkage – and thus, are terminal defense to a counterplan or kritik -- than a question of combining texts/advocacies into a solvency mechanism. If you characterize these as solvency mechanisms rather than a litmus test of exclusivity, you ought to anticipate offense to the permutation (and even theory objections to the permutation) to be weighed against your “net-benefits”. This is your warning to not be shocked if I'm extrapolating a much different theoretical understanding of a permutation if you go 5/6 minutes for it in the 2AR.
Even in method debates where a permutation contends both methods can work in tandem, there is no solvency – in these instances net-benefits function to shield you from links (the only true “net benefit” is the Affirmative). A possible exception to this scenario is “Perm do the Affirmative” where the 1AC subsumes the 1NC’s alternative; here there may be an offensive link turn to the K resulting in independent reasons to vote for the 1AC.
Hello, I am a parent judge. This is my first time judging. I would like to hear persuasive arguments that are supported with evidence. I would also like to hear the students engage the other team's arguments and weigh the importance of each argument. Thank you.
Good luck to all participants. I am an open-minded judge who will decide the round based on the quality of the debate and not on any personal or preconceived views I may have on the topic.
Some background. I am a trial lawyer. In high school, I was an experienced national circuit, Lincoln-Douglas debater, and won tournaments such as TOC. In college, I was a parliamentary debater and competed nationally and internationally.
I will flow the round but value well-warranted analytics and argument over speed and/or argument and evidence with poor explanation/analysis. I can handle some speed but not at the expense of clarity.
I prefer narrative debate and highly value weighing. I will vote for qualitative argumentation over a series of blippy arguments.
Put me on the email chain at the start of the round.
Fair warning. I want a real, substantive debate on the merits of the issues presented by the topic. I WILL not vote for Ks or other theory-based arguments that do not address the topic.
If you're reading this before a PF round consider: skip to the bolded "this is a note for PF" which is about my views on evidence. Otherwise do what you want in round, go crazy. Read the rest of the paradigm if you have time, but it's mostly about LD/Policy.
1. I encourage you to ask me specific questions before the round. Asking me general questions (EG: "How would you describe your paradigm", etc.) before the round won't prompt me to give you very helpful answers. Just be specific with your questions and we'll be good, I'm happy to answer any questions I can. If you have questions that are going to determine or guide your strategy in round then ask them! But I'm not great at summarizing all my thoughts for you on the spot.
2. Most of the thoughts that follow are inspired by my experience judging and coaching LD, especially the Policy-lite model of LD that's become common at the college level. If you're concerned about how these thoughts translate to PF or to more traditional LD settings please ask about that in-round.
3. Tech over truth in nearly every regard, I want to see your arguments and responses to opponents'. Give me clear, evidenced links to support impact scenarios and narrativize them well. I will avoid judge intervention in almost all cases and to the extreme. That is to say, to put yourself in the best position to win I want to see you clearly defend and weigh your points because I will not weigh them for you. I will not automatically default to one position over another when given no reasons to prefer. From a strategic standpoint, it is in your best interest to give me a framework by which to evaluate your impacts even if that framework is localized to weighing your impact.
4. I'm always happy to answer questions and listen to concerns/criticisms of my decisions afterwards. I want to get better and so do you, why not help each other. However, I will not change my decision, even if you convince me I've made the wrong one.
5.THIS IS A NOTE FOR PF. If it takes you longer than 15 seconds to find a card that you claim to have, I will ask you if you want to run YOUR prep time to find it. If you say "yes" then carry on, but maybe consider familiarizing yourself with your evidence so you can find it quicker. If you say "no" then that evidence won't "exist" until you demonstrate that it's real (which could include reading it in the next speech, though that might be too late if your opponents speak between when you cite it and then). Obviously I will be understanding if there are technical difficulties (IE internet cutting out, computer crashing) which I have been made aware of.
Also, while we're on evidence in PF, sending just like, a link to a website isn't great. If your opponent doesn't interact with it I will probably take you at face value, but know that there is a chance (slight) that I will, unprompted, click your link and read the article and if it says something other than what you claimed then I will intervene to vote against you because of this. I won't do this with a cut card unless someone in the round makes it an issue. TL;DR: If you're sending just hyperlinks to articles make sure they say what you claim.
Speed: Sure. I can keep up as long as you are able to maintain clarity. I will call speed if you go too fast, and I encourage you to call speed on your opponent if they are going too fast for you. I will begin docking speaker points on the third time I have to call speed, and if your opponent calls a third time you should expect a good hit to your speaker points. This isn't necessarily a voting issue for me (unless your opponent makes it a voting issue). I definitely want to be on the speechdrop/email chain (though I prefer speechdrop). firstname.lastname@example.org.
AFF: I prefer topical AFFs. I am open to listening to an engaging K AFF (or if your opponent doesn't call T then I guess run whatever you want, obviously), but I would still prefer to listen to a topical AFF. I strongly prefer AFFs that include a plan text of some sort (even if it's a vague/open-ended plan text). I don't like the idea of "reserve the right to clarify" but I understand it's functionality given time constraints. Don't clarify in an utterly unreasonable way (my threshold is pretty high here).
T: Topicality is a stock issue, and as such I will vote on it if it's won. I don't particularly enjoy listening to T arguments, but who really does. I don't particularly love definitions (I.E. "substantial"), unless the original definitions are completely misrepresenting the words of the resolution/rule/etc. That being said, competing interpretations has been doing well in front of me recently so I would hardly call it unviable. Upholding your standards is pretty much the most important thing to do to win T in front of me. You can make your voter "NFA-LD rules" if you want, but there needs to be an articulated voter on T for me to vote on it. I default reasonability, but really I strongly prefer one or both debaters to give me a FW. I will evaluate T on whatever FW is given to me by the debaters. NOTE: My threshold for voting on T is lower than it was my first two years judging, if you happen to remember/have heard that I would not vote on Topicality.
Theory: Pretty much the same as my T paradigm. I'll listen to theoretical positions, just give me some clear standards if you want to win that position in front of me. I default drop the argument, but will vote on drop-the-debater if that argument is warranted out to me. Clear in-round abuse stories tied to theory arguments, especially those focused on research burden and unfair ground have been successful in front of me in the past, but I don't perceive myself as being uniquely drawn to them. I don't mind Neg debaters running Disclosure Theory against Affs, but unless the Neg runs a CP or an Alt I don't think Affs running Disclosure Theory against Negs is a viable strategy in front of me (NOTE: this is for LD, for PF aff's can run disclosure theory, it is viable in that realm). if the Neg DOES run a CP or Alt then suddenly Disclosure is a viable aff position.
Disclosure in PF is a fine theory position to run in front of me, but I will not vote for it on principle alone. I DO generally think disclosure is a good norm that should be adopted into PF, but that being said, you need to have clear standards, voters and weighing on a theory argument to win. My desire to not intervene in a round far outweighs my desire to punish teams for not disclosing. A role of the ballot framing is also a good strategy in any context if you're going for theory and if you're defending against a position like this then having a counter framework is also a good idea.
I will vote on conceded RVI's but the threshold for voting on an RVI that's been effectively defended against is probably fairly high. "Don't vote for an RVI" is not enough defense. Explain to me literally any reason to not vote for the RVI.
CP: I don't have a strong personal predilection to voting on conditionality one way or the other, but I conceptually dislike conditional CP's a lot- that being said, it's not a strong enough dislike for it to matter unless someone in round forces my hand. "Condo Bad" arguments are viable in front of me but by no means will they always win. Perms of the CP need to be actually explained to me. Just hearing "both" won't be a winning position in front of me. I will evaluate the plan vs. CP debate in pretty much the same way that I evaluate the SQ vs. plan debate unless one side offers a different FW. I am okay with the Neg going for CP and SQ in the NR, but I feel like the strategy is risky given that you have to split your time between both positions.
K: I love critical arguments and I'm a critical scholar professionally, but don't necessarily expect me to be read up on all of the literature (though I may surprise you). I'm okay with generic links to the AFF, but I definitely like to see good impact calculus if your argument is reliant on a generic link; I need one or the other to be strong for your K to have a chance in a round. I need to know why the impacts of the K outweigh or precede the impacts of the AFF. I prefer Alternatives that have some type of action, but am open to other types of Alts as well. I don't particularly love hearing alts that say we need to theoretically engage in some different type of discourse unless there's a clear plan for what "engaging in X discourse" looks like in the real world (which can include within the debate round at hand, but might have more). Particularly, I enjoy hearing alternatives that call for the debaters in the round to engage in discourse differently (I think this is the easiest type of Alt to defend). Even if the Alternative is to simply drop the AFF in-round, that is enough "real world" implementation of a theoretical Alt for me.
Clarification: K debate is not the absence of tech- you still need to demonstrate a link an impact even if those things take a different form or are about different things than they would be in a more traditional arg.
DA: Not much to say here. Give me a good DA story and if you are winning it by the end of the round then I'll probably vote on it. Definitely remember to do weighing between the DA and the AFF though because there's always a good chance that I won't vote on your DA if you can't prove it outweighs any unsuccessfully contested Advantages of the Aff. DA's with no weighing are only a little better than no DA at all.
Solvency: A terminal solvency deficit is usually enough of a reason for me to vote against the aff BUT I need this extended as a reason to vote. You can always say that it's try-or-die, tell me there's a risk of solvency and sure, I'll still grant you that begrudgingly (unless you've really lost the solvency debate). If you're getting offense somewhere else good for you, I'll still vote on that; so like, if your case falls but you have a turn on a CP or an RVI on T or something those are still paths to the ballot. This note is here because I've seen a few rounds where the aff just sort of says "they have at best a terminal no solvency argument" and like- that's enough for them. That's what neg needs at the minimum to win the round.
Hi I’m Eric. My two sons did PF in high school. I will vote for the clearest and most logical argument. Please read slow as it will only make it harder for me to evaluate the round if I don’t understand it. I would prefer no theory. Thank you and I look forward to an amazing round.
Hello. My name is Kim and I have a son currently doing PF in high school and my older son also did PF. I will vote for the most logically sound argument and the most persuasive argument. Please do not read fast and make sure to guide me on the flow. Running theory just makes it harder for me to evaluate the round so please stay off that.
Thanks and I look forward to a great round.
Current Coach -- Marist School (2011-present)
Lab Leader -- National Debate Forum (2015-present), Emory University (2016), Dartmouth College (2014-2015), University of Georgia (2012-2015)
Former Coach -- Fayette County (2006-2011), Wheeler (2008-2009)
Former Debater -- Fayette County (2002-2006)
Last Updated -- 2/12/2012 for the 2022 Postseason (no major updates, just being more specific on items)
I am a high school teacher who believes in the power that speech and debate provides students. There is not another activity that provides the benefits that this activity does. I am involved in topic wording with the NSDA and argument development and strategy discussion with Marist, so you can expect I am coming into the room as an informed participant about the topic. As your judge, it is my job to give you the best experience possible in that round. I will work as hard in giving you that experience as I expect you are working to win the debate. I think online debate is amazing and would not be bothered if we never returned to in-person competitions again. For online debate to work, everyone should have their cameras on and be cordial with other understanding that there can be technical issues in a round.
What does a good debate look like?
In my opinion, a good debate features two well-researched teams who clash around a central thesis of the topic. Teams can demonstrate this through a variety of ways in a debate such as the use of evidence, smart questioning in cross examination and strategical thinking through the use of casing and rebuttals. In good debates, each speech answers the one that precedes it (with the second constructive being the exception in public forum). Good debates are fun for all those involved including the judge(s).
The best debates are typically smaller in nature as they can resolve key parts of the debate. The proliferation of large constructives have hindered many second halves as they decrease the amount of time students can interact with specific parts of arguments and even worse leaving judges to sort things out themselves and increasing intervention.
What role does theory play in good debates?
I've always said I prefer substance over theory. That being said, I do know theory has its place in debate rounds and I do have strong opinions on many violations. I will do my best to evaluate theory as pragmatically as possible by weighing the offense under each interpretation. For a crash course in my beliefs of theory - disclosure is good, open source is an unnecessary standard for high school public forum teams until a minimum standard of disclosure is established, paraphrasing is bad, round reports is frivolous, content warnings for graphic representations is required, content warnings over non-graphic representations is debatable.
All of this being said, I don't view myself as an autostrike for teams that don't disclose or paraphrase. However, I've judged enough this year to tell you if you are one of those teams and happen to debate someone with thoughts similar to mine, you should be prepared with answers.
How do "progressive" arguments work in good debates?
Like I said above, arguments work best when they are in the context of the critical thesis of the topic. Thus, if you are reading the same cards in your framing contention from the Septober topic that have zero connections to the current topic, I think you are starting a up-hill battle for yourselves. I have not been entirely persuaded with the "pre-fiat" implications I have seen this year - if those pre-fiat implications were contextualized with topic literature, that would be different.
My major gripe with progressive debates this year has been a lack of clash. Saying "structural violence comes first" doesn't automatically mean it does or that you win. These are debatable arguments, please debate them. I am also finding that sometimes the lack of clash isn't a problem of unprepared debaters, but rather there isn't enough time to resolve major issues in the literature. At a minimum, your evidence that is making progressive type claims in the debate should never be paraphrased and should be well warranted. I have found myself struggling to flow framing contentions that include four completely different arguments that should take 1.5 minutes to read that PF debaters are reading in 20-30 seconds (Read: your crisis politics cards should be more than one line).
How should evidence exchange work?
Evidence exchange in public forum is broken. At the beginning of COVID, I found myself thinking cases sent after the speech in order to protect flowing. However, my view on this has shifted. A lot of debates I found myself judging last season had evidence delays after case. At this point, constructives should be sent immediately prior to speeches. (If you paraphrase, you should send your narrative version with the cut cards in order). At this stage in the game, I don't think rebuttal evidence should be emailed before but I imagine that view will shift with time as well. When you send evidence to the email chain, I prefer a cut card with a proper citation and highlighting to indicate what was read. Cards with no formatting or just links are as a good as analytics.
For what its worth, whenever I return to in-person tournaments, I do expect email chains to continue.
What effects speaker points?
I am trying to increase my baseline for points as I've found I'm typically below average. Instead of starting at a 28, I will try to start at a 28.5 for debaters and move accordingly. Argument selection, strategy choices and smart crossfires are the best way to earn more points with me. You're probably not going to get a 30 but have a good debate with smart strategy choices, and you should get a 29+.
This only applies to tournaments that use a 0.1 metric -- tournaments that are using half points are bad.
I am a lay judge. I am looking for clear communication, professionalism and mutual respect in the debate. I also expect the debaters to maintain time.
I will also look for how each debater responds to questions and answers. Debate should be vigorous, but debaters should show decorum and respect when countering.
Comparing and contrasting in your arguments is very important. Do strong weighing between the two arguments (Affirmative/Negative) and explain why yours is better than theirs and why I should vote for you. Explain and extend and make sure that you EMPHASIZE what you really want me to hear. Slow down and be clear.
I look favorably on the debater that can make their point, and at the appropriate time move on to another strong point of their argument rather than one who stays on the same point for too long.
I don’t prefer intervening and expect teams to call out bad behavior such as spreading, new arguments in final focus etc. Competitors do not have to reply every argument in case a team is using spreading tactic.
Competitors are encouraged to focus on main issues pertaining to the topic rather than “minor” or “obscure” arguments.
I want to be treated as a flay judge!
I debated in Pf at Nova high school for 5 years
-I don't believe in progressive debate. I hate theory and K's with a passion. Run a K or theory and I'll drop you :)
- I prefer weighing to start in rebuttal but obviously it doesn't have to be, just make sure it is in summary if you want it to be considered in final
- don't just weigh on the impact level, weighing on the link level matters more to me as impact weighing is kind of obvious for the most part
I-Not a huge fan of speed, especially if you're just reading off a document, you can go a little fast but if it's late at night, early morning or mid-afternoon try to avoid fast speaking
-warrants are more important than impacts, if I don't hear a warrant, I don't care at all if your impact is extended cleanly throughout the round. I prefer logic over an unwarranted piece of evidence. Having an authors name behind an argument doesn't mean anything to me
- I will vote off of logic over an unwarranted probably not credible author.
Also, don't be rude, stand up when speaking beside the grand cross, and have to try to have fun.
My manner of taking notes during a debate consists of writing the general ideas the contestants are providing and provide sidenotes details that highlight the weaknesses and strengths of their argument about such point. The experience I have with debating is debating clubs and competitions that took place during my high school years (3 years ago). Regarding pet peeves, I prefer to remain impartial during debates, but if I had to choose one, speaking fast to get quantity of information instead of quality is not my favorite thing in the world. My prefer mode of delivery is impromptu but I understand it takes a lot of preparation to deliver this method efficiently therefore my second best is extemporaneous.
I am a tech judge who competed in team debate as a high school student. I like eye contact, debaters who stand to face me while they speak, and good sportsmanship.
I have experience in PF, Parli, Extempt, and Duo/ longtime judge (mainly PF)
Things to consider at the start of the round:
- Make sure to clearly state your contentions
- Speaking fast is okay but do not spread
- Remember I am flowing please make it easy to follow along throughout the round
- Make sure your flow is ready before the round
- Delivery matters!!
Things to consider during the round:
- Keep up with your own prep time
- Make sure you utilize your time wisely. Make sure you use all of your time and are refuting as well as rebuilding your case.
- Please do not spend multiple speeches arguing over one source.
- Make sure you are extending arguments.
- My ballot will go to the team that does the best weighing and impacting in the round. You have to be clear as to why you are winning the round. If you do not call something out or respond, I cannot make the argument for you. Remember to actually debate the resolution don't get lost in the round.
- Be mindful of what you say in the round. The words you use and the arguments you make have implications. Please consider that throughout the round.
- Do not wait to FF to say that the other team dropped all of your contentions.
- Do not ask for a source in question for something that is common knowledge. I do count logical arguments and responses.
If doing an email chain please add me - email@example.com
If you have any other questions feel free to ask!
Go into the round with a blank mind and use the information given to me to judge with no bias.
I am NOT a present or former debater, coach, or professional judge. I have two daughters who debate and I judge a few times a year. I don't flow but I will take notes and listen to everything you say.
Some pointers that will help you to get my ballot:
- Don't be rude in any way and don’t yell; keep the debate civil
- Speak slowly and clearly; If I don’t understand what you are saying, I can’t judge it
- Don't "card dump," I'd rather be persuaded with logic than with a piece of evidence
You will get my vote if you give me a consistent argument the whole round and persuade me with good speeches.
TIMING- For speeches and cross: Please state something like "my time starts now" or "time starts on my first word." For prep time: Say "starting prep now," "time starts when I get my partner's call," or hold your timer so that everyone can see it when you start prep. Also say "stopping prep, we used X" or "x remaining." This helps me and everyone in the round keep track.
When time runs out, please stop speaking. If time runs and you are in mid sentence, you may complete the sentence but only if you can do so in no more than a few seconds. Arguments made or responses given after time is up are NOT "in the round."
Add me to the email chain. If you are sharing speeches with each other, please share them with me - firstname.lastname@example.org
I have judged multiple speech and debate events over the last two years, including rounds in the Florida State Final Championship. I am a practicing attorney in Miami, Florida.
I believe my having studied logic, basic acting, speech, moot court, appellant argument and ligation trial practice advocacy gives me a good broad perspective in my judging. Actively litigating cases for over twenty years and representing a publicly traded company in an external capacity in the past allows me to draw from my own experience in speech/presentation and debate/argument to provide the contestants with useful feedback.
Judge only based upon what the presenters give to me.
I did PF and judged a little a few years ago. I know a lot of the jargon but dislike it.
I’ll be flowing, but remember that you are persuading a person and not a legal pad.
Rhetorical strategies: logos, ethos and pathos. The decision in the round will probably depend solely on logos, but speaker points come from everywhere.
It’s better to approach opponents with a cooperative attitude rather than an adversarial one. This is life advice.
My two most important rules:
- No yelling or hostility
- Before every speech (not crossfire), please provide one interesting fact about yourself. “I am not interesting.” FALSE. You are interesting and we want to know about it.
I am a parent judge. I look for clash throughout the round, clear overviews (big picture analysis), and good weighing mechanisms.
I am a trial lawyer and I want to be persuaded with evidence and logic. Passion, storytelling and humor can help make an argument. Being kind and respectful is important.