49th Harvard National Forensics Tournament
2023 — Cambridge, MA/US
Congress (MS-Online) Paradigm ListAll Paradigms: Show Hide
As a judge, I am personally very big on delivery and the style in which the presentation is done. I am a strong believer that a passionate, engaging form of delivery is crucial for any successful speech. I like to see active participation and I also like when competitors avoid direct-reading like the plague!
I’ve been judging both speech and congress for over 5 years and can say that the experience has been great!
Hello there, my name is Bukunmi Babatunde (she/her/hers)! I'm a student at the University of Ilorin right now. I am a regular debater with expertise in a variety of formats, including BP, PF, WSDC, and ETHICS.
Email address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Conflicts: I don't have any.
When you encounter me in a room, I hold you to a standard of fairness and proper engagement during discussion rounds.
I appreciate debaters who can check all of the boxes for good involvement, such as role fulfillment, engaging the burdens in the debate, and providing appropriate engagement to round confrontations.
Even if they don't agree with the framing or the argument, I strongly advise teams to engage the other party's case.
Unless you pinpoint which warrants they compare, examples/precedent/empirics do not clash. They're frequently misapplied, therefore it's important to consider where arguments go.
The point, warrants, and why you won should be the focus of your summaries. Don't try to resuscitate arguments that weren't even touched/mentioned in the summary as the final focus.
Finally, always make sure you follow all equity rules.
Please keep track of time because I will be doing the same.
Special considerations for virtual debate tournaments
Please keep your cameras on if at all feasible. It's entirely understandable if there are issues with wifi or connection.
It is your responsibility to ensure that your speeches are clear and intelligible. I prefer medium pace speed
Policy Debate Paradigm:
The things you are probably looking for:
Speed: I’m fine with whatever you are comfortable with--no need to try to impress me.
Performance: I do not want to see a performance (deal-breaker)—I took policy debate extremely seriously, and I only want to see your creativity showcased through your strategy and your arguments; however, a relevant and cutesy pun here and there will be well-appreciated.
Pre-dispositions: Please do not make arguments that you do not understand/cannot explain in order to fill the time or to confuse the opponent—I will definitely take notice and probably will not vote for you. Keep things well researched and logical and everything should be fine.
Sportsmanship: Please always be respectful of your opponents. Mean-spiritedness is not a way to show me you’re winning. Even though I will always vote for the better arguments, if you display signs of cruelty towards your opponent, your speaker points will suffer.
****Make sure you have great links…nothing worse than sitting through a round where no one understands how any of the arguments relate to the topic*********
Disadvantages: Unless if your strategy is extremely sophisticated/well thought out/well-rehearsed (I have encountered quite a few when I competed), I think you should always run at least 1 DA.
· The Counterplan: If done well, and the strategy around them is logical and thought-out, these are generally winners. If done poorly and you just inserted one to fill the time, I will be sad and bored.
· Procedurals/Topicality: I love a good meta-debate, and I am open to these if you guys have a solid strategy around these arguments (for example: if your opponents are illogical/made mistakes, point that out to me). However, I usually see T’s used as generic fillers, and I will not vote for a generic filler.
· The Kritik: Love Ks if done well and showcases your knowledge of the topic and argument. However, if I can sense that you don’t know what you’re talking about, running a K might hurt you.
Overall, have fun ( I understand how stressful this event can be), show me you're prepared, and always try to learn something.
Lincoln-Douglas and Public Forum Debate Paradigm:
My job as a judge is to be a blank slate; your job as a debater is to tell me how and why to vote and decide what the resolution/debate means to you. This includes not just topic analysis but also types of arguments and the rules of debate if you would like. If you do not provide me with voters and impacts I will use my own reasoning. I'm open all arguments but they need to be well explained.
My preference is for debates with a warranted, clearly explained analysis. I do not think tagline extensions or simply reading a card is an argument that will win you the debate. In the last speech, make it easy for me to vote for you by giving and clearly weighing voting issues- these are summaries of the debate, not simply repeating your contentions! You will have the most impact with me if you discuss magnitude, scope, etc. and also tell me why I look to your voting issues before your opponents. In terms of case debate, please consider how your two cases interact with each other to create more class; I find turns especially effective. I do listen closely during cross (even if I don't flow), so that is a place to make attacks, but if you want them to be fully considered please include them during your speeches.
POLICY DEBATE PARADIGM
Name: Jamelle Brown
Current Affiliation: Sumner Academy of Arts & Science High School - Kansas City, KS
Debate Experience: 20+ years as a Head HS Coach, Debated 4 yrs in High School and 1 semester during college
List types of arguments that you prefer to listen to.
1. I appreciate real world impacts.
2. I love the kritical arguments/AFF’s with this year’s resolution. Make the debate real and connect to the real social issues in the SQ.
3. For T, neg if you want to prove that the AFF is untopical, provide valid standards and voters. AFF, then correctly answer these standards and voters. However, don't expect to win a ballot off T alone.
4. Know and understand what you are reading and debating. Be able to explain your card’s claims.
List types of arguments that you prefer not to listen to.
1. Every impact should not equal nuclear war. I want to hear realistic/real world impacts.
2. Generic disadvantages without clear links to the AFF.
List stylistics items you like to watch other people do.
1. I prefer medium-speed speaking. Completely not a fan of spreading.
2. Label and signpost for me. I like to keep a very organized flow!
3. Let me see your personalities in CX.
4. Impact Calc – I want to know why you want me to vote for you and weigh the round.
5. I am excited about performance teams!
List stylistics items you do not like to watch.
1. I dislike unrecognizable speed.
2. I am a Communications teacher, please allow me to see valuable communication skills. (Pre-2020 comment) For example, don’t just stare at your laptops for 8 minutes. Hello, I'm your judge – engage me!
In a short paragraph, describe the type of debate you would most like to hear debated.
Debate is a slice of life. I appreciate seeing a variety of styles and “risk takers.” Debate is also an educational venue. I enjoy K debate and appreciate high schoolers tackling K lit. There are so many important social justice issues that debaters can explore. As your judge, engage me into the round. I will not tolerate rude debaters or disrespectful personal attacks. I am a current high school Speech & Debate coach – please don’t forget about the value of communication skills! I coach all of the speech and debate events, so I love to see kids fully engaged in this activity by utilizing the real-world value it brings.
My name is Diya (she/her and pronounced DEE-UH). I debated throughout high school and am currently a junior at Duke (make a reference and I'll smile). I don't debate anymore ... ie I'm out of touch with fast speaking, technical debate, and am coming into this topic with no background. I will vote off the flow.
Speak clearly! Please please please don't spread. Call me traditional (I was), but speaking quickly for the sake of it is not what debate is about
Don't be rude; be respectful (if you're rude, expect low speaker points)
Frame your arguments - I'll default to util if you don't provide a better framework. WEIGH
I appreciate frontlines in second rebuttal
Warrant statistics and evidence with logic. Your numbers mean literally nothing unless you can explain to me WHY they're relevant or actually make sense. That being said, very low chance I call for evidence... you should know how to read and correctly interpret data
I have judged Varsity Policy, Parli and LD debate rounds and IE rounds for 10 years at both the high school and college tournament level. I competed at San Francisco State University in debate and IEs and went to Nationals twice, and I also competed at North Hollywood High School.
Make it a clean debate. Keep the thinking as linear as possible.
Counterplans should be well thought out – and original. (Plan-Inclusive Counterplans are seriously problematic.)
Speed is not an issue with me as usually I can flow when someone spreads.
I do like theory arguments but not arguments that are way, way out there and have no basis in fact or applicability.
Going offcase with non-traditional arguments is fine as long as such arguments are explained.
Above all, have fun.
Former speech/debate competitor at John F. Kennedy CR, IA
current sophomore varsity policy debater at George Mason University and (qualified to the NDT x1, 2023)
overall, If you make arguments that are offensive except speaks to be tanked or my ballot dropped.
Please put me on the email chain email@example.com
Don't change your debate style for me I will do my best to evaluate any argument you throw at me. Just do what you do best.
This may be a hot take but I think sending the constructive is good. it solves wasted time during calling for cards and just makes the activity more accessible.
Please do an evidence comparison if you are gonna ask for it, don't waste all of our time by calling for a hundred cards but never actually using them.
Not the best for theory arguments in PF.
Links are just as important as impacts. Please explain your case do weighing earlier on.
Speech organization is super important for me.
Cross is binding. A lot of people don't utilize cross-ex as the lifesaver it can be but if your opponents slip up y'all should capitalize that.
Speed is fine, but plz be clear if online because tech sux.
I will put the same amount of effort into judging as you do debating!
Tell me what to do, tell me how to write my ballot. Framing is everything in close debates.
I have been coaching debate since 1980. I was a policy debater in high school. I have coached policy debate, Lincoln Douglas, Public Forum, Big Question and World Schools debate. I am also a congressional debate coach and speech coach.
It comes as no surprise based on my experience and age, that I am a traditional judge. I do keep up on current theory and practice, but do not agree with all of it. I am a traditional judge who believes that LDers need to present a value to support based in the resolution. A criterion is helpful if you want me to weigh the round in a certain way. Telling me you won your criterion so your opponent loses doesn't work for me, since I believe you win the round based on your value being upheld by voting affirmative or negative on the resolution. Telling me to weigh the round though using your criterion makes me very happy.
Voting Issues- I need these. I think debaters ought to tell me what to write on my flow and on my ballot.
Not a fan of K's, performance cases, counter plans, or DA's in LD. I know the reasons people do it. I don't think it belongs in this type of debate. I know debate is ever-evolving, but I believe we have different styles of debate and these don't belong here.
Flow: I was a policy debater. I flow most everything in the round.
Speed- The older I get the less I like speed. You will know if you are going too fast --- unless your head is buried in your laptop and you are not paying any attention to me. If I can't hear/understand it, I can't flow it. If I don't flow it, it doesn't count in the round.
Oral Comments- I don't give them.
I have coached Public Forum since it began. I have seen it change a bit, but I still believe it is rooted in discussion that includes evidence and clear points.
Flow: I flow.
Public forum is about finding the 2 or 3 major arguments that are supported in the round with evidence. The two final focus speeches should explain why your side is superior in the round.
I am not a fan of speed in the round. This is not policy-light. I do not listen to the poor arguments moving into the PF world.
In High school I competed for Apple Valley High in Minnesota. Currently, I am competing on the college circuit for Western Kentucky University.
I am mostly an IE judge but if I am being honest...debate is more fun lol.
First of all, have fun and be respectful - enjoy every performance - these years will go by fast!
Speech Interp - I want to believe you, engage me - show me that your story DEMANDS attention.
Speech PA - How is your speech structured? Is it accessible and easy to follow? deliver your speech like it is the most pressing/important information I as your judge will hear all day.
Debate - Please do not spread to quickly, I don't like scrolling through your cards - I would rather just hear and flow your contentions based off what you are saying. I would consider myself a lay judge in debate - break it down for me - tell me WHY you should win.
If you have any questions about your ballots feel free to email me...
I have a Bachelor of Arts in History, and have previously competed in various Speech and Debate events for all four years of high school, was previously Vice President of the Model United Nations team at Nova Southeastern University, and have chaired several Model UN Committees since 2019.
My preferences are somewhat traditional. I make sure to flow notes throughout the round, weighing and articulating both the good and the bad that happens while writing my critiques. I will not tolerate disrespectful behavior which includes but is not limited to talking while a competitor is speaking, interrupting competitors excessively while they are answering a question, as well as racism, sexism, homophobia, transphobia, xenophobia, etc.
Please assume that I know nothing about the topic when the round begins. Clearly state all definitions, clarify your framework, and elaborate on all progressive arguments with clarity as if I am not familiar with them (kritiks, theory, topicality, ect). I will only allow spreading as long as it is explicitly requested before the round begins, and the opponent(s) is/are comfortable with it as well. Here are a few more of my general preferences regarding debate events:
Keep crossfires and cross examination civil and remember to respect one another
When it comes to weighing, I like to focus on links and impacts. The strongest usually win the round.
Make sure links and impacts are clear. If a claim is introduced without this support, I will consider the argument dropped.
Disclosure depends on the tournament however I will only disclose if both parties are comfortable with me doing so.
Lincoln Douglas and Policy Debate
I have competed in LD for two years in high school, and am familiar with most values/ criterion, theories, Ks ect that come along with it. Still, make sure to clearly state all definitions and framework as if me or your opponent is not familiar with it. A few more preferences:
Do not abuse your opponent
Can run Ks as long as they relate to the topic at hand
Assertiveness is fine in cross-examination, just don’t confuse it with aggression
If you want to win the round, make sure you’re crystallizing your arguments, weigh positions, and clearly state why your position should win
Public Forum Debate
In between my two years of debate, I competed in PF for about a year as well, and have been judging the event for over three years. You can pretty much run whatever you want as long as it makes sense. A few more general preferences:
Make sure all cards and information are up to date, within the past five years is my allowance unless the reference of a historical event is necessary for the framework of the case
Anything mentioned in Summary and Final Focus has to be mentioned earlier on in debate or else it will be scratched from the record
Speech and IEs
For all speech and IEs, I generally rank based on creativity, performance, delivery, and passion for the subject at hand.
For Extemp and Oratory, I follow general guidelines but vote on cohesiveness and clarity of the arguments. Do not go up there and spout truisms without evidence; there needs to be a purpose to them. How you present the facts also matters. Make sure to distinguish some of these guidelines for Info. You can have a creative informative speech with meaning and without explicitly mentioning your argument.
As for Interp events, I lean heavily into creativity, strong structure/ story line, and blocking that is intentional. I need to see clear character development, and if I feel your performance is lacking in this area you lose structure. Feel free to go outside of the usual conventions for these events. If your performance is unlike anything that I’ve seen before, you’ll usually get the 1.
For Congress, on the argumentative side it's very similar to the criteria I listed in the Debate section. I rank based on meaningful clash, solid argumentations, excellent weighing, and comparison of impacts. Your performance and presentation can be excellent, but if the argument falls apart during your speech I will count that against your overall rank. As for the PO, you will always be ranked within the top 6 depending on the tournament. Where you fall on the overall rank will depend on how you run the chamber based on equity, fairness, flexibility, and inclusivity.
I did Public Forum debate in High School. I'm pretty much a flow judge, but it makes things unenjoyable for me when everything is entirely tech during the round and I don't get to hear one nicely presented speech. Maybe something to think about as you reach Final Focus.
Some general things: I don't time prep or speeches, I trust you all to do so. I don't flow cross, but I will add something from cross to my flow if you bring it up in your speech. I don't call for cards unless they become voters, I can explain what this means if you have questions. I appreciate extensions in summary. I need weighing/impact analysis in the final two speeches.
I give feedback!
As someone who has spent five years immersed in Congressional Debate, and dabbled in Public Forum Debate on the side, I am always excited to see fresh perspectives and innovative ideas in the competition.
As a judge, I have a few key criteria that I look for in a successful debate. First and foremost, I believe that warranting and argumentation are essential to building a strong case. You should have a good speech structure and analytical reasoning to support your arguments, and while data can be useful, it shouldn't be your only tool. I suggest using a few cards per point to bolster your argumentation.
In addition to strong argumentation, I believe that interactions are a critical component of a successful debate. Good questions, eye contact, and flexibility in your arguments, including flipping and refuting points made by previous speakers, are all important ways to engage with the main points of the clash throughout the round.
I also have a deep appreciation for the art of rhetoric and the power of a good joke. When done well, humor and thematics can add an extra dimension to a debate, helping participants to connect with their audience and drive home their arguments. However, I must emphasize that any humor or thematics used must be appropriate to the situation and not insensitive in any way.
Finally, I believe that respect for your fellow speakers is crucial in any debate. This includes thanking the chair/PO, knowing your motions, and generally being courteous and professional. However, I caution against going overboard with this in an attempt to win brownie points or pander to judges. At the end of the day, it is the strength of your arguments that will carry you through to victory.
If you have any questions or would like additional feedback, please don't hesitate to reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I am always happy to provide further comments and future assistance to anyone looking to improve their debate skills. Best of luck to all the competitors, and let the battle begin!
Did PF at VIP, NFALD at WKU
Speed is fine
Not a fan of non-t critical affs
Don't love Ks either
I enjoy topicality debates
I enjoy theory debates
Finding cards should take less than 30 seconds or its your prep (flash cases for perfect speaks).
If you disclose I'll give you really really high speaks
I'll evaluate most arguments barring anything offensive or insensitive. If you're unsure of what I mean by this or want to clarify anything ask me before the round.
Weigh... That's what the decision is based on, don't focus on the line-by-line in FF, instead explain why your impacts matter more than the other teams.
Parli: PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE do not feel obligated to fill time if you're a beginner or just don't have 7 or 8 minutes worth of argumentation. I would much rather you give a 4-minute rebuttal than an 8-minute rebuttal where half of the speech is you just repeating the same things over and over again. Speed is cool so long as your opponents are fine with it. Any arguments will be evaluated unless they're discriminatory
Let me know if you have any questions
email for chain: email@example.com
Speak clearly. Any speed is fine as long as you slow down and read your tag lines and main points very clearly. Spreading is fine. Give clear indication of when you have reached the burden you set out.
LD: I am a true values debate judge in LD. Tabula rasa judge. Flexible to any kinds of cases and arguments as long as they are respectful. If your case is not topical or abusive and your opponent argues and proves that in their speeches then I am willing to vote based on topicality, education and abuse.
PF and CX: Be respectful and cordial to your opponent. I’m open to most anything in Policy rounds. Always stay on the debate topic, don’t wander off onto an irrelevant subject because it’s more enjoyable to argue about than the topic is. Always allow your opponent the opportunity to complete their sentence before continuing to cross.
I’m a Tabula rasa Judge especially in Policy debate. If you don’t tell me how you want me to weigh the round and set a minimum burden for each side to have to meet within the round to win then I will default to judging based on the block and will turn into a games playing judge and will make voting decisions based on what my flow shows and dropped arguments or arguments that were lost or conceded will very much factor into my vote. Impacts, Warrants and links need to be made very clear, and always show me the magnitude.
Hiiiiiii I’m Brandon Pham and I competed on the circuit for 3 years (if you count online as competing XD). Tbh I’ve done it all, as in I preferred to just try out different events rather than focusing in on being good at one event (weird ikr but I’m here to have fun). I typically know what to look for in each event and what the standards of each event are like. I consider myself a fairly technical and flow-based judge. Most of my success was in my senior year of s&d consistently placing in my events, and I qualified for nationals reaching triple octas representing Arizona on the World Schools Debate team: Team AZ Citrus or Team AZ Yellow idk they kept changing the name (at one point it was one of our teammates’ names). not only that but i’m also part of the ASU forensics team traveling across the country for our own tournaments so if im not on the judging pool its probably because im competing at my own tournaments. i *kinda* know what im doing. im practically yalls age so i dont mind if you treat/see me as such. im chill like that.
I’ve done every debate event (PF, LD, CX, BQ, WSD) except congress, so if I ever judge congress bc of judge desperation, go easy on me o.o. (I have judged congress a few times including the harvard semis round so I still know what I'm doing ish) Regardless, I know how each debate event is run with their nuances and how to judge.
1. SPREADING: idc about spreading and can keep up with it bc i used to spread *occasionally* but if you’re gonna do the “speak in a super loud monotone voice with no inflections thing” you better start an email chain or at least preface that you’ll spread. If I say “clear”, chill out brev, and that means you have either a) not started a sufficient email chain and b) are just speaking way too fast to the point I can’t even flow.
2. SIGNPOSTING: istg if you don’t signpost i’m docking speaks and am less likely to give you the dub. it helps with flow reference, make you appear organized and not fumbling mid-speech, and it even helps your opponent know where you are to sufficiently rebut!
3. CARDS: tag cards appropriately during speeches and reference them as such + key info during later speeches. saves time, helps flow, and is just a more organized form of debating. novices, i get it i was there too, but if you have questions on this or other things ASK. for checking cards, i won’t take prep unless its just a seriously long time. ill start prep the moment you show your opponents the card bc ngl the longer you take to find a card, the more time your opponent will have to prep and that’s your own downfall for poor organization. if you as the opponent need me to check a card bc of a mutual misunderstanding of it, lemme know. also, i *might* ask for cards post round - shouldn’t affect decision too much but it better be cut appropriately!! misconstrued cards reflect HORRIBLY on you so be careful!!
4. CROSS FIRE: lmao i don’t pay attention here. if im on my phone, its bc i couldnt care less what happens here. this is your time to clarify or find weak points. anything brought up in cross ex MUST be brought up in a later speech if you want me to consider it.
5. EXTENSIONS + WEIGHING: this is the most critical point in the round. i go by the flow, so if you do not flow it through in summary, its lost in the abyss forever. obv u dont need to flow everything, just collapse on the key voters. again, flow cards with tag + info/stats and explain why this is important. i also like seeing great clash and further elaboration on your arguments/rebuttals, not just a repeat of your constructive/rebuttal. also, pls try and properly weigh. ive seen too many debaters weigh the wrong way. use weighing mechanisms and why you win on a certain arg. also, don’t forget to frontline! and be very organized with these speeches/say which side/arguments you are addressing. if you want you can offer an off-time road map, up to you.
6. TIMING: time yourselves bro. i’ll be timing too, but take responsibility. if you’re over by five seconds, ya done. anything you say after i won’t even listen/flow. if your opponent is over and you want them to stop, raise a closed fist in the air and i’ll cut them off. also, yall shouldve practiced speeches beforehand so you should know what your time is like. if you’re under time, i couldn’t care less and won’t dock you as long as your arguments are great and well developed. i will have a bit of judgement in the back of my mind if you give like a 2 minute constructive tho, i just wont consider how short your speech is in the round.
7. DEBATER MATH: no.
8. THEORY: i was never too much of a theory debater, but if you are, you do you boo. i do understand theory and will know what you’re talking about, but just thoroughly explain what your argument is and also why your form of theory is necessary here. poorly run theory will get docked!! pf i don’t really see theory and don’t see much of a purpose, but for other debates feel free. policy, make sure you have your stock issues, or else… youre dead.
9. SPEAKS: lmao speaks will NEVER determine who wins an argument for me. you couldve given the worst speech ever but if your organization and arguments were there and you were doing your job to win the debate, you can def still win. i do appreciate some passion and style tho bc lets face it, debate in the real world relies on this type of stuff and for those of you looking into any kinda public speaking career, nows the time to start practicing! i will, however, give extra speaks for people who gimme a snack or some kinda energy drink or coffee/tea. i love love love boba o.o. but don’t try to suck up to me. i will give you LOWER speaks if you do this.
11. Congress specific: I have two primary criteria for judging your speeches; Content and Delivery. I might abbreviate them as "C" and "D" on the ballot but that's just for efficiency for me. I like to see a lot of critical analysis on topics and providing originality on your speeches rather than just regurgitating info you found from a card online. Having a unique and attention-grabbing hook helps with receiving delivery points from me. Also, make sure you are asking questions that help to develop the bill and opens room for debate, if that makes sense. As for my POs, I rank you guys very well and POs almost always make it onto my ranking list. As for whether or not you rank highly depends on how efficiently you run the chamber and ensuring that you are allowing each representative a fair chance at giving a speech and ensuring that everyone tries to speak once per bill for around a total of two speeches throughout the session. I personally don't know much about the certain nuances or the amendments to bills and whatnot, so just make sure that in the event that this does happen, POs, that you handle this situation properly and whatnot.
12. World Schools Debate specific: I go based on exactly the ballot, so I judge based on content, style, and strategy. I need content that develops why we should or shouldn't pass this motion and has a highly analytical basis. Make sure you have evidence that really drives your points and helps with developing your arguments. Make sure to hit the golden number two P.O.I.s and make sure they develop the argument. also be INCREDIBLE speakers pls to me this event gives debaters the chance to simulate actual policymaking when being voiced in a public session. gimme some passion + good arguments. obv have your own style of speaking, but motivate me! for strategy, I also love some good bench comm bc it shows you guys are a team! try to be a lil more ad lib and dont read off your notes. be sure to incorporate things your opponents have said and what your teammates put forth in the round to really bring it all together. like everything else have good organization, speak clearly, and be confident. ive never judged world schools before but ive done it.
If there is ANY instance of discrimination, homophobia, racism, sexism, or ANYTHING that needs to be brought to my attention PLEASEEE do. I take these things seriously and will make sure that your opponent is NEVER seen on this circuit again and receives sufficient punishment. pls do this asap before/after round or whenever is most convenient so that we can get appropriate action to prevent further tournament complication. and if for whatever reason your opponent isn’t punished, i’ll sick my poodle on em.
-for email chains or if you have any questions about rfd or just want advice or even need a friend to talk! i swear im not that scary uwu fish are food not friends i mean huh wo- i think imfunny huh..
that was a lot im sry even i got tired of typing all this but i got a lotta things to say. im pretty flexible tho so lets go wild. if you have any questions ask away ehe. again if you have any questions about rfds or my ballot, need advice, whatever, my email is firstname.lastname@example.org.
glhf girls bros and nonbinary ho- *ahem* :D
For All Events
1) Be Nice (The people you meet in this organization are more important than a snarky comment or abusive tactic)
2) Be Honest (Don't misconstrue evidence)
3) Have Conviction (Present like you believe in what you say, even if that goes against your personal beliefs, and remember you worked hard to get where you are)
What I want:
Link chains, strong evidence, nuanced reasoning, impact analysis, and direct clash.
Open to all argument types but make sure its topical.
I have ZERO TOLERANCE for racism, sexism, homophobia, ableism, bigotry, and discrimination. You will lose, be reported to tab and your coach will be informed.
Presentation is also important, if I can't understand what you are saying, your evidence and reasoning is irrelevant. Don't speak too fast and make sure to enunciate, warming up before rounds will rapidly improve this. Analysis, Evidence, and Reasoning is most important as long as I can understand you. Each speech type is important and has its place, showing mastery of all speech types will get you the 1.
PO should metaphorically "speak softly and carry a big stick" Do your job, maintain control, keep debate moving, and be expeditious.
I will call evidence and if told to call something I will. Don't get stuck fighting over what evidence says, make your point on how it should read and I will read it.
I had a lot of competitive success in HS went to nats, placed on the circuit and the like but thats not important. More importantly, I made lots of friends and met people from across my state, the US, and world.
I am a third year student triple majoring in Behavioral Economic, Policy, and Organization, French and Francophone Studies, and International Relations and Politics at Carnegie Mellon University. If you have any questions about any of that or college definitely ask.
I am happy to answer any questions after round and by email, just ask!
I did congressional debate for all 4 years of high school, going to TOC and NY State Championships. I graduated from MIT where I studied math and computer science and now work as a commodities trader.
- Speaking articulately, using strong vocal techniques, and any relevant hand gestures. Try not to speak too fast or too slow.
- Using reputable, relevant, and recent (<5 years old) evidence.
- Having strong warrants and linking your evidence to impacts.
- Speaking extemporaneously, making good eye contact with the chamber.
- Clash. Probably the most important part of debate. Really elevates just speeches to a real debate round.
- Not necessary, but always a plus if you manage to throw in some humor/original rhetoric and lighten up and engage the round.
- Being overly aggressive in your speeches, questioning, or other aspects of the round. It can come off as disrespectful rather than strong/confident.
- Using poor quality and/or irrelevant evidence.
- Not referencing other speakers in your speeches and having a lack of refutation. Speeches that come later in the round and do not add any value to debate are frowned upon.
- Rehash (saying "speaker ___ said this, but I would like to expand" does not make it acceptable).
- Reading excessively and relying too much on the legal pad.
I always consider ranking the PO, but you will only be ranked if you do your job well. Being elected PO is not a free pass to getting a decent rank - if you do not know all of the rules/make more than just a few minor mistakes you will not be ranked.
General advice for the round:
Do not mess around with the rules too excessively just so you need to prep less. Be kind to other debaters and try your best to be inclusive instead of just politicking before rounds begin. Be wise about submitting amendments, and make sure all discussion/debate pertains to the round and legislation at hand.
My rankings are generally based on: a) who had the strongest arguments/content that contributed the most to the debate, b) who gave the best speeches in terms of style, and c) who had the most memorable content (c being slightly less important than the others).
Speak clearly and make good eye contact. Use good evidence to construct logical arguments, and add value to the debate round through clash/references. Be a respectful debater, both in your speeches and the round as a whole. My email is mporlein [at] mit [dot] edu if you have any questions and/or want personalized feedback.
I am a head debate coach at East Ridge High School in Minnesota with 8 years of debate under my belt and 10+ years of speech coaching / judging experience as well. I love both activities, and I love seeing creative / unique approaches to them. I've sent several students to Nationals in both speech and debate categories for the past several years.
In 'real life' I'm an intellectual property attorney. I love good arguments in all types of debate. But I will NOT make logic jumps for you. You need to do the legwork and lay out the argument for me, step by step. I LOVE legal arguments, but most of all I love a good Story. Frame your arguments for me. Make the impacts CLEAR. (e.g. in PF / LD - WEIGH them.)
I vote on topicality in any type of debate that I judge. If your arguments are non-topical, and you get called on it, they will be struck from my flow. Everyone got the same resolution / bills, that's what I want to hear arguments about.
I am NOT a fan of Kritiks - you got the resolution ahead of time. Debate it. It's NOT accessible.
THIS IS A COMMUNICATION ACTIVITY. Your goal is to effectively communicate your arguments to me. If you are talking too fast to be intelligible, you are not effectively communicating.
If you make my hand cramp taking notes, I'll be crabby. I am a visual person and my notes are how I will judge the round. If I miss an argument because you were talking at light speed, that's your fault, not mine! :)
Attitude / Aggressiveness
100%, above all, you are human beings and citizens of the world. I expect you to act like it. I HATE rudeness or offensive behavior in any debate format. Be kind, be inclusive. By all means, be aggressive, but don't be rude.
Public Forum: I am a huge framework fan. You have the evidence, frame the story for me. If you give me a framework and explain why, under that framework, your evidence means I vote for you, I will. Don't make me do summersaults to get to a decision. If only one team gives me a framework, that's what I'll use.
Re: Summary / FF - I expect the debate to condense in the summary / final focus - and I expect you to condense the story accordingly. Look for places to cross-apply. I do need arguments to extend through every speech to vote for them - but I do not expect you to reiterate all evidence / analysis. Summarizing and weighing is fine for me.
WEIGH arguments for me. Especially if we're talking apples and oranges - are we comparing money to lives? Is there a Risk-Magnitude question I should be considering?
Re: new arguments in GC/FF - I won't weigh new ARGUMENTS, but I will consider new EVIDENCE / extensions.
Re: Argument / Style - I'm here to weigh your arguments. Style is only important to the extent you are understandable.
I generally don't buy nuclear war arguments. I don't believe any rational actor gets to nuclear war.
Lincoln-Douglas: If you give me a V/C pairing, I expect you to tie your arguments back to them. If your arguments don't tie back to your own V/C, I won't understand their purpose. This is a values debate. Justify the value that you choose, and then explain why your points best support your value.
Congress: This is debate. Beautiful speeches, alone, belong in Speech categories. I expect to see that you can speak well, but I am not thrilled to listen to the same argument presented three times. I expect to see clash, I expect to see good Q&A. I love good rebuttal / crystallization speeches.
I DO rank POs (assuming they deserve it) - without good POs, there is no good Congressional Debate. If you PO well in front of me, you will be ranked well.
Hello! Graduated Congressional Debater (2021 House Champion) with experience in other debate and speech events here.
Fully fleshed and logically linked arguments backed by coherent rebuttal will help you win. I value style and confidence during delivery, and frankly don't care how much you spread as long as you clearly signpost your points and slow down for tags/cards/anything you really need me to hear.
Your job is to explain the scope of the resolution and explain why I am voting for you. Don't forget to weigh! The credibility of sources, explaining why cards are relevant/applicable, and using direct evidence to refute your opponents is essential.
No ad hominem attacks or you will lose. Do not yell.
I see speech as a performance more than a presentation. Be creative with your facial expressions and body language, show that you understand your piece inside and out. Effectively capture the audience's attention and work to maintain it at the speech progresses.
PA kiddos should be aware that everything above applies to you, plus the formal aspect. Control your pacing, tone, and be sure to engage your audience.
I critique both your piece and your performance, make sure that your timelines/characters/sources are all relevant and useful to your intended purpose.
When judging congress, I rank primarily off of how well you play the game. Anyone speaking past the author/sponsor should have extemporaneous rebuttal. Constructives past cycle three will be judged harshly, especially if you're not bring anything new to the debate. Well executed crystallization are impressive, especially if you can build your case in prior questions. Signpost, please!
Good questioning periods will not get you a higher rank, but being unable to defend your points/getting flustered in questioning could impact your speaker points and justify a lower rank than someone with a comparable speech and better responses in Q.
Presiding Officer - take control of the round and show me what you can do. I watch you just as closely as the other competitors.
Humor and sass are amusing, bullies get dropped.
My name is Jude and I had the amazing opportunity to take a debate class throughout all four years of high school. I primarly did interp throughout high school and was a nationals/tfa/nietoc qualifer in POI for a few of those years. With that in mind, it is more than likely that I will probably judge in you an interp event. My judging style in Interp is pretty typical- I want to see a good story, good blocking and if you do a book event I really want to see some good book blocking. Above all, I want you to be yourself in your pieces! In other words, when you preform I want too see some aspects of you and who you are reflected in your performance as I find that makes for the best pieces!
However, if I end judging a debate round I do have some experience in CX so I do the understand the very basics of most debate events. I would go ahead and say that you should probably treat me like I am a very traditional/parent judge. I would avoid spreading if I'm your judge (or at least avoid spreading very fast) and I tend to vote very heavily on case arguments.TO CLARIFY I HAVE A AUDITORY PROCESSING DISORDER, IF YOU CHOOSE TO SPREAD I VERY LIKELY WONT BE ABLE TO PROPERLY UNDERSTAND YOU AND THEREFORE WONT BE ABLE TO PROPERLY FLOW YOUR ARGUMENTS.
I've competed in congress pretty much every year and I had some success here in there in the event. To congress competitors: I obviously well research speeches that are presented competely. However, I love great clash in your speeches and I love funny speeches!
I look forward to judging some of y'alls rounds!
I am Dyspolity@gmail on email chains.
Who I am:
Policy debater in the 1970's and 80's. I left debate for 15 years then became a coach in 1995. I was a spread debater, but speed then was not what speed is today. I am not the fast judge you want if you like speed. Because you will email me your constructive speeches, I will follow along fine, but in the speeches that win or lose the round I may not be following if you are TOC circuit fast. If that makes me a dinosaur, so be it.
I have coached most of my career in Houston at public schools and currently I coach at Athens in East Texas. I have had strong TOC debaters in LD, but recently any LDers that I have coached were getting their best help from private coaching. Only recently have I had Policy debate good enough to be relevant at TOC tournaments.
I rarely give 30's. High points come from clear speaking, cogent strategic choices, professional attitudes and eloquent rhetoric.
Line by line debates. I want to see the clash of ideas.
Policy arguments that are sufficiently developed. A disadvantage is almost never one card. Counterplans, too, must be fully developed. Case specific counterplans are vastly preferable to broad generics. PIC's are fine.
Framework debates that actually clash. I like K debates, but I am more likely to vote on a K that is based on philosophy that is more substantive and less ephemeral. NOTE: I have recently concluded that running a K with me in the back of the room is likely to be a mistake. I like the ideas in critical arguments, but I believe I evaluate policy arguments more cleanly.
Poor extensions. Adept extensions will include references to evidence, warrants and impacts.
Overclaiming. Did I need to actually include that?
Theory Arguments, including T. I get that sometimes it is necessary, but flowing the standards and other analytical elements of the debate, particularly in rebuttals, is miserable. To be clear, I do vote on both theory and T, but the standards debate will lose me if you are running through it.
Circuit level speed.
I am fine with conditional elements of a negative advocacy. I believe that policy making in the real world is going to evaluate multiple options and may even question assumptions at the same time. But I prefer that the positions be presented cogently.
Rudeness and arrogance. I believe that every time you debate you ae functioning as a representative of the activity. When you are debating an opponent whose skill development does not approach your own, I would prefer that you debate in such a way so as to enable them to learn from the beating your are giving them. You can beat them soundly, and not risk losing the ballot, without crushing their hopes and dreams. Don't be a jerk. Here is a test, if you have to ask if a certain behavior is symptomatic of jerkitude, then it is.
One More Concern:
There are terms of art in debate that seem to change rather frequently. My observation is that many of these terms become shorthand for more thoroughly explained arguments, or theoretical positions. You should not assume that I understand the particularly specialized language of this specific iteration of debate.
I default negative unless convinced otherwise. Also, I fail to see why the concept of presumption lacks relevance any more.
Because of the time skew, I try to give the affirmative a lot of leeway. For example, I default aff unless convinced otherwise.
I have a very high threshold to overcome my skepticism on ROTB and ROTJ and Pre-Fiat arguments. I should also include K aff's that do not affirm the resolution and most RVI's in that set of ideas that I am skeptical about on face. I will vote on these arguments but there is a higher threshold of certainty to trigger my ballot. I find theory arguments more persuasive if there is demonstrable in-round abuse.
I won't drop a team for paraphrasing, yet, but I think it is one of the most odious practices on the landscape of modern debate. Both teams are responsible for extending arguments through the debate and I certainly do not give any consideration for arguments in the final focus speeches that were not properly extended in the middle of the debate.
1) This is not an interactive activity. I will not signal you when I am ready. If I am in the back of your Congress session, I am ready. 2) At the best levels of this event, everyone speaks well. Content rules my rankings. 3)I am particularly fond of strong sourcing. 4)If you aren't warranting your claims, you do not warrant a high ranking on my ballot. 5) Your language choices should reflect scholarship. 6) All debate is about the resolution of substantive issues central to some controversy, as such clash is critical.
case offense/ turns should be extended by author name, you'll probably get higher speaks if you do, it's a lot clearer for me
do- “Extend our jones evidence which says that extensions like these are good because they're easier to follow"
Dont do "extend our link"
for an argument to be voteable I want uniqueness/ link/ impact to be extended
please extend warrants, I don't want to have a flood of blippy and unwarranted claims on my flow at the end of your summary
this also goes for arguments that are conceded
Defense should be extended but I’ll give slightly more lenience to your side if extended in final especially since the second speaking team already had a chance to frontline it twice. However at this point, it’s probably not terminal defense if it was originally, but it’ll at least mitigate their impact
This is your side’s last chance to weigh, so if the weighing is not here then I will not evaluate any more weighing from your side
Defense must also be extended
Just mirror summary, extend uniqueness, link and impact.
Don't make new implications on something that was never heard before, it’s annoying for me to go look back and see if you really said that, plus it’s just abusive
Cross is binding, just bring it up in a speech though
I know how bad evidence ethics are, however, I will only call for evidence if if the other team tells me to call for it
If your opponents are just blatantly lying about a piece of evidence, call it out in speech and implicate what it means for their argument
I’ve always been a firm believer that a good analytic with a good warrant beats a great empiric with no warrant. Use that to your advantage
You’ll have a minute to pull the evidence your opponents called for before your speaks start getting docked
Exception- the wifi is bad/something is paywalled and you have to go around it