Potomac December Intramural
2022 — Online, MD/US
MSJV PF JUDGES Paradigm ListAll Paradigms: Show Hide
I will judge you on the strength of your arguments, delivery style & quality of your evidences. Be clear, concise and fact based. Debate aesthetics is important, respect for opponents is paramount. Be fair and expect fairness.
My name is Venkat. I would love arguments based on facts and statistics.
Background: Currently, a coach for Liberty University, where I also debated for 4 years, NDT and CEDA octofinalist, and 2021 CEDA Top Speaker. Started by doing traditional policy args, moved to Kritical things, and ended as a performance debater with most of my arguments starting with black women and moving outward such as Cap, AB, Set Col, and so on). started debate in college as a novice and worked my way to Varsity so I do have a pretty good understanding of each division. Also, I'm a black woman if that wasn't obvious or you didn't know lol
I’m here for the petty and I stay for the petty I will vote on the petty but there is a difference between petty and mean I won't vote on mean it makes me very uncomfortable
Judging wise (general things)
How I view debate: Debate is first and foremost a game, but it’s full of real people and real consequences so we should keep that in mind as we play even though it’s a game that definitely has real-life implications for a lot of us.
Facial Expressions: I often make facial expressions during the debate and yes they are about the debate so I would pay attention to it my face will often let you know when I vibing and when I’m confused
Speaker points: --- totally subjective I try and start at 28.7 and then go up and down based on a person’s performance in a debate ---- in the debate, it becomes a trend to ask for higher speaks which is fine but if your gonna do that you best not suck or I will automatically give you a 28.3, also I feel like you need a justification for asking for those speaks outside of a speaker award --- I try to be nice and fair here
Speed: Don’t risk clarity over speed I’m not straining my ear to make sense of mus
Dont go far when the debate is over I tend to know my decision when the debate ends
If you are gonna email questions later pls let me know so I can keep my flows I often throw them away I wanna be to help but its hard for me to answer your questions after the fact if I don't have my flows
Debated a lot of K's, read a lot of K’s as a debater I don’t know every K in existence but with a thorough explanation and well execution, I will probably be fine.
I have a larger threshold for the K because I expect you to explain the linked story and the alternative with warrants so don't assume that just because I know the theory means you don't have to put in the work for the ballot. Links should be contextualized to the aff - please don't restate your tags and author but pull lines from 1ac/2ac. I would also warn against just running a K because you think I'm only a K debater (it’s obvious and annoys me just do what you do best)
I like performative links, not personal attacks. With performative links, just make sure to give a warranted analysis as to why I should vote on it and what the impact is.
Love them is one of my favorite parts of the debate I enjoy the creativity of these!! I do prefer K aff's to be in the direction of the topic or make some attempt to include a discussion of the resolution, but if you are not, then at least give me a warranted explanation as to why you have chosen that route. Those that are on the topic of the resolution, have a clear impact and solvency story. Many times, debaters will get so caught up in the negative arguments that they lose sight of what is important...their aff! So, make sure to keep a storyline going throughout the entirety of the debate.
When you get into FWK/T debates, extend and explain your counter-interpretation. What is your model and why is it good? That plus impact turns = an easy ballot from me.
I think a lot of K teams assume reading your aff is good in debate is gonna do something very big on K aff’s having a reason on why their aff in the debate is good.
It's a strategy that is read against K aff's, it's a strategy tbh I enjoy and am more sympathetic to than most would think. My personal outlook - debate is a game but it has real impacts that can help or harm certain individuals. While it is a competitive strategy, I do not think it is an excuse to not engage the affirmative because most of the time, your lack of engagement is what the aff will use to link turn the performance of reading fwk.
PSA - fairness is not an impact... at best, it’s an internal link. Unless the aff has no justification for their aff, then you got a good chance of getting my ballot by reading fairness. I find it most compelling when you prove in round abuse.
I think a TVA is a must. No, it does not need to solve the entirety of the aff because that is neg ground, but it should be able to solve the main impacts they go for. Lastly, defend your model of debate and explain why it would be better for the debate community writ large. If you are only focusing on one round, then explain why that is better.
Lmao these are things that exist in debate too…
Das I would say make sure you have a clear and warranted link story and awesome impact calc.
And CP’s I’m open to all CPs kinda think of CPs in the context of having a net benefit and how does the CP solve the aff? It's also nice if your CP is competitive...
I think theory is procedural make sure you explain very clearly and slowly what the violation is and why that matters...if you are going to go for theory, I expect the 2n or 2a to spend a good amount of time on it which means not just 30 sec or 1 min.
Policy Affs v K:
Engage the K!Too many times policy teams just write over the K with their fwk thinking that is the only work they have to do but it's just like debating a DA or CP. Do the link work and the more specific answers you have to the alt, the better position you are in. Don't just say Perm DB or Perm aff then alt, but really explain what that means and looks like in the world of the aff. I think you do need fwk to get to weigh your aff but that is all the fwk will get you which means don't forget to extend your aff and the impact story. A really good way to engage the K is to prove how the plan not only outweighs but resolves the specific impacts.
How to get better speaker points with me
Be nice, be funny, be personable
Organized docs and speeches
Mention Scandal/Olivia Pope whom I love in your speech I will bump your speaks like .4
Ohhh and for the black folks ask for speaker points and ye shall receive lol I might not be able to always give you the ballot, but I can give you a 30
A 2NR/2AR with judge instruction is literally the freakin best thing ever
Clements '20 | SLU '24
Email chain/Gdoc: firstname.lastname@example.org
Hi! I debated Public Forum for four years at Clements HS in Houston TX (didn't compete on the nat circuit much). I'm the average 'flow judge' and would also describe my (previous) debate style as an average 'flay' debater. For background, I qualified to TFA State twice and NSDA Nats. In short, I would suggest you focus on persuasion and quality of arguments, rather than quantity and jargon.
Read this above all: "I will not evaluate any Ks, theory (particularly disclosure theory), or other forms of technical argumentation from Policy/LD that are not common in PF. Not only am I uncomfortable with my ability to seriously evaluate these, I don't think they should exist in an event designed with as low of a barrier of entry as possible. If your opponent is racist, sexist, ableist, etc. I will intervene as necessary." -Jacqueline Wei
1. Exercise PF style judgment. Collapse, full frontline in second rebuttal, and extend defense in summary. DO tell me explicitly to call for evidence and signpost clearly. DON'T tag team speeches, flex prep, or spread. Speaker points are based on the above mentioned strategy but also decorum.
2. Present a cohesive narrative. Speeches throughout the round should mirror each other and have a strong central idea. As such, developed arguments and smart analytics always trump blips. I find myself not voting for arguments with little work done on them when they don't fit a story. By the end of the round, each argument should have extended evidence with a claim, warrant, and impact.
3. Weighing decides rounds. Weighing and meta-weighing should be done early and throughout the round, but with quality over quantity. This means implicating your weighing to engage with your opponent's arguments. I encourage you to create a lens to view the round by weighing turns, evidence, and case arguments in novel ways.
**As mentioned above, Please watch for speed when competing online, if you would like to go fast I will expect a speech doc so I can make sure I get everything**
Couple of last ideas I don't really want to type out:
-Please skip GCX if you can, we both want to get out of the round asap and I don't think it really does much for the round anyways
- Please make sure evidence is legit, if I notice it's not what you say it is, I won't buy the argument
- Save my soul and don't waste time sending evidence
- treat me as a lay, I flow as much as I can. I will try to make the best decision possible, but I honestly have no idea what I'm doing in this event.
- if you spread kiss the ballot goodbye. I did PF so don't go all out on me.
- If it helps, look at my PF paradigm (above), if you want some idea of how I judge PF.
- I have no idea what I'm doing.
- I can tell who's doing good and who's doing bad.
- Be nice.
Ask any questions to me if necessary (contact me at email@example.com or tbh just message me on FB - I respond here fastest), and remember to enjoy each round!
hi! I debate pf for Poolesville HL, toc qual x2
Please add me to the email chain: firstname.lastname@example.org
-tech > truth
-please signpost for me!
-offtime roadmaps are very much appreciated
-don't misconstrue your ev
-comparatively weigh- ex. not just "our impact is big" but "our impact is bigger b/c x y z"
-speed is fine, but quality>quantity always. you should collapse!
-2nd rebuttal should frontline 1st offense
-be rude, sexist, racist, homophobic, etc. and I will tank your speaks (so please be nice!!)
-most importantly: have fun!!
theory/prog args: not really comfy evaluating them
(p.s. follow my spotify for +1 speaker points lol)
I am new to judging! I need concepts spelled out for me at a conversational pace. I will vote for whoever overall convinces me of their position.
for harvard: pls come to round flipped, pre-flowed, and with an email chain/evi sharing doc set up. if you take a super long time to find evidence, i won't start deducting that time from your own prep (because i'm too lazy to keep track) but your speaks will definitely take a not-insubstantial hit. conversely, don't be that guy and call for like 10 cards in someone's case or rebuttal.
when they say you need to judge
hi! i debated for plano west for four years. i use they/them pronouns. add me to the email chain: email@example.com
• my priority #1 is a safe debate space. read trigger/content warnings with proper opt-outs when applicable, respect people’s pronouns, and generally don't act exclusionary/___ist or you will be given an L and 20s
• watching people debate off speech docs makes me sad.
• extend the entire argument (uniqueness through impact) and collapse please. otherwise, your speaks will be a bit concerning
• warrants > evidence; i won't call for cards unless you tell me to, or the round is so messy that i absolutely have to
• email chain ≥ google doc >>> zoom/nsda campus chat. pf evidence ethics...
• "new warrants are new arguments and will be treated as such" —aj yi (in other words, don’t blow up a turn in the second final focus and pretend like the warranting was in rebuttal)
• unanswered defense is sticky in first summary; the only frontlining i require in second rebuttal is turns/offense
• i like progressive arguments, as long as they are run in a way that's accessible to everyone in the round. if you read tricks or friv when your opponents didn't agree to a tricks/friv round, you are cringe and my threshold for what counts as a good response will be very very low
• i don't mind speed, but if i have to flow off a speech doc, you're going too fast. that being said, send your speech docs anyway
• i don't have a presumption preference. if the round goes off the rails, tell me why i presume for you or i else i may or may not flip a coin
• click here to boost your speaks; click here and here for instant serotonin, and click here for 4 minutes and 8 seconds of brain off music while you wait
feel free to ask questions! i’m fine with postrounding
if you ever need someone to talk to or have anything else you want to ask, my facebook messenger and instagram (@reneelix) dms are always open
I'll be looking for well-organized arguments that demonstrate the impact and significance of your points. I'll also be looking for direct responses to your opposing team's points. Good luck!
Public Forum debate notes: The comments below are written with policy in mind. But the principles apply. I would suggest reading the whole thing but specifically the parts on qualification of evidence, education and accessibility. What I hear and record by hand on my flow sheet is the official transcript of the debate.
I have experience in just about all types of debate. While some distinctions between formats I see similarities rooted in intentional relationships, education and rhetoric. I do not see the judge as a blank slate. So I have some things that I think, based on my experiences as a debater, social science teacher, coach, parent and program director effect my role as a judge. We all have filters.
Personally, I debated NDT for the University of Houston in the early 80's. Achieving out rounds at major national tournaments and debating at both the NDT and CEDA Nationals. I have coached all debate events and many speech events. My policy teams won St. Marks and Memorial TOC tournaments and enjoyed success nationally. My students were also successful on Texas UIL and local circuits. I have had debate teams, LD debaters, extemp speakers and congress entries placed 1st or 2nd in Texas and have also coached a state oratory champion.
Currently, I consult and do debate on the side from home. I'm 62 years old. Concerns or questions about a judge that age are addressed below.
I am open to alternative approaches to resolutions but also enjoy frameworks employed in the past. Debating and coaching in Houston and teaching at the UTNIF for a decade definitely shaped my my ability to listen to different types of frameworks - or what the debate is supposed to mean or accomplish. I have coached at so many levels, for many years on different topics - instead of seeing differences I see many similarities in the way arguments are framed evolve. I debated when it was highly questionable to do anything beyond policy debate - even counterplans, much less conditional frameworks, but being from a small squad (in a different info environment - when access to research and evidence was definiteley privileged) we pursued the edge strategies - such as hypothesis testing to level the field. Coaching in policy we ran all range of arguments. Overtime shifting to a more critical approach. Once again in response, in part, to the changing information space. On an education topic we went deep all year on Critical Pedagogy and on a criminal justice - Constitutive Criminology. There are very few rules in debate. What policy debate means and what my vote means are for grabs by both teams. I'm not into labels at way to define myself. If I had to pick a term it would be: Critic of Argument
A couple of notes
Speed, unless evolution is really off track, speed can't be any faster, even from when we debated in college. Speed is rarely what set the best debaters apart. However, these are my first NDT rounds this year. (I'm contemplating grad schools in the mountain west for next year) Make sure acronyms, initialisms etc. are clear first before ripping through what will be new information for me. I suggest making sure each of you arguments (CP/K/DA - plan objection if you're old -) have a quick efficient thesis that makes sure I understand your position and its potential in the round before you take off speaking more quickly.
I evaluate your proofs. Proof is a broad term - much more than published material.
I consider evidence to be expert testimony. A type of proof. The debater who presents experts to support their claims should lay the predicate - explain why that source is relevant and qualified to be an expert - when they present the evidence. Quotations submitted as evidence with just a publication title or name and date often fall short of this standard. Generally I don't want to call for a card after the round whose author was not qualified when presented in constructives. I will call for evidence on contested points. However, that evidence has been well qualified by the team presenting it and the debaters are usually talking about lines and warrants from the card. It is highly unlikely that I will call for card not qualified and/or not talked about in rebuttals. If a piece of evidence is not qaulified in a meaningful way during a debaters speech - it is unlikely I would call for it after the round. I've seen traveling graduate students from England just dismantle top flight policy teams - they had proofs that all knew and accepted often with out some of the "debate tech" norms found in academic policy debate (NDT/CEDA). See the comments below on what matters in rebuttals!
Notes on Education
Spurious "quick claims" claims of a specific educational standard thrown out with out all elements of an argument are problematic. I am a life long educator who has witnessed and evolved with debate. Often teams quick claim Education as a voting issue. As an educator, I often see performance methodology (like only reading names and dates to qualify evidence or "card stacking" reading only the parts of a card that favor you - even if full context sheds a different light OR speed reading through post-modern literature as probably much more important than a debate tech argument) as serious education issues that could be discussed - and much more primary to education - than debate tech one offs.
I find "debate tech" like spreading and some uses of technology in round serve to privilege or tilt the playing field. This doesn't mean to slow to a crawl - fast and efficient - but also accessible to both the other team and the judge. So winning because the affirmative can't respond in depth to 8 off case arguments is not persuasive to me. Be bold - go deep on issues that you think are yours. "Debate Terms of Art" often fall in this category. Language choice should be accessible - even if it means adapting to your opponent as well as your judge.
Evidence often is not enough
Most debates aren't won early - the changing information space has created a lot of equity. But there two things debaters do in my experience in rebuttals that make a difference. After they have strategically collapsed or decided which issue to go for they:
1. They talk authors and specific warrants contained in the evidence - usually contrasting opposing authors and warrants. These warrants are prima facia - they are best when clearly identified - even in the opening speeches.
2. They can tell a narrative - or give examples of the mechanics, warrants, internal links in the card. They can also explain sequences of events - what would happen if I voted for your argument/position or team.
From an educators view - this is the goal of debate.
Counterplans and debate tech
Counterplan "micro theory" has really evolved. That is my term for many variations of counterplans that drive focus away from clash on the topic. Superficial, procedural and timing exceptions or additions counterplans. I actually spent time reviewing two articles on the history of PICs and their evolution prior to writing this. The excessive use of academic debate "Terms of Art" is problematic, sometimes exclusionary. I prefer head on collision in debate - and debaters who figure out how to position themselves for that debate. I prefer the debate come down to clash on field contextual issue as opposed to "side swiping" the topic. Just my preference.
I also find that this type of debate tech functions as a tool of exclusion. The debate should be accesable to your opponents without an overreliance of theory or tech debates. If they are used as time sucks that rubs me the wrong way going to your Ethos as a debater.
I do not and will not vote on or enforce a preround disclosure issue. Settle that before the round starts. Take it over my head if you object. If you ask me to adjudicate that - you might not like the answer.
How we treat each other
This is something that might trigger my voting in way you don't expect. Let's work on accomodating each other and creating safe spaces for academic discourse and the development of positive intentional relationships.
I debated in PF for four years at Spring Lake Park high school, and currently compete on the Augsburg University forensics team. I also judge LD and congress and have done so at local tournaments and on the National Circuit.
LD AND PF PARADIGM:
In one respect, I do consider flow. I do look for debaters that extend their impacts and weigh it throughout. For example, if you give me a really strong argument early on and don't extend it all the way through, I can't declare you the winner based on that argument.
However, just because you extend your argument/evidence, doesn't mean the evidence is strong. Above anything else, I prioritize the strength of the arguments themselves.
I look for arguments that:
1. Have convincing grounds, warrants, and impacts
2. Are not convoluted (see my comments on this below)
3. Are backed up by strong evidence
Just because your point was extended, doesn't mean it is strong. And just because your point went uncontested, I will not automatically let you win the debate. I care more about argument strength than I do about flow. If you argument is problematic, illogical, fallacious, has weak/unconvincing warrants, etc, it doesn't matter to me how well you extended it.
If the card being used to back up an argument was not credible or cherry-picked, I will not weigh it even if it goes uncontested in round. (See pet peeves below)
Other general things I look for:
1. Signposting: Please be organized in your delivery so it is easier for me to flow and for you to keep track as well.
2. Clear speaking: Although I debated for four years, I have never ever been in favor of overly fast speaking whatsoever. I think it a cheap way to cram in too many arguments and then later say they never got refuted. I know how to comprehend general speed (sorry, it is hard for me to give exact wpm!), but if you are just spreading your case, unpopular opinion, but I think that reflects poor speaking skills.
- However fast you speak, please enunciate.
3. RESPECT AS A SPEAKER. If I see rude behavior, that is an automatic L from me. I don’t care how strong your case is. If a debater is yelling over someone else, interrupting excessively, speaking condescendingly, or anything of the like, I refuse to let you win the round.
4. Collapse arguments in the second half of the debate (summary and beyond) and please give me clear voters
5. Warrants: As I said above, I don’t just blindly weigh weak arguments just because they aren’t contested. Please make sure you give me a warrant for your impacts.
6. Credible cards that aren’t cherry picked, outdated, or sketchy (see my elaboration on this below)
1. Insisting that quantitative impacts are superior over qualitative ones:
- I don’t believe an impact is inherently not significant just because it cannot be expressed in a number. Numbers are incredibly important to prove the magnitude of a point, but it does not always outweigh a properly explained and cited qualitative impact. Although numbers tend to be more concrete, qualitative impacts can in some cases be quite powerful.
- For example, I cannot give you an exact number of how many people will die if we don't make college free (for example), but that doesn't mean the impact is meaningless. You can give all sorts of studies linking college education to employment, give research on how this might impoverish people, etc. But if you don't have numbers for the exact amount of people that will DIE, that doesn't mean the point is meaningless.
- But if you have numbers, use them. Just don't assume that your opponent's impacts aren't there just because nobody has done a formal study on how many would die.
2. Catastrophic impacts
- I am unconvinced by catastrophic-sounding quantifiable impacts. Examples include people saying "1 billion people will die from nuclear war if we do this;" "x policy will cause mass extinction;" "the passage of x bill will bring back the ice age;" etc. If you’re gonna give me an impact that billions of people will die, I’d like to hear a credible explanation with a warrant that isn’t convoluted. I am skeptical when debaters pull very unrealistic, outrageous sounding numbers, so be cautious of this.
3. Cherry-picking cards or using ones that aren’t credible
- I am very good at being able to pick out when a card sounds fishy, and have caught debaters using such cards. Have integrity, use evidence that you’ve verified, and don’t cut and paste the portions that suit your narrative.
All the notes above still apply.
My other note - please try to move the debate along in your speeches. Too often, I see congressional debaters repeating the same points in later speeches and it doesn't do anything to advance the debate. Throughout the session, you should be addressing the points of contention from the round.
My child has been in public forum for a couple years. I have some experience in judging public forum. I make my decision based on the contentions, evidences and logic. I don't put much weight on the delivery.
I would appreciate it if the students can speak clearly and not too fast.