Quarry Lane Open Scrimmage HS TOC
2023 — Online, CA/US
PF Debate Paradigm ListAll Paradigms: Show Hide
Yes, I want to be on the email chain - firstname.lastname@example.org. Label email chains with the tournament, round, and both teams. Send DOCS, not your excessively paraphrased case + 55 cards in the email chain.
I debated 3 years of PF at Coppell High School. I am now a Public Forum Coach at the Quarry Lane School.
Standing Conflicts: Coppell, Quarry Lane
If there are 5 things to take from my paradigm, here they are:
1. Read what you want. Don't change your year-long strategies for what I may or may not like - assuming the argument is not outright offensive, I will evaluate it. My paradigm gives my preferences on each argument, but you should debate the way you are most comfortable with.
2. Send speech docs. I mean this - Speaks are capped at a 27.5 for ANY tournament in a Varsity division if you are not at a minimum sending constructive with cards. If you paraphrase, send what you read and the cards. Send word docs or google docs, not 100 cards in 12 separate emails. +0.2 speaks for rebuttal docs as well.
3. Don't lie about evidence. I've seen enough shitty evidence this year to feel comfortable intervening on egregiously bad evidence ethics. I won't call for evidence unless the round feel impossible to decide or I have been told to call for evidence, but if it is heavily misconstrued, you will lose.
4. Be respectful. This should be a safe space to read the arguments you enjoy. If someone if offensive or violent in any way, the round will be stopped and you will lose.
5. Extend, warrant, weigh. Applicable to whatever event you're in - easiest way to win any argument is to do these 3 things better than the other team and you'll win my ballot.
Online Debate Update:
Establish a method for evidence exchange PRIOR to the start of the round, NOT before first crossfire. Cameras on at all times. Here's how I'll let you steal prep - if your opponents take more than 2 minutes to search for, compile, and send evidence, I'll stop caring if you steal prep in front of me. This should encourage both teams to send evidence quickly.
All arguments should be responded to in the next speech outside of 1st constructive. If is isn't, the argument is dropped. Theory, framing, ROBs are the exception to this as they have to be responded to in the next speech.
Every argument in final focus should be warranted, extended, and weighed in summary/FF to win you the round. Missing any one of these 3 components is likely to lose you the round. Frontlining in 2nd rebuttal is required. I don't get the whole "frontline offense but not defense" - collapse, frontline the argument, and move on. Defense isn't sticky - extend everything you want in the ballot in summary, including dropped defense.
Theory: I believe that disclosure is good and paraphrasing is bad. I will not hack for these arguments, but these are my personal beliefs that will influence my decision if there is absolutely no objective way for me to choose a winner. I will vote on paraphrasing good, but your speaks will get nuked. I think trigger warnings are bad. The use of them in PF have almost always been to allow a team to avoid interacting with important issues in round because they are afraid of losing, and the amount of censorship of those arguments I've seen because of trigger warnings has led me to this conclusion. I will vote on trigger warning theory if there is an objectively graphic description of something that is widely considered triggering, and there is no attempt to increase safety for the competitors by the team reading it, but other than that I do not see myself voting on this shell often.
I think RVI's are good in PF when teams kick theory. Otherwise, you should 100% read a counter-interp. Reasonability is too difficult to adjudicate in my experience, and I prefer an interp v CI debate.
K's/Non-Topical Positions: There are dozens of these, and I hardly know 3-4. However, as with any other argument, explain it well and prove why it means you should win. I expect there to be distinct ROBs I can evaluate/compare, and if you are reading a K you should delineate for me whether you are linking to the resolution (IMF is bad b/c it is a racist institution) OR your opponents link to the position (they securitized Russia). I think K's should give your opponent's a chance to win - I will NOT evaluate "they cannot link in" or "we win b/c we read the argument first".
I will boost speaks if you disclose (+0.1), read cut cards in rebuttal (+0.2), and do not take over 2 mins to compile and send evidence (+0.1).
Ask me in round for questions about my paradigm, and feel free to ask me questions after round as well.
Hi all I'm Ryan!
Yale 2026 / Competed in Public Forum for Fairmont Prep / Earned 14 Gold Bids / Elimination Rounds at TOC Twice
Slow flow is my ideal debate.
Debate to win, but debate jovially (when possible) and kindly (always).
- Don't worry about adding me to an email chain. I'll let you know if I need to see a card at the end of round.
- Less offense is easier to evaluate.
- I follow the weighing to figure out where to vote.
- I'll presume the team that lost the flip unless presumption arguments are read.
- I don't need any specific structures in responses to progressive arguments. If you read theory, don't go for substance. I evaluate RVI's.
- If you say an argument or card is conceded, and it's not, I will be very sad.
If you have any question, ask!
***ALL cards read during ANY speech need to be sent in the email chain PRIOR to the speech. If you are not comfortable adapting to this standard, please strike me.
I would prefer both teams talk about the topic.
debate is a game and the best players will win.
I am currently a sophomore at Emory university. I debated public forum at the quarry lane school for four years.
tech > truth
please add me to the email chain - email@example.com. Send speech docs before each speech !
I'm fine with speed, but make sure you're clear. Frontline in 2nd rebuttal. Any offense you're going for in final focus should be extended completely (uniqueness, links, impacts) in summary. Cross is binding but doesn't matter unless it's in speech. Please collapse !
Start weighing as early as possible and definitely focus on comparative weighing (both link and impact level if possible), when I'm looking at the arguments, I'll start with the one with the strongest weighing.
Always be respectful towards your opponents. I won't evaluate arguments that are sexist, racist, homophobic, ableist, etc. Lastly, debate can be stressful but make sure to have fun :)
Regarding prog arguments, I have little to no experience with Ks (I’ve debated a K maybe once or twice). If you want to read a K, I think it’s super interesting but I probably won’t be able to evaluate it well and am not a great judge for that. I’ve debated theory, and have more experience with it than Ks, but I’m not extremely experienced with it either.
Good luck and feel free to email me before or after the round if you have any questions.
For PF: Speaks capped at 27.5 if you don't read cut cards (with tags) and send speech docs via email chain prior to your speech of cards to be read (in constructives, rebuttal, summary, or any speech where you have a new card to read). I'm done with paraphrasing and pf rounds taking almost as long as my policy rounds to complete. Speaks will start at 28.5 for teams that do read cut cards and do send speech docs via email chain prior to speech. In elims, since I can't give points, it will be a overall tiebreaker.
For Policy: Speaks capped at 28 if I don't understand each and every word you say while spreading (including cards read). I will not follow along on the speech doc, I will not read cards after the debate (unless contested or required to render a decision), and, thus, I will not reconstruct the debate for you but will just go off my flow. I can handle speed, but I need clarity not a speechdoc to understand warrants. Speaks will start at 28.5 for teams that are completely flowable. I'd say about 85% of debaters have been able to meet this paradigm.
I'd also mostly focus on the style section and bold parts of other sections.
2018 update: College policy debaters should look to who I judged at my last college judging spree (69th National Debate Tournament in Iowa) to get a feeling of who will and will not pref me. I also like Buntin's new judge philosophy (agree roughly 90%).
It's Fall 2015. I judge all types of debate, from policy-v-policy to non-policy-v-non-policy. I think what separates me as a judge is style, not substance.
I debated for Texas for 5 years (2003-2008), 4 years in Texas during high school (1999-2003). I was twice a top 20 speaker at the NDT. I've coached on and off for highschool and college teams during that time and since. I've ran or coached an extremely wide diversity of arguments. Some favorite memories include "china is evil and that outweighs the security k", to "human extinction is good", to "predictions must specify strong data", to "let's consult the chinese, china is awesome", to "housing discrimination based on race causes school segregation based on race", to "factory farms are biopolitical murder", to “free trade good performance”, to "let's reg. neg. the plan to make businesses confident", to “CO2 fertilization, SO2 Screw, or Ice Age DAs”, to "let the Makah whale", etc. Basically, I've been around.
After it was pointed out that I don't do a great job delineating debatable versus non-debatable preferences, I've decided to style-code bold all parts of my philosophy that are not up for debate. Everything else is merely a preference, and can be debated.
I strongly prefer to let the debaters do the debating, and I'll reward depth (the "author+claim + warrant + data+impact" model) over breadth (the "author+claim + impact" model) any day.
When evaluating probabilistic predictions, I start from the assumption everyone begins at 0%, and you persuade me to increase that number (w/ claims + warrants + data). Rarely do teams get me past 5%. A conceeded claim (or even claim + another claim disguised as the warrant) will not start at 100%, but remains at 0%.
Combining those first two essential stylistic criteria means, in practice, many times I discount entirely even conceded, well impacted claims because the debaters failed to provide a warrant and/or data to support their claim. It's analogous to failing a basic "laugh" test. I may not be perfect at this rubric yet, but I still think it's better than the alternative (e.g. rebuttals filled with 20+ uses of the word “conceded” and a stack of 60 cards).
I'll try to minimize the amount of evidence I read to only evidence that is either (A) up for dispute/interpretation between the teams or (B) required to render a decision (due to lack of clash amongst the debaters). In short: don't let the evidence do the debating for you.
Humor is also well rewarded, and it is hard (but not impossible) to offend me.
I'd also strongly prefer if teams would slow down 15-20% so that I can hear and understand every word you say (including cards read). While I won't explicitly punish you if you don't, it does go a mile to have me already understand the evidence while you're debating so I don't have to sort through it at the end (especially since I likely won't call for that card anyway).
- Defense can win a debate (there is such as thing as a 100% no link), but offense helps more times than not.
I'm a big believer in open disclosure practices, and would vote on reasoned arguments about poor disclosure practices. In the perfect world, everything would be open-source (including highlighting and analytics, including 2NR/2AR blocks), and all teams would ultimately share one evidence set. You could cut new evidence, but once read, everyone would have it. We're nowhere near that world. Some performance teams think a few half-citations work when it makes up at best 45 seconds of a 9 minute speech. Some policy teams think offering cards without highlighting for only the first constructive works. I don't think either model works, and would be happy to vote to encourage more open disclosure practices. It's hard to be angry that the other side doesn't engage you when, pre-round, you didn't offer them anything to engage.
You (or your partner) must physically mark cards if you do not finish them. Orally saying "mark here" (and expecting your opponents or the judge to do it for you) doesn't count. After your speech (and before cross-ex), you should resend a marked copy to the other team. If pointed out by the other team, failure to do means you must mark prior to cross-ex. I will count it as prep time times two to deter sloppy debate.
By default, I will not “follow along” and read evidence during a debate. I find that it incentivizes unclear and shallow debates. However, I realize that some people are better visual than auditory learners and I would classify myself as strongly visual. If both teams would prefer and communicate to me that preference before the round, I will “follow along” and read evidence during the debate speeches, cross-exs, and maybe even prep.
I like competing interpretations, the more evidence the better, and clearly delineated and impacted/weighed standards on topicality.
Abuse makes it all the better, but is not required (doesn't unpredictability inherently abuse?).
Treat it like a disad, and go from there. In my opinion, topicality is a dying art, so I'll be sure to reward debaters that show talent.
For the aff – think offense/defense and weigh the standards you're winning against what you're losing rather than say "at least we're reasonable". You'll sound way better.
The exception to the above is the "framework debate". I find it to be an uphill battle for the neg in these debates (usually because that's the only thing the aff has blocked out for 5 minutes, and they debate it 3 out of 4 aff rounds).
If you want to win framework in front of me, spent time delineating your interpretation of debate in a way that doesn't make it seem arbitrary. For example "they're not policy debate" begs the question what exactly policy debate is. I'm not Justice Steward, and this isn't pornography. I don't know when I've seen it. I'm old school in that I conceptualize framework along “predictability”; "topic education", “policymaking education”, and “aff education” (topical version, switch sides, etc) lines.
“We're in the direction of the topic” or “we discuss the topic rather than a topical discussion” is a pretty laughable counter-interpretation.
For the aff, "we agree with the neg's interp of framework but still get to weigh our case" borders on incomprehensible if the framework is the least bit not arbitrary.
Depth in explanation over breadth in coverage. One well explained warrant will do more damage to the 1AR than 5 cards that say the same claim.
Well-developed impact calculus must begin no later than the 1AR for the Aff and Negative Block for the Neg.
I enjoy large indepth case debates. I was 2A who wrote my own community unique affs usually with only 1 advantage and no external add-ons. These type of debates, if properly researched and executed, can be quite fun for all parties.
Intrinsic perms are silly. Normal means arguments are less so.
From an offense/defense paradigm, conceded uniqueness can control the direction of the link. Conceded links can control the direction of uniqueness. The in round application of "why" is important.
A story / spin is usually more important (and harder for the 1AR to deal with) than 5 cards that say the same thing.
I generally prefer functionally competitive counterplans with solvency advocates delineating the counterplan versus the plan (or close) (as opposed to the counterplan versus the topic), but a good case for textual competition can be made with a language K netbenefit.
Conditionality (1 CP, SQ, and 1 K) is a fact of life, and anything less is the negative feeling sorry for you (or themselves). However, I do not like 2NR conditionality (i.e., “judge kick”) ever. Make a decision.
Perms and theory always remain a test of competition (and not a voter) until proven otherwise by the negative by argument (see above), a near impossible standard for arguments that don't interfere substantially with other parts of the debate (e.g. conditionality).
Perm "do the aff" is not a perm. Debatable perms are "do both" and "do cp/alt"(and "do aff and part of the CP" for multi-plank CPs). Others are usually intrinsic.
I think of the critique as a (usually linear) disad and the alt as a cp.
Be sure to clearly impact your critique in the context of what it means/does to the aff case (does the alt solve it, does the critique turn it, make harms inevitable, does it disprove their solvency). Latch on to an external impact (be it "ethics", or biopower causes super-viruses), and weigh it against case.
Use your alternative to either "fiat uniqueness" or create a rubric by which I don't evaluate uniqueness, and to solve case in other ways.
I will say upfront the two types of critique routes I find least persuasive are simplistic versions of "economics", "science", and "militarism" bad (mostly because I have an econ degree and am part of an extensive military family). While good critiques exist out there of both, most of what debaters use are not that, so plan accordingly.
For the aff, figure out how to solve your case absent fiat (education about aff good?), and weigh it against the alternative, which you should reduce to as close as the status quo as possible. Make uniqueness indicts to control the direction of link, and question the timeframe/inevitability/plausability of their impacts.
Perms generally check clearly uncompetitive alternative jive, but don't work too well against "vote neg". A good link turn generally does way more than “perm solves the link”.
Aff Framework doesn't ever make the critique disappear, it just changes how I evaluate/weigh the alternative.
Role of the Ballot - I vote for the team that did the better debating. What is "better" is based on my stylistic criteria. End of story. Don't let "Role of the Ballot" be used as an excuse to avoid impact calculus.
Performance (the other critique):
Empirically, I do judge these debate and end up about 50-50 on them. I neither bandwagon around nor discount the validity of arguments critical of the pedagogy of debate. I'll let you make the case or defense (preferably with data). The team that usually wins my ballot is the team that made an effort to intelligently clash with the other team (whether it's aff or neg) and meet my stylistic criteria. To me, it's just another form of debate.
However, I do have some trouble in some of these debates in that I feel most of what is said is usually non-falsifiable, a little too personal for comfort, and devolves 2 out of 3 times into a chest-beating contest with competition limited to some archaic version of "plan-plan". I do recognize that this isn't always the case, but if you find yourselves banking on "the counterplan/critique doesn't solve" because "you did it first", or "it's not genuine", or "their skin is white"; you're already on the path to a loss.
If you are debating performance teams, the two main takeaways are that you'll probably lose framework unless you win topical version, and I hate judging "X" identity outweighs "Y" identity debates. I suggest, empirically, a critique of their identity politics coupled with some specific case cards is more likely to get my ballot than a strategy based around "Framework" and the "Rev". Not saying it's the only way, just offering some empirical observations of how I vote.