Columbia University Invitational

2019 — New York, NY/US

Nishma Abeyweera Paradigm

I am a typical lay judge and will evaluate the round based on which team is able to best extend a clear round narrative. I will vote off of what is left for me to evaluate from final focus.

Gaurav Asthana Paradigm

6 rounds


I debated nat circuit PF for four years at Acton-Boxborough Regional High School in Massachusetts. I'm currently a sophomore at Georgetown University and I coached PF at Walt Whitman High School last year. This isn't fully comprehensive of my preferences as a judge, but definitely feel free to ask me questions before the round.

Things I like:

- Consistency between the summary and the final focus. This also means full extension of arguments (ie warrant and impact extension) in both speeches.

- Weighing. Make sure it's comparative, not just general reasons your argument matters. Beyond just regular magnitude, scope probability, I think the best teams go deeper with their weighing (ex: Strength of Link, Clarity of Impact, etc). Weighing should start as early in the round as possible.

- Frontlining in second rebuttal. I don't think you need to do a full 2-2 split in the second rebuttal but you are obligated to respond to any new offense brought up in the first rebuttal. I definitely think it is strategic to frontline the argument you are going for.

- Extensions of defense. Every back-half speech is obligated to respond to your opponents' case and with a three-minute summary, this is certainly doable.

- Jokes. Making me laugh gives you a nice bump in speaks, just don't try to be funny if you're not.

Things I don't like:

- Speed. I can handle some speed but I don't write too fast and have always preferred slower debate. Along the same lines, I have never been a fan of really blippy rebuttals where you read a lot of random cards.

- New offense in the second rebuttal. I am not a fan of new offense being read in rebuttal as an overview (weighing overviews are nice though). I think turns are great, but if you're speaking second in the round, I require that you weigh any turns that you read. This is specifically to encourage you to not read a bunch of blippy turns in second rebuttal. I think it is strategic for the first rebuttal to weigh their turns as well, but I don't require it.

- Theory. I definitely think theory and other types of critical arguments have a place in this activity, but only in certain, very limited circumstances (ie read theory when there is clear, substantial abuse in the round). If you think something abusive happens, call it out. In general though, I don't have a lot of experience with critical argumentation and those types of debates will probably naturally end up with you getting a) a worse decision and b) less educational value from me as a judge.

- Tabletotes. They honestly just look silly and are a pretty weird flex.

Sanjay Attada Paradigm

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James Balsan Paradigm

I have spent the last 30 years in the finance industry (Econ BS and MBA in International Finance) working on diverse projects ranging from carbon credit trading and college 529 plan administration to venture capital investments and merger and acquisition execution. I typically read up on the Resolved so lay the groundwork but quickly progress to you contentions.

This is my third year judging PF and I ask for a few simple things to help me in flowing the debate and rewarding your efforts:

1) Clearly highlight your contentions.

2) Define any acronyms / abbreviations the first time you use them.

3) You can speak quickly but please speak clearly.

4) Sign-posting is greatly appreciated to help me flow.

5) Off time road mapping also helps me follow your argument.

I will not disclose decisions but will provide constructive feedback in my RFD on your contentions and each speaker's contribution to the team.

Rahul Bhatia Paradigm

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Julia Brogdon Paradigm

I am a former high school debater that has dabbled in everything. I’ve been judging for the past six years and have judged everything, but policy. I recently graduated with a degree in Anthropology, with a focus on cultural anthropology. I’m a pretty typical PF judge and will vote for the team with the most compelling argument, however, I do like a solid framework. As far as cross goes, I don’t care if you sit or stand—whatever is most comfortable for you works for me. I don’t like when you address me during cross because I feel like you should be focused on your opponents instead. My BIGGIE is DO NOT SPREAD. If you are going too fast, I will not flow the round and drop you. This is PF, not policy. I have an extensive speech background and will be pretty merciless when it comes to speaker points. Other than that, remember to be respectful during the debate. Things can get pretty heated sometimes, but that is no excuse for rudeness. If you say things during the round that that are sexist, racist, homophobic, etc., I will drop you immediately. Let’s be kind to one another and remember to have fun! I look forward to hearing some good debates!

Claire Bruster Paradigm

6 rounds

I'm a member of the Columbia Debate Society and a current sophomore. I used to do PF for Anderson High School.

Please sign post and logically warrant you arguments, in most cases it’s not enough to merely cite someone's opinion. I'm most likely to vote on an argument if the weighing is comparative, tell me why it matters relative to your opponent's impacts. I won't flow cross, if you want an argument to go on the flow you have to mention it in speech.

I won't time you, you all have phones, time yourself and time your opponents. good luck:)

Elizabeth Bukingolts Paradigm

6 rounds

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Daniel Charnis Paradigm

6 rounds

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Steven Chasse Paradigm

4 rounds

I am a former debate coach but have not judged in the past 3 years. Please be organized and respectful. Please keep track of your own time. I like a lively but respectful cross-ex. Thank you.

Luola Chen Paradigm

former policy debater, judged a few pf rounds before

Justin Chou Paradigm

I am new to judging, but I do have some previous PF debate experience. As a general rule, it is always helpful to weigh your arguments and to well-define your value criterion.

I am usually ok with speed, but if I am not flowing, then most likely I am also not following your arguments. Don't compromise clarity for speed.

Joshua Cohen Paradigm

4 rounds


I have been judging PF since 2011.

Please do not speak quickly - I will not be able to follow you.

I place a premium on well-supported, "real-world" links, which are to me a prerequisite to your impact, no matter how large.


I am a judge from Newton South HS, just outside of Boston, MA. I have been judging PF since 2010. I debated in high school in the early 80s. But don’t let that fool you.

FLOWING – I can flow SOMEWHAT faster than conversational speed. As you go faster, however, my comprehension drops. In addition to speed, I have trouble with the following: (1) Evidence tags: Because I am unable to catch most evidence tags, I probably won’t know what you are talking about when you remind me that “Smith in 17” told me something important in your partner’s last speech – unless Smith is a big deal in the round and you have talked a lot about that evidence. (2) Short argument tags, especially in the two-minute speeches, in which debaters often introduce their own argumentation structure. If you say something like, “On economic growth, remember…”, I will end up spending 5-10 seconds trying to figure out what “economic growth” argument you are referring to (and perhaps even what side of the resolution you are on). As a result, I may miss a few of your responses. It’s more helpful if you build a bit of the link chain into your tag. For example – “Our opponents say more H-1b visas boost jobs and hence economic growth, but remember…”

IMPACTS AND LINKS – I find that which side wins my ballot often depends more on link credibility than on impact magnitude. If I don’t find your link chain compelling, I will have a hard time voting for you, even if there’s something very big at the end of that chain. Argumentation that contributes to link chain credibility includes: (1) Inferences based on rigorous analysis of empirical data – i.e., a well-designed statistical analysis. If you can explain why the data in the analysis apply to (i.e., can be generalized to) the scenario being debated in the round, and why the statistical methods mitigate the risk of invalid inferences, I will find you to be compelling. (2) Consistency with history / the world we live in – For a lot of arguments, there are no rigorously conducted statistical analyses. For example, for few statistical studies look at how policies may influence public opinion, politicians, the policies of other countries, and so forth. But if you can identify pertinent historical precedents and argue that they inform the scenario being debated in the round, I will again find you to be compelling.

LESS COMPELLING ARGUMENTS – (1) Just because Professor Smith says something is true won’t necessarily convince me unless I understand *the basis* for Professor Smith’s beliefs. Yes, I’m looking for a warrant. But hopefully, you have more than your *own* explanation for Professor Smith’s conclusion. It’s best to show me that your evidence presents a coherent story with both warrants and resulting conclusions that support your argument. (2) Pasting together links from different sources often produces less compelling arguments. For example, Source A tells us that certain policies are politically divisive; Source B says that political division leads to federal gridlock; and Source C says that gridlock delays funding for the military and undermines national security, which, naturally, causes nuclear war. A problem with this sort of link chain in my mind is that the different sources use similar phrases to describe various types of events, but they aren’t really talking about the same things. For example, is the “divisiveness” described in Source A really equivalent to the “political division” described in Source B? And is the political division described in Source B emblematic of what has caused gridlock, as documented in Source C? If your opponent fleshes out these limitations, and if they have an alternative, more plausible description of how the real world works, that could be a problem for your position.

BOTTOM LINE – Fast argumentation challenges my ability to follow you. Stretched link chains challenge my tendency to believe you. You are best off presenting an intuitive narrative (i.e., a story that is consistent with how the “real world” works) and using that narrative as your foundation for establishing why your position is more credible than your opponent’s.

Coralie Cooper Paradigm

Junior in High School, I am one of the Captains of PF at Arlington High,

PF: Signpost for the love of god,

I can keep up with almost all speeds, do not spread

I do not flow crossfire unless you ask me to or an important concession is made

Try to extend offense through summery,

Weigh as early as possible

Frances Craft Paradigm

6 rounds

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Zane Curtis-Olsen Paradigm

6 rounds

I debated Lincoln-Douglass Debate for three years in high school and Parliamentary Debate for four years in college, where I was also President of the Duke University Parliamentary Debate Team for a year. This is my second year judging Public Forum. I am ok with speed, but think it is important to articulate even when speaking quickly. I like sign posting and clear, numbered points in final focus. If you don't say it in final focus, I will not vote on it. You can't just give me a statistic, I need to understand the argument behind that statistic. Show respect for your opponent, always. I value clash highly, and think it's important that you put your arguments in clear conflict with your opponents and explain why your argument is better/superior. Extending an argument does not just mean repeating it, you must also engage with their responses.

Gabriel Delsol Paradigm

4 years of public forum for Bronx Science (2011-2015).

3.5 years coaching public forum at Walt Whitman (2015-present).

2 years coaching public forum at debate camp (2015, 2016).

Speed: I can flow as fast as you can speak. However, I will always prefer quality over quantity and will clock you heavily for blips. The debaters make the evidence good, not the other way around.

Evidence: If it's not an out round, and you don't ask me to do so, I will probably not call for evidence. Don't be shady and DO NOT miscut your cards.

How I evaluate the round: Develop clash as the round progresses. Weigh clearly and convincingly. I'm fine with extending terminal defense, but I need offense to be clearly extended throughout the entire round. Signposting is your friend. I appreciate a well-executed logical response.

Speaks: I will clock you for rudeness and arrogance. You can get a 29.5/30 by building a strong narrative. RuPaul references get you extra speaker points

Emily DiMaulo-Milk Paradigm

6 rounds

i didn't do pf in high school

weigh and warrant your arguments

i want to see all of your cards

Roger Ding Paradigm

This is my first tournament as a parent judge. Please speak slowly and clearly, and ensure that you can articulate your arguments well. Please do not be overly rude in cross-fire. I am very excited to be here!

Martin Evans Paradigm

6 rounds

I am a parent judge with over two years of experience. Generally I am lay, but I will be flowing the majority of the time (not crossfires, if a major point is brought up in cross, it should be referenced in the next speech). I would rather you speak with clarity and at a moderate pace. Please do not use jargon or abbreviations without explanation. Additionally, show me a clear link between your warrant and your impact.

Spencer Farrar Paradigm

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Jen Fostiropoulos Paradigm

I am a parent judge and have been judging for the past three years .

This should go without saying but I see it happen every tournament .Please, be nice to your opponents!!! I have little patience for people who are rude, cocky, rolling their eyes ,obnoxious, etc. in round. It really is unacceptable and you will be penalized for it ! You are here to debate your topic so do it strong and respectful ! Please make this round enjoyable for everyone and don't ruin it!


I vote for the team with the most persuasive argument. The soundest vote for me is an offensive argument........this means you clearly state your argument while also pointing out the comparative merits over your opponents.

I want you to convince me to vote for you based on your arguments not by the speed you talk . If you talk too fast your speaker points will reflect tht and if you speak so fast that it's difficult to understand you you will lose because I can't vote for a argument I can not hear !


I don't care if you sit or stand during crossfire . Do whatever you're the most comfortable with.


Please do not call for evidence often unless you feel tht there is a real concern for its accuracy . If I feel you are calling for evidence purposely to distract or sway round you will be penalized .

I try to avoid calling for evidence as much as possible. If you tell me to call for something, I most likely will unless it's really unimportant for my decision. I may also call for evidence if something sounds suspect/too good to be true .

Speaker points

Articulate your cases and you will be rewarded . The more you know your case and can articulate it the higher your speaks . Reading from the screen of your computer like a robot will not get you high speaks .

IF YOU SAY things that are SEXIST , RACIST ETC or act rudely as mentioned earlier , I WILL DROP YOU AND GIVE YOU THE LOWEST POSSIBLE SPEAKS. The threshold for me dropping you is pretty high so please never make me do this.

Overall, I am here to hear a strong debate and have a enjoyable experience ! I hope you enjoy the debate as well and have fun !Good luck 🍀

LaJuan Foust Paradigm

8 rounds

Former Speech competitor (high school & college), well used debate judge and coach. Currently, Speech Coach & Co-director at Delbarton. The 18/19 school year is my 20th year involved in this activity in some fashion. I've been doing this too long, give me a reason to keep doing it (part joke/part 1:99).

In Interp, I am pro-argument, especially after competing at the college level for a couple years. This can really separate you from the opposition. Sometimes, I can break a ranking tie just by which one I liked better. When that happens, I always say something like "I just liked [the 1] better" or "I connected with [those other two] more". If I constantly harp about an issue and you get a 4 or something like that, you should be able to infer why. Also, see the last sentence of my Extemp & IMP expectations section below.

In PA Events, I give you a list of grievances: Phony/Robotic/Overly Practiced or rehearsed gestures, rushed through points, and not letting your jokes hit. You have to take your time and let your stories and jokes hit.

In Extemp & IMP, tie everything back to your thesis. I am not a fan of personal stories/references in the body of a speech, unless as witty on-tops in extemp. I quasi-flow speeches, so don't be surprised if a decent chunk of your ballot is just me writing down what you said or what you said with comments (like "Huh?", "What are you doing?" or "Ooooooh! Nice!").

Number of PF Rounds judged in career: Can safely say in the hundreds
Number of PF Rounds judged 18/19 year: 7

I've been judging PF since it began, so I've heard the infamous NBA dress code topic & remember the cancelled mosque topic. This is the first year in a long time that I have not already seen at least 10 rounds by this time of the year. I say this because I am very old school in my approach, leave LD (even though I have experience there and miss judging that) and Policy (NEVER! NEVER! NEVER!) out of the round.

I am a 50/50 judge in terms of content/argument and delivery. I am big on clash, but don't use that to say that you should win the round because your opponents did not counter Con. 5, Sub 8 or junk like that. If the foundation of your argument is, for example, Utilitarianism and the opposition never talks about it in their rebuttals, then you're more likely to get my ballot. I also like to use standard logic. Also, as some folks at Columbia probably know, I hear your misspeaks very easily. Be careful with word choice. I do like to flow if I have my legal pad with me, it may look more like a Parli flow, but you shouldn't really be looking at my flow anyway.

Cards are starting to get really annoying. Don't just ask for cards. There better be a darn good reason.
I don't mind off-time road maps.

I hate E-ballots. Don't be surprised if I give oral RFDs and leave your ballot blank (especially if I am told that "the internet is spotty").

I have experience in judging and/or coaching LD, PF, Parli, Congress, and Speech. So plan accordingly.

Good luck.

Shane Gilbert Paradigm

TOC Update: Please read my paradigm in its entirety. While I strive to adapt to various styles, I am human in that I often resort to my own biases and vote off of what I prefer. The more you know about my predispositions, the better you will do with me as your judge. Please feel free to ask any questions before the round!

Big Picture

When a round is over, I first look at the impact level. In order to win your impact, you must have: a) extended the same link(s) in both summary and FF (even if you did so in 2nd rebuttal); b) extended that impact in both summary and FF; and c) frontlined all responses to the link(s) and impact(s) you extend. [That being said, if there is some muddled defense on your argument, I sometimes will resolve that if your weighing is much better/ the other team's argument is also muddled.]

After considering the impacts, I then look at weighing. I prefer that you do comparative weighing after you have extended your impact since it makes most sense for me to flow there. I have found that most teams I vote for are those who are generally doing much more work on the weighing debate, such as responding to the specific reasoning in their opponent's weighing and offering comparative weighing mechanisms that compel me to prefer their impact(s).

Specific Preferences

1. Do not go fast. Average circuit speed to maybe just a tad faster is my sweet spot. Although I can flow a faster rate, I am more likely to get confused and flustered, often because the debaters are muddling their own arguments instead of explaining the specific warranting. This disconnect makes it difficult for me to assess the round and make a confident decision. By speaking at an average pace, you will increase the chances that I comprehend and ultimately vote off of your argument.

2. Do not give me a roadmap. Just tell me where you're starting and then signpost from there.

3. In summary and FF, I prefer that you collapse on one of your arguments from case.

4. Give me the warranting behind your evidence, especially if you and your opponent have contradictory cards. I do not care if some author says X is true, but I do care quite a bit about why X is true. If you think your opponent's evidence is shady, tell me to call for it. If I think your evidence is shady or that I need to examine cards to make my decision, then I will call for them.

5. I see teams going for turns that they non-uniqued in rebuttal. I will never vote for an argument that you yourself tell me is non-unique, even if the non-unique response was never extended. Obviously you can read other non-uniques that do not interact with your turn, so do not misread this preference as saying that you should not use both forms of refutation in response to an argument. This preference is exclusive to teams that read responses that logically non-unique their own turns.

6. If you say something offensive, then I definitely will lower your speaks and might drop you.

7. Peculiar but maybe important (and hopefully not relevant for TOC, though some teams always manage to come up with wild arguments...): If you are making an argument about how the resolution affects domestic politics (e.g. political capital, elections, etc.), please have very good warranting as to why your argument is probable. I have a higher threshold for voting on these arguments because I think most debate resolutions are rather unlikely to impact U.S. politics to the extent that you can definitively say specific legislation or electoral results do or do not happen. If you do not think you can easily make a persuasive case as to why your politics argument is likely, then please do not read it or go for it.

Yaniv Goren Paradigm

6 rounds

~ Public Forum ~

I did PF all four years of my high school career, and now I'm a first-year at Columbia. I currently coach.

I am not a very picky judge. I'm game with theory. I'm equally game with ordinary, stocky arguments. Run whatever you feel most comfortable running, however you want to run it, and I'll be happy.

When it comes time to make a decision, I generally start by evaluating the framework debate. Then, I assess each team's arguments under what I perceive to be the winning framework. In my view, a winning argument must always have two things: defensible links and clear impacting. Provide both of these things, and provide them to a greater extent than your opponent, and I will pick you up. Narrative is also a plus.

A few other considerations:

- Offense should be extended through the Summary and Final Focus. If any part of your offense (either its constituent links or its impact) doesn't make into either of these speeches, I will not consider it in my decision. Turns count as offense.

- Defense can be brought through to Final Focus, unless it's front-lined.

- Cards matter, but don't over-rely on them. I value clear warranting over clear evidence. (That being said, please have evidence). I also don't call cards unless I am told to. I also don't really care whether or not you extend cards into your Final Focus unless they're paramount to your argument. In this case, actually tell me what your card says; don't just refer to it as "the *insert last name* analysis" or "the *insert university/think-tank* card."

- Don't make offensive arguments. You don't know what experiences I or your opponents have had, so assume a veil of ignorance and talk about sensitive topics as if someone who has personal connections to those topics is in the room with you. I also do not take kindly to sexism.

- Please weigh. If you don't weigh, I'll have to intervene and make my own illogical conclusions about whose argument is stronger. There is a 50% chance that you will not be happy with the resulting decision.

- If you make me laugh with a good joke, I will give you an additional half-speaker point. If you mention Rose McGowan or the Alamo, I will give you an additional half-speaker point. If you mention clowns in absolutely any context, I will give you an additional half-speaker point. If you do any combination of these things, I will not give you more than one half-speaker point. However, I will be thoroughly pleased.

- Pay attention to my body language. If I nod at you, I have gotten your point and you don't need to elaborate further.

That's it! Take a deep breath, and have fun. If you have any questions, feel free to find me before or after the round.

~ Parli ~

I have somewhat limited experience in this form of debate, so chances are I am about as good at it as you are. Keep that in mind as you enter the round – don't be intimidated, and if you ask for my advice, take my opinion with a grain of salt. Although I do decide whether you win or lose the round, so maybe not. It really is up to you.

With that said, some things to note about my paradigm:

- I will not vote on an argument without a warrant. I would rather vote on "soft characteristics" (your framing of the round, the consistency of your argumentation) than a warrantless argument. I am especially strict about this requirement in Parli, where you can't give me substantive evidence.

- Don't make offensive arguments. You don't know what experiences I or your opponents have had, so assume a veil of ignorance and talk about sensitive topics as if someone who has personal connections to those topics is in the room with you. I also do not take kindly to sexism.

- Please weigh. If you don't weigh, I'll have to intervene and make my own illogical conclusions about whose argument is stronger. There is a 50% chance that you will not be happy with the resulting decision.

- If you make me laugh with a good joke, I will give you an additional half-speaker point. If you mention Rose McGowan or the Alamo, I will give you an additional half-speaker point. If you mention clowns in absolutely any context, I will give you an additional half-speaker point. If you do any combination of these things, I will not give you more than one half-speaker point. However, I will be thoroughly pleased.

- Pay attention to my body language. If I nod at you, I have gotten your point and you don't need to elaborate further.

That's it! Take a deep breath, and have fun. If you have any questions, feel free to find me before or after the round.

Edward Gu Paradigm

So after talking to Tim Aldrete at USC, he convinced me that I needed more carrots and less sticks in my philosophy. Therefore, I have a small carrot for those debaters who wish to invoke it. Its called a T.K.O (Technical Knockout). This basically means that at any point of the debate you believe you've solidly already won the debate, beyond a reasonable doubt, (dropped T argument, double turn, strategic miscue that is irreparable by the other team) you can invoke a TKO and immediately end the debate. If a team chooses this path and succeeds, I will give them 30 speaker points each and an immediate win. If the team chooses to invoke this but its unclear you've TKO'd the other team or in fact choose wrong, you obviously will lose and your points will be severely effected. Who dares to take the challenge?

I'm a lay judge.

Blaise Haddad Paradigm

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LE Hartmann Paradigm

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Rodda John Paradigm

6 rounds

"Assuming a pill exists that compels the user to tell the truth, THW destroy it." — Recent fun motion

Parliamentary Debate

If you read nothing else, read this: don't spread; don't tag team; keep stuff in your time; be wary of theory; impact; weigh; warrant.


I debated for four years as a student at Stuyvesant High School and currently debate APDA for Columbia University. I have experience teaching debate to middle school and high school students, I tab way too often, and have lead more judge orientations than I care remember.

People tend to care a lot about these paradigms — I really don't — if you have specific questions, ask me before rounds, in GA, whatever. Please do ask if something is unclear!

I run whacky cases, I debate whacky cases, I choose whacky motions — I really don't mind a lot if it's done well and respectful and conducive to a good round of debate.

General Paradigm

So everyone likes to claim they're a tabula rasa judge. I think this is nonsensical. Obviously personal views will not influence the round, but as arguments leave the sphere of the normal and easily bought, the burden of warranting well increases.

It's reasonably straightforward for me to buy, for example, that individuals do things that make them happy, and since eating ice cream makes people happy, people eat ice cream; but is comparatively hard for me to buy that actually, instead of eating the ice cream in my refrigerator, I'm going to make a 2 day trek across tundra to obtain some of the same ice cream.

I don't mean to discourage complex, strange, or whacky argumentation; rather, I aim to encourage elegant, simple, but robust warranting.


Theory has its place (LD / Policy / new PF circuit / your dinner table maybe ?) — and it's almost never in a parliamentary debate round.

Please limit any kritiks, theory calls, whatever else theory masquerades as nowadays, to instances where the use therein is warranted. Unless something is tightly or abusively defined / modeled or one team is engaging in reprehensible behavior, there is no need for theory — debate the resolution. This is an instance where I am certainly not tabula rasa, I will almost always, except in these previous instances, assume that the theory is being used in an effort to actively exclude the other team simply because the assumption is that I, as a seasoned debater, can follow it (which I can). Except in the caveated cases, the burden is on the team using a kritik or some other theory to prove to me they are not doing this.

If you want to argue about mutual exclusivity of a counterplan, or whatever else you want to do, please be sure to not forget to warrant, and explain things in reasonable terms. Just as you're not going to go off using advanced economic terms in rounds, and instead going to explain how a bubble works (hopefully), don't just use a pick, actually explain and warrant it. And on that, a counterplan had better be mutually exclusive, or at least functionally so, given certain tradeoffs.

Expect lower speaker points and to lose in cases of over eagerly applied theory.


I don't want to warrant for you. Don't make me.

I don't want to impact for you. Don't make me.

I don't want to weigh for you. Don't make me.

I am not going to get into what makes a warrant 'good' or an impact effective or weighing necessary, please as your coach, varsity, mentor, or email me if none of the previous options are available to you (

The final two speeches of a round (the rebuttal or crystallization speeches) are NOT to restate every point in the round, but instead are meant to synthesize, weigh, and flesh out impacts. Please do that. The most effective rebuttal speeches focus on two to three levels of conditional weighing. I won't vote on some random unimpacted and unweighed pull through.

Don't spread — think about a speed a non debater would be able to reasonably follow. This usually means something fast, but not double breathing. Side note: someone who enjoys spreading please explain to me how this doesn't destroy the educational value in learning how to be a rhetorical and persuasive speaker please!

Instead of focusing on a breadth of argumentation, please focus on a depth of argumentation that is complex, and includes a high level of weighing structures and effective warranting.

Tag teaming — never seen this in parli outside of the west coast. Don't do it, you'll have your own chance to speak.

POIs — take them, use them, respect them. Don't go back and forth — if I wanted crossfire I'd be at a PF tournament. Seriously. Also, these are supposed to be fun and humorous — if you don't believe me, watch the House of Commons — however, you are HS debaters and probably take everything way too seriously, therefore I'll settle for not rude.

Offtime Stuff — No. You don't have to tell me what you're going to do, just do it.

Weird Aside on Evidence

Please don't confuse providing evidence with providing warrants. Simply because you were able to effectively use Google and find someone who said something doesn't mean that it's a) true b) important c) relevant d) it will happen again e) isn't without opposing evidence. Please always default to explaining why something happened, not simply that it did, or that someone believes it will happen again.

I have never once picked a team up for the quality of a card, and no round should ever come down to a piece of evidence in any way, shape, or form.

Satheesh Kandasamy Paradigm

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Nicholas Kennedy Paradigm

I am a teacher at Leadership and Public Service, and currently teach economics. This is my first time judging, so please speak slowly, and make your arguments clear. I am not that informed with the topic as much as you, so it is up to you to explain to me what you are talking about.

Please keep track of your own prep time, do not be rude in crossfire, and don't go over time.

Have fun!

Liza Kent Paradigm

6 rounds

I am a new judge. Please provide support for facts, arguments and conclusions.

Brian Kim Paradigm

Son here,

Smart lay judge. Be courteous and clear. If you say something blatantly false or offensive he'll probably drop you.

For Jan19:

He has a background in economics and works in investment banking. He knows basic macro, but its been a while since he was in academic economics so he may not remember specifics.

Roanne Kolvenbach Paradigm

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Tessa Kunz Paradigm

4 rounds

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Amanda Lee Paradigm

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Joon Lee Paradigm

I am a parent.

Ezra Lerner Paradigm

Wikispaces no longer exists for some reason so I'm gonna try and summarize here.

I went to Scarsdale and did Public forum debate there. I am now on the Columbia Parliamentary Debate Team.

I will disclose at the end of the round. Debate is stressful enough without guessing for hours as to who won. The one exception is if its unbelievably close, and for me to tell you without thinking about it past the normal time at the end of the round, would be almost akin to guessing. This has happened a total of once I believe.

If you read a card in the first two speeches, you have to at least tell me its a card in the second two. You don't have to read a tag, but I have to know you said it earlier, so I know I can go back and find it on the earlier parts of the flow after the round. If you don't do this, I won't vote off of it.

I don't care if you go fast, as long as I can flow. I'm faster on computer than paper, but I'm not bad overall. If I ' cant get it the first time, I won't vote off of it.

I don't care if you're a jerk in crossfire, as long as someone doesn't appear visibly uncomfortable. If they do, ease up. No one should leave a debate round upset because they felt bullied. With that said, so much of crossfire is useless because people are trying to yell about who has a right to speak. Focus on getting one really solid point across. You're more likely to sway the needle.

If you want to be card-centric, do that. I'm game.

You don't have to rebuild in the 2nd rebuttal. If you do it well, however, it can be really effective.

Weigh in the summary, weigh in the final focus. Weigh in the rebuttal if you can. If you do those things, I will give you high speaks. I have no issue giving a lot of high speaks. A lot of you are high-quality speakers.

Scott Lessing Paradigm

Parent judge, but active former LD debater. Judge PF based on which side carries the most arguments and weigh relative importance of arguments based on frameworks provided by the debaters.

Lauren Levy Paradigm

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Joshua Lim Paradigm

I was a local/regional/national circuit debater in both LD and PF for 4 years for Timothy Christian School, but I spent my senior year solely debating Varsity PF. I am a stock judge who prefers a resolutional debate, but I will accept a well-explained kritik. DO NOT SPREAD.

Some things to consider:

1. Extensions. If you want me to look at an argument in your final speech, it is essential that you extend it previously.

2. Outweigh. Give me a reason as to why your 25% is more important than your opponent's $200,000. Tell me how the people you are affecting are more important than your opponent's. Essentially, do not make me assume anything and do not make me pick which is more important.

3. Write the ballot for me. Give me clear voters during the round. Literally, tell me what to write on my ballot. Again, do not make me pick which is more important. Tell me why your side is more important.

4. I do have a sense of humor, and I will consider that in a round if done well.

I will vote off of the flow, so make sure to signpost. I will only intervene on the account that there are no voting issues during the round and no real arguments standing, that being said be clear and very selective.

Regarding speaks, make sure you are respectful, or I will not hesitate to lower your speak points.

Overall, debate is about having fun and gaining knowledge, so make sure you that every round is focused around this.

Diane Ma Paradigm

I am a lay judge. Please do NOT rush in your speech. I value logic and persuasive argument from debaters. I do not tolerate any racist, sexist, or otherwise offensive comments, and any of the aforementioned will lead to a reduction of your speaker points. Please be polite and respect your opponents, and most of all have fun! That is the purpose of debate after all.

Eve MacSweeny Paradigm

I am a seasoned journalist and editor who is new to debate judging. Please be polite in round and clear in your argumentation. Explain what you are responding to in your speeches and don't go too fast. I will evaluate the round based on final focus.

Morgan Marguiles Paradigm

Public Forum:

I am a former policy debater and have a year of experience judging public forum. I stick to the flow and will not evaluate new arguments in the final focus that I cannot trace back to earlier speeches. Do your thing and I will evaluate the debate accordingly. Feel free to ask questions

If you think it matters, my poliicy paradigm is below


email -

tl;dr - Two important things:

1. Tech over truth

2. An argument is a claim+warrant+impact, do your thing and I'll evaluate the debate accordingly


I debated for four years at Nevada Union High School in California and qualified to the TOC with two bids my senior year. I liked to think that I was fairly flexible but I went for the kritik pretty often. With that being said, I will vote on any argument, as long as you do the better debating.


T – I will default to competing interpretations unless I am told otherwise. The violation must be clearly explained , if it is not very clear by the end of the debate I will default aff. The most important part of the standards debate is the impact (duh). Limits and ground are NOT impacts, you must tell me why they are important.

Kritiks – This is the argument I read the most often. You do you. You must explain the link in the context of the aff and I really don’t like links of omissions. Make sure the alternative solves the impacts of the kritik. Don’t assume that anyone in the round knows what you are talking about until you have explained your arguments.

Disads – Okay lets be real, the disads are garbage on this topic, but!! if you do it well, you will win the debate. I think evidence comparison and evidence quality is very important in these debates so make sure your ev says what you are saying it says(?). The 2nr/2ar must do impact calculus please please.

Counterplans – I go for the states counter plan a lot and I think it is one of the most over powered arguments in debate. Write your cp text smart so you don't link to solvency deficits and cheat as much as you can. Make sure there is an explanation of how the net benefit works / how it spikes out of the disad and you will be all good. (Also 2NC counterplans are always justified and you should make as many as you can to solve 2ac offense sorry not sorry)

Theory – You gotta do what you gotta do, make sure you impact out the standards. I will evaluate the debate neutrally but with that being said: "No neg fiat" is the worst argument in debate and I think the neg gets as many conditional advocacies as they want.

K affs – Non-traditional affirmatives I think can be very creative and educational. Be passionate and if you understand what you are talking about, you should be good. Make sure you have warrants for your structural claims and do your thaang. These affs should be at least tangentially related to the topic.

Framework - K affs are really cool and all but so is framework. I go for framework in a more limits/skills/procedural fairness way go for whatever. This position when combined with nuanced case arguments is definitely the move. Defend the house.

Be kind, respect your opponent, and have fun!

If you have any questions you can ask me before the round or email me!

Eoin Matthews Paradigm

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Avinash Mehrotra Paradigm

- Lay judge with some experience judging (won't catch spreading or anything more than moderately fast speaking, won't understand terms like internal link or warrant)

- Can flow fairly well but won't catch card names

- Knows how debate works so won't evaluate things that are new in final focus, etc.

Michael Meleta Paradigm

8 rounds

I debated two years of Varsity LD and Varsity PF in high school. I'm fine with speed as long as you are clear. That being said, I vote on the flow so if i do not get something on the flow extended through all of your speeches, I won't vote on it.

I value quality of evidence/arguments over quantity. Weigh your arguments and tell me why your weighing is more important than your opponents' weighing. If I call for any evidence after the round, I need to see the direct quotation that you read from.

I'm fine with any type of argument as long as you argue it well. I evaluate framework before anything else.

signpost. signpost. signpost.

Deborah Merke Paradigm

4 rounds

I am a parent judge. My daughter has debated PF for years. Please speak slowly and explain things clearly. Politeness is appreciated.

Adrian Morrison Paradigm

  For my preferences, please analyze the following:

Every time I see you in the world, you always step to my girl

Back back way back I used to front like Angkor Wat
Mechanicsburg Anchorage and Dar es Salaam
While home in New York was champagne and disco
Tapes from L.A. slash San Francisco
But actually Oakland and not Alameda
Your girl was in Berkeley with her Communist reader
Mine was entombed within boombox and walkman
I was a hoarder but girl that was back then

The gloves are off, the wisdom teeth are out
What you on about?
I feel it in my bones, I feel it in my bones
I'm stronger now, I'm ready for the house
Such a modest mouse,
I can't do it alone, I can't do it alone

Every time I see you in the world, you always step to my girl

Ancestors told me that their girl was better
She's richer than Croesus, she's tougher than leather
I just ignored all the tales of a past life
Stale conversation deserves but a bread knife
And punks who would laugh when they saw us together
Well, they didn't know how to dress for the weather
I can still see them there huddled on Astor
Snow falling slow to the sound of the master

The gloves are off, the wisdom teeth are out
What you on about?
I feel it in my bones, I feel it in my bones
I'm stronger now, I'm ready for the house
Such a modest mouse,
I can't do it alone, I can't do it alone

Wisdom's a gift, but you'd trade it for youth
Age is an honor, it's still not the truth
We saw the stars when they hid from the world
You cursed the sun when it stepped to your girl
Maybe she's gone and I can't resurrect her
The truth is she doesn't need me to protect her
We know the true death, the true way of all flesh
Everyone's dying, but girl you're not old yet

The gloves are off, the wisdom teeth are out
What you on about?
I feel it in my bones, I feel it in my bones
I'm stronger now, I'm ready for the house
Such a modest mouse,
I can't do it alone, I can't do it alone

Every time I see you in the world, you always step to my girl



Thank you,

Adrian Rust Morrison


p.s. don't be too feisty in cross fire


p.p.s. if you do an offtime road map your highest speaks are 23s


p.p.p.s. if you bring me a donut* you automatically win w/ 30s

        ^this is a joke


p.p.p.p.s references to Dar es Salaam will give you +2 speaker points if used intelligently
















*if you actually bring me a donut you may not get 30s but I will be a very happy boy

Gabriella Morvay Paradigm

I am a parent judge.

I will take notes during the debate, but not necessarily "flow".

I will vote for arguments that are explained well and that I understand.

Please be civil during crossfires.

Good luck!

Amy Nanavati Paradigm

Public Forum Paradigm

I will judge as a non-specialist or citizen judge. This means that clear and persuasive arguments will prevail despite any information or bias that I may have about the subject matter. I will look for solid logic, reasoning and analysis which uses sound evidence but is not driven by it. I prefer quality and depth of arguments to quantity of arguments. When countering an opponent’s argument it often becomes apparent how deeply a debater understands the subject matter if they can grasp their opponent’s argument and yet clearly distinguish it from their position. I expect respect and decorum for everyone in the room.

Max Neuman Paradigm

Max F. Neuman (he or they pronouns)

Competitive and Coaching Experience:

4 years of PF, almost entirely on the New York City Urban Debate League, at Bard High School Early College Manhattan; 3 years as a first speaker, 1 year as a second speaker.

1 year of APDA at CUNY, currently in my 3rd at Columbia. MG/LO with some MO on the side.

Former PF Coach at High School for Dual Language and Asian Studies, Midwood High School, and Bard High School Early College Manhattan.

Listened to that NPR podcast about college policy and thought it was cool.


When I'm judging a round, I really want to avoid intervening ie; involving my own thoughts or doing your work in achieving the ballot. It leads to unpredictable decisions that are unfair to everybody. To prevent judge intervention, speak high, and win, here are a few tips:

• Enjoy yourself! A lot of judges put this at the ends of their paradigms, but I think all the strategic and competitive hullaballoo below is entirely secondary to having a good experience in this activity. Run crazy advocacies. Attempt daring refutation strategies. Take accepted wisdom and turn it on its ear. Make jokes (but not mean ones). In victory and defeat, HAVE FUN. I wouldn't be here if I didn't love debate, and I hope you'll have as much fun as I do.

• An essential corollary of my hope that you have fun is a deep shame that this activity is not open to or enjoyable for everyone who could benefit from it. No matter who is in the room, be conscious of your words' and actions' impacts on audiences, teammates, and opponents, especially under-represented groups in debate. If you go for an argument that is blatantly exclusionary or threatening to a group's participation in debate, there's gonna be an uncomfortable conversation and some very low speaks.

• If you need to make a potentially triggering argument, please give a content warning.

Everything below this point is stuff I am flexible on, but will default to absent other argumentation.

• I've stayed involved in debate, but you definitely know the current topic and the format's evolving norms better than I do. Author names don't mean much to me, so explain what cards say. If you want to make an abuse or theory call, or even do something non-traditional like a K, I'm amenable to it if it's adequately warranted and weighed in a way that's accessible to a broad audience that isn't steeped in debate pedagogy. If something is warranted well and not responded to at all, I'll consider it true, no matter how outlandish.

• Weigh and condense. Going for the whole flow at any point after second crossfire reduces the round to a whirlwind of blips, often with very little analysis about what should sway the ballot. Impact calculus is hard to master, but entirely worth it.

• Tag and signpost more than you think you need to. I'll primarily flow author names if said clearly; so it's easier for me to apply responses to "Chung" than to "NCBI," and easiest to flow "answer to the maternal health point." I do this because there might be multiple cards from any given institution saying different things, but individual authors are generally consistent. Make all of your responses apply to something at least when you start, or else I'll probably just type them at the bottom of the flow.

• If some offense is in first constructive or rebuttal and then never gets brought up during the round, I'm fine with a final focus weighing it to win, although the weighing needs to be stronger than "they dropped it so it's true." I will pick up a team that says "they dropped it so it's true, and we weigh it so it matters" if the weighing actually happens.

• You don't have to extend all defense in a summary if you've already touched an argument; you do have to respond if the other side is going for it and engaging with your refutation. If something was in the round before, regardless of whether it was in summary or second constructive, it can be in final focus and on the ballot if you mention it explicitly. I will enforce the prohibition on totally new argumentation (in all cases except the first-speaking team answering totally new content in the second team's summary) in final focus.

• Speed is fine when coupled with clarity. If you're absolutely nuts (like 300 words per minute or more), start slow so I can get up to speed. If I can't flow you at all, I'll say "clear" up to three times because LD and Policy have one or two admirable and importable norms.

• Explaining how something works or happens is so much better than citing a source or quantifying a conclusion. Maybe it's because I've seen so many bad debaters win rounds on evidence challenges or because I'm a parliamentary debater, but I value explanation somewhat on par with evidence. It may take more time, but mechanistic warranting is totally worth it. This admirable round is stuffed with it:

• I probably won't flow crossfire because I don't think I can do so with nearly as much accuracy as the speeches. If something important happened in crossfire, mention it in a speech to be sure it's in the round.

• I am begrudgingly okay with calling cards. It would be better if everyone could avoid this by not lying about evidence (your own or your opponents'). If there has been a question of validity or a direct and unresolved clash of cards during the round, I'll probably want to see the original source after the round. If you have a citation and a card, it's okay with me if you have to pull an original source off the internet when asked. Any other internet use is super duper prohibited. If the entire round comes down to a fact claim that nobody can resolve like "Russia has 15 nuclear submarines" when the brightline for impact access is 15, I'm amenable to arguments that I should google the number, and I'll default to just resolving the next most important issue in the round if it's deadlocked around an unresolvable fact claim.

If you want my flow, it's all yours! Send me an email at maxfneuman [at] to ask for the flow or if you have any questions, preferably on the same weekend as your round in front of me. I'll probably delete flows/forget details about rounds after that.

Yves Nguyen Paradigm

6 rounds

Theory shells read with "internal links" are annoying and repetitive. For example, if ground is good, you should just explain in the context of how your loss of ground was unfair in the debate taking place.
I like a HEAVY standards debate and default to reasonability. Competing Interpretations should be justified

I don't like blimpy theory args.

Yes. Do it well. I'm pretty comfortable with whatever you got as long as we don't hide behind cards. Explain your argument, what it means for me as a judge at a debate tournament, and what my ballot is doing in the back of the room. Tell me what you think an argument is and why you've won it.


In front of me, the money is in the substance/impact debate. I don't care how you do it, but the earlier you do it the better. Directly comparing the consequences/ ethical issues within the debate is fine. Of course, do what you do.

I like good framework and am very inclined to vote for it, if it is very good and impactful

Don't be blippy,
Don't read your logic homework in front of me
You can really do whatever you want in/with your CX time. I enjoy the show and no I'm not going to flow it. Make moments count. I will be paying attention.


I think the Aff should be related to the topic in some way. What that is remains up to the debaters, but I am open to voting on a T interpretation that holds the Aff to a specific reading of the resolution based on the text of the topic you received before the round.

Policy Affs
Please slow down at the plan /counterplan text because I write them down. 2AC's should always include a framing issue against the K or anything with a heavy emphasis on timeframe. 2AR's should have impact calculus (timeframe, magnitude, ethical preclusion). I'll probably call for a lot of stuff after the debate, but please don't give it to me during the debate.


I love evidence heavy , well impacted disad debates as net benefits to a counterplan. I appreciate this portion of debate tech more than any other.
PICs are more than welcome , but you should probably only get a single conditional one to have the most game on the theory debate. Once you get past 2 conditional items in the 1NC, the theory game is up in the air for who wins it.

Tech Preferences for PF

Collapsing/Crystallizing - give me 1-4 points that you want me to evaluate - what's most important.

Weighing - I like clarity about what is important to your team and why your arguments are more important/impactful. You need to tell me why your arguments have more magnitude, probability, or are more pressing.

Organization/Signposting - be clean and clear.

Subodh Nimbkar Paradigm

8 rounds

Im a lay judge and I mostly judge PF.

I look for fact to back up all assertions. I expect debaters to speak slowly and clearly or I wont flow the round. I weigh on magnitude of impact and contentions should have proper link chains throughout or I drop it from the flow. I never weigh on cross, but I do pay attention.

For LD, I'm super lay and I really like traditional arguments. Don't even think about spreading. I don't buy progressive arguments too often. T shells should be avoided unless absolutely necessary.

Julie Orme Paradigm

4 rounds

I’m a new judge for PF so don’t speak too fast.

Be clean on your flow

Don’t interupt each other during cross X. Ask a question and listen for an answer and vice versa.

Brian Paick Paradigm

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Grace Panetta Paradigm

Hello! My name is Grace Panetta and I did public forum debate all 4 years of high school on the Massachusetts and national circuit. I'm not an especially strict or picky judge, but if you stick the following guidelines you should do well:

1. Please.weigh.your.arguments! I know how easy it is in summary and final focus to get bogged down in specific points or cards, especially if there are little things you feel are inaccurate. But if you take a step back, weigh the 2-3 most important arguments in the round, and explain to me why you're winning, my job is going to be a lot more easier and you'll probably have a higher chance of winning. I will not do the weighing for you.

2. I consider myself to be a relatively non-interventionist judge. If you or your opponents say something I know to be factually incorrect, I won't factor it into my decision unless someone calls it out as such.

3. Please don't waste a ton of time calling cards. If something sounds too good to be true, it very well might be, and you should ask to see a card if you have serious concerns about its validity, but please try to keep it to a minimum. I was once a debater too, and can easily tell when teams call cards for the sole purpose of biding time/making their opponents nervous. As a judge, I'll only call a card if it's disputed during the round. I want to waste as little time looking at cards so our round doesn't go way over time and tab doesn't get mad at me :)

4. I know the rules of PF technically allow it, but I probably won't weigh new evidence brought up in final focus very heavily. You shouldn't even need to bring up new evidence in FF to win.

Good luck to everyone competing!

Sarbjit Parmar Paradigm

6 rounds

Third year judging public forum

You have to convince me why you side's contentions using logic or trust worthy evidence, do I need say... If your speech does not make sense to me for reasons of speed or convoluted logic or if in my judgement it didn’t make sense to your opponents I would drop the contention from consideration

expect a well informed judge who flows, expect an unbiased judgment based solely on team's arguments against each other's logic/information, who enjoys that task as a challenge

Christopher Paulison Paradigm

6 rounds

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Angela Pitter Paradigm

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Natalie Polanco Paradigm

2 rounds

Image result for much serious very debate

Logan Reed Paradigm

Please set up the email chain before round so you can hit send at start time.

* are new/significant-PF at bottom

*for big bronx 19': I havn't judged/debated much in the last few months, so please take it a little slow at least for the first couple prelims/early morning rounds. You may also want to explain newer meta references/args a little more to me than another judge*

-Do good and win arguments. The more rounds i judge, the less i feel like the type of argument/style of debate you do matters as much in my evaluation of a round as i expected it would when i first started judging.
-Read what you want, if it has a warrant and some kind of framing mechanism to impact into.
-Also, don't intentionally be a bigot if you don't want to lose w/shit speaks.
-Feel free to go fast, but signpost, differentiate tags, be clear, and SLOW DOWN AT INTERPS and PLANS! especially these theory interps with like 3 planks, you just cant spread through that if you want me to catch the nuances of the shell.

i wont vote on- the resolved a-priori (other a-priories are fine), arguments cut from the SCUM manifesto, *trans-exclusionary feminism/gender args* (the flow will no longer be more important than my existence, sorry), oppression of any kind good, evaluate theory after the 2nr.

Speaks are based on how well you debate, with some focus on technical performance but more on strategic choice, with 28.5 being average. Have not ever given a 30 so i lied about being a speaks fairy lol.

if you think my paradigm is odd and want to ask questions about it, feel free to.


I debated LD in High School and got a few bids. I currently do policy debate at NYU in college. Still consider myself slightly better at knowing LD stuff though. I mostly read the K, and thats the style of debate I understand the best generally, but in HS i was very flex and will vote on whatever. I also think disclosure is in general good and the best responses to disclosure theory are kritical rather than about small schools or fairness.

Don't be violent, and pay attention to social position. I dock speaks for microggressions, sometimes subconsciously, so try to not. (for example there is nothing less impressive to watch in a debate round where a dude condescends a woman on something she understands better than he does)

defaults- presume aff, flips if neg reads an advocacy. other ones are probably not important: Im more likely to discard a flow as irresolvable and look for other offense in other places, rather than default on a million paradigm issues to make a ballot story make sense.

Im cool with more weird/innovative arguments and i tend to like them a lot, as well as impact turns like extinction good that some judges don't like.

note- i was an independent debater in high school, and I try to be an advocate for y'all still. I have a deep understanding of what its like to do the busted tournament struggle without a team (lol), but that means i also know when something isnt actually an important access issue in relation to that struggle. this means you should have good warrants and analysis for your access arguments and not assume we have all of the same opinions and ill auto vote on the words 'small school'. (this is mostly for like theory, not performance, and trust me if people didn't do this to me all the time it wouldn't be such a major part of my paradigm lol)


I do NOT evaluate rounds based on persuasion. I evaluate the flow. If i should evaluate the round different, that's possible, but you have to win a warrant for your role of the judge. Any progressive stuff yall want to do is cool, but don't do it really badly. None of yall can spread too quickly so go whatever speed. Also uuuh 'rules of pf' isnt an argument in 99% of cases

I really do not like paraphrased evidence. PF already has huge issues with evidence integrity, and paraphrased evidence can say whatever you want it to say. Analytic arguments are almost always better because they normally actually have a warrant and don't teach bad academic practices. I also call for cards after the round and will go through the effort to check cites- do not fabricate evidence in front of me

ALL basic debate things actually do still apply to yall. For example- no new in the 2 (your arguments other than weighing/comparison in the final focus u want me to vote off of must be in a previous speech, and ideally before the summery. To clarify further, you also do not have to extend all arguments from earlier speeches, rather you should collapse down to your best arguments), dropped arguments are conceded arguments (including the first speech for whoever is speaking second!), you need offense to win a round, ect.

Another issue i often have in pf rounds is that teams expect me to take something bad-sounding for granted as an impact. You should not to this- 1. you de facto have to warrant all of the pieces; a) that your impact exists, and (b) that its bad, and (c) that its worse than your opponents impacts. 2. Things you think are intuitively bad are often not the same as what i think is intuitively bad, ie anarchy

Bill Reid Paradigm

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Emily Ringel Paradigm

6 rounds

I am a freshman at Barnard and compete with the Columbia Parli Team. I competed in PF for four years at Sidwell Friends School. I'll flow and can handle moderate speed, but prefer for there to be clear signposting, especially in early speeches, in order to best understand your arguments. The best argumentation should include extensions of your arguments (with convincing responses to rebuttals from the opposing side) and thoughtful weighing.

Arvind Sanger Paradigm

I am a parent lay judge. Please speak clearly, as I cannot vote for you on an argument if I do not hear it. Also, please explain any debate jargon you use and don't just state your evidence, explain why it's important and what it is saying.

Aaron Schaffer-Neitz Paradigm

6 rounds

I did PF for four years at Shikellamy High School, where I placed 8th at NSDA nationals, and am currently a senior on the Columbia Debate Society.

I flow and am willing to follow *some* speed. I will listen and flow to all arguments so long as they are reasonably warranted and are not offensive/violent.

Like other judges, I expect teams that I judge to warrant, impact, and weigh. To be more precise, and to touch on my personal preferences, teams should develop and prove their arguments with evidence and logical explanation. Thus, if a team offers cards to impact their case and assert that their contention is true, but fails to provide robust reasoning, I consider that argument to be deficient. For example, "Scholar A says that Y happens" is deficient, but "Scholar A says that Y happens *because* of ..." is not deficient. Beyond offering explanations of why their case is true, the best teams will develop and extend their arguments throughout the entire round (all, or almost all, speeches). Finally, teams should make a habit of weighing arguments in the round. While attacking the veracity of opponents' claims is persuasive, it is also worthwhile to weigh arguments as if they are true to show why your arguments are more important (ex: Even if my opponents' second contention is true, our first contention still outweighs because ...). Doing so will make me happy (yay!) and also increase your chances of winning.

I hope the aforementioned preferences make sense, and I look forward to watching everyone debate :)

Chengfeng Shao Paradigm

I did PF for two years at Boston Latin School, and am currently a junior at Columbia University.

I will flow; speed is fine if not excessive. Please treat opposing arguments with charity and respect, and avoid offensive content. I am most likely to vote for you if you extend arguments through the round and weigh their impacts comparatively with your opponent's.

Ted Snyder Paradigm

I'm a parent judge, and have been judging at various public forum tournaments for the past 6 years.

I have worked for 30+ years as a litigating attorney, so I understand what works as a persuasive argument. I value logical arguments supported by evidence (not just conclusory statements). Tie your arguments to the resolution, and explain based on the evidence and logic why I should vote in your favor on the merits. You should address and not ignore your adversaries' points.

Please do not speak too fast, make sure you have the evidence ready and available if it is called for, and be civil and respectful at all times.

Andrew Souther Paradigm

I did PF for three years at Jesuit High School in New Orleans, and I am now in my second year of parliamentary debate at Fordham University. I graduated in 2017, but I am fairly new to judging high school debate.

Public Forum:

I can handle some speed, but at the end of the day I did PF in high school and not LD/CX, so I am probably not prepared to judge spreading.

I will pay attention in cross-fire, but I will not be flowing. If you want to make sure that I consider an idea from cross-fire, bring it up in one of your speeches. As always, make sure to extend your arguments and to weigh them clearly.


By the end of my PF career, I noticed a worrying trend of teams misconstruing evidence. In fact, I think that the structure of Public Forum may incentivize misconstruing evidence because opponents have very little prep-time to analyze your cards and realize they are misconstrued at all. If one team calls into question the legitimacy of the other's evidence, I will ask to take a look at the card (and preferably the whole PDF) after the round. Please have an honest debate.

Michael Stephenson Paradigm

I am a new and relatively inexperienced judge. I have judged one full tournament previously, and I look forward to judging this tournament.

Sara Sun Paradigm

Hi, this is her daughter speaking.

My mom is a lay judge but she has judged pf tournaments for the past 3 years. That being said, don't be progressive in your arguments. No theory's, no K's, no spreading. She votes off of "good points" and "clarity". If you sound good and you are logical, she'll vote you up.

*UPDATE* she will drop you if you don't respond to an argument and your opponent extends that argument in summary in FF

also, she will not evaluate new responses in FF unless it's some sort of weighing analysis, just like all judges should do. She is attempting to be as "technical" as possible, but then again, she is a parent lol.

Sivaperraju Tolety Paradigm

Hey everyone, this is Sriram from Algonquin TZ, and you are about to be judged by my dad, so please show him a quality round.

Understand that at his core, he is a parent judge.

How He Will Evaluate Rounds

Although he has no debate experience like us competitors, he has an extremely rich trove of knowledge, and he will make sure to listen to the warrants and would appreciate really clear analysis. To borrow from Ben Konstan's paradigm: "Will he listen to weighing? Absolutely. Will he like if you read off a gazillion cards? Almost certainly not." Collapse the round into a few easy to understand, logical argument, explain why your winning, weigh, and you've got a great shot at winning the round. If you start yelling "REMEMBER ALGONQUIN 18 ITS A CLEAN TURN ON THEIR ENTIRE CASE," you clearly have not read this paradigm, and you will probably lose.


He has a PhD. in CS,so he will definitely know a lot about technology arguments. He also has a lot of historical knowledge as well as general knowledge, so he knows more about H1B Visas than most people (especially true considering he is an immigrant from India). And While we are here, lets talk about respect.


My dad will always expect the best of you: show up on time, do not speak over each other or the judge, and always be silent when the other team is speaking. Do not let crossfire devolve into a shouting match - sort through the chaos and be responsible, and you will be rewarded. Please do not start bashing India or for that matter any country, race, religion, gender, or culture, as that is an instant L you do not want.


He can understand a moderate speed; don't start spearing fast, and don't dare go near spreading levels and you will be fine.


He can understand the basic things, but make sure you don't sacrifice clarity and tempo for shouting out debate terminology


Stop. Don't go near these, don't mention them, don't use them. Instant L.


Anywhere from 25-29. If he is blown away by your poise, presentation, and general brilliance you could get a 30. Won't drop below a 26/27 unless you're completely incoherent, offensive, or other special circumstances.


No formal judging experience, though he as judged a lot of rounds at this point(~3 years). He also has heard me talking about rounds for the past few years, so keep that in mind.


Big picture, slow down. He really wants a strong narrative first and foremost, supported by good logic and strong evidence.

Kyle Traynham Paradigm

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Joe Vaughan Paradigm

6 rounds

I am the coach of Scarsdale HS and have been in th activity for 20 some odd years


As a member of the LD Wording Committee, I prefer to hear arguments that are actually about the topics. I will listen to any well reasoned and explained arguments though although voting on argument not about the topic will probably make me want to give poor points.

Don’t steal time. Once the timer starts at the beginning of the round, it doesn’t stop. Whatever electronic shuffling you want to do, water that you want to drink, happens on your time.

No, I don’t want to be on the speech doc. I want to flow and think. Therefore, if you want it on my flow, you have to speak at a speed and clarity that allows that to happen. I would say that about half what you believe to be your fastest speed is probably appropriate.


i would prefer fewer cards and stats that are actually contextualized and explained than a slurry of paraphrased nonsense. Anyone can make individualized stats dance, but a solid debater can explain the context of that work and how it links to other pieces of info

Alex Watkins-Goodman Paradigm

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Linda Williams Paradigm

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Sumedha Zachariah Paradigm

I am a parent judge, which means a few things:

1. Slow down, please! If you focus on the narratives of the arguments, you'll win the round.

2. If there's something important in the constructive or rebuttal, make sure it's talked about in the summary and final focus.

3. Voters are a great way to win the round in the 2nd half of the debate.

4. Be nice and not rude.

** If you clearly weigh your arguments against your opponent and stimulate a consistent narrative, you'll win the round. **

Eric Zerof Paradigm

Updated for 2018 TOC

Public Forum Paradigm

First thing to know about me, I am a lay public forum judge. I am judging on behalf of Bronx Science and I am a parent judge.

I like delivery that is slow, tasteful, and artful. I prefer big picture analysis over a highly technical line-by-line approach. The role of the final focus should be to tell me who is winning the round clearly and concisely--narrative speeches are preferred. Extension is very important to me, and I will not take well to teams that extend through ink.

With that being said, ink will be limited. During speeches, I like to sit back and listen. Persuasion is very important to me, and for that reason, I value understanding your arguments over following them on the flow, and will take limited notes. I am not aware of arguments regarding topicality or kritiks, and plans are illegal in Public Forum, so I will not vote for them.

I tend to value style and argument equally, as both are very important. I will always vote for the team with the clearest arguments and delivery at the end of the round. I do not care much for how you structure your speeches, but all arguments that you expect to win on have to be in both summary and final focus--not grand crossfire. A second speaking team is not expected to cover their own case in rebuttal.