The Instigator
LR4N6FTW4EVA
Pro (for)
Losing
12 Points
The Contender
draxxt
Con (against)
Winning
22 Points

Debate.org votes biased

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 5/2/2008 Category: Society
Updated: 8 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 1,184 times Debate No: 3868
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (9)
Votes (10)

 

LR4N6FTW4EVA

Pro

I will let my opponent go before I post my arguments. I think the resolution is clear. If you have a problem, we can debate what it means as well.
draxxt

Con

Since you did not apply the meaning you wanted in your first speech, you have given free reign to give my own perception to this debate.

My perception is that the site itself is giving a biased vote. The site itself cannot give a biased vote for the following reasons.

1) This website in particular is not at liberty to vote within itself. Debate.org cannot vote for anything at all.

for example

The world has an election for a world leader. The world itself cannot vote but it's inhabitants can.

2) The website cannot have a bias on anything because it has no consciousness.

For example:

The world decides to kill all caucasions. The world cannot kill the caucasions but its inhabitants can.

For the above reasons, you vote CON

Thanks,
-EG
Debate Round No. 1
LR4N6FTW4EVA

Pro

"Since you did not apply the meaning you wanted in your first speech, you have given free reign to give my own perception to this debate."
I clearly said "I think the resolution is clear. If you have a problem, we can debate what it means as well." So, we will also have to debate what it means. Now, as I wrote this resolution myself, I think I could be considered an expert on what it means. To quote myself "This resolution means that voters on Debate.org vote based on their own beliefs rather than the quality of a position." Although I could have been clearer, I know what I meant, so I can enlighten you to what it means.

Even if you don't accept my meaning, I still will win.
First, my opponent claims that the website itself can't vote. This is not necessarily true, it could have been programmed to vote on a debate. Unless you are the programmer who programmed this site, or you provide testimony from said programmer, you can't claim that this is true.

Then, my opponent says that since the website has no conscience, it can't be biased. This also is not necessarily true. First, according to a 2005 NPR report, a man tested the shuffle feature on his iPod, and found it to be significantly biased towards playing Eagles music. I am not sure how he did this, but obviously this sows that a machine can be biased, for whatever reason. Also, the site could have been programmed to be biased towards one end of the political spectrum.

Now, to uphold the resolution under my meaning:
First, a possibly abusive way to uphold it:
Everybody is biased. Including the voters of Debate.org, I vote on this site, and even though I try to be objective, I still am admittedly biased.

Now, another possibly abusive way to uphold it:
Even if we were objective, and voted for the better debater, we would still be biased. That is, towards the better debater.

Next, a definitely non-abusive way to uphold it:
There are debates that are more like opinion polls on the issue rather than debates. I'll use two examples:
(One is of mine, please don't think I'm a sore loser or anything)
http://www.debate.org...
In this debate, PRO presented a superior argument, using Civil Unions as a superior alternative to gay marriage, and CON forfeited a round. CON won, as gay marriage is supported by many on this site.

The second example (Vote PRO), is one of my debates
This site has many atheists and agnostics, my opponent conceded two rounds and never refuted my only weak premise, (I'm not going to say what that was). My opponent won.

Finally:
Some on this site vote for themselves. That is logical, but it is biased towards oneself. Therefore, they vote biased.

QED
draxxt

Con

Let's begin shall we?

"I clearly said "I think the resolution is clear. If you have a problem, we can debate what it means as well." So, we will also have to debate what it means. Now, as I wrote this resolution myself, I think I could be considered an expert on what it means. To quote myself "This resolution means that voters on Debate.org vote based on their own beliefs rather than the quality of a position." Although I could have been clearer, I know what I meant, so I can enlighten you to what it means."

It seems my opponent is confusing what is with what might be. I clearly stated that the resolution meant the site itself votes biased. He said it was self-explanatory and I found reason why he should have made it clearer. My opponent says he could have been clearer and if he could have, he should have.

The resolution should have been, in order to support my opponent's defense, "The debators and voters on debate.org vote based on a biased assumption."

"First, my opponent claims that the website itself can't vote. This is not necessarily true, it could have been programmed to vote on a debate."

Though that is absurd, I have asked a moderator to comment either by email or on this debate on whether or not the site can vote. This will be present in either my R3 or R4.

"Then, my opponent says that since the website has no conscience, it can't be biased. This also is not necessarily true. First, according to a 2005 NPR report, a man tested the shuffle feature on his iPod, and found it to be significantly biased towards playing Eagles music. I am not sure how he did this, but obviously this s[h]ows that a machine can be biased, for whatever reason. Also, the site could have been programmed to be biased towards one end of the political spectrum."

My opponent brings up an interesting point but simply because an Ipod has a random obscene "bias" does not mean debate.org does. Also, to say an IPod has a bias, you must first prove that he did not have MORE Eagles songs than not. If he did, then it is not the Ipod that is biased, it is the man who put the songs on the IPod.

"Everybody is biased. Including the voters of Debate.org, I vote on this site, and even though I try to be objective, I still am admittedly biased."

I have yet to VOTE biased. Yes, some of the topics are against my beliefs but I refrain from using that bias against the debator who deserved to win.

"Even if we were objective, and voted for the better debater, we would still be biased. That is, towards the better debater."

Merriam-Webster:

bias as: "a personal and unreasoned judgment"

Voting for the person who deserved to win is in no way unreasoned and is, in fact, rather reasoned.

"In this debate, PRO presented a superior argument, using Civil Unions as a superior alternative to gay marriage, and CON forfeited a round. CON won, as gay marriage is supported by many on this site.

"The second example (Vote PRO), is one of my debates
This site has many atheists and agnostics, my opponent conceded two rounds and never refuted my only weak premise, (I'm not going to say what that was). My opponent won."

Even so, the resolution, which I have not accepted as your definition as of yet, under your circumstances states the site as a whole votes biased. "Debate.org votes biased" is an absolute statement. To say "Some members of debate.org vote biased." is not an absolute statement. Just because one person or even a small group of people are biased, does not mean the whole group is.

"Some on this site vote for themselves. That is logical, but it is biased towards oneself. Therefore, they vote biased."

It is not unreasoned though. Someone votes for themselves for a purpose: A feeling of victory or because they want the percent of their victory raised. This is in no way biased and therefore is not unreasoned.

Thanks,
-EG
Debate Round No. 2
LR4N6FTW4EVA

Pro

When you accepted this debate, you agreed to the parameters I set, that was part of accepting my topic. So we will have to debate the meaning of the resolution, and as I said before, as I wrote the resolution, I know best what it means, so we must accept my definition.

Because of this there is no need to debate on his meaning any further. Now onto the real debate.

First, my opponent claims he is completely unbiased in his voting. If that is true, he is most likely a robot or a zombie, but I believe he is probably wrong. It could mean that he did not consider every single word and point completely objectively, or that one person wrote a long argument that he simply skimmed. While we all try to be objective, there is subjectivity in our nature, and we cannot avoid it completely. Although if we take his definition of bias, he could be right. But, we cannot take his definition. I feel the most palatable definition for our purposes is this definition, by Merriam-Webster, "an inclination of temperament or outlook", from http://www.merriam-webster.com....

His meaning of bias is also used to justify his argument against my point that people vote for themselves often. He said it is reasonable, therefore unbiased. If we take the more valid definition we see that these voters would have an inclination to vote for their side.

Why vote PRO?
1. Everybody is slightly biased
2. His interpretation of the resolution is invalid.
draxxt

Con

First I would like to say thank you to the Webmaster for clearing this up.

Second, I would like to say that in no way has my opponent refuted all of my points. He dropped the first half of my argument and only stated:

"First, my opponent claims he is completely unbiased in his voting. If that is true, he is most likely a robot or a zombie, but I believe he is probably wrong. It could mean that he did not consider every single word and point completely objectively, or that one person wrote a long argument that he simply skimmed. While we all try to be objective, there is subjectivity in our nature, and we cannot avoid it completely. Although if we take his definition of bias, he could be right. But, we cannot take his definition. I feel the most palatable definition for our purposes is this definition, by Merriam-Webster, "an inclination of temperament or outlook", from http://www.merriam-webster.com...;

I never said I was completely unbiased, I said I have yet to vote based on a bias. You believe this is wrong but for now, you cannot prove it.

And my opponent is right, we cannot avoid subjectivity. Some things, by nature, are subjective: Morals, opinions, belief structures. The list goes on. And while bias is a subjectivity, we have no way to say that only bias should be considered.

temperament: "characteristic or habitual inclination or mode of emotional response"

inclination: "a tendency to a particular aspect, state, character, or action"

This action or "temperament" is unreasoned as it is a tendency. You cannot reason a tendency as it is nature. I still maintain my definition and my original argument.

"His meaning of bias is also used to justify his argument against my point that people vote for themselves often. He said it is reasonable, therefore unbiased. If we take the more valid definition we see that these voters would have an inclination to vote for their side."

That inclination is not a bias, it is reasoned. As I've proved above, you can apply reason or lack thereof to this word.

"1. Everybody is slightly biased
2. His interpretation of the resolution is invalid"

Everybody is slightly biased but simply being biased doesn't prove your resolution, voting biased does.

My interpretation cannot be invalid as it is my interpretation. You did not expound in your R1 and therefore, you opened the field for a range of semantics arguments.

My opponent has not provided anything to refute either my first aspect or his aspect which I am debating both. The Webmaster below has claimed that the site itself cannot vote, therefore proving his resolution invalid.

Thank you,
-EG
Debate Round No. 3
LR4N6FTW4EVA

Pro

"Second, I would like to say that in no way has my opponent refuted all of my points. He dropped the first half of my argument..."

I dropped the first half because it was on the wrong definition. It is now irrelevant that the site cannot vote for itself.

To refute my point that everyone is at least partially biased he says:
"I never said I was completely unbiased, I said I have yet to vote based on a bias. You believe this is wrong but for now, you cannot prove it."

By human nature you at least somewhat biased, as in considering a point made, etc.
It is human nature to be very biased, and you cannot escape that completely when you vote.

Then, my opponent stubbornly maintains his argument that bias is always unreasonable. It does not have to be, an inclination to consider one's own argument superior is not necessarily unreasonable, but it is biased. Also, all humans have inclinations and tendencies to interpret and consider points different ways. I may find a point ridiculous and vote against that debater, while another member of this site may interpret it as very logical, and vote for that debater.

Voters are biased when they vote for themselves, that's an inclination to consider points made be yourself superior, voters are biased when they vote for anyone on the site as well, either they have an inclination to look at points in a certain way, or they have an inclination that one debater was better in that instance. If a debate was so clear cut, there would never be any disagreement. Reiterating my point, there is bias when we consider the validity of points, and that is what will affect the decision of the voter the most. For example, once this debate is finished, a voter may read it, and decide that yes, you were allowed to supply your own interpretation of the resolution, and we have to look at it that way, and then, you would likely win. Another voter may come through, and decide that my interpretation is more valid, and vote based on that. The issue is not necessarily clear cut, and different people will interpret that differently, making their vote based on that bias.

"Everybody is slightly biased but simply being biased doesn't prove your resolution, voting biased does."

I have just shown that bias will inevitably creep into the voter's decision.

"My interpretation cannot be invalid as it is my interpretation. You did not expound in your R1 and therefore, you opened the field for a range of semantics arguments."

In Round One I said, "I think the resolution is clear. If you have a problem, we can debate what it means as well." When you accepted this debate you accepted those parameters. When you presented your interpretation of the resolution, you had a problem with the definition that was pretty darn implicit in the resolution. So, we had to debate it. I provided an expert testimony from the author of the resolution (myself) to say what it means. The expert is more valid in interpreting the resolution than you are, therefore we must accept the expert's definition.

Why vote PRO?
1. I have shown that bias is inevitable when voting
2. I have refuted my opponent's case, on my interpretation by going line by line and showing its fallaciousness, and for his interpretation by showing it was irrelevant.
draxxt

Con

"I dropped the first half because it was on the wrong definition. It is now irrelevant that the site cannot vote for itself."

No it wasn't. you set no guidelines as to what the debate meant, therefore, I made my own. Perhaps your definition is the wrong one...

"By human nature you at least somewhat biased, as in considering a point made, etc.
It is human nature to be very biased, and you cannot escape that completely when you vote."

That is not true. Simply because we are all partially something does not make us wholly that. Say I am a mixture containing 20% water, 60% acid, and 20% pickle juice. This strange concoction is not just acid, nor water, nor pickle juice, but a combination of the three. We are biased but that does not mean every part of us is biased, even including our voting.

"Then, my opponent stubbornly maintains his argument that bias is always unreasonable. It does not have to be, an inclination to consider one's own argument superior is not necessarily unreasonable, but it is biased. Also, all humans have inclinations and tendencies to interpret and consider points different ways. I may find a point ridiculous and vote against that debater, while another member of this site may interpret it as very logical, and vote for that debater."

I maintain that bias is unreasonable because I have proven it to be unreasonable.

"Voters are biased when they vote for themselves, that's an..."

No. Voters have a reason when they vote for themselves.

"I have just shown that bias will inevitably creep into the voter's decision."

And I have shown it doesn't have to.

"In Round One I said, "I think the resolution is clear. "

And it was... to me. I CLEARLY said "The site itself cannot vote" That was what I interpreted from the resolution.

"Why vote PRO?
1. I have shown that bias is inevitable when voting
2. I have refuted my opponent's case, on my interpretation by going line by line and showing its fallaciousness, and for his interpretation by showing it was irrelevant."

My opponent has done nothing of the sort in either case.

Let's recap:

1) the site itself cannot vote.

2) It is not provably inevitable that we will all vote biased.

3) My opponent dropped half of my case

Thank you and please, vote CON. It's only logical, unbiased decision making skills.

Thanks again,
-EG
Debate Round No. 4
9 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 9 records.
Posted by sadolite 8 years ago
sadolite
My opponent forfeited every round and still almost beat me, he was ahead for awhile. Biased? absolutely! But I still like to read and have debates, I could careless if I win or not. I would have quit long ago if that were the case.

http://www.debate.org...
Posted by Logical-Master 8 years ago
Logical-Master
Not really. Unbiased reason for voting: You dropped a major argument. You dropped an argument which didn't rely on actual bias from individuals but rather from the website itself. With this argument (and the fact that you didn't prevent such an argument from being created during round 1), CON overturns all of your "inevitable bias" points by simply pointing back to the fact that the actual website is not biased. Rather than conceding, you should have battled the webmaster's testimony.

Also, your "expert testimony" is unreliable given the fact you're the one debating. In other words, you're prone to bias especially considering that it is your intention to WIN this debate. You can easily change the meaning of the resolution at any time for your own convenience. Of course, CON didn't really capitalize on this point (which would have led me to vote PRO had you not dropped and had sufficiently countered "the website is biased" point).
Posted by LR4N6FTW4EVA 8 years ago
LR4N6FTW4EVA
The fact that draxxt is winning proves my point that the voters on this site are biased.
Posted by Logical-Master 8 years ago
Logical-Master
I probably would have concocted a reason to conclude that the webmaster's testimony is inadmissible.
Posted by LR4N6FTW4EVA 8 years ago
LR4N6FTW4EVA
What? That was propaganda, not a rebuttal!
Posted by draxxt 8 years ago
draxxt
Thank you Webmaster.
25 Characters.
Posted by LR4N6FTW4EVA 8 years ago
LR4N6FTW4EVA
Yeah, whatever, I had to think fast with that annoying definition of the resolution draxxt supplied.
Posted by Webmaster 8 years ago
Webmaster
Hello Debaters,

The site itself cannot vote. There is no program in place that allows the site to vote on a debate. Only a registered and logged on member can vote on a debate.

-Webmaster
Posted by LR4N6FTW4EVA 8 years ago
LR4N6FTW4EVA
For the record, the guy with the Eagles biased iPod had a number of Eagles songs being played that was disproportionate to the amount of those songs on his iPod.
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