The Instigator
TheInterlang
Con (against)
Losing
2 Points
The Contender
donald.keller
Pro (for)
Winning
25 Points

Should musicians be paid?

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 6 votes the winner is...
donald.keller
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 8/14/2013 Category: Arts
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 4,695 times Debate No: 36692
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (5)
Votes (6)

 

TheInterlang

Con

Hello. I think music should be free and musicians should not be paid, at least not in the same way as a "real" job. (i.e. a person who does music but nothing else). There are a number of reasons why, which I will state in the debate.
donald.keller

Pro

I accept. Plan well.
Debate Round No. 1
TheInterlang

Con

1. Influence. Since music can be treated as a profession, it has encouraged kids to literally drop out of school in pursuit of becoming a star. (The same could be said about sports, but that's a different problem.) People seldom hear a kid say "I want to be a doctor" or "Fireman" or "Lawyer". Instead, they either hear "athlete" or "musician" (or some other form of the word, like "rapper"). We are currently having a doctor shortage and high demand for medical care{1}, and if Katy Perry and all the others were to obey their parents and go through with their schooling, we may not be in as difficult of a situation.

2. Society. In our society, we need many things to be done: Manufacturing, science, medicine, farming, technology, power, Internet, etc. Music does NOT fit into this equation; musicians essentially take from society and don't give anything back that keeps it afloat, so society owes them nothing.

3. Money. Do you realize how much money the average person spends on music? There is the radio, but most of us want to have some freedom of choice, so we buy CD's or download tracks on iTunes. It can cost anywhere between 50" and $1.50 USD per song (depending on where you get your music).{2} This means that a 100-song collection can cost 100+ dollars, and to fill a basic iPod completely will cost over 1000 dollars. Of course you can use Kazaw (sp?), but that's illegal!

CITATIONS:
{1} https://www.aamc.org...
{2} Based on iTunes and other competing services.
donald.keller

Pro

Thank you for the short reply. Sometimes smaller, simpler discussions are nicer. I will hope to do the same.

1. Influence.
The number of children dropping out of school is deceptively displayed in the Con's argument. Nearly all students dreaming of becoming musicians stay in school. Few students drop out for music, because there is no point in dropping out. While Athlete and Musician are high in the ranks, they are still below Doctor, and Crime Scene Investigation (Forensics being the most popular.) Healthcare is in high demand... From both side. We need more doctors, and a lot of people are trying to become doctors.(1) The number of Med School students has been increasing year by year.(2) While healthcare is above Education now, we are still short. This isn't because less people want to enter, but because more people are needed, it's a proportion issue, as seem below.


This chart doesn't actually display real world statistics. It's only an example to vaguely show the relationship between students joining to students needed. The lighter lines show the increase.

Most students won't drop out of High School to become a musician, and most students still want to become Athletes, Doctors, Forensic Scientists, and Teachers before becoming Musicians.

1) http://www.mlive.com...
2) http://kff.org...

2. Society.
Most of our society and culture was built around the arts, with music being among the most influential. Many inventions and scientific discoveries was inspired while listening to music. Most people perform the tasks you listed well while listening to music.

Our culture and who we are is inspired by Music. It's led the masses and inspired change. It's also inspired many other ideas, and inventions. Overall, music is among the things that create our society. Music was a also major part of the Renaissance.

3. Money.
The Music industry brought in $16.5 billion a year (as of 2012.)(3) That is averaged at $52 a US citizen a year. The amount is actually quite smaller because a great deal of money comes from advertisements on Radios and TV, which benefits companies and businesses. The rest is shared on a global scale, and isn't just in America.
people could spend $1000 filling up their ipod, but they don't. The average person spends very little on music, in fact.

If you stopped paying Musicians, you won't stop people from buying music. You can't make it free because the companies still need pay.

3) http://www.nytimes.com...

4. Loses.
If you stopped paying musicians, they would simply quit making music. This is a great loss to society, as music makes up some the most important parts of the following...
- TV Show/Movies
- Video Games
- Car Rides
We would lose something that made up so uch of our history, and the people of the future would miss out on new music that reflects our culture from this point on.

5. Fairness
Anyone who makes music deserves fair pay. As an Entertainment Industry, they should be paid relative to the number of people they entertain. If a musician entertains a lot of people, he should be paid for it. Musicians earn very little per album, but make a lot simply because they sell a lot of albums.

Music is quite a full-time job. Writing songs can be both scary, and time consuming. It also takes constant practice, and the skill to completely memorize a long list of songs.

It'd be unfair to refuse them pay simply because you do not feel they add to science and society.

CONCLUSION:
With this, we see it'd be both unfair and unproductive to stop paying Musicians. The losses to our culture would also be lost.
Debate Round No. 2
TheInterlang

Con

In my first reason, I stated kids who wanted to be musicians, going against their parents, and screwing up any other potential they might have. I am talking not only about the dropouts (few, but not unheard of), but also those who major in music in college, and those who do not want to attend college because of music. The problem is that it is a gamble. An example of this is my old Math tutor. His father (from India) made the mistake of majoring in music, and he was very poor. He told his son (my math tutor) "Whatever you do, don't think about doing music for a living". Some of these people become homeless or resort to vices like drugs and alcohol, since they can't get a good job. Also, if a person may be an OK musician, but has a naturally large brain as well, he could become an excellent (insert here) instead. Music is probably the hardest thing to become successful in. I am not discouraging people from becoming musicians. I am just making a point that paying musicians highly can influence kids to try (rarely successfully.)

I do not hate music. I like music, and I don't want to see it go. I never said "Should music be illegal"? I am simply stating that musicians shouldn't be paid as much as they can be today.

The thing that makes writing music different than, say, driving a car, is that it is not a learned behavior. Playing the actual instrument is, but the ability to sing or write a song/piece is genetic and instinctive, and the amount of learning required has gone down thanks to computers. Biologically, music functions as a mating call. Although musicians may not be aware of it, musicians sing for the same reason why a peacock displays its feathers, to attract the mates. Ever wondered why an artist's song quality deteriorates after they settle down and have babies? Their subconscious mind has already recieved what it was looking for. {1} {2} Musicians can continue to play, but it will be more forced and worse-sounding. Unlike another career, a musician (one) doesn't really have to work for it, and (two) "burns out" after settling down.

Music started when people started, but the idea of having to pay to listen to it is relatively recent, starting in 1672 with violinist John Banister {3} who played a concert and charged people money to see it. There were many other motivated musicians before that time.

CITATIONS

{1} http://psychcentral.com... Maslows pyramid, updated version.
{2} A quote from a teacher, "Playing the guitar gets you the girls, but when you get your girlfriend, you stop playing the guitar".
{3} Scholastic Book of Firsts
donald.keller

Pro

In my first reason, I stated kids who wanted to be musicians, going against their parents, and screwing up any other potential they might have.

The Con has conceded that Musicians don't increase Drop out rate.

Musicians have every right like any human to waste available talents. Of course if they are good at music, than that qualifies as potential them have. Every person will have many potential, and they will typically only pick one to follow. This, even with Music, does not count as 'screwing up' those other talents. That's like saying Secretaries shouldn't be paid because my Mother choose to be one, instead of a Doctor (she did graduate Med School.)

We all have many potentials, for some, music is one. We can choose which potential to follow, if any. We do not have to choose the potential that best benefits others, as they are our potentials, and they should make us happy to.

The Con says being a musician is a gamble, but every job is a gamble. Some more so than others, Music isn't the worst, in fact, in the CareerOverview.com list of the most difficult jobs, being a model is listed, but not a musicians (It does mention Freelancers, but that refers to anything you do on your own, be it model, artist, or journalist.)(1) We all have the right to take those gambles, as it's our life to gamble with.

As for becoming homeless and turning to addictions, such a claim is a Slippery Sloop, and there is nothing that states an overwhelming number of homeless were musicians. If we concluded that the job shouldn't exist because you could go homeless if it doesn't work out, than no job should be allowed. As for drugs and alcohol abuse, the largest cause of homelessness wasn't a failed job, but was substance abuse prior to becoming homeless in the first place.(2)

1]http://www.careeroverview.com...
2]http://www.nationalhomeless.org...

I do not hate music.

I never said you did, but you will not see music thrive if you refuse pay.
"I think music should be free and musicians should not be paid..."
So if you refuse pay, people will simply stop producing and selling. You need to understand that Music isn't the property of the people, nor is it a right to have or an entitlement. Music is the property of the Musicians. Music is a product that the producer is trying to sell, not give away. Everyone deserves pay for their product.

The thing that makes writing music different than, say, driving a car, is that it is not a learned behavior.

While this whole post doesn't seem relevant, especially since driving a car isn't often a job, I shall answer. The ability to sing can be taught, as it is in any Music or Choir class. While not everyone can learn, that's irrelevant. The amount of talent needed going down because of computers is also irrelevant. Many jobs have required less skill after the introduction of the Computer. Some more than others. Singing may not require as much, but writing skill does. Another reason this is irrelevant is because the amount of computer influence in a song depends entirely on the genre. Only in Dubstep and Techno does singing require little skill, but even they deserve pay from every purchase.

While some seek music for fame and women, not everyone seeks that. Many musicians simply want to sing. Many seeking fame aren't doing it for woman either. Ultimately mating is not the reason for everything human's do. Some just want money, some want to be known, etc... Although the reason to take a job is irrelevant.

The Con claims musician don't have to work for success, but had prior mentioned it being a gamble because it was hard to succeed in. Any job that requires judgement in mass is a difficult job.

What happens after someone settled down is both their business and their responsibility.

Music started when people started, but the idea of having to pay to listen to it is relatively recent, starting in 1672 with violinist John Banisterwho played a concert and charged people money to see it.

People also did not have to pay for food until the Marketplace arose.
John Banister had a talent, and knew he could make a living off it. This is okay. We do not own music, it is not owed to us. I do not owe you my talents... We are not entitled someone else's work because we enjoy it. Such an idea is as close to legalized theft as one can get without mentioning 'taking'.

If you get music free, and someone starts charging for his, either you continue to listen to the free artists, or you pay for his. But you may not steal his to listen to. If he wants to charge for it, he can, and because his songs are his, he doesn't have to give it to you unless you pay his fee.

Music does not belong to us, it belongs to the musician. It's called Intellectual Property.(2, 3) If I create a song, only I may listen to it, unless I am willing to sell copies off. Music is a product of Musicians, and they, like any creator, deserves pay for their product.

2]http://www.wto.org...
3]http://www.wipo.int...

What motivated musicians before than was that they where paid by other means, and the fact that they often song simple songs developed by centuries of musicians and people, and didn't belong to them. The concept of being paid per purchase is okay, because if I give you a copy in turn for $1, that's both logically and reasonable.

The Con has dropped much of his R2 arguments.

1. Intellectual Property

Intellectual property (IP) refers to creations of the mind: inventions, literary and artistic works, and symbols, names, images, and designs used in commerce.
IP is divided into two categories: Industrial property, which includes inventions (patents), trademarks, industrial designs, and geographic indications of source; and Copyright, which includes literary and artistic works such as novels, poems and plays, films, musical works, artistic works such as drawings, paintings, photographs and sculptures, and architectural designs.

Such a right is given so that someone's hard work, practice, and product (a song) can only belong to him and whom ever he wants it to belong to.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

We need to remember that while music was changed society, it does not belong to society, nor is society owed it. If Society did not make a song, it doesn't owe that song.

No one should have what they worked on took from them because people thinks it's owed to them.
Debate Round No. 3
TheInterlang

Con

Writing music really isn't any more difficult than being attractive. As long as you have the right genes, it requires little training (though it can help), little work, and little time. Music captures us, and so do attractive people, but you never see people charging you to look at them. Driving a car is not a job, but it is an example of a skill that can be considered a learned behavior.

We charge for food because a great deal of work went into growing the corn that fed the cow which was killed with a knife and then gutted on a large line. We charge for software because software designers have to write thousands of characters of lines, make many pictures, and check to see if everything is perfect. A software maker goes by strict rules and has to double-check everything. Musicians simply go by what "sounds" right. We charge for computers for all the same reasons why we charge for software, plus the fact that they must be manufactured. An author of a book must use proper grammar, or at least give the book to a human proofreader, or else the Grammar Nazi's will be mad. You hear grammatical mistakes in songs all the time, because people do not care about a song's grammar.

Music is the most effortless-to-make thing that people charge for.

Intellectual "property" is harming more people than it benefits. From suing other musicians because of a simple eight-note coincidence, to fining a restaurant over singing a copyrighted yet traditional Birthday song. The copyright goes on for up to 120 years after all the authors die. Where does that money go when the composers have already DE-composed? This is greed.
donald.keller

Pro

Writing music really isn't any more difficult than being attractive.

Genetics aren't that important. They can give you a hot voice, and that's it. You teach yourself how to use that voice. We see this in Ozzy, who has a speech impediment. As such, Singing must be learned. As most any instrument in the band. You might be born with a good voice, but a good voice doesn't make a song, a trained does, as Ozzy had to do.
Difficulty isn't relevant though. It's not difficult to watch a movie (or play a game) and write how good or bad it was... Let's look at a list of jobs easier than writing music...

- Editor
- Game Tester
- Critic
- Wine Tester
- Taxi Driver (now that they have GPS)
- Door opener
- Manson Sitter
- Cute pet aggregator
- TV Watcher
- Professional know-it-all
- Chocolate Eater
- Spa Critic

These people still get paid for their services and products. It doesn't have to be hard, just has to be yours. The Con views jobs on a singular level of difficulty. They have many. A 'fluffer' is not a hard job... It's quite easy in fact, but is difficult none-the-less. Anyone who knows what a Fluffer is knows it's easy to do from one point-of-view, but from another, it's a very hard job because of what it is.

Like-wise, being a Singer isn't hard because writing a song is hard, but because singing it, and getting the instruments right, and then doing it for a crowd is difficult.

We charge for food because a great deal of work went into growing the corn that fed the cow which was killed with a knife and then gutted on a large line.

The reason is irrelevant. They had theirs, and singer's had one, too. It doesn't have to be a selfless reason.
Besides, accepting Gay Marriage is also a new concept. Being new or recent isn't relevant.

We charge for software because software designers have to write thousands of characters of lines, make many pictures, and check to see if everything is perfect.

You made the perfect analogy for what a Singer does.
We pay for music because it's an industry that is fueled off purchases. We pay for it because it doesn't belong to us, but we still want it. Knowing that it's not owed to us, we pay to have it. It's difficult determining what sounds right. We know it's difficult because of how many people fail at it.

As for grammatical mistakes... Who cares? Besides, most grammatical mistakes are made for the same reason they make historical mistakes in movies... Artistic freedom that helps make everything good. Imagine a rap song with proper grammar and proper English.

The Con's argument is basically that because it's a different job than most, and because it doesn't match what he feels a job is, you shouldn't be paid. It sounds more like he just doesn't want to pay.

Music is the most effortless-to-make thing that people charge for.

That bullsh!t. The most effortless job is Pro-Sleeper.(1)
The Singer has to write a song, make everything sound right, then sing it in front of a live audience of thousands, with risk of his voice cracking, or forgetting a lyric, or one of the other 1, 3, maybe 5 people in the band messing up even slightly. He must do this many times in a concert, across hundreds of concerts.
And really, I don't care how easy the job is. I cut grass 5 hours a day, and work in the heat doing things that require manual labor for minimal wage. This doesn't mean I believe people who critize movies all day shouldn't be paid because it's easier than my job.

1] http://shine.yahoo.com...

Intellectual "property" is harming more people than it benefits.

Let's review some cases of Intellectual Property in action...
- Patents.
- Plagiarism being illegal.
- Trademarks.

Intellectual Property protects authors, directors, chefs, and many more...

From suing other musicians because of a simple eight-note coincidence, to fining a restaurant over singing a copyrighted yet traditional Birthday song.

You list no examples. However, Frivolous Lawsuits are a different case, and barely ever work out.

The copyright goes on for up to 120 years after all the authors die. Where does that money go when the composers have already DE-composed?

Let me show you another case like this... Bodily Autonomy. The idea that even after death, no one may own your body. The only person that owed it was you, from conception to death and after. If only you owed it after death, then the only owner is dead. I'm not owner, the President's not owner, the Doctor isn't owner... Only you, and since you didn't elect anyone else owner after death, no one has rights over the body. This means no one can rob your body or sell off pieces of it for profit.

This is the same with Music. Only the Musician (and anyone else he elects co-owner, like the Producer and Band members) own that song. Even after death. You don't own that song, and if he dies.... You still don't own that song.

The contract between a Musician and a Producer gives both of them rights over it, so after the Singers death, the Producer owns the song still.

This is greed.

Greed is irrelevant. Anyone can be greedy, even Janitors and Authors, or Burger Flippers and Managers... They still deserve pay.

Besides, Greed isn't just in wanting pay for something you made (which isn't that greedy...) Greed is also wanting more of what you don't have...

GREED
:An excessive desire to acquire or possess more than what one needs or deserves, especially with respect to material wealth.(2)
:a selfish and excessive desire for more of something (as money) than is needed.(3)
:excessive or rapacious desire, especially for wealth or possessions.(4)

2] http://www.thefreedictionary.com...
3] http://www.merriam-webster.com...
4] http://dictionary.reference.com...

Here is an idea to consider...
Greed isn't wanting to keep what's yours (money, or future pay that's owed)... It's wanting to take what isn't yours.

If you want songs that you didn't earn, that you didn't make, that you don't own... That's greed. Wanting to take those songs from their Musicians without pay... The singers aren't greedy just because they want pay in return for their work. Some are greedy, but not for wanting fair pay for their product. If you want to refuse them pay for their hard work, so you can have their stuff for free, that's greed.

Although greed is irrelevant... A wealthy CEO who is greedy still deserves his pay.

As the definitions show, especially the first on, most Greed is in Wanting. As the first definition show, greed is also in wanting more of what you don't deserve (didn't pay for.) You dont'deserve someone's hard work unless you pay. My nieghbors don't deserve someone to cut their grass unless they pay the parson.

YOu do not deserve a song because it's you like it... And you especially don't deserve a song because You think Musicians make too much. You deserve (one copy of) a song only if you buy it.

----------------------------------------------------------------------

The Con's original argument was based on an argument, but he dropped them afterwards. We now see that his argument is the following...

- Writing songs isn't hard. [wrong]
- They earn too much (greed).
- Music should belong to everyone.
- Paying for Music is a new concept.

All of these are wrong... We can summerize the last Round with...

- Writing songs isn't hard.
Writing songs and organising a band, training, and performing for people is very difficult.

- They earn too much (greed).
In the Entertainment Industry, you are paid by how many people you entertain. A lot of people = A lot of money.

- Music should belong to everyone.
Everything should belong to it's owner. The owner is the person who makes/bought it. Musicians make Music, therefore music belongs to Musicians.

- Paying for Music is a new concept.
As is accepting Homosexuals. Being new or old isn't relevant. In a thousands years, they will be talking about how old the practice is.

----------------------------------------------------------------------

Thank you, and vote Pro.
Debate Round No. 4
5 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 5 records.
Posted by neptune1bond 3 years ago
neptune1bond
I have had and am going through extensive training in classical, jazz, and popular styles through university as well as private study and as a person who actually trains in all different styles, I can tell you that making good music requires EXTENSIVE amounts of effort...period, no matter the style. Now, I can concede that making crappy music can require far less effort (depending on the level of crappiness), but it is the responsibility of those who purchase music to put their buying efforts into supporting those who are providing a quality product. (Quality music exists in most styles of music, in my opinion, not just classical.) None-the-less, I do not think that anyone should ever be expected to provide a service without compensation, especially with the many hours and hard work actually required to produce music.

There is also a misconception that people who did not go through "formal" training did not have to work for their skill. Nothing could be farther from the truth. As a person who has worked with, interacted with, and helped educate many musicians of differing styles, I can tell you that talent works the same in music as any subject. There is not a single person that woke up one day and said,"Hey look! I'm suddenly a professional musician and making music requires no effort for me!" If a person catches on to math a lot quicker than his peers, he still has a lot of work before he can be a professional physicist, and even then each job he is hired for still requires hard work and effort. Even savants aren't quite as supernatural as people think. Sometimes their handicap is their strength since they can have the ability to do a task over and over and over without fatigue or boredom (which is commonly where a great deal of their ability comes from). Most people listed as savants have been found to spend most full days (not just hours) sitting at their instrument playing songs over and over.

Either way, no one's gonna work for free. No pay, no music.
Posted by TheInterlang 3 years ago
TheInterlang
@neptune1bond I doubt Blink-182 or Nirvana went through classical music training other than guitar lessons. Kurt Cobain admitted he is no guitar expert.
Posted by neptune1bond 3 years ago
neptune1bond
As a musician, I had a huge problem with Con's argument that making music is easy and requires no effort. I cannot tell you how many countless hours I had to practice and how much information I had to memorize to learn harmony and theory, counterpoint, orchestration, music history, sight singing, melodic dictation, ear training, improvisation, to interpret the works of the great classical masters of the past etc. etc. (the list goes on and on). I cannot tell you how many hours I had to practice to get my voice sounding just right, to learn to hit that high-C correctly, to interpret different singing styles, to learn all the different little articulations and sounds that the voice is capable of, etc. much less how to combine all these skills into something worth listening to. And even after you have spent the MANY years it takes to complete your training, that doesn't include the huge number of trained professionals and many hours of hard work that go into writing, performing, recording, and selling a song.

This person obviously has never been present when an artist spends hours and hours stretched out over months practicing a song just to PREPARE for performance and/or recording, much less the hours spent in the studio actually recording the thing. This person has obviously never sat with a composer for hours upon hours as he/she toils over just one line of music before he/she even considers how in the heck it's going to tie in the rest of the ensemble. I could go on, but I think you can now have the smallest most microscopic glimpse of what I'm talking about.

I've spent every waking moment that I'm not doing the bare necessities towards perfecting my craft and you can bet that it will be a cold day in hell when I will put in the time and money to make songs just to give them away for free. (It can easily costs 1000's of dollars to hire the professionals, buy the materials, and rent the studio time to make fairly decent recordings of just a few songs, btw.
Posted by donald.keller 3 years ago
donald.keller
lol
Posted by Bannanawamajama 3 years ago
Bannanawamajama
Pro, are chocolate eater and cute pet aggretator real jobs? Thats awesome.

Also, using "fluffers" in a debate? Naughty naughty.
6 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 6 records.
Vote Placed by funwiththoughts 3 years ago
funwiththoughts
TheInterlangdonald.kellerTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Pro is the clear winner here as he approached the argument with facts and logic which Con never really addressed, in addition Con made a major flip-flop, as his initial argument was that music is so hard kids shouldn't be encouraged to try, and then later states that music is so easy it isn't worth anything. This is quite a notable change which detracts from the compellingness of Con's arguments. Pro remained consistent throughout the debate, making his arguments easier to follow. Pro is the clear winner here.
Vote Placed by basketball 3 years ago
basketball
TheInterlangdonald.kellerTied
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Reasons for voting decision: kjlholknkl
Vote Placed by Nyx999 3 years ago
Nyx999
TheInterlangdonald.kellerTied
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Reasons for voting decision: I completely agree with Donald Keller, being a musician is a hard job, and I think that ultimately the consumer decides how much someone is paid. (I.e. if someone prices their service too high, consumers won't buy it.) And the consumers of america want music. There are a hundred more ridiculous jobs out there, and yet America wouldn't be America without them.
Vote Placed by rajun 3 years ago
rajun
TheInterlangdonald.kellerTied
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Reasons for voting decision: ok i need to vote on this one...Pro wins by a good! He rebutted every argument and did it awesome...sources were very unreliable on both sides but if we see the pics...pro gets the point>
Vote Placed by MassiveDump 3 years ago
MassiveDump
TheInterlangdonald.kellerTied
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: Con conceded multiple contentions. Next time, he should be sure to rebut every argument presented.
Vote Placed by newbiehere 3 years ago
newbiehere
TheInterlangdonald.kellerTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Conduct goes to Con because Pro said, "Vote Pro." I know a lot of people do it, but this type of begging for votes bothers me. Convincing arguments goes to Pro, because he shot down every argument Con threw his way. Sources goes to Pro as well, because Con used a terrible source ("a quote from a teacher"; I'm not the only one who finds this super skethy, am I?) and an irrelevant one (Con makes a pretty big jump from Maslow's Pyramid to a statement about the quality of musicians' music) to support his second to last paragraph.