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Debate Tournament Update #6

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4/22/2011 2:03:21 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
For the sake of clarity, let's go over the rules of the tournament once more. And let's clarify a few matters that need to be clarified.

Debate Tournament Rules

1. Good conduct is expected from those that participate. Don't engage in semantics or other questionable forms of behavior.

2. If you decide to put up a voting period for your debate, it can't be longer than two weeks. I suppose it would be alright if you really wanted to make the voting period longer, but the winner will be decided two weeks after the debate ends even if their is still time left on the clock. Debates without a clock based voting period will also have a two week voting period that goes into effect when the debate ends.

3. You are free to pick a partner that is in your bracket. You are also free to allow yourself to be assigned a random partner.

4. If you and your partner both really want to debate different topics, then you can both put forward proposals you would be willing to debate. One of the two topics will be randomly picked for the debate. Allow me to illustrate how this will work if I have not made myself clear.

Say, for example, that Mongoose is my partner. Suppose I really want to debate human cloning with him. And suppose that he really wants to debate abortion with me. Assuming both of us disagree with each other on the given topics, one of our topics will be randomly picked.

In football games, their is a coin flip to see which side goes first. This is kind of like that. But all of you are very affable; I'm sure you can all work things out on your own.

5. You will NOT be assigned new partners after the brackets are set up. If your partner disappears, you will automatically advance to the next round, even if this ends up happening to multiple people. This is put in place for the sake of time. Time limits will be set up with respect to round 2 debate preparation, but I'll talk more about that later.

6. Excessively poor conduct is grounds for disqualification. You will be given a warning before you are asked to leave. For example, calling people in the tournament names is unacceptable.

I'm completely open-minded about what people would consider to be "excessively poor conduct."

7. It is still my view that all of our votes should be equal. In the last round, everyone gave 7 point votes. This system seemed to work well, but it did have one defect: it gave the impression to some people that giving 7 point votes was generally acceptable.

So, if you could give 5 point votes (i.e., sources and arguments) that would be very good. Remember, it's not the numerical value that matters. All your votes are equal to 1 regardless of the number attached to them. I just think doing it this way will prevent people from assuming voteboming is acceptable.

General Recommendations -- not official rules

1. Please try to make your debate something that everyone can generally appreciate. So, steer clear of obscure issues in philosophy or quantum mechanics, for example.

2. I don't care how many rounds your debates are. But it would be preferable to have debates that aren't 5 rounds.

3. I've never had a problem with people posting advice to my debates while the debate was in action. The advice people give my opponents is usually bad in any case. If you think you have a knockdown argument against my position, bring it on. I'm after the truth, after all. But that's just me. I'm very easygoing.

Most people probably wouldn't appreciate it if you are feeding their opponent new information/evidence/arguments in the comments section of their ongoing debate. So, don't do this.

I will keep building (or removing) rules from this list based on your recommendations. Feel free to give any input that you want. And I would like to thank RoyLatham for all of the helpful suggestions. He's done a really good job at thinking ahead about issues that might come up.

Having said all of that, there is still one more item of business that needs to be taken care of. The following people don't have partners. Please indicate if you want to be randomly assigned a partner. Or indicate whether there is someone that you are planning on being matched with.


Round 2 will officially begin when the brackets are set up in the next update. It's just good to have these issues resolved beforehand.
Chancellor of Propaganda and Foreign Relations in the Franklin administration.

"I intend to live forever. So far, so good." -- Steven Wright