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the neverending tournament debate (ELO rank)

Cliff.Stamp
Posts: 2,169
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5/24/2011 9:06:44 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
Recently, OreEle noted that a lot of the top ranked debaters tend to debate mainly the lower ranked debaters. I have also noted that many of the top ranked debaters can be hesitant to debate each other and it is simply because of the effort it takes compared to the other stye of debate which can often be done extempore. I have also noted a huge lack of voting in debates, often so much that one vote bomb can dominate a vote.

As an experiment to deal with these issues and a few other things I am going to carry out an ongoing tournament. If you want to be part of it then just send me a PM, do not list your name here (this is part of the fun continue reading to understand). When you do send me a PM also send me a list of any topics you wish to debate.

Here is the way the tournament will work :

-there will always be at least one, and at most two active tournament debates
-the topics will be decided at random from the list of topics submitted
-the participants will be chosen at random (weighted on participation)
-the participants will be Pro or Con at random
-the instigator will be chosen at random
-the instigator has three days to present the OP or they default and this is a loss
-if the opponent does not accept this is a default and counts as a loss
-all voting periods are set to two weeks
-all debates are set to 4000 words and 3 day periods and four rounds
-all participants have to vote on all debates, if you do not it counts as a loss
-all resolutions have a three letter league tag in the resolution for ease of searching (ELO)

Now before anyone freaks out about the mandatory voting, remember this is only on average one debate a week to vote and is is only 4 rounds of 4000 words.

A note on ELO rankings, it will take some time before they become meaningful, especially as we are only doing one debate a week. I will start the rankings based on my opinion of the participant plus a random perturbation. Again, before this freaks you out, the starting value is not relevant. If I guess really off then the ELO corrections will simply be very large in the first few debates.

Finally, if you are really brave and have confidence in your kung-fu then you can be classifed as a froody debater. If you are a froody guy there is a 25% chance that your debate will be tagged open season (you have to note this in the resolution as OS-ELO). If this happens then your opponent can openly ask for assistance from anyone in the tournament league. This assistance is sent via request through PM to me, I send it out to the person they want to ask and then post the result in a comment. This can be requested once per round.

However if you win, it counts as a win against every single person that gave advice, this will mean a massive increase to your rank as you just won five matches. If you lose, it only counts as a loss to the direct opponent. So if you are the type of guy that always knows where your towel is then this is the debate style for you. Again this is optional, you do not need to do it and you can ask to have your froody status removed at any time, just send a PM.

Note, if you do not want to debate but at any time want to see topics discussed then PM them as well They can be of any nature aside from against the TOS, i.e., do not be overly offensive.

Assuming there is interest I will start this in a week and update the ELO rankings after every debate has ended.
RoyLatham
Posts: 4,488
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5/25/2011 11:13:40 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
The random topic and 4000 word limit make it unappealing to me.

Note that it is a mathematical impossibility for top ranked debaters to debate other than mostly lower ranked debaters.
Cliff.Stamp
Posts: 2,169
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5/25/2011 11:27:49 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 5/25/2011 11:13:40 AM, RoyLatham wrote:
The random topic and 4000 word limit make it unappealing to me.

Roy,

The 4000 word limit has two purposes :

-it focuses debates
-it encourages voting

Given the mandatory nature of the event, the debates also have to be able to be completed in a small amount of time.

The point of the random nature is

-to actually judge strength of debate vs someone just talking about subjects they know extremely in depth

-add an element of excitement and fun back to the debating

-get to see people argue far out of their comfort range and have to innovate rather than repeat stock arguments that everyone has seen them make before

It is not for everyone that is obvious, we shall see if there is a significant demand for it.

In regards to the impossibility, that is not self-evident to me.
Ore_Ele
Posts: 25,980
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5/25/2011 11:31:12 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
Requiring people to argue any side of any issue is going to be a major turn off to new members and many old members. Personally, I hate debating religion, and only really do so when someone is making a claim on one extreme or the other (There, for sure, is a God or There, for sure, is no God).
"Wanting Red Rhino Pill to have gender"
Cliff.Stamp
Posts: 2,169
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5/25/2011 11:41:46 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 5/25/2011 11:31:12 AM, OreEle wrote:

Requiring people to argue any side of any issue is going to be a major turn off to new members and many old members.

Yes, that is a known issues. This again is for people who wish to exercise debating skill and enjoy debate in general. A lot of people here only argue particular issues. This is not meant to replace DDO, just give a venue for those people who want to debate in general.

As a note, consider someone like Danille, she will debate almost anything from rap to science to religion to politics, etc. . This is why I would consider her one of the strongest debaters on the site because she can debate with solid performance on almost any topic. This is meant for those type of people.
CiRrK
Posts: 670
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5/25/2011 11:42:53 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
I think a good compromise is to send a resolution, and also an alternative resolution. Also, the way I did a semi-parliamentary debate in high school at some random tournament was that one side chose the resolution, and the other got to pick which side they wanted. I think thats a fair way of doing it.
Cliff.Stamp
Posts: 2,169
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5/25/2011 11:49:30 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 5/25/2011 11:42:53 AM, CiRrK wrote:

I think a good compromise is to send a resolution, and also an alternative resolution. Also, the way I did a semi-parliamentary debate in high school at some random tournament was that one side chose the resolution, and the other got to pick which side they wanted. I think thats a fair way of doing it.

I can understand this and the reluctance, and it could be done for example to send three random topics. The problem is though that this is intended specifically to move people out of their comfort zones intentionally to force people to improvise and argue in areas they are not well researched. If we turn it back into everyone chooses then we have gained littled and the rank does not become meaningful.

Seiben made a valid point awhile ago that somepeople do over inflate their rank by carefully choosing opponents and arguments, this has been repeated by other people as well. This does give a very skewed impressio of debating skill and it often leads to extreme debate skews where you have one side presenting a very polished opening argument and the other side innovating.

Note when I PM new members I always suggest that they do this intentionally and argue areas they are extemely familiar with until they get more experienced, even if the debate topics are somewhat less than serious.
CiRrK
Posts: 670
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5/25/2011 11:55:42 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
Understandable, and I agree. However, I think that might backfire because the pool will become really limited and more will end up dropping out. Also, I have a concern about conflict of resolutions. For instance some on this site like to debate just odd topics, like the one in the challenge period: "I will NOT contradict myself." I would not want to debate that cause I think its stupid, and Id probably just refuse to do it. On the other hand, I love debating politics/policies and political or moral philosophy, but I know others would hate debating that. So can we at least break the tournament into overarching categories?
Cliff.Stamp
Posts: 2,169
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5/25/2011 12:02:55 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 5/25/2011 11:55:42 AM, CiRrK wrote:

I would not want to debate that cause I think its stupid, and Id probably just refuse to do it.

Yes, so you just refuse, this doesn't mean you are kicked out, it just means your rank drops as you get a loss. One of the main purposes is that the debating rank should reflect debating skill in general. The debaters with the top ELO rank are those that can argue on any topic on any side.

There is nothing stopping you from entering your name and being very selective on what you debate, only debating religion (or completely avoiding it). However the people who do not and who can argue and win in any area will simply rise in rank very fast compared to those that are very selective.

That being said if you completely dominate in your areas then that will have a significant effect as well, especially if you allow open season tags. Thus people who want to focus can have that option as well, be very selective about what you debate - but when you do debate it, then open it up to make a very strong counter argument.
CiRrK
Posts: 670
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5/25/2011 12:05:47 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 5/25/2011 12:02:55 PM, Cliff.Stamp wrote:
At 5/25/2011 11:55:42 AM, CiRrK wrote:

I would not want to debate that cause I think its stupid, and Id probably just refuse to do it.

Yes, so you just refuse, this doesn't mean you are kicked out, it just means your rank drops as you get a loss. One of the main purposes is that the debating rank should reflect debating skill in general. The debaters with the top ELO rank are those that can argue on any topic on any side.

There is nothing stopping you from entering your name and being very selective on what you debate, only debating religion (or completely avoiding it). However the people who do not and who can argue and win in any area will simply rise in rank very fast compared to those that are very selective.

That being said if you completely dominate in your areas then that will have a significant effect as well, especially if you allow open season tags. Thus people who want to focus can have that option as well, be very selective about what you debate - but when you do debate it, then open it up to make a very strong counter argument.

Cool. Alright.
headphonegut
Posts: 4,122
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5/25/2011 12:07:14 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
I'd be interested in this only if there are al least three people who approve of the resolution as not being dull just sayin
crying to soldiers coming home to their dogs why do I torment myself with these videos?
Cliff.Stamp
Posts: 2,169
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5/25/2011 12:23:01 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 5/25/2011 12:05:47 PM, CiRrK wrote:

Cool. Alright.

This is of course meant to be fun and enjoyable. If you forfeit a debate you just see a minor change in rank. It is not like I IP hack your computer and use your cam to record you and post the videos all over the internet.

(I do that anyway - thaddeus distributes them under our label of "New Kids on the Backsteets Present")

The rank changes are also fairly minor, you don't see a chess rank plummet because they dropped a match. Ranks are typically ~2k and a rank change is about 1-3 points.

Just enter, have fun, accept what you want and debate. Again the only thing to keep in mind is that the people who will dominate the ranks are people who will accept anything and can offer a strong debate on either side.
vardas0antras
Posts: 983
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5/25/2011 12:30:41 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 5/25/2011 11:55:42 AM, CiRrK wrote:
Understandable, and I agree. However, I think that might backfire because the pool will become really limited and more will end up dropping out. Also, I have a concern about conflict of resolutions. For instance some on this site like to debate just odd topics, like the one in the challenge period: "I will NOT contradict myself." I would not want to debate that cause I think its stupid, and Id probably just refuse to do it. On the other hand, I love debating politics/policies and political or moral philosophy, but I know others would hate debating that. So can we at least break the tournament into overarching categories?

Oh :( really?
"When he awoke in a tomb three days later he would actually have believed that he rose from the dead" FREEDO about the resurrection of Jesus Christ
CiRrK
Posts: 670
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5/25/2011 12:39:36 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 5/25/2011 12:30:41 PM, vardas0antras wrote:
At 5/25/2011 11:55:42 AM, CiRrK wrote:
Understandable, and I agree. However, I think that might backfire because the pool will become really limited and more will end up dropping out. Also, I have a concern about conflict of resolutions. For instance some on this site like to debate just odd topics, like the one in the challenge period: "I will NOT contradict myself." I would not want to debate that cause I think its stupid, and Id probably just refuse to do it. On the other hand, I love debating politics/policies and political or moral philosophy, but I know others would hate debating that. So can we at least break the tournament into overarching categories?

Oh :( really?

Haha, yes. Really. : )
Kinesis
Posts: 3,667
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5/25/2011 12:43:06 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
The 'I will not contradict myself' debates used to be a common sight between some awesome past debaters and resulted in some interesting exchanges, but they got old quickly just like the 'Yo momma' debates (though not nearly as annoying).
Cliff.Stamp
Posts: 2,169
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5/25/2011 1:10:50 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 5/25/2011 12:43:06 PM, Kinesis wrote:
The 'I will not contradict myself' debates used to be a common sight between some awesome past debaters and resulted in some interesting exchanges, but they got old quickly just like the 'Yo momma' debates (though not nearly as annoying).

Note the odds of getting that would be very low as it is one debate in a long list of a very specific type.
Cliff.Stamp
Posts: 2,169
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5/25/2011 1:29:55 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 5/25/2011 1:26:21 PM, CiRrK wrote:
How long will it take for the tournament to get going?

I was planning a week to get participants and then it will start and people can add at any time.
CiRrK
Posts: 670
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5/25/2011 1:35:44 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 5/25/2011 1:29:55 PM, Cliff.Stamp wrote:
At 5/25/2011 1:26:21 PM, CiRrK wrote:
How long will it take for the tournament to get going?

I was planning a week to get participants and then it will start and people can add at any time.

Sounds good : )
Cliff.Stamp
Posts: 2,169
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5/28/2011 9:55:56 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
To those that have joined and have not yet sent in a list of topics please do so. Note I am considering one alteration to the procedure which is that first a member will be selected and a topic and pro/con and this is made as an open challenge. If accepted then it is treated as normal the the other individual simply having a default rank and being classified as a non-active member. If it is not accepted then another ELO member is chosen at random to accept the debate. This hopefully will introduce new members into the field and also keep the debating pool fresh and not so intimidating to new DDO members who may be unwilling to jump into a tournament but may wish to take a single debate.
Cliff.Stamp
Posts: 2,169
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5/30/2011 7:01:16 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
First resolution :

"Compassion is a more worthwhile human trait than intelligence"

CiRrk is Con.

Burden of proof is always equal, definitions are always able to be contested in the first response.

Note the OP rule, there is three days to develop the OP or it is considered a forfeit and thus a loss.

I am going to make a slight change to the rules. This resolution will be made an open challenge (to encourage participation). If no one accepts in the six days then one of the participants are chosen at random to accept it. If they forfeit I will simply accept it as default.

Once the challenge has been accepted I will choose another random person and position and that way there will always be one debate ongoing and another in process.
Phoenix_Reaper
Posts: 318
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5/30/2011 8:30:45 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 5/30/2011 7:01:16 PM, Cliff.Stamp wrote:
First resolution :

"Compassion is a more worthwhile human trait than intelligence"

CiRrk is Con.

Burden of proof is always equal, definitions are always able to be contested in the first response.

Note the OP rule, there is three days to develop the OP or it is considered a forfeit and thus a loss.

I am going to make a slight change to the rules. This resolution will be made an open challenge (to encourage participation). If no one accepts in the six days then one of the participants are chosen at random to accept it. If they forfeit I will simply accept it as default.

Once the challenge has been accepted I will choose another random person and position and that way there will always be one debate ongoing and another in process.

I accept. Considering i favor Con... be good to get other side.
Phoenix Reaper - To rise from the ashes of defeat and claim your soul.

: At 3/15/2011 4:23:07 PM, J.Kenyon wrote:
: Taste is for pussïes. Be a nihilist. Drink vodka.
Phoenix_Reaper
Posts: 318
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6/4/2011 10:06:04 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
Bump.
Phoenix Reaper - To rise from the ashes of defeat and claim your soul.

: At 3/15/2011 4:23:07 PM, J.Kenyon wrote:
: Taste is for pussïes. Be a nihilist. Drink vodka.
Phoenix_Reaper
Posts: 318
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6/4/2011 10:30:18 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 6/4/2011 4:08:05 PM, CiRrK wrote:
it has been a good round so far ^^

I am doing what I can. Not my best stance.
Phoenix Reaper - To rise from the ashes of defeat and claim your soul.

: At 3/15/2011 4:23:07 PM, J.Kenyon wrote:
: Taste is for pussïes. Be a nihilist. Drink vodka.