[eDebate] GSU College Tournament Invite- Increased Judging Commitment

Stefan Bauschard stefan.bauschard
Mon Jul 21 19:53:04 CDT 2008


Just a few comments on a couple of specifics:

> One potential way to deal with this problem- If schools don't end up
providing the requisite amount of mutually preferred judging at tournaments,
they should pay the tournament the appropriate hired judging fee.  The
tournament can in turn use this money to hire local mutually preferred
judges and/or pay other mutually preferred judges at the tournament who have
extra rounds available and want to judge additional rounds for money.

This is somewhat difficult to do in practice. It is unclear what it means to
not provide "the requisite amount of mutually preferred judging at
tournaments."  It is easy if a judge is struck by (nearly) every team in the
tournament, but what if the person has an 8 round commitment and fits in 1
debate as a mutual one and 5 debates as a mutual 7 or 8?  Is the school
simply required to pay for two debates you really couldn't get the judge
into, or the other 1-5 that hopefully you really won't have to use him or
her in?  Also, this makes it difficult to run a tournament -- if you look
hard in every single debate it is sometimes possible to fit people in
somewhere, but this takes an incredible amount of time.

The 5 round solution may not get at the root of the problem since many of
the additional rounds may very well be hired out to people who are not very
highly preferred, but it seems like it will help the situation *some* -- as
long as the tournament doesn't subsequently increase the strength of the
preference system, more "preferred" judging will be available because there
will be more rounds in the lower number categories and because at least some
more highly preferred (if not most highly preferred) will end up judging
some more debates. It seems unlikely that all 80-100 extra rounds @ GSU will
be hired out to people who are not preferred.

Is it worth it?  I don't have a strong opinion.  It make sense from a tab
room director's standpoint because many people are unhappy if they don't get
the judging they want/expect.

It would certainly help if more preferred judges judged more debates, but
this is easier said than done.  Many of these people

-- already judge a ton of debates, including ones that are difficult and
time consuming to decide
-- judge most of the debates on Monday
-- have judged a trillion debates over their respective careers
-- have other at-tournament responsibilities

No easy solutions.  5 rounds could help some.  Is it worth it?  Dunno.





On Mon, Jul 21, 2008 at 7:11 PM, Aaron Kall <mardigras23 at hotmail.com> wrote:

> ------------------------------
>
> "JUDGING REQUIREMENTS. Schools must supply 5 rounds of judging for every
> team, regardless of division. If you have two teams, for example, you will
> need to provide 10 total rounds of judging.  If this requirement is going
> to create a serious financial hardship for your team, please contact Joe
> Bellon (joe.bellon at gmail.com) so we can discuss possible alternatives."
>
>  this e-mail is not directed specifically at the gsu tournament, which i
> have always enjoyed.  i'm especially happy with the new tournament hotel.
> the gsu tournament just happens to be the first major tournament of the
> college season and it appears they've decided to increase their judging
> requirements.  i think this is a bad idea in general and think a dialogue on
> this idea and judge preferences in general needs to be started.  so,
> hopefully this e-mail will facilitate this process.
>
> i think it's generally a bad idea for our community to start increasing the
> size judging commitments and i hope other tournaments won't consider doing
> the same thing.  unless someone is being paid specifically to judge, four
> out of eight rounds seems to be an appropriate judging commitment .  i know
> directors and the like aren't going to be eager to judge a fifth debate, so
> this new policy will likely only add to increased tournament costs.
> considering recent increases in travel costs associated with oil prices,
> luggage, etc., it seems like this is possibly the worst time to further
> increase tournament costs/fees in this way.
>
> There are obviously many reasons, but in my opinion (after talking with
> many tab directors) the greatest reason college tournaments are constantly
> short on judging is because several teams are providing the requisite amount
> of judging, but not providing the requisite amount of "mutually preferred
> judging".  Tournaments routinely lose dozens of rounds of committed
> judging because several judges can be placed in few or zero rounds.  This
> problem gets exacerbated when a team fulfills their judging commitment with
> a non-mutually preferred judge and this same judge hires his or her other
> half commitment out to another team so they can also fulfill their judging
> commitment.  A new policy of increasing the size of judging commitments
> doesn't really get at the root of this problem.  It basically punishes
> everyone to make up for the rounds lost from teams that don't bring enough
> mutually preferred judges.
>
> One potential way to deal with this problem- If schools don't end up
> providing the requisite amount of mutually preferred judging at tournaments,
> they should pay the tournament the appropriate hired judging fee.  The
> tournament can in turn use this money to hire local mutually preferred
> judges and/or pay other mutually preferred judges at the tournament who have
> extra rounds available and want to judge additional rounds for money.
>
> If this type of system is viewed as unfair or too elitist (certainly
> reasonable concerns), I think we have to re-examine the whole concept of
> mutually preferred judging.  If the requisite amount of mutually preferred
> judging can't be provided by asking teams to provide half judging
> commitments, we should re-evaluate the system of mutual judging.  If this
> year it's 5/8 round judging commitments, 6/8, 7/8, or 8/8 won't be that far
> off in the distance.  At the NDT last year, we had to provide 24 rounds of
> judging for only one team.  I'm generally in favor of some type of mutual
> preference judging system, but not if the only way to achieve it is through
> increased judging commitments and fees.  I would personally rather get an
> A- or a B instead of an A+ judge, as opposed to subjecting the entire
> tournament to increased judging commitments/fees.
>
> Aaron
>
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-- 
Stefan Bauschard

President & Co-Founder, PlanetDebate.com
Director of Debate, Lakeland Schools
Debate Coach, Harvard Debate

(c) 781-775-0433
(fx) 617-588-0283
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