[eDebate] What's in a name?

Alfred Snider alfred.snider
Wed Apr 8 13:59:21 CDT 2009

Scott Elliott says change the name.

It is a little disconcerting because many debate formats debate about 
policy issues.

Some have said to call it "cross examination" debate, others say 
"research" debate.

Yet, other formats have cross ex and not every "policy" debate in 
CEDA-NDT has evidence.

A proper name would make things clearer to those outside but break our 
link with past debaters who use the policy moniker.

I would like to agree with Kevin Kuswa and others that a serious problem 
is the USFG fetish.

Some years ago I wrote a topic paper using the agent "we." By this I 
would mean those people in the room who were debating about an idea. Not 
that they should go out and implement some plan, but that for the 
purposes of this debate they were the objects of persuasion.

The term in the worlds format is "This House" which means the same thing 
as we, as it refers to those gathered in that room.

I would prefer we or This House, and as illustrated by the discussion so 
far, then we could have a choice of agents. Let's face it, USFG does not 

Another concern is the unwillingness to debate the topic. Yes, that is a 
problem, for preparation, for publicity, for training judges, for 
bringing in new coaches, for a lot of things. I like the freedom of 
speech aspects, though.

I will be interested in following this discussion.


Alfred C. Snider aka Tuna
Edwin Lawrence Professor of Forensics
University of Vermont
Huber House, 475 Main Street, UVM, Burlington, VT 05405 USA
Global Debate Blog http://globaldebateblog.blogspot.com
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World Debate Institute http://debate.uvm.edu/wdi/
World Debate Institute Blog http://worlddebateinstitute.blogspot.com
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