[eDebate] Judging in the dark

David Glass gacggc
Thu Sep 24 07:47:35 CDT 2009

It just seems that what your'e really saying is that the debate is
really becoming
a written activity not an oral activity, and the limits as to what
material is entered
into the debate is how much can be read during speech time... but the way the
information is actually understood and processed is via reading - and paperless
definitely accentuates this and flips the balance to the round being more about
written-word processing.

On Wed, Sep 23, 2009 at 10:00 PM, Stefan Bauschard
<stefan.bauschard at gmail.com> wrote:
> This is in no way an objection to paperless...
> The neg gets the 1AC right before the debate starts...they are ordinarily
> asked not to read ahead...but they can read along...the judge sits and
> listens -- the best he or she can...maybe yells "clearer" now and then...the
> neg doesn't much care about "clearer" because they are just reading...and
> maybe quickly changing the small sized font to get more context...
> Then the 1NC goes...ditto...they get it all...and are reading along...they
> get that long CP text that spikes every 2AC answer and has a crafty
> net-benefit..of course, the CP is read really fast and the judge tries to
> sit there and figure out what it does while the Aff is reading every word
> and integrating cards into their speech.doc.. c-x ensues with everyone but
> the judge having read the full text of (just about) everything....
> It seems to me that it is nearly impossible for the judge to be as clued-in
> to what all the arguments in the debate are/process them as fast since they
> are only getting the info orally and others are getting to read it as it
> goes...
> I thought this was always somewhat of a problem..debaters reading cards & CP
> texts during the debate...with the judge trying to figure it out after..or
> at least getting more clued in later when reading the evidence after the
> debate rather than during...but with the participants getting real-time
> access to at least all evidence-based things during the debate and the judge
> not getting it until after it just seems that? the debate is always going to
> proceed wit the participants having a much greater understanding of what is
> going on than what the judge can provide by looking at it after the debate.
> What do people think of debaters also giving the judge a copy of the speech
> before they start? It would clue the judge in a lot faster.? Is it
> unreasonable for a judge to ask for this?? I still think judges should just
> flow and not read along during the speech since obviously the content of the
> speech probably won't exactly match the anticipated speech doc, but as a
> judge I'd love to be able to quickly read the CP while it was being
> discussed in the c-x, maybe glance at the link cards when the link was being
> discussed, maybe look at an un-underlined part of a card when someone tries
> to argue that it says the opposite of the underlined part, and maybe scan
> through some of the cards during prep time....
> I don't think I'm alone in saying that when judging a debate I like to
> understand the arguments as much as possible when the debate
> progresses...paperless seems to create more judge darkness relative to the
> debaters in terms of understanding those arguments...immediately sharing the
> doc would reduce the darkness....and it would probably speed-up post-round
> decision-making since I'd have a "full" understanding of the arguments
> during the debate and would have all the ev I needed to look at immediately
> available at the end of the debate.
> Thoughts?
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