MOD ANNOUNCEMENT: Member Debates (Input needed)

Discussion in 'Debates & Contests' started by E_Pluribus_Venom, Jul 5, 2011.

  1. E_Pluribus_Venom

    E_Pluribus_Venom Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 19, 2008
    Messages:
    15,672
    Likes Received:
    129
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Hello all,

    I hope those of you that celebrate the 4th of July enjoyed yourselves this weekend. Hopefully there weren't any firework accidents similar to my neighbor (eesh).

    Anyway, in a continued effort to encourage civil discourse here at political forum... we the moderation panel have been throwing around some ideas, one of which includes constructed & judged debates that will showcase the forum for a specific amount of time. In order to ensure we're all on the same page, I'd like to share with you some ideas we've come up with while giving you the opportunity to contribute to what we hope could be a trend-setting practice on political discussion outlets. So let's begin:

    1. To keep things in perspective and to avoid missed requests, one idea is to let the moderators choose a topic and announce it for one member (from each stance) to accept. Some examples of topics include (but are not limited to):

    • Abortion
    • Taxes
    • Gay Marriage
    • Drug Legalization
    • Government spending
    • Current/Past Wars
    • Health Care
    • Torture
    • Job Creation & Economy
    • Gun Rights
    • Conspiracy Theory (9-11/Birth Certificate legitimacy)

    Anyone that does not accept a debate challenge may not participate in the thread while a debate is in play (and will be immediately banned from the thread without warning).


    Agree or disagree? Please explain.

    2. To allow for adequate time to make arguments & respond, members are given 5 days to participate in the topics they accept. Members are encouraged to only accept challenges if they can participate, and all responses must include personal stance on the issue (in order to avoid retort-only debates). Once time is up, judging will begin.

    Agree or disagree? Please explain.

    3. In order to ensure bias doesn't come into play, one idea is to disallow public poll opinion and favor pre-designated judges that are approved by the debating participants. The judges may be PF members or members from the moderator/advisor staff. All in all, judges must understand that their votes are not issued according to what position he/she personally agrees with. Instead, the judges decision will go to who made the best argument to support their position. Once judging is complete, the thread will be moved to the appropriate section and open for all members to continue the discussion.

    Those interested in being judges may indicate intentions here

    Agree or disagree? Please explain.

    This is a very raw look at something we'd like to fine tune, and we believe we can reach that goal with some input from you. Please take some time to think about this and your ideas. Thanks...


    [​IMG]
     
  2. teamosil

    teamosil New Member Past Donor

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2009
    Messages:
    16,022
    Likes Received:
    8
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Excellent idea!

    My only suggestion would be to set up narrower, more specific, questions instead of general topic areas. Ideally with a built in goal. For example, instead of "taxes", it could be "is progressive taxation good for the economy". If it is too broad it won't be possible to resolve in one debate and if the goal isn't specified in the question, you can just get bogged down on unresolvable questions where the judge's own leanings would pretty much decide who won. For example, on taxes, if one person is just arguing that taxation is immoral and the other person is arguing from a pragmatic perspective, it would really just come down to which way of looking at the question is more appealing to the judge. Two ships passing in the night. But if the goal is specified- like whether it is good or bad for the economy- then they meet head on.
     
  3. E_Pluribus_Venom

    E_Pluribus_Venom Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 19, 2008
    Messages:
    15,672
    Likes Received:
    129
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Oh... and I will not be participating in debates (for those of you worried about losing on a constant basis). That just wouldn't be fair.
     
  4. E_Pluribus_Venom

    E_Pluribus_Venom Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 19, 2008
    Messages:
    15,672
    Likes Received:
    129
    Trophy Points:
    63
    My fault for not being specific. The topics I listed aren't the sole basis for each debate, because (as you stated) it's far too broad to compile into one argument. Each topic has it's own sub-topic that specifies the parameters of the debate. For example:

    Topic: Abortion
    Focus: Is "right to privacy" legitimate basis for legal justification?


    Thanks for that reminder teamosil... great catch!
     
  5. teamosil

    teamosil New Member Past Donor

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2009
    Messages:
    16,022
    Likes Received:
    8
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Ok awesome. Sounds great.
     
  6. Atreides

    Atreides New Member Past Donor

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2011
    Messages:
    87
    Likes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    0
    And suddenly the competition seems much less interesting...

    I mean, if I'm going to be creamed, then I'd prefer it for the champ to do so.

    Edit: @Teamosil, good point. A narrower and more focused topic will keep things snappy and interesting
     
  7. E_Pluribus_Venom

    E_Pluribus_Venom Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 19, 2008
    Messages:
    15,672
    Likes Received:
    129
    Trophy Points:
    63
    I would hate for the internet to implode due to the awesomeness it would be forced to display.
     
  8. Atreides

    Atreides New Member Past Donor

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2011
    Messages:
    87
    Likes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    0
    And he's humble too!:;):
     
  9. JP5

    JP5 Former Moderator Past Donor

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2004
    Messages:
    45,633
    Likes Received:
    276
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Great idea, huh?

    I would also suggest that they pick a number or something like that to see who starts off the debate. Then it should be a back-and-forth....IOW, wait until the opponent's response before posting a rebuttal, etc. That way, everyone gets equal time and opportunity.
     
  10. Perriquine

    Perriquine On hiatus Past Donor

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2007
    Messages:
    9,522
    Likes Received:
    126
    Trophy Points:
    63
    I like the idea. But you're going to have to be very careful about how you phrase not just the focus, but also the topic. Case in point:

    Gay Marriage

    To me, that title alone immediately suggests a bias toward a particular position on the broad issue, as it suggests that the the marriages of same-sex couples are different from those of opposite-sex couples.

    At the same time, it also takes for granted that same-sex relationships can even be described as marital - also a matter of debate.

    Equally bad would be calling the topic "Marriage Equality", as that likewise suggests a bias toward a particular position.

    Perhaps wordy, but more neutral would be "Legal Recognition of Same-Sex Relationships". This takes no position on whether those relationships should be granted status, what the scope of that status should be, or what to call it.

    TAKE NOTE: No, I'm not suggesting we get into a debate about legal recognition of same-sex relationships in this thread. I'm merely pointing out that the phrasing of thread topics and focus topics needs to be as position-neutral as possible.
     
  11. Sir Thaddeus

    Sir Thaddeus New Member Past Donor

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2008
    Messages:
    5,339
    Likes Received:
    88
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Awesome Idea, good job Mods!
     
  12. Kranes56

    Kranes56 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2011
    Messages:
    20,959
    Likes Received:
    124
    Trophy Points:
    63
    I was actually thinking something like this. It was more of a campagin kind of idea. With a election, and debates.

    This is still a great idea. It's been awhile since I was in a good debate.
     
  13. injest

    injest New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2011
    Messages:
    4,266
    Likes Received:
    203
    Trophy Points:
    0
    sounds like interesting reading!

    so the mods would post a subject, wait for volunteers to offer to debate or would one member challenge another?

    if it was a real debate, with people following the rules of civil debate, we may actually hear what people think on the issues themselves!
     
  14. Shangrila

    Shangrila staff Staff Member Past Donor

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2010
    Messages:
    29,435
    Likes Received:
    654
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Gender:
    Female
    I agree. Its easier to stay on topic this way, and its easier to judge on merit.
    Sounds intriguing.
     
  15. Shangrila

    Shangrila staff Staff Member Past Donor

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2010
    Messages:
    29,435
    Likes Received:
    654
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Gender:
    Female
    Might give us a chance to discuss on topic, without silly interruptions, instead of going over the deep end.
     
  16. Agent Zero

    Agent Zero New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2009
    Messages:
    15,298
    Likes Received:
    28
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Makes it easier to have several questions based on one topic (such as taxes) instead of throwing that topic out and hoping it goes well.
     
  17. 1984society

    1984society Banned

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2010
    Messages:
    3,022
    Likes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Was this based on my Parliament idea?
     
  18. Eighty Deuce

    Eighty Deuce New Member Past Donor

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2009
    Messages:
    26,846
    Likes Received:
    543
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Just one member ? Why just one ? When is any side represented by just one finite angle ? Make it 2-3 per side. Folks can't be here 24/7 responding. 2-3 better carries the debate. Most "debates" are teams regardless.
     
  19. Catch

    Catch Banned

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2011
    Messages:
    8,092
    Likes Received:
    17
    Trophy Points:
    0
    LOL. No, I bet it wasn't.
     
  20. 1984society

    1984society Banned

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2010
    Messages:
    3,022
    Likes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Yes it was. :bump:
     

Share This Page