• OK, it's on.
  • Please note that many, many Email Addresses used for spam, are not accepted at registration. Select a respectable Free email.

Debates?

Agent Intellect

Absurd Anti-hero.
Joined
Jul 28, 2008
Messages
4,116
Location
Michigan
#1
I wonder if anyone else would be interested in having a forum for formal style debates, perhaps requested and set up by a moderator or something.

I'm thinking in a style where both debaters put up an introduction, stating their arguments and supporting them - these are done independently. After that, rebuttals can be made to however far both contestants wish to go. As it's a formal debate, debate etiquette would apply, ie both contestants should know what fallacies are, links and citations made, no plagiarism etc.

Could possibly even have a vote for them (just a suggestion), so that other members can read the debate and vote on who they think put forward the strongest argument. A second 'comments' thread could be made for observers (and contestants) to make comments about the debate so that the thread can keep clear.

Why have a formal debate forum?
First and foremost, it might help keep some other threads from being derailed or turned into flame wars by two people having a never ending debate (I'm guilty of the former quite a bit). Also, to help people practice debating - something that I think is important (and something I'd like to get better at), - and get practice and researching subjects.

Just wondering what people think, or if anyone can build off this idea or change it/ make it better.
 

Inappropriate Behavior

is peeing on the carpet
Joined
Sep 21, 2008
Messages
3,816
Location
Behind you, kicking you in the ass
#2
I think it's a good idea!

Some suggestions:

Maybe set certain word limits to arguments and rebuttals. INTPs sometimes have a "kitchen sink" mentality that might make for some very long posts. A limit of say 1,500 for opening arguments and 1,000 for rebuttals?

Perhaps the moderator can pick the topic and the first two takers(or more if there is potentially more than 2 sides) pick their side. Should there be a time limit for how long one has to write hir argument?

There should perhaps be a limit to how many arguments and rebuttals can be made. This will make the debators be thorough and concise in their arguments since they won't get to go on and on trying to be convincing.

I would say don't let the contestants use the comment thread or at least not use it to try and advance their arguments in any way. Make them present their arguments in the debate and the debate only.

Just thoughts. So are you going to moderate the first one or are you anxious to be a contestant? ;)
 

flow

Audiophile/Insomniac
Joined
Aug 8, 2008
Messages
1,167
Location
Iowa
#3
hmmmm, this has potential.
 

Claverhouse

Royalist Freicorps Feldgendarme
Joined
Sep 7, 2007
Messages
1,161
Location
Between the Harz and Carpathians
#6
Cæsar's Wife

Seems fine by me, provided the 'moderators' were called Adjudicators or something, and were volunteers from the community. Having actual moderator participation invites abuse of power.



Claverhouse :phear:
 

Agent Intellect

Absurd Anti-hero.
Joined
Jul 28, 2008
Messages
4,116
Location
Michigan
#8
Word limits would probably be a good idea (soft limits anyway) perhaps agreed upon by the contestants.. As far as the number of rebuttals, I'd say that could be agreed upon by the contestants before hand, but certainly a limit to that too. Deadlines would be mandatory, especially for intro argument, because that one is supposed to be presenting ones case before seeing the other persons arguments (so limit on how early and how late to post it, or send it to mod to put it up or something).

I would probably do an intro thing, then rebuttals in by a certain time limit (no order on who goes first, but only one at at time). Group debates would work too, as long as the groups were able to organize well (not have a bunch of redundant arguments etc). I would try to keep the debate to two opposing views, though - preferably a statement, idea, or point of some kind and then someone arguing on the side of it and someone arguing against it. The introduction would more or less be arguing with/against the statement and not so much the other contestant; debating each other would happen during the rebuttals.

The comment thread would mainly be for people giving their justifications or criteria on why they voted a certain way (if we had a vote), or for what arguments people thought were good/bad, or for non-contestants pointing out plagiarisms/fallacies etc. I wouldn't restrict the contestants from that, just as long as the debate itself stays out of it.

Topics for debate could be anything. Ranging from philosophy, science, religion, and politics all the way to why one video game, book, music, TV show etc is superior to the other (so this wouldn't just be a place for all the religious debates). Anyone can challenge anyone else to a debate, but the other person has to publicly accept the challenge and get a thread set up to do it.

And no, I would not want to moderate it (I shun that kind of responsibility) and yes, I would probably use it a lot.


EDIT:

Seems fine by me, provided the 'moderators' were called Adjudicators or something, and were volunteers from the community. Having actual moderator participation invites abuse of power.
True, but someone that can delete threads (in case observers post in the actual debate) and move things around if need be would be nice.

Second EDIT:

Could also have an open invitation place. Someone creates a thread making a statement (for example "I'm opposed to public health care in America") and anyone that wants to debate them on the subject can reply accepting the challenge. Also, any thread elsewhere on the forum, if it begins escalating into a debate (at least one that's a derailment from the original topic) can be made into a debate challenge.
 

Claverhouse

Royalist Freicorps Feldgendarme
Joined
Sep 7, 2007
Messages
1,161
Location
Between the Harz and Carpathians
#9
True, but someone that can delete threads (in case observers post in the actual debate) and move things around if need be would be nice.

Oh, I don't think you have to worry about that at all.





:beatyou:



Claverhouse :phear:
 

Inappropriate Behavior

is peeing on the carpet
Joined
Sep 21, 2008
Messages
3,816
Location
Behind you, kicking you in the ass
#10
It might be a good idea to have the two opening statements sent to the moderator. If it's done directly to the thread, the second contestant will have the advantage of seeing the first's opening statement.

So who wants to moderate? Let's get this puppy started before we get distracted by something :p.
 

Claverhouse

Royalist Freicorps Feldgendarme
Joined
Sep 7, 2007
Messages
1,161
Location
Between the Harz and Carpathians
#11
Mmm... I was thinking that Agent wanted a sub-forum to keep these debates in.

Also, I would suggest that for each thread a poll be added after the concluding arguments, by the initiator of course.


An' stop saying moderate ! Judges... Arbitrators... Linesmen...


Claverhouse :phear:
 

Yellow

for the glory of satan
Joined
Sep 2, 2009
Messages
2,865
Location
127.0.0.1
#12
This sounds like a great idea. Earlier this week I had thought of a good debate topic but I wasn't sure how to go about wording a new thread to convey it properly. It's as if someone read my mind.

I had an idea about the judges... unless one person knew they would be online everyday and was willing to judge every debate... why don't the debaters pick the days/time of their debate posts and choose the judge between themselves? That way, the task could be shared. Oh! and team debates should be an option (though I realize it would be rarely utilized).
 

Inappropriate Behavior

is peeing on the carpet
Joined
Sep 21, 2008
Messages
3,816
Location
Behind you, kicking you in the ass
#13
mod·er·a·tor (mŏd'ə-rā'tər)

  1. One that moderates, as:
  2. One that arbitrates or mediates.
  3. One who presides over a meeting, forum, or debate.
^^Who put that there?

*whistles softly as he twiddles his thumbs*
 

loveofreason

echoes through time
Joined
Sep 8, 2007
Messages
5,504
#14
^ballboy.

:p
 

Claverhouse

Royalist Freicorps Feldgendarme
Joined
Sep 7, 2007
Messages
1,161
Location
Between the Harz and Carpathians
#15
You are running into the same mortal error as those in vBulletinland who chose to name unofficial hacks as 'mods', despite mods being a normal abbreviation for the system-term of moderators.

To use 'moderators' for those who arbitrate these debates runs the risk of making them officially sanctioned and controlled by the administration. Or even wrongly thought so. There are real dangers in letting any state calmly gather unjealously held freedoms; and in loosely using official nomenclature.



Claverhouse :phear:
 

Sapphire Harp

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 6, 2008
Messages
652
Location
Denver, Colorado
#17
True, but someone that can delete threads (in case observers post in the actual debate) and move things around if need be would be nice.
I'm wondering how much you'll need to clean up the debate threads if they're open for posting... I'm guessing a lot, myself. If it's difficult to keep the threads clean, is it possible to lock the debate threads and edit in posts by the debaters?

Alternatively, here's a high-effort notion. When setting up the debate, the debaters can post empty postings as place holders... (labelled things like "rebuttal" and "closing remarks"), posted in the order the debate will proceed, which can be filled by the actual debate posts later? This would let free-range posting come in below the actual debate.

Or you could have side-by-side threads... 'the debate thread' and 'the commentary on the debate' thread. This sort of thing might emerge, anyway.

As far as rules, I figure it would be easier to establish those out for each individual debate, case-by-case, right? Same with format, I expect. It might be best for the initial post to outline the rules and proceedings of the debate? (If simply linking to the ones which are being borrowed...)
 

Claverhouse

Royalist Freicorps Feldgendarme
Joined
Sep 7, 2007
Messages
1,161
Location
Between the Harz and Carpathians
#18
OK, the sub has been set up and may be found here.

Oddly enough that information will become entirely recursive since I am simultaneously moving this thread there as a start.

It would be a gracious gesture if Agent Intellect could write a post there, to be closed and stickied, setting out the aims of the sub-forum and rules to be followed.



Claverhouse :phear:
 

Agent Intellect

Absurd Anti-hero.
Joined
Jul 28, 2008
Messages
4,116
Location
Michigan
#19
It would be a gracious gesture if Agent Intellect could write a post there, to be closed and stickied, setting out the aims of the sub-forum and rules to be followed.
Hey, I just came up with the idea, I didn't know I had to do anything.

I think most of the rules seem to be spread out throughout this thread - at least, as far as I know, those are the agreed upon rules. I can make a more cohesive thread for it, though.
 

Claverhouse

Royalist Freicorps Feldgendarme
Joined
Sep 7, 2007
Messages
1,161
Location
Between the Harz and Carpathians
#20

Agent Intellect

Absurd Anti-hero.
Joined
Jul 28, 2008
Messages
4,116
Location
Michigan
#22
Agent Intellect, maybe it would be easiest to to develop it by going through the motions once? A low intensity topic debated with half sized statements and rebuttals?
I was thinking the same thing. I posted a rules thread, but I don't know how comprehensive it is (I may have accidentally omitted something) if someone wants to proof read it.
 

Inappropriate Behavior

is peeing on the carpet
Joined
Sep 21, 2008
Messages
3,816
Location
Behind you, kicking you in the ass
#23
How come I'm not seeing the subforum on the main page? It shows up on new posts but if others aren't finding it either, then it could be hard to get back if some time goes by between posts.

Edit: Also AI, these links of logical fallacies might be helpful additions to your rules post.

Plus a list of cognitive biases might be useful to some as well.
 

Claverhouse

Royalist Freicorps Feldgendarme
Joined
Sep 7, 2007
Messages
1,161
Location
Between the Harz and Carpathians
#24
How come I'm not seeing the subforum on the main page?

Sadly, this is a feature of vBulletin: no sub-forum within a forum can be seen on the front page ( we have several ).


The only way around it, at an instant rough guess, would be if they created a dummy forum visible on the front page as a symbolic link to the actual folder. But that is probably a silly idea since I know as much about coding as I do about moondust.



Claverhouse :phear:
 

Claverhouse

Royalist Freicorps Feldgendarme
Joined
Sep 7, 2007
Messages
1,161
Location
Between the Harz and Carpathians
#26
I would assume you create a thread within the said sub-forum announcing your challenge, and the terms of the debate; which in turn would lead to your creation of the thread for the debate itself.


Unless you desire a sub-sub-forum within the sub-forum specifically for Proposed Debates.



Claverhouse :phear:
 
Joined
Jan 8, 2010
Messages
8,988
Location
New York City (The Big Apple) & State
#27
Question people: I happened on this thread. Am I looking in the rong place or are there debates going on or were they going on? I'm afraid to say anything for feeling out-of-place and foolish.
 
Joined
Jan 8, 2010
Messages
8,988
Location
New York City (The Big Apple) & State
#29
Felan. Might be awkward for an INTP. I couldn't figure this thread. If they haven't already started it, so many rules. What INTP is that patient?

I just figure pick a topic. State something in favor, one sentence, wait for a counter, then counter that. And so on. What's wrong with that?
 
Joined
Jan 8, 2010
Messages
8,988
Location
New York City (The Big Apple) & State
#31
Oh. I see. All those threads below the sticky threads are supposed to be "formal" debates. I wonder. I'll take a look. I've seen them before but never realized they were supposed to be formal. I wonder if that turned out???
 

Felan

Prolific Member
Joined
Apr 20, 2009
Messages
1,073
Location
Unauthorized personnel only
#32
Felan. Might be awkward for an INTP. I couldn't figure this thread. If they haven't already started it, so many rules. What INTP is that patient?

I just figure pick a topic. State something in favor, one sentence, wait for a counter, then counter that. And so on. What's wrong with that?
Nothing wrong with that, I was failing to be funny.
 
Joined
Mar 10, 2011
Messages
234
#33
Oh. I see. All those threads below the sticky threads are supposed to be "formal" debates. I wonder. I'll take a look. I've seen them before but never realized they were supposed to be formal. I wonder if that turned out???
Heh. It would seem the intention was there, but the actual execution has perhaps been lacking somewhat. Now why does that sound familiar...
 
Joined
Oct 21, 2014
Messages
20
Location
Jacksonville, FL
#34
I'm currently taking an MOOC on how to reason and argue so this would be a great learning experience for me. I would be able to observe several debates then hopefully participate in one myself.
 

Yellow

for the glory of satan
Joined
Sep 2, 2009
Messages
2,865
Location
127.0.0.1
#35
Wait. didn't I do a debate (or most of one) with AI? I couldn't remember how it turned out or exactly what the topic was (except I remember being on the counter-to-my-opinion side) so I looked for it here, and it's not here. But I know it happened. At least a few rounds of it. Was it deleted? I'm a little confused.

Edit: Where did just about every contributor to this thread go? I just realized how missing they are.
 

Blarraun

straightedgy
Joined
Nov 21, 2013
Messages
4,124
Location
someplace windswept
#36
Wait. didn't I do a debate (or most of one) with AI? I couldn't remember how it turned out or exactly what the topic was (except I remember being on the counter-to-my-opinion side) so I looked for it here, and it's not here. But I know it happened. At least a few rounds of it. Was it deleted? I'm a little confused.
Do you mean this one?
It was in the lounge archive as likely any other debate present here, now that I think of it, could've been more useful to have a separate archive for the debates sub-section.
Or make the whole section into a main category...thoughts?

People complaining about lacking standards could either start their own threads and clarify rules they expect or open debates here. It seems this place doesn't see much use, maybe there's not enough people willing to put effort in the discussion.

Still we have better standards than tv and oxford debates. There is at least some content behind the premise.
 
Top Bottom