Communication and Rhetoric

Platform Perfection: Standing Out

Platform Perfection: Standing Out

We hear coaches (and judges) discuss the need to “stand out from the competition.” Point well taken. Just one question: What does this mean for writing, blocking, and performing our platforms? If you have ever asked or thought of a similar question, you are not alone....

Conversational Team Policy

Conversational Team Policy

Earlier this season, I received a ballot from a judge who was thoroughly and absolutely confused. At the base of her puzzlement was the solitary word: inherency.  My partner and I had argued that the affirmative plan had essentially already been passed, and thus...

Why You Should Be Friends With Your Rivals

Why You Should Be Friends With Your Rivals

Endless searching and continuing education are a part of any good debater’s appetite. Learning new things,   for data is a really healthy mental diet to exercise. One way to do this is through podcasts. Podcasts are unique because you can Listen - and do other things!...

Question and Answer With a College Debater

Question and Answer With a College Debater

Last year, Ethos brought on Jadon Buzzard as a coach and sourcebook writer. From the beginning, Jadon showed a real knack for grasping Ethos’ core mission and teaching it to his students. Today - we sit down with Jadon and talk about his debate career, and...

Steelmanning

Steelmanning

Author Robin Sloan described attending debates sponsored by the Long Now Foundation. He was struck by the debate format, writing, “The first time I saw one of these debates, it blew my mind.” Why were these debates so revolutionary? Sloan gives some context: “Our...

Patterns, Not Problems

Patterns, Not Problems

No matter how you’re involved in the speech/debate scene, at some point you’ll probably be asked to give feedback to help other people improve. This post aims to make that feedback better. “Fix patterns, not problems.” - Tracy Wilk, former Google executive, quoting...