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Thumbs up TDL XVIII: THE POINT WAGG LOST INTEREST AT - THE RESULTS

TDL XVIII: THE POINT WAGG LOST INTEREST AT

CHAMPviaDQ

Alim vs The Japanese Buzzsaw vs WrestlingOracle
Is there any longevity in the Adam Rose & Rusev characters?


Spoiler for Debates:
The Japanese Buzzsaw

Is there any longevity in the Adam Rose & Rusev characters?

My stance on this question is NO for both.

First I want to define the word longevity

Longevity-the length of time that something or someone lasts or continues

Adam Rose

I defined the word longevity because it is clear that if you watched the NXT takeover show, Adam Rose was over with the crowd. However, this debate is not about whether or not Adam Rose is over, because the word longevity connects to a wrestler being over is that they need to STAY over. History shows that goofy comedy characters do not stay over. Men with similar gimmicks to Rose's have generally been midcard acts. He belongs in the same category as Adrian Adonis, Rick "The Model" Martel, Rico and Fandango. Those men each had gimmicks that overshadowed their wrestling abilities and were hard to take seriously as contenders.

Adonis' run with his "Adorable" gimmick saw him last just two years with WWE, he would occasionally go up the card, but at WrestleMania time he was pushed down the card. Adonis wrestled Uncle Elmer in a throwaway match at WrestleMania II and lost a Hair vs. Hair match to Roddy Piper at WrestleMania III.

Fandango hasn't had a feud that's given him any traction. He worked with The Great Khali for what seemed like years and has been taking on Santino on a regular basis in matches seemingly designed to offer folks a snack break.
History is against him, though. He can realistically hope for a run that includes a sustained stay on the midcard, being involved in a few notable feuds and maybe being a goofy champ like Santino. Anything beyond is out of his reach without changing his gimmick. Fans cheer for and chuckle at men like Rose, but eventually the appeal of the act fades. The rebranding of Adam Rose shares a lot of the hallmarks with Brodus Clay's switch from monster heel to Funkasaurus, and while that gimmick proved popular out of the gate, it quickly lost interest. Look at other examples such as Tensai, Ryback, Miz, Kofi, and Curtis Axel.

Rusev

One of the newer additions to the main roster in WWE is Rusev, The Bulgarian Brute who has been routinely destroying everyone in his path for weeks on end. He has been on a roll, scoring victories over everyone he's faced, no matter what their past accomplishments were. It would seem as though this could possibly last forever, since WWE loves to ask "who can stop Rusev?" However, sooner than later, this is all going to turn south for Rusev, and things will take a turn for the worse. Rusev may seem like he's on a path of destruction, but he's actually on a path toward utter failure.

My biggest beef with Rusev is how they are booking him as this unstoppable monster, yet he really doesn't look like one at all. Rusev's body shape is awkward and doesn't lend itself to the same magnitude necessary for being a future world champion. He is by no means a small man or a twig, but instead of being tall and muscular, his physique can be better described as stout. If you put Rusev next to Big Show, he will look like a runt, and if you put him next to someone who is more chiseled like John Cena, he will look out of shape. Sure, people like Daniel Bryan are champions but is he booked like a monster heel similar to a Brock Lesnar or Ryback? Hell no. Rusev is barely even 6 feet tall, barely 2 inches taller than myself, and do people call me a brute? No of course not I am of standard size, and so is Rusev, his body size is more comparable to someone like Bray Wyatt, who is certainly not called out for a monster like body size.

Also, monsters like Rusev who cant offer much in the ring par squashing local Indy wrestlers and can’t talk on the mic to save their life never seem to go anywhere, as hard as WWE tries to make them, they always seem to fade out of the spotlight after a few months. For instance, look at the history of these men, Ryback, Khali, Brodus Clay, Kozlov, and Viscera. Did any of these men end up having any sort of longevity whatsoever? No they didn't, mainly because the WWE relied on their physique and forgetting any sort of character or ring skills at all. When you have someone like Rusev who really doesn't have any in ring skills, mic skills, or any real credible physique to go along with the monster booking he is given, he doesn't stand a chance of getting over in the first place, very less having longevity.

Alim

Recently, there has been a sudden influx of NXT talent coming onto the main WWE roster. This includes the likes of Paige, Emma, Bo Dallas, Adam Rose, and Rusev. Two of them, Rusev and Rose, have over-the-top gimmicks that makes us question the longevity of these characters. I think that the Rusev character can go a long way while on the other hand; Adam Rose might have much more of a struggle getting there.

I will start with Rusev. He has a monster-like presence that makes you feel like he will be an upper-mid card mainstay for quite some time. One of the reasons why I feel this way is because he has a manager that speaks for him. When it comes to monsters like Rusev, often times, their biggest issue is that they can’t talk. Not literally, but they are charisma vacuums on the microphone and thus fail to get over. But in Rusev’s case, he has Lana. Not only is she scorching hot, but she can talk and draw heat for herself and her client. Rusev is a good wrestler. He has a wide variety of moves where he can ground and pound or come at you with various flying strikes. He has the type of moveset that can make the crowd eat from the palms of his hands. It’s also proven that although there have been their fair share of Anti-American busts over the years, there have been a number that have been successful as well. Not everyone is a Vladimir Kozlov. Iron Sheik, Nikolai Volkoff, The Un-Americans, Bret Hart, Sgt. Slaughter and Muhammad Hassan are all examples of superstars who have had the Anti-American label attached to them at some point in their career and went onto have some success.

I really like Adam Rose. I really do. I guess you could call me a Rosebud. But unfortunately I think his gimmick, unlike Rusev’s, has a shelf life. I’m drawing eerily similar comparisons to Fandango of last year. Fandango debuted around the same time as Rose. They were both highly flamboyant and had over-the-top gimmicks. They both have a unique entrance that takes up quite some time and sets them apart from everyone else. They both got over due to a catchy tune in their entrance theme. And now look where Fandango is. Last year at Wrestlemania he pinned Chris Jericho. Now? He’s nothing more than a midcard enhancing talent. I see Adam Rose taking a similar career path as Fandango. He’s currently feuding with an established talent in Jack Swagger. After that, he’ll toil away in the midcard for a bit and later move onto comedy segments such as dance offs before falling into obscurity. It’s unfortunate because I enjoy his gimmick, but I don’t think in this day and age there is room for many over-the-top characters like the before. It worked in the Golden, New Generation, and Attitude Eras. But the product is much more cookie cutter these days. Everything is clean and refined and the fine line between reality and kayfabe is even smaller than before because the business is more exposed than ever now.

The bottom line when it comes to Rusev and Adam Rose is that I think only one of them is destined for success with their current character and that’s Rusev. The party animal character Rose plays can only take you so far before you have to consider a repackage because can you really see Rose, in his current state, competing for a world championship? I can see Rusev doing that, but not Rose. Heck, with the way things are going right now, I don’t even see Rose being able to hold one of the midcard belts anytime soon either. And if you can’t even do that, then what’s the point? Unless you’re going to be an enhancement talent for good.

WrestlingOracle

Longevity is a term holding different meaning to different people. Longevity is also a speculative trait. For this discussion, longevity shall mean multiple years. As for the new talents Rusev and Adam Rose, Rusev does not hold longevity while Rose definitely does.

First, analyze why Rusev will not be “crushing” the WWE landscape for long. The chief reason is that Rusev’s presentation is outdated. I don’t think anyone would argue that the premise of a foreign super athlete here to crush Americans to prove Russia’s superiority is outdated. Rusev would’ve been fine in 1984 but in 2014 the gimmick is stale. Due to outdated presentation, fans view Rusev as incredibly cheesy, hence have no desire to invest in the character. To prove my point, consider that at Extreme Rules,even though Rusev had his debut ppv match, a chant for Lana broke out. This means that fans would rather gaze at Rusev’s ravishing valet than watch Rusev work in the ring. As exemplified by Marc Mero and Fandango, if a wrestler’s valet is more over than the wrestler, that does not bode well for the success of that wrestler.

Unlike Fandango, Rusev cannot speak English. In a segment driven, promo heavy product, this fact does not allow Rusev to evolve his character or even branch out on his own. Evolution in order to maintain freshness and survive the product cycle is the key to longevity in wrestling. Rusev supporters would suggest that a change to a true mouthpiece like Heyman would solve this issue of evolving. There are two problems with this proposed fix. Issue one is if Rusev switches managers,the Rusev gimmick would be entirely destroyed. The second issue is if Rusev had a new manager, that would insult the intelligence of the audience, since Rusev’s mission is to dominate for “the enemy”.Clearly no one would endorse Rusev. Besides, Rusev wouldn’t align himself with an American manager.

Not only does Rusev offer nothing on the stick, but from a character perspective, he offers nothing in the ring. Rusev’s allure is incredible displays of strength in the ring. As time has passed, brute strength has become a commonplace hallmark of wrestling, hence brute strength doesn’t have the same awe inspiring effect. Gone are the days of fans flocking to see the once rare strength of wrestlers or gargantuan size. Strength alone can’t get a wrestler over, hence other means are necessary in 2014 to build a connection with fans. Rusev can’t cut promos and due to his character is unable to play a sympathetic face. Put simply, once Rusev loses his first match, thus shattering his invincibility, he has nothing in his toolbox to survive the long haul.


There are many reasons why Rose will not wilt like Rusev. If one looks at society, individualism is strengthening. There is no denying that the Adam Rose character is unique to the current or even recent WWE landscape. Many lose sight of the fact that the casual audience members make up the overwhelming majority of the audience, hence most viewers want a fun, unique character to get behind as opposed to viewing technical broadways that they can’t digest. Fans are already warming to Rose based off of the positive cheers at Rose’s offense. These cheers at Rose’s offense tells me that it isn’t just Rose’s catchy theme music interesting audiences.

In recent history, characters with an eccentric base have been the characters to get the most evolution within the character, thus remaining fresh. Rose’s gimmick unlike Rusev’s allows for many directions while still maintaining the character. On the high end, Rose could be witty on the mike and be akin to Jericho’s debut character. Even if Rose doesn’t rise in the ranks, the party line facet of his gimmick allows for comedic elements. Not many wrestlers possess a comedic ability, thus those whose gimmick has comedic potential often last despite lack of title success ala Santino, Hornswaggle or Funaki.


Perhaps the most prevalent knock I’ve seen on Rose’s potential for longevity is that the performer is thirty four, which people deem “old”. In wrestling, thirty four is certainly not old,, especially when considering today’s medical,dietary and technological advances. Besides, while there are too many examples of wrestlers hitting their zenith in their mid/late thirties/40s to completely list, consider the likes of DDP, who is famously a late bloomer; Steve Austin turned face near his mid thirties;Crow Sting didn’t start until Borden was thirty six. Further refuting this age is against Rose notion is that Rose isn’t completely green, as Rose worked the Leo Kreuger gimmick previously.

To recap, Rusev’s outdated, limited character does not allow him the means to have longevity. .Regarding Rose’s longevity, I am not a lemon.


Spoiler for Judging Cards:
Seabs
The Japanese Buzzsaw - Good stuff with the definition of longevity. That's good practice in debates. However, I thought your actual definition was too dictionary esque and less something you could use in your debate. Alim did a better job of defining it as multiple years in his debate as it gave some actual context. Right thinking though, just take better care of the actual definition. Your base for why Rose won't stay over because history has told us so with past similar gimmicks was good. I would have preferred for you to focus more on Rose rather than other guys like Fandango and Adonis. The historical argument was good but it should have been your base rather than your entire argument. It felt like you neglected talking about Rose too much. What does Rose bring to the table that doesn't make him sustainable? For example is Rose just an entrance and can just an entrance be sustainable? Do they care about him once he gets in the ring as well? More focus on Rose and this part would have been very good. Rusev argument I thought was weaker. I think the core of your argument being that Rusev isn't the tallest, most impressive looking monster ever isn't the greatest. I mean it's ok but I think there's better arguments to be made such as what happens when gets beat? Then what when he's "stoppable"? Past examples again were good though.

Alim - Your Rusev argument is pretty good yet under developed. The words are there so use them. I liked the Lana argument because it's an important part of Rusev's act. Of course then though there's always the argument of what about if Lana leaves him? Moveset argument was good in terms of separating him from your clichéd monster heel that can't move around the ring. Good practice with the historical examples although I don't think they were the best. Shiek and Koloff had similar gimmicks but they weren't monsters like Rusev is. The Un-Americans I guess were sustainable but you needed to say that Rusev could be a sustainable midcard act for this comparison to work. You didn't really say in what capacity Rusev could be sustainable in. At midcard or main event level? Because sustainable doesn't have to mean can he be a sustainable main eventer? Hassan wasn't exactly sustainable although I guess that wasn't the fault of him personally and Bret and Slaughter got over and were sustainable because of other gimmicks. Be careful when using examples that they actually fit and make sure you develop your argument a bit more, especially when you have over 100 extra words to use. Rose argument is pretty similar to TJB's argument for him. I thought you did a strong job with the Fandango comparison although again I would have liked to see you develop it more and go into the specifics of Rose's character and why he can't make a gimmick work that has previously flopped over the long term. This was pretty good all be it under developed.

WrestlingOracle - This was the pick of the bunch and actually a very good debate so well done with this one. Great job defining longevity in a way that was relevant. Would have been nice to see you come back to this definition during the main body of you debate though. Don't just forget about your definition because it can be very useful to come back to it later in your argument. Rusev argument was strong. Agreed with the foreign character argument and you argued it well. The Lana argument at the end was really good too, topped off with the Fandango and Mero comparisons. Lack of English (not sure if true so a source would have been cool) argument was strong too. You could have made the comparison to Sin Cara too or Kozlov and Khali. One weak area of this debate though was the idea that a new manager for Rusev would kill his character? Can't he get another Russian (or Bulgarian I guess) manager? Also can't he turn babyface? Plenty of wrestlers such as Bret and Christian have done the whole Fuck American gimmick and been babyfaces later. I liked the idea of your moveset argument although I think Wrestling Oracle countered it quite nicely by showing how Rusev's moveset is athletic enough to get over. "Fans are already warming to Rose based off of the positive cheers at Rose’s offense." - could have done with a video here tbh. If you reference something in your debate then try to provide a link to it as well. I thought you could have done more to counter the Fandango, etc comparisons with Rose although the Santino comparison went some way to making up for it. You could have done with defining where his sustainability could be, for example are you referring to sustainability at the top of the card or in the undercard like Santino? Age argument was very good and a strong climax to your debate. Really strong comparisons here. "Regarding Rose’s longevity, I am not a lemon." - this might have been the worse outro to a debate since Oxi's infamous swerve. WHAT?

Winner - WrestlingOracle

BkB Hulk
The Japanese Buzzsaw:
I don’t think longevity needs a definition. It’s a pretty straight forward word that really only has the one meaning, certainly in this context, unless you’re giving a certain amount of time. A bit of a waste of words, really, and it seems a bit silly when you say “I defined the word longevity” because it’s really just the general definition of what it is.

The midcard acts argument doesn’t point to a lack of longevity either. The question doesn’t ask if he’ll be a main eventer for a long time, nor did your assertion of longevity points you in that direction. As a result, a guy like Rick Martel, who worked the gimmick for years, being brought up hurt your case. Really, it would have been better for you to ignore him completely if you were going to go this way, as it counters the Adonis longevity argument perfectly.

Your Rusev argument was okay, although a little rough. The first paragraph could really be summed up by the last sentence, really. The rest is a bit unnecessary, save for maybe a few words for context. The rest is okay, and brings up some solid points, although the writing flowing more smoothly would have helped you.

I think you’re hindered a bit by this feeling like two separate debates too. It probably would have worked better if you pointed out the collective short-termism, as you didn’t really have a conclusion or an introduction. They’ve been introduced at the same time, so a comment on short-term characters could have helped you.


Alim:
I like that you’ve synthesised the two topics quite well to form it into the one debate, which the last debater struggled with.

I think you need to really work on varying your writing style. The Rose paragraph in particular was very choppy. You have one short sentence. And then another. It’s very monotonous. It isn’t exciting to read. In general, your writing probably needs more life too. It’s very matter of fact, which is fine I guess if you’re writing an academic piece, but you’re doing a job of trying to convince a reader here. Look at what the top debaters do and learn from that.

You did a decent job putting across your viewpoint and providing reasons why, but it feels like you’ve only just scratched the surface. You haven’t really got specific examples, but just said that Rusev has this and Lana can do that. I think that would aid your debate, plus it would also fill it out further. Right now you’ve got a chunk of words for each person without really going too far into them, especially Rusev. With Rose you provided a direct comparison, which was better, but expanding upon it and adding some life to your writing would serve you well.

This felt like a solid essay rather than a debate in a way, but you’re certainly on the right path. You’ve addressed the question well enough, and just need that extra bit more.

WrestlingOracle:
I panned the longevity definition in an earlier debate, but this one is more specific, which is probably what it needs to be if you’re going to do it. Again, I liked that you’ve synthesised both wrestlers together into the one opening as new characters, because it keeps the whole thing together as one debate.

The Rusev arguments weren’t just strong, but you provided great evidence to back it up. I’m not going to go too in-depth here. I just think you’ve done well to cut down Rusev’s gimmick, his character, his current overness (with similar examples provided) and his future chances, which are probably the most important for a debate like this.

Similarly, you’ve put forth a convincing case for Rose. You’ve addressed the opposing view, like you did for Rusev, with regards to the music and age, and you’ve given strong reasons for future prospects. Not only that, but the way that you juxtaposed it with Rusev also keeps the debate flowing as one.

Really, quite an impressive debate. A natural writing style, a debate that flowed despite being two questions in a way, and really well presented arguments.

WrestlingOracle is a strong winner.

Aid180
The Japanese Buzzsaw

Intro: Interesting style. It was short but you made your stance clear and defined longevity. If your longevity definition plays a part in the debate, than this is a good way to start.

Rose: I think you did a good job clarifying about this being about staying over. I like the references to other wrestlers such as Martel, Rico, and Fandango. It helps to give examples like this. You then go into detail about the Adonis example. So that’s good. Then you go into detail about Fandango. This is where I find some faults for this section. It’s not that the Fandango and Santino examples are bad, but it’s that you almost forget about Rose. You don’t really talk about why Rose will fail other than because other guys with gimmicks like this have failed. Anything other than that? Anything specific about Rose that will result in a lack of longevity? I also didn’t quite get the Kofi example with the others. Did he switch characters or gimmicks or something? Are Ryback and Axel included because they changed names? I mean, the face of the WWE started as Prototype and later became a rapper before his current character. If this was a point about a serious character becoming a fun babyface, I don’t think Kofi, Miz, Ryback, or Axel were necessary comparisons. If it was to point out guys who changed gimmicks, I refer back to the Cena example. Maybe I just didn’t understand your point here. Sorry.

Rusev: Your first argument is about look, saying he is too short and stout to be monster character. Is he? I mean, Umaga was pretty monstrous while being pretty rotund. Samoa Joe is pretty flabby and was treated like a monster during his undefeated streak. Rusev is also 300 pounds (at least billed that much). I don’t know if he is really that big, but he looks pretty big compared to the 214 pound Zack Ryder. I guess I am not convinced about the look argument. The can’t talk argument felt empty too. I mean, Khali was a World champion. Umaga was pretty over without speaking. I guess I need some better examples here.

Pros:
Nice Intro
Nice examples for Rose

Cons:
Lack of actually discussing Rose
Weak Rusev arguments

Alim

Intro: Decent intro. It’s pretty standard, but you show which side you are debating, so it covers everything you need. I’m not sure if you were struggling with cutting words when finishing your debate, but if you were, I would suggest limiting some of your intro. I don’t think you need to really mention Bo, Emma, and Paige. Just a suggestion. No real points off for it though.

Rusev: I think this was solid. You counter the mic skills argument with the fact that he has a manager. You mention that he is good in the ring and has a nice variety to his moveset. You mention that anti-American characters do have some longevity. So not bad. My only complaint here is that there really isn’t much. I know we are splitting the debate in half by talking about two wrestlers, but I feel this is a little short. Maybe going into some detail on one or two of your points would help. Maybe like a specific move Rusev uses or how Lana draws in heat for the Rusev act. A little more substance really would help.

Rose: I think the comparisons to Fandango were good. You kept it about both guys and really showed how similar the two are. So I think this was solid. I really don’t have much to add here. Maybe you could have added some sort of counter-argument for someone who thinks Rose is different from Fandango or others. Maybe go into detail about the booking and how WWE has problems consistently building comedy midcard characters. Just something a little more to truly drive your debate home.

Conclusion was solid and finished your points. Just remember to really try and fill your word count as much as you can in future debates. Fit in as many arguments as you can.

Pros:
Good Comparisons
Nice points for Rusev

Cons:
A little lacking in substance

WrestlingOracle

Intro: Nice intro. You defined what you think longevity is and made your stance clear. It was pretty concise too. Not a lot of wasted words. So good job.

Rusev: I think your gimmick argument makes a lot of sense. The times changing and the effectiveness of a foreign heel is really questionable. You then bring this point full circle by mentioning that Lana is getting more over than Rusev and the gimmick is potentially the reason. Then you go on to mention how having a more over manager can be harmful to the act. Good stuff. You then continue to add points by saying that with his gimmick right now, it wouldn’t make sense to switch managers and the inability to speak English makes it really hard to evolve without a manager. Finally you mention that the strength allure gets weakened after a while. You mentioned how strenght doesn’t get anyone over anymore. I think a counter could be made for Cesaro and his amazing feats of strenght. There is more to Cesaro than just that, but his strength really is a big part of his character, and I would have liked to have seen an example for the strength argument or a counter to Cesaro. Still good overall though.

Rose: The individualism argument is interesting. I think you make a good point with the casual fans. A lot of the audience is casual, so it makes sense that they would like stand out characters. You reaffirm this with his current cheers. Then you compare him to former long lasting comedy characters, Santino, Horny, and Funaki. They are longlasting despite not being successful. So good examples. The Jericho character evolution comparison is pretty good too. Your best argument in my opinion is the old counter. No one mentioned age in their debate, but you make a good case saying how Rose isn’t green and others bloomed in their late 30s. The Steve Austin and Sting examples are particularly good. So overall, good use of examples. If I were to be negative, I would have liked a little bit more on what makes Rose so unique. A little bit explaining why he will get over on uniqueness and what that unique feature is would have topped off the argument.

Pros:
Good points and examples
Casual Fan argument
Lana getting more over than Rusev

Cons:
Just a little expansion on Rose’s uniqueness needed

DECISION: WrestlingOracle wins. The debate was the most well rounded and used the words the best. The Japanese Buzzsaw's left me with a lot of questions and arguments and didn’t convince me. Alim's was a tad light on content. The Japanese Buzzsaw just needs to tighten up the arguments a little more in the future. Make sure nothing can be countered. Alim just needs to finish the extra step and fill up the debate. Use that word count as much as you can.

WINNER: WrestlingOracle


Winner via Unanimous Decision - WrestlingOracle

Tater vs pinkandblack vs Bearodactyl
Do national newspapers have too much of a negative approach towards reporting news?


Spoiler for Debates:
Bearodactyl
An interesting question, that if dissected by someone with anal retentive tendencies could be interpreted and answered any number of ways.
However, the question at the forefront seems to be the most interesting one, and revolves around the words “negative approach (towards reporting news)”.

For when one uses that term, does one mean “making news sound bad”, in other words presenting news in a negative manner, or does it actually mean “focusing too much on the objectively negative events in the world”, in contrast to focusing more on news concerning joyous events?

Thankfully for the sake of this debate, in both instances the answer to the question at hand is the same: no.

In the first interpretation, the main question could be paraphrased to read “Do national newspapers make news sound worse than they actually need to?”. Are they, whether on purpose or unknowingly, viewing things from a bleaker than necessary perspective?

The answer to that lies in first reviewing the essence of a newspaper. It’s raison d’etre, so to speak.

It’s clear that through the years newspapers have been used as a means of propaganda (think Nazi Germany if you need an obvious example) by those in power, and even to this day events are often viewed from the perspective of the part of the world population a particular newspaper caters to instead of from a truly neutral point of view. Yet at its core, a newspaper reports news. It is a means to convey factual information of happenings around the world, from those in the know to those that aren’t. Not to make us cower in fear, nor to hold our hand and tell us everything is alright, but simply to inform us as coherently as possible.

That being said, since it’s of some importance that the information isn’t already massively misconstrued before reaching the general populace and is still factually accurate, a certain expertise on the part of those reporters that are deemed skilled enough to get hired by a national newspaper is expected.

Them shedding their light on the facts, suggesting to us how to interpret things, is an essential part of informing those of us that would have a hard time interpreting happenings by themselves and would therefore less likely understand the world’s goings on if this interpretation didn’t occur.

But because this has to happen, we introduce a human perspective in the telling of the news, and thus have made it nigh impossible for reporters to keep things entirely objective.

Back to the original question, we now have to wonder if this interpretation is not being done overtly negative. I, for one, do not see any evidence to support such a suggestion, although I do acknowledge a subconcious feeling that this IS infact the case residing within me from time to time.

I contribute the existence of this feeling on the essence of the term “cold, hard facts”. They’re not called “warm, fluffy facts” for a reason. Even when discussing negative subjects such as natural disasters or economic turmoil in the most neutral way feasible, their global impact and possible personal consequences will no doubt leave us feeling blue. We’re going to feel bad about sad news whether it’s told to us by simple numbers or with some added sobstory.

Hence, though it may at times seem like storytelling is slanted towards the negative, in all actuality it only feels that way. Which brings us...

.. to our second interpretation of “negative approach”, where we focus on if there’s an unfair amount of negative stories being printed compared to stories of happyness and fluffy bunnies.

The reason I say no to the main question from this pov is much simpler: even if one could factually prove negative stories getting precedent over positive ones in a medium with finite printingspace, it would still be a matter of priority and importance and not unfair bias if this occured, and therefore could by definition never be “too much”.

Ignoring the hardships of the many people in the world would be a sign of disrespect to their suffering and sometimes sacrifice. Hearing about evil ensures we don’t turn a blind eye, and keep debating the topics that matter. Informing us on economic malaise helps us prepare, so life doesn’t catches us unaware. All key information to share, and alas there’s lots of it.

So to conclude:

No, the focus on the particular stories being told by national newspapers is spot on and not overtly and unfairly biased towards the sad, bad and downright evil.

And no, the way these stories are being told is not from an overtly negative perspective.

Therefore, it should be clear that the answer to today’s question is NO, national newspapers do not have too much of a negative approach towards reporting the news.

pinkandblack
As a journalism major and an employer of a local newspaper company in Missouri, I frequently have the opportunity to compare and contrast news that comes out of our town, the state, and the nation as a whole. Through my own personal experience and through reading studies for this debate, I have undoubtedly concluded that more Americans think national newspapers present from more NEGATIVELY than positively. With that said, while I would concede that a lot of national news coverage is negative from a newspaper such as the New York Times, it is no more negative than what you might find at your local newspaper printer. If anything, I believe it to be less negative from a personal standpoint. So with that in mind, my contention is this: while national newspaper have a tendency to report from a negative approach, it is fair and ethical.

I would like to present two main premises to support my contention.
Premise 1: National newspapers often report negative news stories because that's what people pay for. It's supply and demand.
Premise 2: News itself is information, and should seldom be defined as "bad" or "good". It is an objective rending in our society.

To support premise 2, Journalists report, analyze and discuss what happens in a society--positive or negative. Yes they they are inclined to report the unusual because that makes the news. In some countries the government requires the media to produce articles or programs and report happenings in a particular way. Some media follow these instructions in the name of patriotism--as in the US and India where they invariably block news of state's violation of human rights; at other are forced into obedience or rewarded for the services they render for autocratic rulers. Let's count the countries where violation of human rights is the state policy, and watch out if the media really report on these. An attempt to make national newspapers more positive would simply be an underhand attempt to suppress media freedom. I vehemently contend that journalists should report the truth, weather it be positive or negative. Informing the public about a bad thing done by a bad person is not being "negative". It is instead an ethical obligation from a journalism standpoint.

A biennial news attitudes survey was conducted July 20-24 of last year among 1,501 adults nationwide, with supplemental data collected on other, smaller surveys in June, July and August. These surveys find that while the public generally holds news organizations in low regard, they are more trusted as a source of information than are federal, state and local governments, the Obama administration and business corporations. (source: http://www.people-press.org/2011/09/...-institutions/) 59% say they trust information from national news organizations. By comparison, about half say they have a lot or some trust in information provided by their state government (51%) and the Obama administration (50%). Smaller percentages trust information from federal agencies (44%), business corporations (41%), Congress (37%) or candidates running for office (29%). This study shows that even though national news coverage can be unfairly labeled as "too negative", Americans still trust it over almost any other source. Moreover, while the press’s overall reputation in many areas has declined, majorities continue to say that news organizations care about how good a job they do (62%) and are highly professional (57%).

To summarize, I believe that national news journalists are not inventors or creators of news. Events, albeit negative or positive, are determinable factors constituting news. Journalists must adhere to the media ethics to provide readers with true information. Do negative stories often time get publicized more than the positive ones? In some cases absolutely, but this is not exclusive to national newspapers. Newspapers are inclined to broadcast the most interesting stories in the same way that a television channel broadcasts their most watched program during primetime. National news is a privilege every American has access to because it is profitable. Before we attack national newspapers for sensationalizing the negative stories over the positive ones, we should ask ourselves as citizens why we often tend to crave them more. A journalism professor once told me that only reporting/reading positive news is like eating dessert every night for supper. I conclude that a public that is shielded from the things that are not positive, is a public that is ill-informed and cannot make reasonable decisions about the world around them and how they want the world around them to evolve. Thank you.

Tater
Do national newspapers have too much of a negative approach towards reporting news? Selling newspapers is a business. It's a tough landscape out there for print media. There is no such thing as too much negativity if it gets people to buy newspapers.

The Decline of National Newspapers.

National newspaper circulation has been in a steady decline since the 90s. Television and radio news have long been adversaries of print media but it was when the internet came along that the newspapers really started to see a decline in their circulation. Over a twenty year span from 1990-2010, Sunday circulation of newspapers dropped from 62.6 million to to 46.2 million. Daily circulation has dropped even further from 62.3 million to 43.4 million. Newspapers have been hit even harder in recent years. In 2001, the industry employed 414,000 people. Ten years later in 2011, that number had dropped to 246,020. [1] [2]

With more and more people becoming tech-savvy, those numbers are likely to continue to drop. We live in a “need it now” society with people who are more connected than ever. We don't even have to go to a stationary computer to get our news anymore. The news comes with us on our smart phones and tablets. For those people who are constantly connected and who pay attention to the news, by the time it is printed in a newspaper, it is already old news to them. As any Twitter follower can tell you, they find out about the news the moment it happens.

The Psychology of Rubbernecking.

Everyone loves a good car wreck. Oftentimes, when you're stuck in traffic because of a car wreck, once you actually get to the wreck, it's not the wreck that is causing the traffic delay; it is the people braking to rubberneck. Oh, yeah, it sure is terrible, somebody might be hurt; but we're still going to get a good look at what happened. We just can't help ourselves. [3]

No matter how much some people might protest and how much we might try to deny it, we like to see and hear about the bad things that happen in the world. It is built into our basic psychology. When 9/11 happened, people were glued to the news for days on end. You won't find many people who will say they enjoyed it but the fact remains, something really bad happened and it got everyone's attention.

Sensationalism Sells Newspapers.

Sensationalism:

1. subject matter, language or style producing or designed to produce startling or thrilling impressions or to excite and please vulgar taste.

2. the use of or interest in this subject matter, language, or style: The cheap tabloids relied on sensationalism to increase their circulation.
[4]

If we saw a headline on a newspaper about a fireman rescuing a kitty from a tree, our thought would be, “oh, that's cute”, then we would not give it a second thought and would move along with our day. If we saw a headline that read, “twelve children dead in bus accident”, we're going to want to read the story to find out more. The people who produce the newspapers know this, so that's what they give us.

Do national newspapers have too much of a negative approach towards reporting news?

Lowered circulation. The psychology of rubbernecking. Sensationalism sells newspapers. When you add it all up, I don't see how the national newspapers have any choice in the matter. Negativity sells and they have to print what sells to stay in business.

Would it be nice to see more positive news in the newspapers? Yeah, I think it would. But you can't lead with nice stories because that's not what sells. The horrors of the world are what sells. Put all the good news you want to later in the paper. There will always be the minority of people who want to read about good news. Even the people who buy the newspapers based on the horrific headlines will like seeing a bit of good news later in the paper.

I could make the case that more positive news should be included in the newspapers but they would never be headline news. Positive news on the front page is not going to sell newspapers. I could also make the case that it is a sad state of society we live in that wants to see bad news but national newspapers must continue with their negative approach towards reporting news because that's what sells.

At the end of the day, selling newspapers is a business and they are in the business of selling newspapers. They are forced to print what sells. Violence sells. Negativity sells. By reporting bad news, they are simply doing what's best for business.


Spoiler for Judging Cards:
Anark
Bearodactyl
I think you had an interesting angle in your point about news not necessarily being negative in itself but being interpreted that way by the reader, but you could have expanded on it a lot more. The second big point regarding the importance of so-called negative news was excellent, though again I think you could have dedicated more time to it and expanded upon it instead of having such a long-winded intro explaining your interpretation, which you really could have summed up within a sentence or two. This is a well written piece, but my main problem with it is that the parts of the debate that were intended to directly influence me that your stance was the correct one seemed very rushed.

pinkandblack
I really liked the early comparison with local print news as it set the scene for the rest of your debate. I also liked that instead of disputing the negativity of the reported news, you homed in on the validity of the ‘too much’ part of the question. The section regarding positive news being an ‘underhand attempt to suppress media freedom’ was fantastic, but the following section seemed to veer off course a little. I’m not sure how much people trusting newspapers a bit more than political administrations affects the amount or justification of negativity that’s reported, though at the same time it was some interesting information and statistics which still complimented the debate as a whole. You also finished with a great conclusion, and I loved you flipping the question on its head and placing the blame on the reader for wanting the bad news in the first place.

Tater
Another really well written debate. You make an undeniable point about the culture of rubber-necking and you were right to focus on the business side of things, as newspapers are first and foremost a business. The section on the decline of newspaper sales went into a little too much unnecessary detail imo, using space which you could have used to make another supporting point. The whole debate was pretty focused on newspapers being businesses and needing bad news to sell, but it was a point covered in the Debate B while they also raised other points. Swapping that sales decline stats paragraph for a paragraph detailing another reason why your stance is right may well have swung the decision your way.

VERDICT
This one was tough to judge and it took me three reads to eliminate Bearodactly and another to finally make the call. I’m going with pinkandblack as they covered the points made in both other debates while adding additional reasoning and scoring higher on the substance scale. The personal touch at the beginning was nice too, and though it wasn’t a clincher it added real authority to the stance. I’m interested to see the other judges’ comments and I won’t be surprised to see a split decision win for any of these debates.

Winner: Rupert Murdoch (and pinkandblack)

ZOMBO
Bearodactyl

An interesting breakdown of the question, and I liked that approach. Feels like a "fuller" setup than the others, in the sense that you're attacking the question at it's root. The question is if you attack it well.

When delving into your first question, I feel that there are some paragraphs that act as filler which don't really push forward the points you're trying to get at (in particular, when discussing the essence of a newspaper). I feel a good chunk of this could be cut / summarized more succinctly.

When you get back on the question, you just state that you don't see any evidence towards the negative approach, but indicate a feeling that there is one. It'd be nice if there was some evidence here in terms of a survey of the public in terms of how the news comes across to them (a quick google search led me to an article citing how much more bad news is reported in the paper than good news, and how that appeals to human psychology).

The above ties in with your approach to the second question, and shows that a bias DOES exist.

Ultimately, although you have some eloquent writing, I feel that your arguments aren't very compelling without some facts / research to back them up. Instead, it's a nicely worded opinion piece, but one that has holes to be poked at.

pinkandblack

Another unique way to attack the question. While you concede that papers report too much bad news, you say they are justified in doing so (therefore, your stance is that they don't have too much of a negative stance when reporting)

The way you break down your argument into premises was very effective, I thought. It would've been nice to see something as a reference to back up your claim that people pay for negative news stories (as mentioned in Bearodactyl's feedback, a simple google search turns up a few results on that right away). So, although the point is FAIRLY evident, you should just go that extra step to make sure the reader is left 100% onboard with your proposition.

The breakdown of premise 2 is solid, and some factual evidence to back up your claims is good here. Your conclusion is effective, summarizing WHY you don't think newspapers have too much of a negative approach. Overall, an enjoyable debate to read.

Tater

Another creative approach, analyzing this question purely from the perspective of the newspaper as a business.

Top to bottom, this debate builds in the direction that you set out immediately in the introduction. You use sources well, and compellingly, to get your point across.

I don't really have any kind of criticisms here. You took the question, and crafted an answer that doesn't really leave room for counters or doubt to creep into the reader's mind. That's a successful debate. Well written, cleanly laid out, and bulletproof.

THE DECISION

All three debates were well-written, leaving me feeling good about some fresh challenges for the upper echelon of the Social Division. That said, Tater's approach shut down any opposition and takes this one.

Aid180
Bearodactyl

Interesting you are debating two interpretations of the question. I feel in a debate that needs every word possible, this may cost you, but we’ll see. I do like how you explained your interpretation in the intro, but I feel you were a tad wordy with it. The positives though are that you are bringing a certain style and tone to the debate early, so it’s solid.

The propaganda point is interesting. I didn’t think of the question like this. You use this to lead into the point that newspapers from certain areas focus on said areas. This then brings to your main point, newspapers report news. Newspapers are papers for news. They are there to inform us. I like how you bring up that the news has to be somewhat interpreted already to give the less intelligent the ability to understand the news. The news is for the general population, so it has to be presented in a way everyone can understand. I like how you transfer this to the point that human perspective makes it impossible to be entirely objective.

Your next point is the use of the phrase, “cold, hard facts.” I thought this was clever. The idea that even covering negative subjects objectively will still feel negative is kind of obvious. . It’s still good to write that down anyway I suppose. Your final points here are about negative stories in general. This paragraph is pretty good. “Ignoring the hardships of the many people in the world would be a sign of disrespect to their suffering and sometimes sacrifice. Hearing about evil ensures we don’t turn a blind eye, and keep debating the topics that matter. Informing us on economic malaise helps us prepare, so life doesn’t catches us unaware. All key information to share, and alas there’s lots of it.“ I don’t really have much to say about it. It makes logical sense to share the bad stories.

Your conclusion was solid. You re-stated your stance and answered the question. I’ve got really nothing more to add here. I guess if I had any complaints overall, I would have liked to see a counter about how it seems positive stories aren’t really reported. You have a line about some stories getting covered over others, but I would have liked a little more on this.

Pros:
Cold, Hard Facts point
Ignoring Hardship point
Explaining how you answered the question

Cons:
I would have liked some more on why positive stories aren’t reported

pinkandblack

Interesting start. I didn’t quite know which side you were leaning towards until the bold, but I think this will be good. Good thing I wasn’t drinking, or I would have had no idea which side you were taking. . I jest. So you think they are negative, but it is a fair and ethical negative approach. At least that’s what I think you said. I guess we’ll see if that is consistent.

I like the use of premises. It helps to structure your debate a little differently. It makes it stand out a bit from the others. Your premise 2 paragraph ultimately concludes with the idea that reporting negative news isn’t negative, but instead an obligation for journalism. The society argument is interesting. I get it, but I don’t feel like it adds anything to your argument. At least to me anyway. I feel like you should have focused more on the final idea of the paragraph, reporting negative news is not negative. I get the whole obedience thing and bias for some countries. So I guess you have a point.

So your next point is that news coverage can be unfairly labeled as "too negative", Americans still trust it over almost any other source. Alright. I guess this is for premise 1, right? I guess not. I’m not really seeing anything about supply and demand. Just that they trust the news slightly more than the government. Or at least 59% do anyway. I feel a poll of 1501 adults is kind of small. But that’s just a minor point. I guess overall, I’m having issues with where this argument of trusting the news more than congress fits in premise 1 or 2.

Okay. I see that premise 1 made it into the final paragraph here. “Newspapers are inclined to broadcast the most interesting stories in the same way that a television channel broadcasts their most watched program during primetime. National news is a privilege every American has access to because it is profitable.” This was nice. The journalism teacher quote is a nice touch. So going back to your intro, you think news is negative, but it is fair and ethical. I guess I’m not seeing it here in the conclusion. So a public that is shielded from negative things is an ill-informed public? I guess that answers your stance. So newspapers have to be negative, right? Therefore they do not have too much of a negative approach, right? I think that is what you were trying to say.

Pros:
The premises were a nice touch
Negative News isn’t Negative Point
Journalist Obligation Point

Cons:
A little convoluted at the end
The poll comparing trustworthiness felt out of place

Tater

Intro: There is no such thing as too much negativity. Gotcha. Your point is clear. That’s good. So you mention it is a business. I would love to see if this point comes back up in your debate. Solid intro though.

Decline of National Newspapers: Alright, so how does this matter to the topic? Newspapers are declining. Yup. You provide good stats to prove this. People want news sooner and as it happens. Yup. Makes sense. My issue is that I don’t think really adds anything to the debate. I mean, just adding a sentence about negativity in news in relation to the decline of newspapers would have helped. Maybe this comes up later, but I would have liked some sort of connection.

The Psychology of Rubbernecking: Ok, see, you made the connection between negativity and rubbernecking. That’s what the last point was missing. This is a good example to point out negativity draws. I think the 9/11 example is a little extreme as it was a terrorist attack, but the point still stands. No harm there. The car wreck example is really good. I think it was a good example. That and I just watched the American Dad episode about rubbernecking, so I lol’d.

Sensationalism Sells Newspapers: The definition is a nice touch. Your points about the headline are true as well. You make it known that the negative headline will sell more than the positive headline. So this is a good point too.

Do national newspapers have too much of a negative approach towards reporting news?: So do they? You answer the question with, “When you add it all up, I don't see how the national newspapers have any choice in the matter. Negativity sells and they have to print what sells to stay in business.” When you say they have no choice, it leads me to the idea that you think they do have too much of a negative approach because they have to in order to sell papers. Going back to your intro stance, they have to be negative to sell. Ok. So it’s consistent, but do they have too much of a negative approach? I really want to throw you a bone here. I think you have a pretty good debate. My issue is that I don’t see the answer to the question. I think you hint that it is too much of a negative approach by saying they have to have a negative approach, but you don’t outright say it. For all I know, you could really mean that they do not have too much of a negative approach because they need to have said approach. I mean, you prove the point in your conclusion well. “At the end of the day, selling newspapers is a business and they are in the business of selling newspapers. They are forced to print what sells. Violence sells. Negativity sells. By reporting bad news, they are simply doing what's best for business.” The problem is that this isn’t the question asked in the debate. If only you added: “They do have too much of a negative approach. But in the end, it is needed to sell papers.” That would have helped you tremendously.

Pros:
Nice Style
Good Examples
Good sell on the need for negativity

Cons:
I don’t think the question is truly answered. Even just one throwaway at the end to the question would have won this for you.

DECISION: Tater's was the best debate, but ultimately, it didn’t feel like the debate about whether newspapers have too much of a negative approach. It felt more like an argument for why they are negative. pinkandblack also felt like it got a little lost in the end. You concluded that the public needs negativity to be reasonable. So newspapers do not have too much of a negative approach? That and the poll felt kind of weird. Bearodactyl's was solid and answered the question well. It wasn’t the best, but there wasn’t a lot wrong with it. So Bearodactyl wins.

Winner: Bearodactly


Spoiler for 4th Judge:
Seabs
And there' s a 3 way tie so I guess I've gotta find time to jump in as a 4th judge now. If you're upset that I'm judging these without anonymity then boo hoo. Not giving long feedback for each debate just reasoning for my choice of winner. You've already got 3 pieced of debate feedback anyway and there's football about to start.

All 3 debates needed to stay on focus better for my liking. There were signs of a really good debate in all of them but then you all got sidetracked talking about other stuff and answering other questions. Just answer the question you're provided with and avoid going off at too much of a tangent. When you've finished your debate, read it back with the sole intention of thinking how does this point directly answer the question I'm given to answer. Bearodactyl has some really elegant writing but you spent too much time setting the question up and then not enough time actually proving your arguments. Set them up like you did here (which was great) but do it much more concisely. Then get to your arguments and starting proving them rather than just stating them. pinkandblack's debate was more focused aside from the trust paragraph which started answering another question before coming back to the actual question at hand. When you were on topic it was very good though and you made your arguments better than any of your opponents. Tater was also way too off topic. Key words in the question that you took no notice of - TOO MUCH. Ok it's negative and you explained why. You did that well but the question wasn't is it negative or positive and why is it negative or positive? The question was is it TOO MUCH of a negative approach. Read the question and take it in properly and like I said before, go over your debate and really critically think about how well every point is answering the actual question. For the question you answer you answer it pretty well but it was the wrong question so you shot yourself in the foot super bad. All 3 debates could be very good with better focus on the question but I thought pinkandblack stayed on focus the most and made the best arguments for the actual question presented.

Winner - pinkandblack


Winner via 4th Judge - pinkandblack

MoveMent vs BOOGIE COUSINS vs RetepAdam.
You are given a new NFL team. You are allowed to take any player of any position except for a QB. Who do you take?


Spoiler for Debates:
BOOGIE COUSINS
To me this sort of came down to two people, Calvin Johnson, and Adrian Peterson, And I choose “Megatron” Calvin Johnson, mostly because i feel like I can get more out of the rest of Megatron’s career than i can with the remainder of AP’s. That isn’t a knock on Peterson, he’ll go down as one of the greats, but I'd rather have Johnson as the guy to start my franchise with.

Calvin Johnson is almost unanimously thought to be the best Wide Receiver in the game. He’s got a size and strength level that is almost never seen. He’s 6’5” and 236, and fast, which is pretty much unheard of for a receiver that big. he ran a 4.35 40 yard dash which was just .1 off the mark set by Chris Johnson, even though he was 40 pounds lighter than Calvin.

The reason i choose a elite WR over a elite running back like Peterson is i feel like Calvin will take longer to break down, and can play at a elite to good level for well into his 30’s. while Running Backs tend to stop being real productive around the age of 30. Receivers usually take a lot less punishment than a featured RB, they handle the ball maybe 5 or 6 times and are getting tackled by 200 pounds guys. while a elite back will handle the ball 20 or so times and gets hit by 250 pound linebacker, 270 pound Defensive End, or maybe a 300 pound Defensive Tackle. Calvin Johnson’s career total of catches of 572 is nearly 4 times less than Adrian Peterson’s career carries of 2033. They’ve both played the same amount of years but Peterson has taken much more punishment.

Megatron’s numbers are also very comparable to Jerry Rice’s over their first 7 season. Rice had 526 receptions for 9,072 yards and 93 td’s. Johnson has 535 receptions, 8,657 yards and 61 touchdowns. Rice is the nearly unquestioned GOAT of receivers and maybe of the NFL in general. so to be on pace to match those is a true testament to how good the guy is. It’s way too early too say that Johnson is Rice’s equal or better, as he did what he did over the course of 20 years, but he’s had a great start.

He’s also almost un-coverable sometimes. Take a look at when he caught a couple balls in triple coverage.



Now most receivers have trouble dealing with 2 guys on them, let alone 3. It really shows how much faith the QB has by tossing it up to him with men draped on him when there was probably a safer option out there. It goes to show that you can’t even take him out of a play when you put most of your defensive backfield on him.

Also having him on your team would help the other receivers and running backs. If you are going to focus so much attention on him, he will help open up some opportunities for your other players because of the attention he gets. If you put 3 people on him, then that would mean that you are most likely putting single coverage on every other WR, making it easier for them to beat their man. It could also open up some opportunities for your RB to get some more yards since the defense can’t just key in on the run.


Those are the reasons I feel like Calvin Johnson would be your best option to pick up if you are starting a franchise. He's a physical freak, plays at a less punishing position, and can help out your other players by the attention he grabs. Those are all something you need in a person that you're building your team around.

MoveMent
You are given a new NFL team. You are allowed to take any player of any position except for a QB. Who do you take?

If you’re going to give me any player I want but now allow me a quarterback to build my new NFL franchise then that still won’t change my approach to how I’m going to choose. The quarterback is the most important position in the NFL, which is also arguably the most “Team sport” professionally so that says a lot. However the NFL has made it clear with every rule change the focus is to protect the quarterback and overall offense at the expense of the defense.

So if I can’t have a quarterback, my focus is who I’m going to have to protect my quarterback. QB’s aren't exactly easy to find but with all the teams giving out $100 Million dollar contract to QB’s who aren't even elite it’s safe to say if I’m investing that much money I need to make sure they have sufficient time and space to make the right decision with the ball.

And who does that better then Evan Mathis?

While the Eagles as a team has had some slips in the Offensive Line (Mostly due to injuries…and that random moment they refused to block for Vick??) but one thing that has been consistent the past few years and has actually gotten progressively better is Mathis. His performance this past year speaks a lot. He was selected to his first Pro-Bowl and All-Pro team after being in the NFL for nearly a decade. Mathis is very athletic and uses it to his advantage against larger defenders in combination with his speed. Just this past season he was the number 1 in run blocking. Being one of the fastest guards guarantee’s that he’ll almost always be able to get to his man and his length and experienced hands are among his biggest assets. And in the pass block he was ranked #2 being able to efficiently protect Nick Foles/Vick in Chip Kelly’s high powered offense.

Your quarterback needs time and space to make the right decisions with the ball during the game. Whether it be waiting for your man to get free, deciding whether to run, or having to change targets. Anything can happen that cause the play to break down leaving the quarterback to scramble and whether or not you’re fortunate enough to have an athletic quarterback who can extend the play. Every second counts.

This question admittedly makes me want to look at my defensive options as well, but as I stated earlier the NFL if preparing for the game to accommodate the quarterback far more than the defense. You probably couldn't tell because the Number 1 Ranked defense washed the Number 1 Ranked offense in the Super Bowl but if it was one thing about the Broncos that was truly overrated it was their Offensive Line. Not that they weren't good, but during the regular season they faced no real threat on a consistent basis in protecting Peyton Manning in protecting the run or the pass. Once we got to the Super Bowl, and saw Manning not being able to prosper under such defensive presser the importance of the offensive line became clearer because while the Number 1 ranked defensive is going to give you problems regardless, Peyton Manning is not going to fold like that if the Line can at least rival the defense.

The only thing that may turn people away from Mathis is that he’s already 32 years old, but I believe that veteran experience is what every team needs especially on such important positions in the game. Also, the NFL is a win now league having a guy for just 3-4 more years is all you need sometimes if you’re a competent organization.

And if you are a competent organization chances are your first thoughts are what quarterback you’re going to have as your franchise player and how you are going to protect him so that he remains your franchise player especially early in their career. That’s why Evan Mathis should be in everyone’s thoughts after such an amazing performance last season and progressively improving as the years go on.

ProFootballFocus; Evan Mathis
https://www.profootballfocus.com/blo...7-evan-mathis/

RetepAdam.
In the last installment of TDL, I responded to a question about projecting the future value of NFL Draft prospects by suggesting that in the NFL, overall player value is intrinsically linked to the typical on-field value of that player’s position. For instance, I cited the possibility that the best player in the draft in terms of sheer talent could very well have been punter Pat O’Donnell. However, as good a punter as O’Donnell may turn out to be, the mere fact that he plays a position that does not figure prominently into the outcomes of games automatically handicaps his value to the point that it would be nearly impossible for him to outperform even a solid contributor at a more important position. The same is true, to some extent, for other positions as well.

With this in mind, it becomes important to identify the positions that are thought to provide the greatest overall value, as I did in the following excerpt from the debate:

Quote:
Earlier this week, FiveThirtyEight’s Neil Paine published a study analyzing the draft cost (volume and value of draft picks) teams were spending on players at each position, using the average number of players from each position typically deployed on each snap (1 QB, 5 OL, 1.3 RBs, etc.) as a weight to determine an “index” of how NFL teams valued each position. The results were as follows:

Spoiler for Appendix A:


As we can see, quarterback was far and away the highest-valued position, followed by defensive line and running back. While Paine’s index did not differentiate between pass rushers (defensive ends) and interior linemen (defensive tackles), the large gap between QBs and RBs would suggest that DEs, who are tasked with pressuring the quarterback, are rated significantly higher than RBs, while DTs, whose typical responsibility is stopping the run, likely lag slightly behind RBs in projected value.
Based on Paine’s analysis, it becomes clear that the matchup that has the greatest impact on the outcome of a game is that between a quarterback and the opposing pass rush. Thus, if we are not allowed to take a quarterback, it stands to reason that the next best option is to take the best pass rusher available, and beyond a shadow of a doubt, that player is Houston Texans DE J.J. Watt.

Since Watt’s breakout sophomore season in 2012-13, his production has been unparalleled. Over the past two seasons, Watt led all players with 31 sacks. However, arguably more impressive is the fact that Watt has managed to rack up over 100 solo tackles in addition to his gaudy sack total. Among all players not named J.J. Watt with at least 100 solo tackles in the past two seasons, the next highest sack total belongs to Arizona linebacker Daryl Washington… with 12. Simply put, no other player even comes close to Watt’s ability to singlehandedly blow up plays all over the field.

It’s no surprise that Watt’s superior playmaking ability earned him NFL Defensive Player of the Year honors in the 2012-13 season, and despite seeing his sack totals dip in 2013-14, Watt was once again the best defender in the NFL, according to ProFootballFocus’s grading system. It’s also worth noting that although there was surely more in play than just the addition of Watt, Houston jumped from 30th in the NFL in yards allowed during the 2010-11 season to 2nd overall in Watt’s rookie year. And despite never having cracked the top 10 in defensive yardage in the franchise’s nine-year existence prior to drafting Watt, the Texans have ranked no worse than 7th since Watt came aboard in 2011.

Perhaps the only thing scarier than the idea of lining up against J.J. Watt is the idea that he is still likely to get better as the years go on. Coming into the 2014-15 season, Watt will be entering his fourth season at a position where the average All-Pro player has over five years experience. Additionally, Watt has started all 52 games to date, never once being forced to sit due to injury. In other words, quarterbacks in the AFC South are going to see a lot of Watt over the next few years, and they might not have even seen the best of him yet. In an increasingly offense-oriented (and especially pass-oriented) league, very few players possess the ability to tip the balance back in the defense’s favor. At only 25 years old, J.J. Watt has already established himself as the most dominant player at the most important non-QB position in football, and his physical upside and tremendous durability suggest that he will remain on top for years to come, making him the obvious answer to the question at hand.


Spoiler for Judging Cards:
ZOMBO
BOOGIE COUSINS

Strong opening, identifying your main two options but clearly picking one. I'm glad that you made sure to list reasons to knock Peterson here and there in order to deal with any counters on his end.

The facts you list as pros for Calvin are all solid and make perfect sense. I feel that you had the opportunity to squeeze a LITTLE more out of it though. For one, a point about the NFL becoming a more passer-friendly league with restrictive coverage rules would've helped justify a WR over a RB.

A link or two that hammers home the point to the reader about RB's decline after 30 (and comparing it to a WR's numbers after 30, for example), would also be favourable. Give the reader some NUMBERS~! to truly visualize your opinion and make the point that much stronger. I mean, what you're saying is accurate, but it's just a suggestion to help reinforce your point.

Overall, a solid debate top to bottom.

MoveMent

An interesting slant to approaching the question, but one that you did well enough in justifying the protection of your fictional QB.

You break down why an offensive line is crucial to protecting your most important player, so choosing Mathis makes sense.

You don't take any time to look at other O-linemen (who may be younger and nearly as effective) and knock them down a peg, which would've bolstered your stance some. Also, some facts that show the impact / value of premier O-Lineman vs other positions would help justify your selection. Just a couple things I'd suggest to make your debate stronger.

Overall, it's a good little piece on Mathis, but I don't know if it's truly as convincing as the other two in terms of analysis.

RetepAdam.

The chart / source used to set up your reasoning behind taking a defensive lineman was an AWESOME start to your debate, and really sets the stage for your pick. This was crucial, because it limits your comparison now between Watt and other DLs.

The statistical analysis and references that you used also leaves the reader feeling "shit, no one else is in his league at that position". You list his age, individual stats, Houston's team stats, and everything is in his favour. Just a great debate all around.

THE DECISION

Three solid debates, but I believe there is a clear winner here. RetepAdam. set up his argument very effectively, and hammered home his choice with statistical references.

Aid180
BOOGIE COUSINS

Intro: Starting off with arguably the two best non-QB offensive players is a nice start. AP and Megatron are considered the best at their position and it would be crazy not to think about them. I guess my only knock here on your intro is that you just didn’t state why them over other players. It’s only very minor though. You did state that you are picking Calvin Johnson, so you made your decision clear so I know who you are debating. So solid work.

Body: I like how you cover his measurables. I don’t know how many non-Football fans realize what a specimen he is. As someone who has seen him live while he was at Georgia Tech, he is truly amazing. Next you state why you eliminated Peterson. This is all true. Running backs decline sooner. Running backs take more punishment. Running backs, especially ones like AP, have big workloads. I guess my only real knock is that you didn’t get into their injury histories. That could have been something to mention. Also, grammar was getting a little spotty here. It’s coming off as a bit rushed. It’s not a knock for me, but it could be for another judge. So I’d be careful with that.

Next you compare Johnson to Rice, a legendary WR. It’s nice to solidify Johnson as a great WR and potential a Hall of Famer, but I think I would have compared Calvin to some of the current WRs in the league to show why he is better than some of the younger guys. I mean, what about the younger AJ Green, Julio Jones, Demaryius Thomas, or Alshon Jeffery? That’s just what I probably would have done here. It is nice that you proved how great Calvin is though, so that is good enough.

Next you show videos of Calvin catching the ball in triple coverage. See, this is where you can really bring home the win with an argument like this. You highlight why Calvin is amazing and what he does better than everyone else. You continue to connect the ability to catch while covered by more than one defender by linking it to that ability opening up the field for other players. You even mention that it can open up space for the RB, which would help a lesser RB, who you decided to take over AP. So overall, good points here.

Conclusion: You summed up your points briefly here and re-answered the question. So solid overall. To put on my negative hat for a minute, my biggest issue here is that you really never mentioned how helpful the best WR would be over say the best DB or lineman or linebacker. I think it would have helped if you eliminated those positions as well. Also, I think it would have been cool if you mentioned Calvin’s vertical as well. He can jump so high and reach so far that he has an incredible catch window. That would have truly explained how insane he really is.

Pros:
Nice job highlighting Calvin’s amazing abilities
Nice use of videos
Great job pointing out how he can help other positions

Cons:
A little weak on counters for linemen and defensive players

MoveMent

Intro: Evan Mathis? Interesting choice. I’ll be honest, when I first was skimming the three debates to see who you picked I thought you meant Robert Mathis . Anyway, I can’t say I know of every offensive linemen in the NFL, but I did enjoy how you pointed out how important the guy protecting the QB is. If I were to come up with a complaint for this part, it would probably be that you spent too much time telling me you can’t pick a QB even though we know that because it is the question topic. Just a minor complaint.

Body: Alright. You start off well telling me about Mathis’ accomplishments this past season and how well he stacks up compared to other linemen. You then go on to make a point at how important they are to a QB. I think that really helps.

Next you begin your counter for why you didn’t pick a defensive player. I do want to point out that the Broncos line wasn’t overrated at all. In fact, it was very injured. I think they were missing 2-3 starters and were running with a patchwork line that truly worked because of how quick Manning’s release is. So with that said, it makes a lot of your words in this paragraph feel kind of meaningless to me. Besides that, the point still makes sense. If Manning’s line was better, he would have been better during the Super Bowl. I just don’t think this example in particular is the best choice. I think it would have helped you to mention just how important a single linemen is to team chemistry on the line with comparing Manning losing his center during the playoffs.

Now you bring up the elephant in the room: age. This is where I think you should have focused more arguments on. You ended up selecting the oldest player of the three debates. I guess I would have liked to see more on why a veteran experience is so important or why a guy can’t be a veteran at say 28. I get the win now argument, I just wish there were more points here.

Conclusion: This was solid. I think you make excellent points for why a lineman is so important, especially because the QB is so important. I guess I have nothing else to add. I think you did a solid job, but I don’t know if your age argument was strong enough. I guess we’ll see.

Pros:
Great job explaining how important linemen are
Nice job explaining how good Mathis is

Cons:
Not the strongest age argument

RetepAdam.

Intro: Well this was an interesting way to start. I guess it’s pretty effective, but it did take up a lot of space. You do highlight positions and how one may be more important than the other. It did set up a good way to eliminate the other positions and show why your choice, Defensive End, is the best choice. So that was good. Then you selected J.J. Watt. So you got who you are choosing out of the way. So I guess that my only issue is that this takes up a lot of time and space to get to the choice of Watt, but I don’t think it was bad.
Body: STATS. You brought them here. Obviously Watt has been a defensive force, but you make this well known just how much of a force he has been. Defensive player of the year. Leads all players in sacks the last two years. I guess if I want to be negative and pick something apart, isn’t Watt’s rookie year the same year Houston hired defensive coordinator Wade Phillips? Maybe that has a lot to do with the changes in defensive rankings. Watt probably helped a lot though. It’s hard to argue with the numbers and the PFF grading system though. I like the little added videos. Clowney is pretty disruptive.

The best part of your argument is the age. There are plenty of great players, but how many of them are under the age of 26? Unfortunately, the age argument is only a few sentences . I guess it’s not too bad, but I would have loved for you to really drive the point home at how young he is and how he potentially hasn’t peaked yet. I do like how you brought up his lack of injuries. It helps to show how consistent he can be.

Conclusion: The conclusion wraps up the points you made. So good job. I guess my only real complaints here are that you probably could have driven home the age argument just a bit more. I think you spent a lot of words in the intro that were ultimately unnecessary. You did use that space to eliminate the other positions, so it’s not all bad.

Pros:
Nice way of eliminating other positions
STATS
Nice use of sources and videos

Cons:
Age point needed a little more meat IMO

DECISION:

Alright fellas. This is pretty hard. I really appreciate you all picked different players of different ages at different positions. It made for a really fun judging for me. Unfortunately, all three of you cannot win. So I’ve got to be a little mean here. MoveMent, my biggest issue with your choice is age, and unfortunately, I don’t think your counter argument for age was strong enough to convince me to start a new franchise around a 32 year old player. RetepAdam., I think you were on a very good track but I don’t think you really had enough behind your best argument for Watt, his age. BOOGIE COUSINS, you did good explaining just how much impact Calvin has. The issue is that you didn't really counter other positions as much as you could have. I guess in the end, all RetepAdam. really needed was to add a little depth to his argument, even still, you did cover really all you needed for age. So I guess RetepAdam. wins. This was close though.

WINNER: RetepAdam.

JM
BOOGIE COUSINS
What is there is well written. I think you did a good job explaining when MEGATRON is a better option than ALLDAY but I was pretty much left wondering the entire debate why it came down to just those 2 players and that bothered me. You said “To me this sort of came down to two people, Calvin Johnson, and Adrian Peterson”. Why? They are obviously 2 of, if the THE 2 greatest non-QB offensive weapon in the league and it probably does go without saying why those 2 were chosen from their counterparts at those positions but there are a lot of other positions and no explanation was given as to why you didn’t go in those directions. Really would have liked to have seen that. Other than that, well done in explaining why Calvin is elite, can be elite for a while and showing why he is an absolutely nightmare to try to defend.

MoveMent
This one was good. I liked your analysis for choosing someone that protects the QB since you weren’t able to pick a QB. When I started reading I assumed you were going to pick a Left Tackle since they (usually) are the ones protecting the QBs blindside so I was a little surprised there. Not necessarily a bad surprise if you can support it, just a thought I had while reading. When I got to your selection I was a bit disappointed, since I hate the Eagles since he’s so old but I think you made some good arguments to make this less of an issue. I liked the leadership point and the win now point. Overall this one was well done with strong arguments.

RetepAdam.
I liked this one. You gave some nice reasoning for your selection and it was a thorough analysis. Can’t pick a QB so you pick the position that is most responsible for making the apposing QB’s life difficult on the field. Very sound. Once you landed on DE Watt is the obvious choice so no head scratcher there. Good arguments, good use of STATS to back up your claim and the fact that he’s already elite at the age of 25 really makes this a great choice. The GIFS were a nice addition as well.

Decision
I really enjoyed this debate as I really had no idea where people would go with this. It’s such a broad spectrum of choices. When deciding here the two things I really looked at were A) the position you chose and how you supported this and B) the player you chose at that position and how you supported this. For me, the debate that did these 2 things the best was RetepAdam.. BOOGIE COUSINS really lacked reasoning for why they decided on the two players/positions they did. MoveMent's was similar to RetepAdam. but what put RetepAdam. over the top was the added appendix (very straight forward approach) and you chose a player that arguably (most likely) hasn’t even reached his potential yet and is already among the very best at his position.


Winner via Unanimous Decision - RetepAdam.

Rigby vs RAB vs Hoopy Frood vs Mountain Rushmore
Universities should only teach in smaller groups of no more than 20 students rather than teaching 100+ students in one lecture. Agree or Disagree?


*Mountain Rushmore no-showed*

Spoiler for Debates:
RAB

“Universities should only teach in smaller groups of no more than 20 students rather than teaching 100+ students in one lecture.”

This is correct. This is because a lecturer teaching a smaller class can provide many things which a lecturer of a bigger class cannot.

Most students pay money to go to university. This means that class sizes should be tailored to what works best for students. Let’s first take a look at one of the most important aspects of university: feedback. Feedback is important as it teaches pupils what they’ve done wrong in assignments or tests and allows them to learn from these mistakes. Feedback in a smaller class size will have more detail and expertise than in a larger class. Lecturers will read and assess assignments or coursework in a smaller class, therefore giving quality feedback, whereas assistants will do this in larger classes. Whilst the assistant’s feedback might be good, it simply cannot match the quality of an experienced and battle-hardened lecturer. Still on the topic of feedback, it is also noteworthy that in a smaller class feedback is likely to be more prompt than in a larger class. As a student myself, I can say that receiving feedback sooner rather than later is a key part of my education and this played a huge role in me deciding which university to go for. Furthermore, a student paying for a course should expect a quality academic environment. Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota says that they offer smaller class sizes for exactly this reason – they provide a better academic environment than classes which are larger in size.

“B-b-but… the argument can be made that larger classes mean that a university can provide an education to more people, right?”

Yes, you may be right in saying that in larger classes more people will receive an education. However, who is going to have the better quality education? The student who had regular contact with their lecturer as part of a small group of students or the student who sat struggling throughout the years, feeling as if they were just 1 of 130; too distant from their lecturer to ask for help? The student who was able to regularly ask questions and receive in depth analysis from their lecturer is likely to have received a better quality education than the student who felt too distant to ask a question. It really comes down to an ancient, but simple, rule: quality over quantity. Education is important primarily to the student. They need a high standard of education and a university can provide this by only teaching in smaller groups.

“Okay, you’ve covered the size of classes with regards to the quality of learning, but what about success, both during their tenure at university and afterwards?”

Class sizes affect the success of students at university. Success is doing well in exams, getting a good degree and having the skills to back it up. As discussed previously, students in smaller classes receive a higher quality of education than someone from a larger class. Thus, students from a smaller class are better equipped for exams than students from a larger class. Lecturers of smaller classes can meticulously plan and deliver pre-exam workshops tailored to weaknesses of students, whereas with larger classes this is not possible. Better exam results mean better degrees, e.g first class honours, and a better degree gives students from smaller classes an immediate leverage over students from larger classes in the job market. Furthermore, as workshops are more personal and weakness orientated in smaller classes, students hailing from these classes are likely to have better skills than those from larger classes who perhaps did not receive enough personalised tuition in their workshops. To support my view that smaller class sizes mean better exam results, research conducted by the University of Colorado Boulder has determined that in larger class sizes, student outcomes are harmed.

To conclude, universities should only teach in smaller groups because, as supported by research, these groups offer many things that larger groups simply cannot; close attention and detail during lectures, close one-on-one help during lectures/workshops, a better chance at getting good grades in exams and, as a result of that, a better chance of securing employment after university.

However, if you still happen to doubt that smaller class sizes are the way to go, then fear not because research conducted by the Minnesota Private College Research Foundation shows that a whopping 90% of students found that being in a class which was smaller in size helped them with their studies. Coming back to the fact that students pay money for their university tuition, why should they settle for larger class sizes when fellow students, in their overwhelming majority, have decided that smaller class sizes are best?

They shouldn’t. Period.

Hoopy Frood

The purpose of a university education is to prepare yourself for the real world, so that you can best represent that universities name brand, and funnel money back to the university as satisfied alumni. Whether a university is public or private, the bottom line will always be cash flow. Harvard University’s endowment fund at the end of the fiscal year for 2012 was over thirty billion dollars.[1] That’s a lot of satisfied graduates.

A common complaint about university life is that the class size is too large for the teacher to effectively teach. [2] As someone who has been through the university system, I believe large classes have their uses for first and second year courses and should not be discouraged. Large classes are cost effective for the university, and by extension, the student paying for that education.

People tend to give large numbers of students in a course, in the couple hundreds or even thousands as seen in the NBC News article, for why university courses should be taught in smaller numbers. The thing is this large number of student courses are necessary to allow as many students as possible to take the classes they would like. Typically, the largest classes are always the classes everyone has to take; your entry level English courses, your entry level Math courses, some university core classes, or the first level classes for a course of study. These classes are so popular, that in order to offer them universities have two choices, a three hundred person class with one teacher and a couple teaching assistants, or fifteen twenty person classes taught by five separate teachers. On a campus with twenty buildings capable of holding a class, classes offered from seven in the morning to nine at night, and twenty courses that might have what some would consider an over sized class, is it more cost efficient for a university to schedule twenty classes, or three hundred classes? Each class takes up teachers, time slots, and lecture halls, that could be put to use for classes people actually want to take. Cost of these resources gets passed along to the student.

Not everybody who gets in to university is cut out for the major they are pursuing, or even for university as a whole. As one of my professors once told me, large first year classes are often meant to weed out people who would not last in the program. What a novel concept, instead of taking their money and letting them decide three years in to a program that they are not cut for it, you help them realize this after a class or two.

So, some of the largest classes are remedial English and Math courses that universities have to offer because the state requires them to dumb down and diversify entrance standards?[3] Contrary to popular belief, studies show that class size has zero effect on a student’s ability to learn in not only remedial courses[4][5][6], but in all large class settings. Since credits are not offered for remedial classes on stuff the students should have learned previously, universities are actually losing money by not offering smaller classes. This all comes back to the resources available.

From personal experience in college, large classes can do well, but it comes down to three things. What teachers are used? Different teachers have different strengths. Was the classroom was designed to be of adequate size and acoustics for a class that size? It is not just a remodeled older building tearing down some walls to make a room bigger. The number of quality teaching assistants available. Can they be section leaders and answer questions as well as the professor could have? If all of these factors are there, there is a chance to succeed in a large class. Granted, my largest classes were only a couple hundred, but an engaging teacher can easily carry an hour or two long lectures where the majority of the class understands. Then we go to our section leader for outside help and further smaller group study sessions. They forced you to develop good study habits. The teaching assistants probably should not have had their own classes, but as section leaders they work, and for a fraction of the cost less they gain valuable experience as part of their graduate programs.

Large classes are a help to everyone involved when they are set up correctly. Universities can manage classrooms easier, students can get in to classes easier, teaching assistants get a unique experience, students pay less in tuition because fewer professors are needed, and teachers are not asked to do too much work. It really depends on when the student wants to pay the university, unhappily now, or happily after graduation?

[1] http://www.usnews.com/education/best...ial-endowments

[2] http://www.nbcnews.com/id/21951104/n...able-colleges/

[3] http://www.highereducation.org/repor...ness/gap.shtml

[4] http://www.math.byu.edu/~jarvis/clas...e-preprint.pdf

[5] http://sigmaa.maa.org/rume/crume2010...ve/Gleason.pdf

[6] http://www.dukechronicle.com/blogs/b...-doesnt-matter

Rigby

SIZE MATTERS...?


Disclaimer: The scope of this debate is limited to the US due to the word limit.

The US education system is facing serious problems; its students are outranked in math by 24 countries spanning 4 continents[1] and 1 in 4 US students lack skills essential to leading to a productive life[2]. How can the US confront these issues?

This debate offers a solution: Universities should only teach in smaller groups of no more than 20 students rather than teaching 100+ students in one lecture. That seems like it would solve the problems caused by substandard education. When all other factors are equal, class size does impact student performance[3], so we should just force all the classes to be small, so that all the education is good! Right?

WRONG

First, let's examine the semantics of the debate. "Universities" will be treated as accredited post-secondary education. The previously underlined terms state an absolute limit of 20 students, so that's the standard used in this debate. It's worth noting that universities don't exist in a vacuum, and data regarding class size in primary/secondary education is essential to understanding the trends and issues at hand.

Now to the fine point: Enforcing a 20 student limitation is not physically possible. At the University of Colorado, there are over 30 classes with over 400 students[4]. To make this fit the 20 student limit, these 30 classes would have to be expanded to at least 600 classes. In order to accommodate this change, they'd have to hire more instructors. Instructors earn over $50,000 a year[5] with benefits, which means increased university spending. To cover this spending, tuition would have to skyrocket. US citizens already have over $1,000,000,000,000 in outstanding school loans[6], they can't afford current tuition, let alone the tuition necessary to cover these increased costs.

This is only 1 of over 7,000 universities[7], and University of Colorado isn't one of the largest in the country[8]. Logistically, this cannot work without making universities more exclusive or making higher education an unrealistic luxury. However, the debate isn't limited to can this happen, it's also about should it happen.

It should happen because it'll guarantee improvement!

Looking at the top ten universities in terms of small class size[9], four of them rank in the top five universities in the country. That proves small classes correlate with a better education, right? Think again. Cardinal Stritch University, the university with the most sub-20 student classes, is one of the lowest ranking universities in the country. The bottom ranking 25% of universities in their respective rating category are "RNP", and the US News doesn't publish their rank. Three of the universities closest to reaching a 20 student class standard have this RNP ranking, including Cardinal Stritch. The other three top universities in small class size don't rank in the top 100 universities.

Why are all of these universities ranking so low if they're so close to making this 20 student standard a reality? Because class-size is the result, not the cause, of a broken education system.

But class size is THE reason US education comes behind!



South Korea leads the world in math and reading[1], and class sizes[10]; as in, their class sizes are larger than US classes. Same with Japan, Australia, UK, and Germany, who all outrank the US despite larger class sizes. Class sizes is not the reason the US is behind.

Comparing states in the US that have class-size limits[11] with states without these regulations, there is no correlation between a student's chance of success, or the quality of a state's educational spending, and the enforcement of class-size limitations[12].

But the system is flawed, we NEED reform!

Reform IS possible. Romania had a more broken university system than the US; students cheated without consequence, diplomas were handed out to undeserving graduates for the right price, and higher education was worthless in the country. This went on until a non-government collective was formed that held individuals responsible for corruption in the system. They exposed the fraud, imposed a higher standard, rewarded improvement, restored faith and value in diplomas, and fixed a broken system, all without class-size limitations[13].

The US education system is flawed, there needs to be reform, but the destination of reform (reduced class sizes) cannot be mistaken as the path to reform. Class size matters, but reducing class sizes without properly reforming the education system does not solve the problems, nor is it logistically possible. Disproportionate emphasis on research[14] and athletics[15], flawed tenure processes[16], student debt[17], and Universities placing "publish or perish" pressures on professors[18] are among the real issues that need to be faced along the path to reform, not arbitrary class-size limitations. Therefore, I wholeheartedly disagree with this debate's proposition of 20 student lecture limits.

1. http://www.theguardian.com/news/data...cience-reading
2. http://www.theatlantic.com/education...t-math/281983/
3. http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/...esearch-shows/
4. http://www.nbcnews.com/id/21951104/n.../#.U4-8vCgfzzc
5. http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/...ade-last-year/
6. http://www.consumerfinance.gov/blog/...ts-a-trillion/
7. http://www.braintrack.com/us-colleges/
8. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of..._by_enrollment
9. http://www.usnews.com/education/best...sses-are-small
10. http://economix.blogs.nytimes.com/20...ype=blogs&_r=0
11. http://www.edweek.org/ew/section/inf..._size_map.html
12. http://www.edweek.org/ew/qc/2010/17src.h29.html
13. http://www.timeshighereducation.co.u...009139.article
14. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-11241871
15. http://www.nytimes.com/2014/04/07/ed...ort-finds.html
16. http://www.insidehighered.com/advice....sTIaQ3L5.dpbs
17. http://www.forbes.com/sites/johnthar...n-debt-crisis/
18. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Publish_or_perish


Spoiler for Judging Cards:
Seabs
RAB - This was well argued for the opposing side compared to the other 2 debates but it ultimately fell short due to a lack of consideration of their own arguments. You argued your own stance really well with good supporting evidence but the neglection of the opposing points meant you struggled to compete for the victory here. That aside this was very strong though but in more of an idealist way compared to the more real world approach taken by the other 2 debates. I liked the way you separated your points nicely with the questions and you then answering them. A bit of formatting would have helped though. Just boldening them questions up helps your debate read a bit better as you can see from Rigby's debate.

Hoopy Frood - I thought your first paragraph could have been cut without effecting your debate. The second time I read it I read it without the first paragraph and it made no difference to your argument. Words are valuable when you only have 800 of them to make an argument so any that are used that you feel don't really add to your argument drop for words that can add to your argument. Even just chopping 20-30 words from your debate can allow you to make one more quick point. This was pretty similar to RAB's in terms of quality expect for the opposing stance. Here though you addressed his argument pretty well with some stats of your own which RAB failed to do. Be careful generalising your own experience to everyone's experience too. It wasn't an issue here but you did a lot and could become an issue in a future debate so just keep an eye on it.

Rigby - This was excellent. Hoopy Frood didn't really do anything to lose this debate but you just took his chances, munched them up and then spat them back out right in his face. Oh and while you were doing that you were sitting on RAB's face adding insults to his strong outing of a debate. Point is you won this debate from stellar competition. Definitely not challenging Oxi for worst winning debate in TDL history (Hi Oxitron ). Good stuff defining your scope and even narrowing it down to benefit yourself. The breakdown and manipulation of the wording of the topic was first class. All these are really excellent debating traits that will allow you to compete with literally anyone here. Loved your formatting too. May seem inconsequential but I thought it really enhanced your debate and allowed certain parts to stick out when needed to. Not sure you have enough references for an 800 word debate . No seriously all them sources added a ton to your debate. Counter to RAB's entire debate was expertly done too. I thought your first paragraph did a nice job making a link between the question and the problems facing the US education system and allowed you to tie another topic in here in a way that actually worked. The only knock I'd have on this debate is that I thought you strayed too near your own topic and too far away from the lecture size topic in the penultimate paragraph. I don't think the Romanian reform paragraph was totally relevant in all honesty. That aside this was brilliant and would give any of Anark's debates a run for their money. Between this and your social media debate you should feel confident of beating him.

One last thing. I thought all of you missed an opportunity with how the topic was worded geared towards lectures. Obviously I don't know how it works elsewhere but here we have larger sized lectures and then smaller sized tutorials/workshops that are more personal. Just an aspect of the question that I thought one of you would have touched on to show how both sides of the argument can be facilitated.

Winner - Rigby

Anark
RAB
Bit of a one trick pony here, but that one trick is a very good one, no doubt. The debate appears to be structured around two main points, but really the second point about students’ success in exams and post-studies is really just an extension of your first point that education quality is improved by learning in smaller classes. While reading this debate I kept hoping for a counter argument to be brought up and dealt with, such as universities not having the capacity to teach in smaller groups due to lack of funds for extra teachers or additional classrooms/lecture halls etc. Or what if they have the best teachers they can get already, so splitting their classes into smaller groups means hiring less capable teachers to cover the extra classes? Would that lower quality of teacher not harm the potential of a student as well? Would you rather have a shit teacher in a small group or an excellent teacher in a large group? How much more are you willing to pay for your education to get the smaller class size? Big questions you should have tackled imo.

Hoopy Frood
I wrote the notes for my thoughts on RAB's debate before reading on, so I chuckled when you raised a lot of the points I would like to have seen countered in RAB's debate. I liked the much wider scope you took, though I think your stance lends itself to having a wider scope so maybe RAB shot himself in the foot by choosing the opposite side. The points you made about larger classes weeding out people who won’t last a full program and the financial aspect for both unis and students were very clever and definitely nudged you ahead of RAB, despite Debate A being a little more eloquent imo. Definitely a case of substance winning out over style here in the battle between you and RAB.

Rigby
I started getting a feeling that this debate might be a winner a little over halfway through reading it, and then I knew it was a real feeling I was feeling because the rest left me in no doubt. You had a similar stance to Hoopy Frood but with a lot more flamboyance, adding style to that substance. This was much more succinct in taking all the points - or point, rather - made in the opposing stance of RAB and squashing it like a bug. The passion and personality really shined through and it’s tempting to ascribe the win to this element, but the truth is that you also more than matched the substance of Hoopy Frood.

VERDICT
A really interesting battle, as at one stage you had the superior substance of Hoopy Frood winning out over the superior style of RAB, only for Rigby to combine these two elements into an ultimately victorious combination. I hope RAB and Hoopy Frood don’t lose heart from the loss because everyone in this debate has showed they can debate with anyone in the TDL. With a little tinkering here and there, any of these debates could have won. Seriously, when the right subject drops for you (as it appeared to for Rigby in this instance), then I just fucking hope it’s not me you’re up against.

WINNER: The Social Division (and Rigby)

Aid180
RAB

The feedback example really strikes home with me. I had a teacher last semester in a 75 person class that left little to no feedback at all. All of my assignments pretty much just had a point or two taken off with no explanation. It was annoying. So I like how you brought this up. It’s hard to argue against this point unless you have a really quality teacher.

I found the technique of answering questions that was self-prompted to be interesting. It was a pretty effective way to create attention to the counter argument in my opinion. I think you did a good job with the first question covering quality of education. The idea of quality over quantity is interesting here.

I don’t have much to harp on for the next section. I think you nailed the point that larger classes make it difficult to maximize education. I guess you could argue that the quality of teacher is really important here. A great teacher can maximize the learning in a large lecture, but a bad teacher can screw up a small group too. I guess teacher quality is one thing I would have liked to see you mention.

You then finish off the debate with research and stats. Good job. Then you beg the question that if students prefer smaller classes, shouldn’t they get smaller classes as they are paying for said classes. Nice.

Pros:
Nice use of research
Teacher feedback argument
Nice style

Cons:
Maybe bring up teacher quality. (Grasping for something negative here)

Hoopy Frood

I like that you took a different approach and went with the business side of things. I didn’t think about this question from the University standpoint when I first read it. The Harvard example is really good too.

The necessary line is pretty good. I think this point about how a university needs to provide large classes so everyone can take it is good as well. Not only that, but you bring back the cost and logistics of actually having 300 classes as opposed to 20. Good work.

I like the quote from the professor. The weed out thing is completely true. I think your point about weeding them out early as opposed to in three years is good too. I have a buddy going to a smaller college that is now on his third choice of major in 5 years because he didn’t like his last choice or couldn’t handle the work. He is also indecisive as hell, but that’s another story. Anyway, the next argument about class size having zero effect is a good counter to bring up. From the BYU math study, it appears teacher quality is much more important. After this, you bring it back to the monetary points again. Nice consistency.

And just as I mention teacher quality, you bring up the teachers’ strengths. Nice. You then point out how teacher assistants can help with their own sections and students can still go up to assistants or teachers and ask questions. It’s all about that desire to learn. It does force you to pick up good study habits. Wow. I’m pretty convinced here. Your conclusion then ties this all together with your Harvard intro on graduation happiness with alumni and earning money for the institution. This was a very well-rounded effort that looked at things from a few points of view and brought up good points.

Pros:
University Business POV
Teacher Quality argument
Nice tie-in with personal experience

Cons:
Um… I got nothing

Rigby

I like the title.

Really good intro. It is interesting that you are focusing on the world rankings in math and essential skills. Before reading, I wonder if that has to do with the sheer number of Americans going to college as secondary education is almost a social requirement in these times. With no child left behind, even the one’s that shouldn’t be in schools are going to schools. That’s a different story though, so I’m interested to see where this goes.

I like the passion and the style. You clearly do not think smaller classes should be the norm. Oh wow. The numbers in the UoC fact are astounding. 600 classes? The tuition increase to pay for that would be crazy. Yeah. I see what you mean that it would not be feasible at all. It is interesting that you took the approach of answering the question as literally as possible. The facts that you provide do point in your favor though.

It’s interesting that 4 of the top ten in smallest class size are in the top 5 universities in the country. I guess to play devil’s advocate, you said that there are over 7000 universities in the country. Isn’t being university 190 pretty good then? Sure there are three in the bottom 1750 or so, but isn’t being 2, 3, 4, and 5 out of 7000 really great? I guess if anything, class size is a wash, but I feel this point can be interpreted a few ways.

The class size argument with other countries is interesting. I am questioning why you are using public school class sizes as examples for this. High School and Middle School greatly differ from College in the US. At least it did for me anyway. College is optional while public school for the most part is not. So even the less intelligent are in the public school numbers. Maybe I am missing the point. The Romania example is interesting, but I don’t think their cheating and broken system were a result of large classes. Unless I missed a graph or source somewhere. It feels like a grasping point here.

Conclusion was solid, but I feel like you are throwing a lot of stuff out at the last minute here. Word limits probably had a lot to do with that.

Pros:
Nice style
Good intro
Nice use of numbers

Cons:
The Romania point felt kind of skewed towards a point it isn’t about

DECISION:

This was a good one fellas. I really had to grasp to find negatives. There can only be one winner and that winner is Hoopy Frood. RAB would have won if it focused a little bit on teacher quality. Rigby would have been my winner if it tighten up the last few points and made it feel a little more relevant. Good effort overall guys.

WINNER: Hoopy Frood


Winner via Split Decision - Rigby

MichaelDD vs Pez vs Fanjawi vs ShinsuKlee Nakamura
Should WWE move Royal Rumble to February and Elimination Chamber to January?


Spoiler for Debates:
MichaelDD

Should the WWE move the Royal Rumble to February and Elimination Chamber to January? As a man from Texas once said….

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stone Cold View Post
GIMMIE A HELL YEAH
Thanks Steve. But seriously, take off your nostalgia glasses for a second and it's obvious that the Royal Rumble would be better suited for February. In fact i feel there is only one circumstance that should keep the Rumble where it is now and that's if a different PPV takes place in February, but more on that later.

The Royal Rumble has always been the start of the road to Wrestlemania with the winner getting the opportunity to face the WWE/WHC champion, however, i've always felt that Elimination Chamber has slowed this road. Nine times out of ten Elimination Chamber has the winner of the Royal Rumble take part in random filler matches. For example let's look at 2004. The RR winner was Chris Benoit, what happened with him at NWO 2004? Absolutely nothing. This is one of the reasons why there shouldn't be a PPV in between RR and WM, it slows down the storyline.

The same can be said for 2011, the RR winner Alberto Del Rio went on to face Kofi Kingston in a submission match. Sure, you can make the argument that they were feuding but how did this have anything to do with the story of ADR winning the RR? He should have been focused on the champion not Kofi bloody Kingston.

There is one exception to this and for that let's look at the 2006 Royal Rumble. Your winner? Rey Mysterio. At No Way Out he went on to face Randy Orton, the stipulation? Winner gets the opportunity to face the WHC at Wrestlemania 22. This is the one stipulation that makes it acceptable to have a PPV between the Rumble and Wrestlemania, however how many times has this actually happened? Between the years 2000-2014 it has only happened THREE times. Not a good track record. Let's also not forget that both Rey and Randy competed in the WHC match at WM 22 making the match at NWO pretty useless.

One could also argue that Elimination Chamber this year was used to correct the mistake of not having Daniel Bryan participate/win the Royal Rumble, although it's not certain that this was always going to be the planned route for the story and DB's story could have ended here if it wasn't for the fans being behind Daniel Bryan.

Now don't get me wrong, it helped having a PPV between the RR and WM when the WWE had two champions, it allowed them to determine a challenger for the one championship at WM at the RR and then EC/NWO would allow them to decide a challenger for the second belt but now that we're down to only one major championship there's no need to have to build up a second challenger.

Personally i believe having Wrestlemania take place straight after the Royal Rumble also helps a characters momentum. It allows the boys in the back to create a story that the winner has just conquered twenty nine other men and now has his eyes firmly set on becoming the champion. Having a PPV in between the RR and WM often slows these storylines down a bit and shifts the winners focus to somewhere completely random where as if there was no PPV between them they can continue to build on the winners story.

Earlier in my debate i stated that i felt that there should be a PPV in between the Royal Rumble and WM but it shouldn't be EC. I feel that if the WWE are determined on having a PPV between them it should be Survivor Series. My reason? Have the RR winner lead a team of five people and have the current champion lead a team of four other men and have your traditional Survivor Series match revolve around this. Not only would it add to the story between the champion and the challenger but it'd also bring some needed prestige back to Survivor Series.

So in summary, should the Royal Rumble and Elimination Chamber swap places? Absolutely. They don't use EC properly, they don't use it to continue the Rumble winners storyline and instead they usually take part in a filer storyline or don't compete at all. Either replace the February PPV with Survivor Series or even a War Games style event with the champ and challenger choosing teams again. If not, move the Royal Rumble to February.

ShinsuKlee Nakamura

Should WWE move Royal Rumble to February and Elimination Chamber to January?

What?

You must be crazy!

Why would you even suggest such a thing? Don’t answer that, it’s rhetorical.

No, they shouldn’t.

There is history to consider.

Royal Rumble first appeared as a WWE PPV on January 15, 1989. It has continued to be steeped in tradition and, to this day is one of the WWE’s flagship PPV events of the year. I personally look forward to this PPV more than any other on the WWE PPV calendar. The Royal Rumble takes place every year and has always been at the end of January.

The Elimination Chamber match, not the PPV event, was first introduced at Survivor Series in 2002. Eric Bischoff first introduced it during a time where WWE had an extensive roster due the purchase of WCW. WWE had also initiated the ‘Brand Split’, which created separate rosters for each brand and used two recognised World Championships for each brand. This match would appear at other events utilising stars from each brand usually contested for the relevant championship.

The Royal Rumble should remain as the January Pay Per View and the Elimination Pay Per View should be replaced. Having a regular PPV between The Royal Rumble and Wrestlemania would allow for storyline progression and opportunity to create excitement and tension for Wrestlemania. The build and anticipation is what creates the magic of a Wrestlemania main event. Removing the cluster fuck that is the Elimination Chamber PPV is what is best for business.

Having the Champion decided during a match where a random selection of six superstars deemed worthy of ‘a shot’ are thrown together to crown the new champion whilst the newly crowned challenger sits around and waits is a ridiculous notion.

The World Champion should be decided before the Challenger for the world title in the main event at Wrestlemania is decided. It make sense that the Champion should find out who is challenger will be and be able to prepare to face that challenger, from a storyline perspective.

It feels more like a stumbling block every year when we are on the road to Wrestlemania. Often it seems like WWE have to throw together some random superstars to join the more prominent main eventers in the match to make up the numbers.

Don’t swap them over, just get rid of the awful gimmick PPV all together. It would allow the Royal Rumble Pay Per View to flourish.

But the Elimination Chamber is sooooooo exciting…

No, it really isn’t. Some of the action can be exciting but the meaning is lost. The Elimination Chamber Pay Per View completely diminishes the value of the Royal Rumble Pay Per View. It also gives the superstars a second chance at main eventing Wrestlemania, not as the challenger, but as the Companies World Champion.

This is especially prevalent today as the WWE currently only has one World Heavyweight Championship.

I hate the idea of branded PPV’s. The spectacle of the Elimination Chamber is lost when the match type only appears at the specific PPV in the Specific month of the year. It should seldom be used and used when the match actually makes sense, at a time when you need to decide a new Champion or need to decide a new number one contender.

So why not just switch them then? Because then you’re just allowing the same gimmick PPV formula the WWE relies on to create special moments, when the reality is it’s the feuds and rivalries that create those moments. The match type needs to appropriately reflect the rivalry not cause confusion on the road to the biggest Pay Per View of the year.

The Dirt sheets tend to have a habit of correctly predicting big storylines and what the main event of Wrestlemania will be months in advance. This gives away the winner of the ‘seemingly unpredictable’ Elimination Chamber match and makes it a complete waste of time. It feels incredibly forced and I personally feel apathetic to the chamber match as you generally know who the Champion is likely to be come Wrestlemania.

There is no doubt in my mind that the Royal Rumble should continue to be broadcast in January and the Elimination Chamber should either not remain as a stand alone Pay Per View or be shifted to sometime after Wrestlemania. Returning it to the event it debuted at, Survivor Series would be the most beneficial outcome to the scenario of sorting out the mess that is the current WWE PPV schedule in January and February.

Fanjawi

Greetings. Today we are going to be debating about another topic. And here it is.

“Should WWE move Royal Rumble to February and Elimination Chamber to January?”

I’ll start off with a simple yes or no. And my answer is no. Both have their own pros and cons, and we will get to that.

In my opinion, I think it’s going to be hard to build up the post Royal Rumble storylines just 6 weeks, compared to the 10 weeks WWE has to build the storyline. The two PPV’s before Wrestlemania are very important to determine how WM will end up in the end. You can’t have a good Wrestlemania if you don’t have enough time and get struggle to work with storylines.

So let’s say if the Royal Rumble took place in February. The WWE will only have 6 weeks to make a great storyline with whoever the winner is facing. We all know that Wrestlemania is the grandest stage of them all, and if it wants to hold on to that name, it should be a great show. And storylines help a lot when it comes to making great shows. It would be much better having to work on a feud for weeks rather than just thinking "Hey, let's make Undertaker vs John Cena!" out of the blue.

So, if the Royal Rumble stayed being in January, it would be all great, right? Not really. Here's another thing. You know how much it takes to make a great Elimination Chamber PPV, or, even a match. If you get the top stars to be in an Elimination Chamber match, they could risk injury. Imagine, just imagine this. The fans are all pumped up for Daniel Bryan to defend his WWE championship in this year's WM, until, the next day after the Elimination Chamber PPV, they announce that Bryan suffered a major injury and couldn't perform for the next three months or so. WWE will panic and just mess up everything because they don't have a good replacement for the biggest star.

Let's take a look at some injuries that have happened over the years.

Triple H suffered a legitimate injury during the 2002 Survivor Series match with swelling on the inside of his throat which put pressure on his esophagus and trachea.

Sheamus reportedly suffered a concussion during the Raw Elimination Chamber match in 2010.

The Triple H injury isn't as bad as Sheamus' since it wasn't the last PPV before Wrestlemania, but it still shows what these cage matches can do to the human body and how it could affect the storylines. Sheamus missed a valuable Raw the next night. The reason why it's valuable is because he had a week less to work on his road to WM.

So after all this, I feel kinda lost. Royal Rumble needs more time to build and January is going to be the best option. On the other hand, having Elimination Chamber matches in February could risk big injuries. My solution to all this? Replace the Elimination Chamber PPV with another Pay-per view. But since this is a debate about only the Royal Rumble and Elimination Chamber events, I better stick to that.

At the end, I still think the WWE better stick on the safe side and keep the Royal Rumble event to take place in January. Yes, superstars could risk injuries, and yes, it could change everything, but the amount of superstars who get injured in chamber matches are still low. Only two (That I could have found) in the past twelve years.

The Royal Rumble is more important than the Elimination chamber will ever be. The Royal Rumble is an event to start the great road to Wrestlemania and to actually shape it up, unlike the Elimination Chamber which only keeps things heated up and going.

So yes. Here is my answer to all this.

Having the WWE keep the Royal Rumble in January is the better option, because..

Pros:

. More time to build storylines.

. To shape things up for WM.

. The winner of the Royal Rumble match is the top star that the WWE could use to change that year's Wrestlemania and make it different than last year's.

Cons: If the RR gets to be in January, then that could only mean the Elimination Chamber takes place in February, meaning..:

. Risking injuries.

. The superstars might get super tired after trying to make a great chamber match.

And I think that's all. I hope you have learned a thing or two from my debate.

Sources:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elimination_Chamber

Pez

Should WWE move Royal Rumble to February and Elimination Chamber to January? Definitely not. Since it's inception in 1988, the Royal Rumble has historically been the first pay-per-view event of the year. All 27 Royal Rumble events have been held in January. Of the “Big Four” WWE PPVs, WrestleMania is the only one of the four that has ever been held in a month other than the month the event debuted in. SummerSlam has been held in August since its debut, and Survivor Series has been held in November since its debut. A move from January to February would damage the historical legacy of the event.

Since 1993, the winner of the Royal Rumble match receives a guaranteed championship match against the holder of the (or one of the holders, in the case of multiple “big belts”) promotion's top champion at WrestleMania. Having a PPV event between the Royal Rumble and WrestleMania gives the company a buffer, some wiggle room, to change the booking of the match. This buffer would not be there if the Royal Rumble and Elimination Chamber PPVs were to swap places in the PPV schedule.

The breathing room to make changes regarding the Rumble winner is more than just breathing room. It is also time which can be used to develop the feud between the Rumble winner and the individual he will face at WrestleMania. Not having this room would constrict the choices in Rumble winner to those already feuding with the title holder, otherwise the resulting match at WrestleMania would not have adequate time to develop an interest.

One could argue that by the nature of booking the Rumble winner to have a guaranteed match against a specific individual that a feud between them starting before Elimination Chamber all but guarantees that the title holder will retain at Elimination Chamber. While this is true and may seem to counter the argument in the above paragraph, the above paragraph is an option that is given to the writers and bookers. The Rumble winner can wait to begin a feud with the title holder until after the Elimination Chamber PPV.

If the Rumble were to occur between the Elimination Chamber and WrestleMania, there are less options to take. When it comes to booking and writing, it is better to give yourself avenues and time to change things should it be needed. The Rumble winner would absolutely be telegraphed as someone already feuding with the champion after the Elimination Chamber PPV, or it would be a wrestler who is not feuding with the current champion with only a minimal time to build an interesting feud until WrestleMania.

Moving Elimination Chamber to January would also alter the flow of “gimmick” based PPVs that are in the WWE PPV schedule. In this instance I refer to a “gimmick” based PPV as an event that has a specific match type built around a foreign element (TLC, MITB) or a structure (Hell in a Cell) and not just a match with unique rules (Royal Rumble) or a guaranteed match type that does not have a foreign element or structure (Survivor Series). If Elimination Chamber is moved to January, it would be the PPV immediately following the last PPV of the calender year – TLC: Tables, Ladders & Chairs.

This would be bad for business, as fans will get frustrated by multiple “gimmick” PPVs of this type in a row. Having events between such PPVs, such as Survivor Series buffering between Hell in a Cell and TLC and, gives the fans time between such events to get hyped for the next dangerous “gimmick” match. This also gives the wrestlers and their bodies a buffer as well, so that they would not have to work two such dangerous and/or brutal match types in a row. This is a benefit for both the health of the wrestler and the company, as it extends the career of the wrestlers involved.

When one looks at the legacy of the Royal Rumble, the health and career longevity of wrestlers, booking/writing advantage and fan tolerance for dangerous gimmick matches, the conclusion has to be that the Royal Rumble and Elimination Chamber PPV events are fine exactly where they currently are and should not be swapped in the PPV schedule.


Spoiler for Judging Cards:
Seabs
MichaelDD - Most of this was good with a few areas that were weaker. The main idea of your debate I like a lot (and is actually what I would have argued for) and thankfully you argue that stance pretty well overall. First things first, don't put NWO instead of No Way Out. Spell it out in your debates please. It would have helped your debate if you defined that you were considering Elimination Chamber as a continuation of the former February PPV No Way Out. You do this but without the explanation that you're doing this it felt a bit odd. Not sure if "Nine times out of ten Elimination Chamber" was literally nine times out of ten. If it was then you should have expanded on it more rather than just citing a few examples. The Benoit comparison wasn't very good imo because Benoit was working a program on Raw going into Mania and No Way Out was a Smackdown exclusive PPV at the time so he wouldn't be on it anyway. Just be careful with your facts. The Del Rio example is much better and the type of example you should have been focusing on. If there were so many examples like you said then it would have been nice to see you use more of them, or at least a better one than the flopped Benoit example. Your next two paragraphs I thought weakened your overall debate. Good stuff raising counters but if you're going to raise an argument against your own stance then you need to be able to shut it down really effectively and I didn't feel you did that well enough here. The Rey paragraph imo just showed that there being a PPV between Royal Rumble and Wrestlemania isn't a bad thing and the Bryan paragraph felt rather pointless and should have been used to show the damage it did to Batista's momentum this year. Then the next two paragraphs get right back on form though and really good. Great ideas and well argued. Structure wise I would have put the momentum paragraph before the ADR example as that plays well into this argument. The lack of a need for a 2nd PPV to establish a 2nd #1 Contender was great though. Word of advice, take "Personally i believe" out of that sentence. That phrasing makes it sounds more like opinion than fact and facts > opinions in debates. Also if you're looking to cut back on words "the boys in the back" could have easily been reduce to just "creative". The penultimate argument I felt wasn't needed. It's a great idea mind but I felt it strayed too far away from the actual topic and you didn't link it back to the actual topic well enough t justify included what felt like a P.S. type point. Remember we're talking about moving Elimination Chamber to January not anywhere else and Royal Rumble to February and nowhere else. Overall this is good with a few weak areas that dropped the quality of your debate a bit. Really good ideas that are well written and well argued for the most part though.

ShinsuKlee Nakamura - I really like your intro. Great use of powerful wording to kick your debate off. Sadly this is where your debate peaked and it's not a great place to peak at. My main gripe with this debate was I didn't feel it answered the actual question at hand. And that's a pretty significant fault in a debate. You start of talking about history but nowhere does it tell me why preserving the Rumble's January placement is important. The 2nd paragraph here should have been cut entirely. It was just basically a Wikipedia paragraph that argued nothing. The 3rd paragraph was good though and is what your debate should have centred around but instead you left it there undeveloped and started talking about some other stuff that wasn't the actual topic being debated. Your next point that "The World Champion should be decided before the Challenger" was actually a great argument. Except it was for the opposite stance. Then you go off on this tangent about removing the Elimination Chamber PPV all together which wasn't really an option when the topic states either or. If you are going down the route of taking a stance other than the 2 the question tells you to take then it better be something special and this wasn't good enough to warrant that sort of direction. The second half of your debate started answering your own question rather than the actual question. Remember to stay on topic because that's kind of an important thing and not doing it is a sure fire way of essentially defaulting a debate unless you're producing something really good.

Fanjawi - "Greetings. Today we are going to be debating about another topic. And here it is." - ok what the fuck was that? Don't be wasting your word count on weird shit like that. Again, "I’ll start off with a simple yes or no. And my answer is no." is just a waste of words. Take better care of your word count. 800 is really very little to form a great argument in so don't waste them with pointless chatter like that. "Both have their own pros and cons, and we will get to that." - that line was the problem with this debate in a nutshell. You argue one side first and then for some odd reason you argue AGAINST YOURSELF. Not sure what gave you the idea that arguing both sides and providing a critical review of the question would be wise but yeah... no. This isn't critical analysis, this is debating. Pick a stance on the question you get and argue FOR that stance. Not for and against it. I guess now I'm essentially giving feedback on two debates here. Your whole 6 weeks isn't long enough argument wasn't great imo and MichaelDD countered it nicely by pointing out how little happens between the January and February PPV anyway. This argument really needed examples to back it up too. Examples are key in proving your arguments. You need to read your own debate back before submitting too. Sentences like "You can’t have a good Wrestlemania if you don’t have enough time and get struggle to work with storylines." just look lousy and lazy. Also "will end up in the end" is silly wording. It's just will end up. This should sound silly to you too if you read it back to yourself. The injury argument is better I guess although pretty easy to counter by pointing out that injuries can happen at any point and that you can put the winner of the Chamber match in the match and protect him from taking any dangerous bumps on the steel to massively reduce this risk. Better debating practice here though citing past examples. "And I think that's all. I hope you have learned a thing or two from my debate." - please fuck off with this shit. And remember to actually argue for ONE side next time.

Pez - You start off with the historical legacy argument but it's all just describing things rather than actually giving me a reason why maintaining this history is important. I read it and just though "so what?". Your follow up is strong though and I really liked the buffer argument which I felt was your best. I thought the idea that "It is also time which can be used to develop the feud between the Rumble winner and the individual he will face at WrestleMania." was good on paper but also nicely countered by MichaelDD saying that this rarely happens anyway and the booking pattern is to start the build for the match after the February PPV anyway so the time between Rumble and EC is largelt wasted. Also I disagree with "otherwise the resulting match at WrestleMania would not have adequate time to develop an interest." because loads and loads of great Mania programs only had a build starting after the February PPV. Rock vs Austin for example. Also arguably the hottest angle WWE has done in this era was Punk/Cena leading into MITB which had less than 6 weeks worth of build but still developed more than just an interest. 6 weeks is definitely time and if you were arguing this you needed some strong examples to prove your argument here which were missing. Remember that examples to validate your arguments are key. The next paragraph I thought was an own goal because to me it just raised a valid counter without effectively countering it. If you're raising a counter than you've got to make sure you do a strong job of actually countering otherwise you just leave a valid hole in your stance just sitting right in the middle of your debate. But good practice attempting to counter the opposing stance, just got to do a better job of actually countering it. The next argument I'm not sure I got and again is where some examples would have really helped. The wording here could be better to explain it better. I guess you were saying that the feud would need to start before the February PPV but there's loads of feuds to cite that start after the February PPV that still had plenty of time to develop. The next argument I kinda liked but also thought it was kinda weak. I get what you were saying but I wasn't really convinced of the difference it would make. Not every wrestler has to work these gimmick matches and matches like HIAC are so toned down these days that they're almost just worked like a regular match inside a cell with little danger to them unlike during the Attitude Era for example. Again some examples might have helped make your case here. Remember to use them because they would have helped your debate a lot here.

This is obviously between MichaelDD and Pez. My vote goes to MichaelDD. Both had good ideas but also had faults in their debate. However, I felt MichaelDD's good ideas were stronger.

Winner - MichaelDD

BkB Hulk
MichaelDD:
Early points for knocking the nostalgia argument off as something that actually clouds judgment and takes away from a logical decision.

I like the argument that it takes away from a wrestler’s momentum if you redirect him, but the Benoit point actually seemed like more of a counter to that. In 2004, Benoit moved to RAW immediately after the Rumble, and subsequently wasn’t on the No Way Out show because his brand at the time wasn’t part of that PPV. He was actually being directed towards Triple H at the time, do, despite the PPV being there, he WAS heading for the champion.

Del Rio was a good point though, and I feel like you could have even expanded upon that further by pointing out how his feud with Edge was a bit of a flop.

Your argument seemed to become a little confused when you said No Way Out was pointless too because the only reason to have a PPV is if the shot is on the line, before saying you could sub EC out for another PPV. Those two statements are very contrasting, especially when you explicitly say “This is the one stipulation that makes it acceptable to have a PPV between the Rumble and Wrestlemania”. That renders the whole paragraph in which that line is used pretty much useless, as you’ve effectively countered your own argument. You save it a little at the end by clarifying that WWE don’t use the PPV right so it shouldn’t be there at least.

Similarly, the Bryan point you don’t really effectively counter. You say it’s because the fans got behind him that the storyline potentially got changed, but wouldn’t it possibly have not had time to change if there was only a month between WrestleMania and Royal Rumble?

The momentum argument is the best thing you’ve got, and the expansion on that was solid, although examples of striking while hot could have maybe aided your argument further. Not without flaws, but this was a solid debate that was pretty well written.


ShinsuKlee Nakamura:
You took a similar point of view to the previous debater, but interestingly used it to argue the other side. You opened with the nostalgia case too, and while I think you could have maybe driven home the history more by citing specific examples, you still did a decent job of making it feel like the Rumble simply had to remain in January.

Similarly, you said that a greater build allows for greater progression, and while that’s true, an example here would be ace too. You need to support your arguments, rather than just state them to really take it to the next level. Illustrate what you mean to make a point undeniable.

The idea that the Chamber diminishes the value of the Rumble is one I wish you had expanded upon more, because I thought that was a really interesting point. The “second chance” point is quite a good one though, especially if you point out those that are in the Chamber are always in the Rumble too (with the exception of Bryan this year).

The branded PPVs point seems a bit out of place when shilling the Rumble – a branded PPV of its own – but that is fixed by stating matches should be used when they make sense, and this is tradition.

The dirt sheets point doesn’t hold up so well, because how many times have they predicted the Rumble winner too? I’d wager most, so you could argue that makes the Rumble less exciting. The filler participants point in the Chamber works well though.

The conclusion was okay, although you could have maybe worked a bit of personality from the rest of your debate into it. Otherwise, it was a solid debate that would grow stronger through use of examples to provide evidence.


Fanjawi:
Hi to you too.

Like the last debate, I agree with the point that you can build a better feud over time, but evidence would be great. The suggestion of it all being a bit thrown together with six weeks by just putting two people together is a solid point though.

I think you kind of lost it at this point. Not only does this argue against your original assertion and not make your point as strong, I don’t think the examples were great. Both of your injury examples didn’t keep wrestlers away from the next PPV (in fact, H went on to a Three Stages of Hell match at the next event), so as a point, the evidence doesn’t really back up what you’ve tried to say.

On top of that, you’re arguing against your original point now. In an essay that would be okayish, but in a debate you have to be strong on your case. Instead you’re a bit half in half out, acknowledging that there’s a good reason to move it and that you could really be wrong. The point of the debate is to insist that you’re right, hence why this weakens you.

From there, you weren’t really strong in your beliefs, and while you acknowledged the injury toll was low, your debate wasn’t as convincing.


Pez:
You hit the nostalgia hard, and definitely did it best out of anyone in this debate. The nod to history and how important is had been is a strong one.

You are right, however, when you say the third and fourth paragraphs counter each other. While I get that you’re presenting options that the Rumble in January provides, saying “otherwise the resulting match at WrestleMania would not have adequate time to develop an interest” and then saying you can change it certainly makes one of your points void.

The options argument is a good one too, but, like the above debates, it’s when you start to notice the lack of examples given and evidence provided. You’re giving sweeping statements, but you’re not explaining just why exactly they’re true.

Similarly, there’s no evidence for people becoming frustrated by consecutive gimmick PPVs. You could have probably pointed to 2009ish (I think?) when Breaking Point, Hell in a Cell and Bragging Rights were all around the same time. I think buyrates suffered, but it’s not up to me to look that up. If you provide that evidence, then you give credence to what you’re arguing.

(Sidenote: At least half of the wrestling debates I read now seem to have “bad for business” put in there somewhere. It’s almost becoming clichéd at this point, as a general note for everyone.)

The buffer idea is a decent one too, without going into much detail. I feel that’s where you’re maybe lacking a bit, as you’ve got a really good skeleton for a debate without filling out the meaty bits and providing evidence. The conclusion is a good one though, bringing together all your points for your argument.


Pez wins for me, having covered significant ground and put forth some good points.


The Lady Killer
Apologies in advance for lack of depth to this feedback.

MichaelDD = started off nicely but then your stance felt a bit shaky once you started teetering between yes and no. What you said for support was OK but I needed more conviction. Never doubt the stance you're taking. If you aren't sure, how can the reader be sure?

ShinsuKlee Nakamura = this was pretty good, but I felt it lost focus a little at times when you started discussing the replacement of EC, which isn't what the question is asking. Good entry overall, but remember to stay at home with the topic.

Fanjawi = same pitfall as MichaelDD basically, but worse. Never say there is truth in both sides of the argument. It's one thing to allude to counter arguments and shut them down, but listing pros and cons and saying you feel "lost" doesn't bode well as far as persuasion is concerned.

Pez = it's close between this and Klee, but this debate stayed focused and was every bit as well written and convincing so it's getting the nod. Good job.

Winner = Pez


Winner via Split Decision - Pez

TDL Wrestling Division #1 Contenders Match
STEVIE SWAG vs Elipses Corter vs CGS

If CM Punk returned to WWE should they push him at the level they pushed him at prior to him leaving?


Spoiler for Debates:
Elipses Corter
The departure of CM Punk from WWE has been a blessing and a curse. A blessing in the sense that it somewhat forced WWE to continue a storyline that began in August of last year when HHH cost Daniel Bryan the WWE Title. It’s a curse in the sense that, seeing as how Bryan’s title win at Wrestlemania was the act of damage control, WWE didn’t really have anything planned coming out of that, based on them pairing him with “damaged goods” Kane in one of the weakest executed storylines of recent memory. Make no mistake about it, there’s a place for Punk in WWE. But should he be pushed at the same level as he was prior to leaving? No. HE SHOULD BE PUSHED AT A HIGHER LEVEL.

Let’s take a look at Punk’s final six months in WWE.

He returns awkwardly via a match with Chris Jericho that really had no story to it. From there, the eventual split with Paul Heyman is teased, with it actually occurring a month later. That placed Punk in a situation where, for the next 3-4 months, he was feuding with Heyman & his clients. Now, while a match with Brock Lesnar did result from it, it was just in the shadows, as the focus was Punk vs. Heyman. From there, he goes on to brief programs with the Wyatt Family & The Shield.

Wasn’t necessarily bad but things have changed. Those changes have drastically affected the main event scene. Cena has never been further from the main event since becoming a main eventer. The angle with Bryan is being poorly booked, largely because it wasn’t the original plan. So, it’s portrayed as if Evolution vs. The Shield is the top program. Which means an authority angle takes precedent over the WWE Title. And regardless of what the big plans are for Roman Reigns in the future, that should not get more of the focus in the now. But, the reason for that is simple. The main event scene is weak in WWE.

And it has gotten somewhat weaker by Batista going on hiatus. Again, if reports are to be believed, big things are in store for Roman Reigns. But, that’s in the future. It’s still a bit of time before it actually comes to fruition. What about the now?

If the past two months mean anything, Daniel Bryan’s title run is going to be a bust. Prior to becoming champion, Bryan has four pinfall victories over Kane, whereas Kane has only pinned Bryan once. So, are we expected to buy into an angle that, statistically, sees Bryan with the advantage? So, Bryan can’t be elevated. Sadly, there’s nobody else on the roster that could elevate Bryan and help him sustain. That’s where Punk comes into play.

The luxury of a situation like this is that WWE could spin it into a total work. Punk could talk about leaving because he was tired of being in the shadows and the reason he came back is because of Bryan, a guy that reminds him of himself. He can talk about how WWE didn’t want neither man as champion and constantly put obstacles in their way. Suddenly, Punk changes his tune, saying he’s not like Bryan at all and it all goes back to what he said in 2011, that he (Punk) has the balls to say what nobody else has the balls to say. He can blast Bryan for slowly turning into corporate puppet, a marketing tool that is only allowed to exist because WWE can get rich of his likeness, while degrading him in the process and even worse that Bryan accepts it. Long story short, he’s pissed that him and Bryan both were going through the same neglect from the company but only he (Punk) was man enough to do something about it.

The point I’m trying to make is, with a guy like Punk and his current situation, you have to put him at or near the top and he was pretty far from there in his final three months with the company. His departure was a pretty big deal and shook up the WWE. Pushing him at the same level as before his departure is like saying nothing happened, Punk didn’t walk out and this has been nothing but a mass hallucination.

A gift and a curse. You have to take advantage of your resources. And one definitely shouldn’t expect Punk to agree to return and be placed at the same level as before, which likely fueled reasoning for walking out in the first place.

This ain’t Rob Van Dam, this ain’t Chris Jericho. This is a guy that will only come back if it’s right and pushing him at the same level as before is far from right.

STEVIE SWAG
Why did Punk leave? Some reports say he was unhappy with the way he was being handled, while some say it was because his body couldn't take it anymore. Some say it was both. No one knows for sure, but regardless of what it was, when, or if he returns, yes, he should be pushed just the way he was before. Because at the end of the day, it isn't about the personal issues or differences behind the scenes, its about what's best for business

Lets have a look at the stars E has produced in the past half decade. I mean credible mainevent level stars. While quite a lot of guys got pushed, taking a look the list of the last 20 WWE Champions would be an easy way to find out who the management went all the way with. Outside of the usual Cenas and Ortons, the new names to join the list were the Miz, ADR, Sheamus, Punk and Bryan. All five of them were pushed fairly during their runs on the top, and while the former two did reach the top, the latter three were the ones who stayed there. You can also take THE CENA TEST, ie., you know you're good when you're looked at as a legit threat going against Cena. Again, Punk and Bryan are the only two big names you can think of, maybe Sheamus too. With Punk being one of the only few stars to reach that level in almost half a decade, not making the most of him when you have the option to would be pretty dumb.

Unlike Miz, ADR or any other wrestlers who were also given opportunities in the past, Punk didn't just reach the top kayfabe-wise. In addition to putting on some great showings, he made loads of money for the company, which is the most important aspect of being a top star in the business. Punk iirc was the first guy in years to beat the company's top cash-cow Cena in selling merchandise. And the fact that he is still one of the top three merch sellers (1) despite not being a part of the company anymore says something. I'm not a guy who's into ratings, buyrates and stuff, but if we really want to go down that dirty road, although he was no Rock or Austin, yes, he was still a good draw. Of all the other instances, an article linked below (2) shows the differences he made when he was made the most of (which is what we're talking about), in the summer of 2011. So yeah, business-wise, it only makes sense to exploit an asset as valuable as Punk.

Not only that, using him to his fullest would only strengthen the roster. And the better the roster gets, (chances are) the better the program will. Right now, Bryan's facing a guy who's never won a mainevent match that has actually mattered in years for the company's biggest prize, and Batista's facing Ziggler every second week while being part of a top program, and it isn't because Ziggler's getting elevated. Not only would it provide them with an option of having another top babyface given how the current mainevent scene lacks made stars (full time, I mean), it also gives them the option of having another heel, and a great one in this case.

Unless he decides to return as a part-timer, gets pushed heavily and steals someone's spot, which I don't think is a possibility given how vocal Punk's been about other part-timers stealing spots in the past, I don't see any wrong in pushing Punk. He's also been vocal about retiring at an early age, and if this isn't his retirement and he does come back, he probably won't stick for all that long, so one might see that as an issue before investing in him. But again, given the value his name has, it would only make sense to milk it as much as you can till he walks out for real.

In closing, they should push him at the level they did before because he is CM MOTHERFUCKING PUNK. The word limit won't let me summarize all his work (and I don't think I need to actually), but lets put it this way. Being one of the handful guys who've wrestled around the world before coming to WWE, he knows his shit, and importantly, has a connection with the audience like very few do. From selling tons of merchandise and tickets off the screen, to being a one of a kind character who drops pipebombs and puts on great matches on a nightly basis, Punk isn't the kind of a guy who you'd like to hold down just because of some issues behind the scenes. YES, FUCKING PUSH HIM.

--

(1) http://www.bleacherreport.com/articl...es-an-a-player

(2) http://www.cagesideseats.com/2011/7/...g-draw-for-wwe


CGS
If CM Punk returned to the WWE should they push him at the level they pushed him prior to him leaving?


CM Punk’s abrupt exit is one that took many by surprise, few saw it coming and even fewer are happy about it. Many are still very optimistic that one day they will hear cult of personality blare through the arena’s speakers once again. Will it ever come? Who knows? One thing is certain though. CM Punk was a mega star and a main event player within the company before leaving and if one day he does decide to return there is simply no question about it, he SHOULD be pushed at that exact same level again.

First off, wrestling itself is all about generating a great atmosphere and making sure the fans are fully invested in the action in front of them with the hope of creating brilliant moments that can be looked on decades down the line. Something Punk is an expert at. Remember all those amazing matches he provided us with against the world’s biggest stars, what about the “Summer of Punk” and the PIPE BOMB~ promo, or the cult that was the straight edge society, hell even the simple moment of him returning at Payback 13’ to a raucous crowd the guy has been able to go out and constantly captivate the audience no matter what. Even with him gone you go from arena to arena and you will hear “CM PUNK” chants from the fans during events. Hell they even began “hijacking” shows, chanting his name during random segments and matches. I mean technical skill, mic ability, charisma the guy has shown he has what it takes to generate real emotion from the fans.

So why not continue to capitalise on this?

At 35 years old CM Punk still has the time and ability to go up against some of the biggest names and produce even MORE memorable moments for the fans. They could throw him into the midcard scene but what good would come from putting the guy up against the likes of Ryback & Swagger for months on end? He needs to be right up there once again facing the likes of Cena & Bryan, chasing world titles and participating in “dream matches”. Simply put CM Punk knows how to gain a reaction and can create memorable moments…the WWE want stars who can gain a reaction from the fans and create memorable moments. Put the two together and you everyone wins.

Plus, this also has a direct influence on the other side of the WWE and what they want to achieve. While yes fan involvement is important, what’s even more is well…I’ll let the old man say it himself:



Yes, the WWE is a large global organisation and like any large global organisations they are out to make MONEY and as much of it as possible. Remember when Austin walked out all those years ago? When he did return did Vince push him down the roster because of what he did? No. He kept him right near the top of the card because he knew Austin was still a huge marketable asset he could use to make big money out of no matter what. Punk is in a similar boat to Austin. Despite his exit he’s still a huge marketable asset the company have and one of the most profitable stars on the roster. Just look at his current track record if you don’t believe me.
  • At one stage in 2011 he was claimed to have SURPASSED Cena as the #1 Merchandise seller within the company(1). First person to do so in years.
  • He has constantly been reported as at least the #2 Merchandise seller within the company over the last few years.
  • Prior to him leaving he was also the biggest online merchandise seller within the company. Ahead of John Cena himself (2).
  • Even after his walk out reports suggested that his merchandise is STILL selling strongly and he’s still one of the top merchandise sellers within the company on WWEshop.com (3)

I Mean if we were discussing Cena in this situation you would still expect the E’ to milk him for what he’s worth right?

End of the day, The WWE requires two things from their superstars. 1) To be able to go out, get a reaction and generate real emotion and investment from the fans and 2) to bring in a shit load of money. CM Punk has proven to be a huge asset to the company. His ability to generate real emotion from the fans has made it easy for the WWE to push whatever merchandise they can in the faces of the fans and make serious money. Simply put Punk + main event level push upon a return = $$$$$$. Don’t need to be an accountant to work that one out.


Footnotes & References
[1]http://www.wrestlezone.com/news/2429...h-seller-new-1

[2]http://whatculture.com/wwe/wwe-merch...-top-stars.php

[3]http://whatculture.com/wwe/wwe-top-m...-right-now.php

http://bleacherreport.com/articles/1...es-an-a-player

http://www.wrestlinginc.com/wi/news/...g-memorabilia/


Spoiler for Judging Cards:
Seabs
I thought all 3 of these were pretty disappointing tbh and took far too narrow/basic a view of the question. None of you really battled the trust element which was super disappointing given it's probably the main reason not to push him as hard in the future. Also all of you had a very short-term in the present outlook on the question assuming that Punk returns this year. What about if he returns two years down the line with the roster in much better shape and guys like Reigns, Ambrose, Rollins, Zayn, Cesaro, etc all well on their way to becoming genuine top of the card stars. Those were the big faults of all 3 debates for me that held each of you back, some more than others.

Elipses Corter - This was the most disappointing of the 3, mostly because I didn't really feel that it tackled the actual topic, rather just danced around the edges of it. The timeframe critique I made applies most to this debate imo. You wasted a lot of words outlining the main event picture since Punk's last return but it all felt rather needless. It would have been better if the question added today after If CM Punk returned but it didn't and thus your debate was left lacking. Too much of your debate was describing history for me. Do that as succinctly as possible and get into the real crux of your arguments and argue them. It's a debate rather than a history lesson. Your argument that IF he returned today he should be pushed at the level you argue for is good but that's not really the question. Additionally, you also only really look at his push upon return. Ok they re-debut him in a main event angle. Then what? Does he stay there or do they drop him down to a slightly lower status where they're less dependent on him if he decides to run home again? All these holes were left gaping and needed filling.

STEVIE SWAG - Same critiques I listed at the start here although I thought this was slightly better than EC's. Still not what I'd call a good debate though because those holes in your debate are pretty consequential and the difference between your debate being ok and good. The paragraph outlining Punk's value was good. The merch argument with the source was very strong and effectively showed why you're arguing that Punk is too valuable of an asset not to push hard. Fuck off using "iirc" in a debate though. Spell it out. It looks lousy in a debate. The 2nd source isn't all that good because the reasons listed in it are really tame. Ok people were talking about Punk more and he got Living Colour some more downloads but they're not the best metrics for showing how he's a difference maker. You really should have gone to buyrates here because they're what matter. But your first article with the merchandise argument made up for it. Again the rest is good if the topic assumed that he returned today but it didn't. Wording of the penultimate paragraph is pretty bad too. "I don't see any wrong in pushing Punk." is pretty lousy because there's always a counter argument and I listed a big one at the start. If you're going to bring up a counter (not sure if you realised right after saying you see no reason you raised a reason either intentionally or not) then make sure you really hammer it down as not being a legit argument against your stance. I thought the age and risk of retiring early worked against your stance and you didn't shoot it down effectively enough for me.

CGS - This was the best/least disappointing of the 3. Your title debate will need to be a lot tighter though and ensure that you cover all aspects that the topic might cover. Your argument for why Punk needs to be in the main event again if he returns is better than the arguments from your opponents which wins you this debate. You would have fallen well short if someone had got the context of the question right though and raised valid counters against your stance and had a more long-term outlook. I liked what you attempted with the Austin comparison but I don't think it was the best comparison. Different context's imo. Austin was THE guy at the time of 2002 (although you could argue he slipped down the card as he wasn't in the title picture anymore but he was there for all of 2001) and when he came back he didn't really return at that level. Maybe due to him walking out and maybe due to the fact he didn't have long left and they were transitioning in new top guys like Hunter, Angle and Brock at that point. Plus he didn't really have a super long run upon return from walking out either so the comparison isn't the strongest. Merch stats are great though. 2nd bullet point could do with a source like the other 3 mind but your point was made regardless. Refer back to the start of my feedback for the major issues with this.

Winner - CGS

ZOMBO
Elipses Corter

Well, I suppose this debate offers the strongest 'take' in the sense that you're advocating Punk being pushed HIGHER than he was before leaving. That said, the depth of analysis seen in the other two trumps the passion of your stance.

I felt like a good majority of your debate was storyline summary / recap, which segued into a little fantasy booking. Whereas the other guys looked at the financial impact ie: the VALUE of a guy like Punk, you recapped that he was in second-tier storylines before leaving and expressed a desire for him to be in the main event. That just doesn't cut it against these other two debates.

STEVIE SWAG & CGS

I'm doing these together because I enjoyed each of these immensely, and I feel similar comments apply.

I love how each of you emphasized the monetary aspect that Punk brings to the company. At the end of the day, the almighty dollar is what's going to heal any sore wounds that McMahon might have from Punk, so this is a crucial aspect and I'm glad to see you each address it.

You both discuss Punk's in-ring ability and his ability to connect with an audience, also good points. I think you each lay out your arguments very, very well.

The only distinction I really see is that STEVIE SWAG provided a little more backdrop into where Punk was (ie: the Cena Test section) before leaving, as well as some analysis about Punk coming back as a full-timer as opposed to a part-timer and highlighting how valuable that is even if it isn't for a long period.

THE DECISION

I'm splitting hairs between STEVIE SWAG & CGS here , but I think that STEVIE SWAG went into JUSTTTT a little more depth in this to come out with the win. Fantastic job though.


WOOLCOCK
Elipses Corter:

Main issue I had with this is it feels like you spend forever recapping Punk's past tenure and the position WWE find themselves in, rather than how Punk can alter this and why he needs to be at the top. You have to find a balance between 'setting the scene', but equally making sure you make the critical arguments for your stance. Your main Punk argument is a hypothetical fantasy booking idea opposite Bryan. An intriguing feud on paper, but WHY is this crucial? WHY is this a priority for WWE? WHY must Punk be pushed more than he was prior? You don't really consider or elaborate on his monetary value, his name recognition or how WWE's sparse roster means Punk is a commodity who they need to properly showcase. It felt like you didn't really consider the intangibles outside of an interesting feud he could have with Bryan, rather than taking a critical overview of why Punk has to be pushed further than he was before his departure. The ending is ok, but again, the beginning and middle felt too inconsequential in their focus, and when you turn your attention to Punk, I felt you desperately lacked the company's incentive to push Punk relentlessly upon his return.


STEVIE SWAG:

This was better, in so far as I felt you explored the motivations from WWE's perspective on why failing to capitalise on what Punks offers them would be a mistake. I think the first paragraph could have been condensed, but I liked your approach to highlight how distinguished Punk is in terms of kayfabe accomplishments, compared to his peers. You certainly put him on a pedestal and made a good argument that he offered more to the company than others in terms of name value and credibility. You then expanded on that and segued it into a strong argument highlighting Punk's merchandise sales and his consistent ability to connect with fans, again distinguishing him by virtue of his strong sales, indicating he offers more to the company than others. The only thing I felt compelled to bring up though, is that you're making a good argument in what CM Punk offers to the company, but at the same time a counter could be made that fans seem to gravitate to Punk regardless of his card placement, so would his merch sales and overall impact to the company be irreversibly effected if he wasn't put into the main event? That's the only thing I'm pondering. Next paragraph I felt was weak, because you present a vague statement about 'using him to his fullest would only strengthen the roster', but don't really present an argument for what this is. I felt a contextual consideration here, perhaps looking at someone like Cesaro who desperately needs a compelling program could have enhanced your argument here. Your job is to convince me that Punk needs to be pushed to the same extent he was prior to leaving. You can't leave it up to me to deduce what possibilities his return offers the roster. You need to be telling me and persuading me as you outline his potential. Next paragraph I felt was very odd. I don't see why you'd draw attention to a legitimate counter (Punk not possibly staying overly long) without taking the proper attention to dismiss it. Surely if you're acknowledging Punk himself could be a liability in terms of abruptly leaving again, then maybe it stands to reason that making Punk a focal point of the product might impact negatively on WWE if he's not going to be around long-term. And again, you draw attention to 'milk it as much as you can till he walks out for real' but don't tell me what this is. Is it merely putting over long-term prospects, who need a credible win? You're drawing attention to his shortcomings, and not really presenting a compelling counter, which again seems really odd. Conclusion is ok but truthfully I felt the second half of the debate really started to expose some flaws in your arguments, and didn't sustain the promising beginning. I felt you were too vague with regard to how Punk should be used, and really feel you needed to supply greater evidence to persuade me, rather than leaving it to me to ponder how he would be used.


CGS:

I felt this was the winner, by virtue of presenting a better case for Punk than Elipses Corter, whilst having less glaring flaws than STEVIE SWAG. Much of the content here was similar to STEVIE SWAG, however I felt you presented your points better and didn't have questionable moments in your debate like they did. I liked how you put across Punk's ability to generate interest in his programs and his character, and then made a good argument for why positioning him opposite Cena and Bryan in more lucrative programs would be a good fit for the character. Austin example was interest given the similar circumstances behind both exiting the company, and again I felt you made a good argument on why Vince would have an incentive to push Punk at the leve he was before, rather than make him an afterthought. It wasn't a perfect debate, but I felt it had less glaring faults than either of your competitors, so in that respect it felt like a straightforward decision to award you the win. A few of your sentences could have done with being broken up, rather than endlessly running on, and I also felt you spent a bit too much time initially seting the scene for your argument.



Winner - CGS


Winner via Split Decision - CGS

TDL Sports Division #1 Contenders Match
Aid180 vs Perfect Poster

Should the NFL place a team in London permanently (either by relocation or expansion)?


Spoiler for Debates:
Aid180
Should the NFL place a team in London permanently (either by relocation or expansion)?

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell's dead-set on bringing a team to London. Too bad that's a stupid idea.

First, Goodell’s not a stupid man. Moving or expanding to London does have perks. There’s more money to be made there. It could reach a whole bunch of new fans that wouldn’t have watched without a home team to cheer for. And based on the recent sellouts of the three upcoming London games, there appears to be some demand. This is where the problems start.

The most obvious is the long plane trips. Sure this can be rectified slightly be lumping games home and away games together so the team doesn’t have to go across the pond 16 times a season, but should players have to spend 2-3+ weeks away from their home at a time? Even if they do that, the miles built up from even 8 trips are a lot. There’s a correlation between record and distance travelled. From 1997 to 2011, teams that traveled 2,000 miles or more for a road trip only won 39.8 percent of their games[1][2].





The winning percentage jumped up to 40.3 percent for road trips that were 1,000-1,999 miles long. Teams that traveled 999 miles or less to a road game won 43 percent of the time. As small as 3% is, an increase in winning percentage is still an increase. This would be a disadvantage for London in 8 games and a disadvantage for their 8 traveling opponents.

The London team would also have issues with acquiring players. Many players have stated they would choose somewhere else over London. Ryan Clark even said he would retire before signing with a London team[3]. If players are this against it, this could result in an “Eli Manning” situation[4] in which a player drafted by the London team refuses to play for them and demands a trade. This is not good for creating a balanced playing field. Sure there are some players that are fine with it and would even embrace the idea of playing for London, but if an overwhelming majority don’t want to go overseas, that is not good for the London franchise. The biggest counter to this is the fact that some players don’t want to play for other teams in small markets as well, like Jacksonville. The difference between those examples and London is that Jacksonville and others aren’t in a different country across the sea from friends and family.

Another issue is converting fans. The NFL season conveniently takes place during the middle of the EPL season. This could cause many potential fans to remain with their EPL team instead of watching their NFL team. Many also think the NFL is a “wimpier” version of rugby, and may not switch to watching it over rugby. Detractors would mention that the NFL games are selling out in London now. The issue there is that these London games are limited novelties right now. There are only three right now. What happens if it becomes a bi-weekly thing with 8 games in the season? Will they continue to sell out or will the novelty wear out? I’m voting on wearing out. As Ira Boudway put it, in London the NFL is just Cirque du Soleil with linebackers[5]. Then there are the already established English NFL fans. Not all of them will switch teams that they have cheered for their entire lives just because there is a local team now. Many will remain fans of their chosen team. Just ask our lovable Canadian brother JM. When asked if he would switch to a Toronto team if the NFL established one:

Quote:
Originally Posted by JM
Steelers, but that's a tough one. It would be slightly irritating I guess but I don’t think I could switch teams like that.
If JM is proper example, many established London fans may find it hard to switch as well.

Finally, the toughest part about the feasibility of a London team is the taxes, visas and rate of living in England[6]. It's more expensive to live in England than it is in America. Many players would demand bigger contracts to cover the higher taxes and rate of living. The London salary cap would have to be adjusted in order to account for this or they’d be at a big disadvantage.

With differing tax rules and the unique burden of playing on a different continent, a London-based team would likely be unable to compete on a level playing field with the other teams in the NFL. To create a truly fair situation, the London team would have to enjoy some benefits not provided to the rest of the league. That makes a London team overall a bad idea.

Sources:

[1] http://grantland.com/features/packin...paying-kicker/
[2] http://www.cbssports.com/nfl/eye-on-...steelers-least
[3] http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com...a-london-team/
[4] http://www.cbssports.com/nfl/eye-on-...s-to-draft-him
[5] http://www.businessweek.com/articles...th-linebackers
[6] http://espn.go.com/nfl/story/_/id/97...s-legal-issues

Perfect Poster
Should the NFL place a team in London permanently (either by relocation or expansion)?

Over the past few years there has been increased talk of the NFL placing a team in London permanently. The NFL has tested the London market by having games between current teams, and those games have been quite successful. Despite the NFL's noted success in having single games across the pond, the NFL should stay away from giving London a permanent team for numerous reasons.

The first reason why there shouldn't be a team in London is the time difference. From Grantlands Bill Barnwell, “Imagine if our London team had to travel from the West Coast after a 1 p.m. game there; assuming its flight would take off at about 7 p.m. PT, the team would get back to London at about 2 p.m. the following day, both messing with the players’ bodies and giving the rest of the league a head start in preparation time for the following week.” The London team would be placed in a significant competitive disadvantage. A team in London isn't worth the effort if significant disadvantage keeps them from being competitive.

Another reason why a permanent team in London shouldn't be done is because of the schedule conflicts it would present. Whenever teams go over to London as currently constructed, they receive their one BYE week the following week in order to recover from travel. If there was a full time team, that would mean there would be 8 games in London, meaning 8 BYE weeks the week after. BYE weeks typically run from Weeks 4-11 (with some leeway here and there). In order to attempt to stay somewhat with how the schedule is currently set up, that would mean the London team would play 8 straight home games from weeks 4-11. That would be unfair to both the London team since they would have two longer than normal road trips (from Weeks 1-3 and 12-17) and to the London fans since they wouldn't get the chance to see meaningful late season games at home.

A third reason why London shouldn't get a team is because it would ruin the balance of the league. There's 32 teams separated into 8 equal divisions. Assuming a team was added in London instead of being relocated, it would create an odd number and would likely mean a 34th team would be added. There's no real way to make equal divisions, so some teams would have a better chance of making the playoffs since there would be less teams in their division to compete with. The NFL is a league that loves to talk about their balance and parity, so giving some teams an advantage that others couldn't get as well would be counter intuitive.

Overall, having a full fledged team in London just doesn't seem like a reasonal move for the NFL. They are a very risk averse league as it is, and moving a team to London would be the biggest risk there is. While the games that have been moved to London have turned out well for attendance, let's not forget the last time there was full fledged NFL-caliber teams in Europe, it wasn't very successful. Yes, NFL Europe isn't exactly the same as having just one full fledged team in London, but the league was never all that relevant and/or popular. American football in Europe is more of a novelty at this point, and with the popularity that soccer has in those countries, it likely will never be much more than that.

When you have the combination of travel issues, schedule conflicts, and balance of conferences/divisions, along with the recent failure of NFL Europe, placing a team in London would not be a smart decision for the league.

Source: http://grantland.com/features/nfl-ta...don-franchise/


Spoiler for Judging Cards:
Headliner
Aid180

This was solid. I liked how you correlated the long travel to winning percentages and how that could effect both the London team and US team. That was quite important in establishing the fairness of this whole thing. Your body was ok. You made another good point by mentioning how hard it may be to gain viewership and fans once the NFL becomes a regular thing due to EPL season, and the novelty wearing off. You finished pretty good by mentioning the difference in cost of living, taxes and how that would effect the contract structure of the league.

Good job covering a series of concerns.


Perfect Poster

This whole debate seemed rush and it really took away from the quality of your debate. You listed decent reasons for the London expansion not to happen, then it was over. Where's the structure? Where's the potential shutdown of counter argument? Where are some facts beyond normal reasoning and common sense. Where is the research?

Tip for next time. Think outside the box a little. A good debate is one that stands out because your debate shows you thought outside the box. This debate seemed like an extended post in the NFL thread.


Winner-Aid180

ZOMBO
Aid180

Solid debate all around, going point to point. The chart made me chuckle a little bit, looking at how extreme it looked in graph form considering it's only a couple % points difference. But still, the travel point makes sense.

The point about players not wanting to play there is valid. The fan conversion factor is perhaps the strongest argument in a league that's ultimately a BUSINESS. As usual, I'd prefer not to see the opinions of chatbox posters used in a debate. I think this point was more effective without the quote.

The point about taxes / cost of living for the players is not one I'd previously considered and found interesting. Overall, a compelling case as to why the NFL shouldn't move a team to London.

Perfect Poster

This debate was also solid, but a fair bit of it felt like a not-as-good-version of Barnwell's article that you referenced.

That said, the majority of it is fine. But there were parts that made me scratch my head. For instance, the question asks about an NFL team being established in London either through expansion or relocation. You make an assumption midway through about how adding a team would create an odd number of teams and lead to problems... I mean, relocation is an option (or, if it realistically isn't, you should address why that isn't feasible in your debate, instead of neglecting it as a possibility).

The scheduling section is also odd, as I doubt that's the ONLY way to schedule the season. I agree that scheduling would be a major issue if a team existed overseas, but the presentation here left something to be desired.

The other points are all fine, as well as the intro / conclusion.

THE DECISION

I feel that both debates were good yet had some minor flaws. There were less of them by Aid180, so that's my pick.

MrMister
Aid180 was more thorough. So I'm giving it to him. Perfect Poster has a typo in the first sentence. Proof read pls.

Neither debates were very convincing. The time difference is the major issue and both touched on that. The NFL probably doesn't care about the disadvantages to the players though. They're trying to increase the global appeal of the sport here. I mean if the London Jaguars increase the revenue of the league while expanding the game's appeal outside of North America...this is a potential win/win. There aren't many arguments that can be made against the NFL making more money and increasing its audience. NFL Europe, however, isn't the only time an American football Euro league has failed either. But don't forget those leagues didn't have the best players, the NFL players. I obviously don't know any projected revenue the NFL thinks they can make, but clearly if the move improves their bottom line, they're moving to London. I'd say they're in the data collecting stage. Time will tell.

But yeah, Aid180 > Perfect Poster.


Winner via Unanimous Decision - Aid180

TDL Social Division Championship Match
Anark vs Hollywood Hanoi

Has the decreased quality of The Simpsons in later seasons hurt the legacy of the show?


Spoiler for Debates:
Anark
The Simpsons’ legacy is entirely dependant on their original impact and that impact’s subsequent influence on television and popular culture, which means it cannot be hurt by a decrease in quality in later seasons because what has already happened cannot unhappen.

Join me in a thorough examination of that impact and influence.

THE BIRTH OF AN EMPIRE (OR TWO)
Fox struggled when it launched in 1986. Today, they rub shoulders with the ‘Big 3’ networks thanks to the success of the chance they took on The Simpsons. Similarly, Sky launched in the UK in the early 1990s and it was their capture of the rights to air The Simpsons which drove those early customer subscriptions which allowed them to take more and more chances on ground-breaking shows that have since turned them into the monopolising beast we know today.

Whether it’s a good or a bad one, the success of The Simpsons playing a vital part in enabling not one but two fledgling networks to survive their early rocky periods and go on to become lumbering behemoths of the industry today is a hell of a legacy few individual shows can boast.

OVERACHIEVER AND PROUD OF IT, MAN
The Oxford English Dictionary famously includes Doh!, but this exclamation isn’t nearly the only contribution Simpsons added to our common vernacular. The French may not like it, but what do those cheese-eating surrender monkeys know?

That’s just one example of multiple Simpsons quotes which have been included in various quotation dictionaries, including the renowned Oxford version. There are also words entirely invented by The Simpsons which have been used in mediums as intellectually diverse as a Stanford University paper describing String Theory (embiggen - meaning to grow or expand - first uttered by Jebediah Springfield).

The Simpsons also popularised the now worldwide meh, which has since been included in the Collins English Dictionary and utilised by pretty much every English speaker with internet access at some point, and doesn’t appear to be going away anytime soon.

An undeniable fact is that the impact of The Simpsons still resonates in the language we speak today, over a quarter of a century after the show first aired. Even if all Simpsons-related influences on our lexicon ceased tomorrow, that these numerous additions to our language happened at all is a lasting legacy unto itself and no amount of decline in quality of later seasons can take away the fact that this happened in the first place.

TELEVISUAL INFLUENCE
The only previous prime-time animation on US television was The Flintstones (a kid’s show). After The Simpsons came Beavis and Butthead, South Park, Futurama, Family Guy, King of the Hill and so on (you get the idea). Now, thanks to The Simpsons, there will forevermore be a prime-time market for adult-orientated animations. In Adult Swim, there’s even an entire channel dedicated to it.

The Simpsons liberated animation from the confines of Saturday morning kids’ TV.

But it’s not just in animation that the influence of The Simpsons refuses to dim. Back in the late 80s, it was an extremely radical move when The Simpsons opted not to include a laughter track. This decision showed a whole new generation of comedy writers and TV channels that it wasn’t necessary to treat your audience like an idiot and tell them when to laugh.

And it’s not just this direct influence on TV format that can be traced back to The Simpsons. Ricky Gervais says that The Simpsons was a major influence on The Office, which itself has gone on to influence many more successful shows such as Parks and Recreation.

Edgar Wright says that Spaced was "an attempt to do a live-action The Simpsons.” The success of Spaced and its particular brand of humour inspired by The Simpsons led Wright to co-write and direct the likes of Shaun of the Dead and Scott Pilgrim vs the World.

The fact is that the ripple effect of The Simpsons has already happened. Shows that The Simpsons influenced are already influencing other new shows and even films. No decrease in current episode quality can un-write what has already been written.

GAME CHANGER
An expert panel determined that The Simpsons was the No.1 US show with the most influence on UK television, ahead of The Sopranos and Friends. In the US, The Simpsons is also considered one of the most influential shows ever aired, mostly due to its game-changing approach to humour.

A Vanity Fair article examining the cultural impact of The Simpsons describes the comedy landscape at the time of its first airing as being “ruled by didactic, saccharine family fare” such as The Cosby Show and Growing Pains. Now consider the politically aware, satirical and often anarchic comedy that’s been prolific since the 1990s up to today and you can trace it all back to The Simpsons.

The Simpsons’ incorporation of regular pop culture references into its scripts was another innovation that a myriad of sit-coms still emulate, while its constant questioning of authority has been cited as a direct influence on shows like The Daily Show and The Colbert Report.

It’s all these extra dimensions that The Simpsons added to the existent sphere of television comedy that is perhaps the most important element of their legacy. A decrease in quality of later seasons cannot erase those extra dimensions to television comedy that The Simpsons originally added.

Remember too that later seasons of The Simpsons air in a massively changed television landscape to when they began so how can they possibly have the same impact they had in the late 80s and 90s? That’s exactly why the legacy of The Simpsons cannot be hurt by a perceived quality decrease in later seasons because it was The Simpsons who changed that landscape in the first place. They opened the door.

And they didn’t just open a door. They invented the door and they built the door and they installed the door. And then they went and knocked the whole fucking wall through.


Hollywood Hanoi
No, The Simpsons legacy was already cemented by the mid-90s and had reached such unfuckwithable levels of industry and cultural impact by the early 2000’s that it will forever be a contender for the title of greatest TV show ever (in any genre). While most fans and critics will agree there has been a decrease in quality few will agree as to exactly when, and how badly, this happened. It is my contention that the decreasing quality argument will be a mere footnote to the greater legacy of the show, one not significant enough to hurt it. Let’s look at the shows legacy from a few different angles…

The Industry Legacy-

So what is its legacy its own field? The longest running American animated show, the longest running American comedy show, a world-wide TV institution and guaranteed ratings draw at any time slot (regardless if those are ‘decreased quality’ newer episodes or endlessly repeated classics). A global merchandising phenomenon.
Sure all those things are great but as any fan of The Wire will tell you, ratings and numbers don’t reveal a show’s real legacy. Consider the TV world The Simpson was born into, the era of the safe primetime family sitcoms like Full House and The Cosby Show, where Cheers and Roseanne were what passed for ‘edgy’ comedy. Now enter a strange looking animated show aimed at a wide audience ostensibly riffing on the modern American dysfunctional family that would quickly sharpen its satire to include politics, culture, religion, history and television itself. Put simply there was NOTHING like it before. There would be plenty like it after though and all as a direct result, not just obvious descendants like Family Guy, King of the Hill and South Park but the show’s mix of biting satire, irony and lovable characters can be felt everywhere from The Daily Show to the US Office to Spaced. The Simpsons introduced at least a few TV generations to a thoroughly new brand of irreverent ironic humour.
As for the argument that some of these new animated shows may have now surpassed the Simpsons thus damaging its legacy – bullshit I say! These shows would not exist without The Simpsons’ trailblazing, they ARE the shows legacy, its offspring. This is not just opinion, the creators behind ALL these shows have openly acknowledged their debt to The Simpson for not just creating an audience but creating their very medium.


Cultural Legacy-

When is the last time you took the piss out of a Frenchman without using the term “cheese eating surrender monkey”? Have you ever taken an English test without noting it’d be “unpossible” for you to fail? Hell, when was the last time you used the word “meh” to express indifference? You do all these and many more because The Simpsons did them first. The real legacy for any form of entertainment is how much it gets engrained into popular culture, a part of language. I can recall long periods where my friends and I could almost talk exclusively in Simpsons references no matter what the topic of conversation, not because it was an in-joke between us but because the show had the stellar ability to perfectly sum up the absurdity of the modern world.
NONE of this will ever come with the caveat that the show’s later seasons don’t have the same impact, it’s irrelevant to the colossal impact the show has already HAD.

The Decline-

The later seasons of The Simpsons are of decreased quality compared to its glory years, ok fine, it couldn’t live up to the herculean high standards set during its peak, you won’t find any disagreement here but when did the decline start and how sharp was it?

Well that’s the thing, ask 10 Simpsons fanatics and you’ll likely get 10 different answers, I’m personally of the opinion that the show was still solid gold well into the early 2000’s, many feel season 6 was a negative change from earlier Simpsons with the show becoming zanier while losing some of its heart and realism (another debate), my mate Dave reckons the peak was during Conan O’Brian’s writing tenure and hasn’t been near as good since. The point here is there is no clear marker, skim through some Simpsons web forums (they’re as numerous, nitpicky and ridiculous as wrestling forums) will reveal countless other theories. Defining the bad usually as means to celebrate the great.
Then if we at least all agree that it did decline the argument as to how badly generates just as much debate and for every “it sucks now” there’ll always be another to pipe up “they still have some good episodes”. I’m personally of the opinion that, although Homer did it once for a meta in-joke, the show never truly jumped the shark. There are 3 periods of The Simpsons – the early years, the glory years and then the long, gradual fade into being just another TV show (as opposed to a must see show) with good episodes, bad ones and average ones.
What I’m saying is it’s a pointless (but fun) argument for GEEKS, to even hold an opinion on the matter is to be a superfan who has been compelled to watch so damn much of the show over the years that you can tell the good from the bad. Even here the show has perfectly parodied this mindset in the opinionated whims of its Comic Book Guy character. That a 25 year old show still has these types of obsessive fans says more about its legacy than whatever petty debates they may be having.

NO show in the history of TV sustained its peak for 25 years, The Simpsons held it longer than most, to the point we don’t need to ponder what its legacy will be because its legacy is already definable and visible, both in its influence on entertainment and its humour popping up in our everyday lives. It has made its indelible mark on the world, its legacy is undamaged.


Spoiler for Judging Cards:
Seabs
I'll tackle these together and keep it short as a sign of how similar yet really good both debates were. No major criticisms of either debate which means shorter feedback. Just one main difference between the two debates that was the decider for me and that was (the ironically titled) "The Decline" paragraph of Hanoi's debate. While it wasn't bad I didn't feel it was really good to great like the rest of both debates were. It felt like it ventured too far off into another topic of when was the decline and is it still good now. I thought Anark's debate could have dealt with the decreased quality of later seasons aspect of the topic a tad more but I guess the argument that the legacy was already defined and nothing was changing that was fine (great actually). I really liked how both debates almost mirrored each at times with the first 2/3rds of Hanoi's debate. Almost to the point of it looking like you exchanged notes first. The first 2/3rds of Hanoi's debate is largely covered by Anark too although Hanoi argues the same points every bit as well. Also sort your formatting out please Hanoi. Looked like you needed to preview your message before submitting to see that the paragraphs didn't space out properly. Great contest.

Winner - Anark

WOOLCOCK
I'll keep this brief because this was a very good match which saw both debaters essentially use mirroring arguments to state their case. The structure, language, presentation and variety of arguments were all of a sufficiently high standard that it's not necessary to go into detail in stating this. Instead, I'll just focus on why I arrived at the decision I did.


Anark:

Loved this. From the usage of the headlines into the clever and extensive list of ways in which The Simpsons has become ingrained into pop culture and continually had an impact on television, both in terms of what it presented on the show and the succession of shows which have been produced since it's inception based on its success. I loved your overall argument as well, that the long-standing success and impact on the show is so extensive, littered and unlike any other that it's hard to see how a drop in quality invalidates the historical impact the show has had on TV and pop culture alike. I appreciated the presentation of your arguments, and how you made a succession of concise but logical and well argued points that built continually and ensured there was never really a part of your debate I felt was lacking and weaker than the rest. Your arguments all had good merit to them and continually echoed your overarching argument that the show has had too much influence and impact in a variety of areas for its legacy to be hurt simply because it peaked years ago. When that peak has had the continual and innovative effect of The Simpsons, it seems illogical that the show can be seen to have lost its legacy. "Even if all Simpsons-related influences on our lexicon ceased tomorrow, that these numerous additions to our language happened at all is a lasting legacy unto itself and no amount of decline in quality of later seasons can take away the fact that this happened in the first place." - awesome way of encapsulating my thoughts here. Superb stuff.


Hollywood Hanoi:

As I mentioned above, your arguments were strikingly similar to your opponent which made it a bit easier to arrive at a decision, since rather than having to weigh up differing arguments, I could evaluate the similar arguments and see which made the better presentation of that particular argument. The Industry argument I felt was bettered by your opponent, if only because of the extensive coverage they presented, e.g the lack of a laugh track, how it influenced shows which indirectly led to films being developed etc. I felt your opponent just had a more thorough evaluation of how the impact the show has had to people within the comedy/entertainment industry. I did love your argument however about how said shows which might be viewed as better today still can only exist because of the initial impact and legacy The Simpsons created for itself. That was a great justification for why the legacy cannot be lessened because of a perceived drop in quality, but again I felt your argument just convinced me more since they developed this argument as the overarching theme of their debate - the show having too much immediate and historical impact that has already happened for its drop in quality to hurt it.

The cultural aspect again I felt your opponent presented in a more convincing manner, especially in terms of how it's vernacular can be found in accredited scholarly papers, rather than merely our own vernacular or dictionaries.

I did however feel your closing argument to be your weakest, and felt this was the key area where your opponent's debate appeared the stronger of the two. I understood your intention, but I felt your opening arguments and direction were far stronger, rather than drawing attention to how and when the decline in quality began. As you alluded to, a drop in quality isn't arguable really, but it's the impact the show has spawned at its peak that ensures it can't have its legacy tarnished. I felt your opponent's continual reference to this, aided by credible examples ensured their debate slowly pulled away, as I felt your final argument didn't really convince me to the extent your other arguments did that the show's legacy was untarnished. Again, I can appreciate the intention, but I felt it weakened your overall argument since your debate didn't sustain your strong beginning, whereas your opponent had a continual flow to their debate that I felt surpassed yours and had more highs without having a wobble at the end. The conclusion is good, but for me it was your final paragraph where the two debates began to become easier to decide, which was a shame because had you made your opening arguments the continual focus of your debate, this could have been a closer contest.


Winner - Anark

BkB Hulk
Anark:
Really, I thought this was excellent. Obviously the show is much bigger than the show itself, as both you and your opponent showed with the approach of the topic. The writing was entertaining, and the subheading were clever – particularly the real Simpsonsism in when addressing the lexicon of The Simpsons.

You’ve backed up pretty much all of your arguments, and the way in which you dismissed the opposing side of the debate so quickly and easily worked in your favour, as you were able to cover so much positive ground while staying within a word limit. The use of channels as well as shows was a really good argument to present the size of the impact, as well as showing that it really does have a forever lasting legacy.

Really, nothing to fault. You covered all of the influence that the show had, and did it in a very entertaining way. The conclusion illustrated just that, which was entertaining in a Simpsons kind of way.


Hollywood Hanoi:
You took pretty much the same approach, and again, it was a well-written debate. The use of what The Simpsons has brought onto television through inspiration and thus using those shows as its legacy is a smart way to dismiss them from having made it look bad.

Similarly, the research showed well with the ground you covered in showing “meh” originated from The Simpsons, while the other point in there about how other words and phrases have become a part of everyday life is a smart way to show the legacy of it too.

The argument about the decline was alright, but I don’t think it really dealt with the legacy as much as maybe the rest of the debate did. I think you were saying it shows the legacy because people have watched it for 25 years, but it didn’t necessarily explicitly read that way. Really, you could have summarised a lot of it with the first line of your conclusion, which summarised your debate well.

Anark both covered more ground and wrote what felt like an effortlessly entertaining debate, and thus gets my vote.


Winner via Unanimous Decision - Anark

TDL Wrestling Division Championship Match
Seabs vs WOOLCOCK

Which company had a better roster, WCW in 1992 or WWF in 2001?


Spoiler for Debates:
WOOLCOCK

Which company had a better roster, WCW in 1992 or WWF in 2001?


Many would rightfully consider ‘better’ the key determinant in this question, however in my view ‘roster’ holds an equally important weight. It is not a question of which roster achieved more financial and business success, or even which roster had an overall greater impact. Rather, it is an evaluation of the respective rosters alone. For this, considering the depth and respective performance of the rosters is most pertinent, and by this criteria I can only surmise that WCW in 1992 possessed the better roster.

The Case for WCW – Performance

A clear argument for WCW rests on the respective level of performance amongst their plethora of talent in comparison to their WWF counterparts. Whilst 2001 was a remarkable year for Steve Austin, arguably the finest of his career, 1992 was a tremendous year for a greater number of WCW performers, which holds great pertinence in evaluating the respective quality of both rosters in both contexts.

Rick Rude, Arn Anderson, Dustin Rhodes, Sting, Vader and Shane Douglas can all cite ’92 as strong contenders for their peak career year. Arn and Dustin shined expertly in singles matches, tag team matches, working the midcard in Arn’s case in terrific singles outings vs Barry Windham & Matt Borne, whilst Douglas rose to prominence alongside Steamboat in a succession of tag team affairs. Sting/Vader would have impeccable chemistry, with their two PPV encounters being arguably two of Sting’s greatest career matches, in addition to the incredible War Games that culminated the Dangerous Alliance program and the great Cactus Jack Falls Count Anywhere match, both from, you guessed it, 1992. Rude was superb throughout the year, engaged in a terrific program with Steamboat which produced arguably the greatest Ironman match in US wrestling, at Beach Blast ’92. Steamboat himself, alongside Barry Windham would also have something of a career resurgence, with both having their finest career year since ’89 and ’87 respectively.

In comparison, bar Austin, how many WWF guys at the time would people cite as being at their best in 2001? Edge shined far greater in the middle of the decade, Christian was nowhere near the peak he would arrive at in ’09, Taker & Jericho would both record stronger years between ’07-’10 in Taker’s case, and ’08-’09 for Jericho. The Hardyz would record stronger years as singles stars after 2001, and even a stronger year as a team with their ’07 reformation. Quite evidently, WCW’s individual talent as a collective outperformed their WWF counterparts in the respective years, which underlines the greater quality WCW’s roster carried within both contexts. On paper, WWF’s roster is striking, in retrospect, their performances, Austin aside, less so.

The Case for WCW – Depth in Divisions

The Invasion angle aside, what are the most notable moments from 2001 WWF? Austin/HHH, Austin/Rock, Austin/HHH vs Jericho/Benoit, Austin/Angle & Jericho/Rock. Or rather, the Main Event. If only the question concerned the respective quality of the main events alone from both years. However, it doesn’t. It forces us to consider the roster as a whole, and further inspection outlines how WCW’s roster in 1992 had more versatility and depth in separate divisions, that the WWF cannot contend with.

’92 WCW succeeded where ’01 WWF laboured by its sheer consistency throughout the card, as opposed to a main event scene alone which drew attention away from an unspectacular midcard and lower-card.

The midcard produced some of the finest matches and programs of the year, with The Dangerous Alliance angle spanning numerous sub-feuds which ensured the promotion produced a litany of absorbing matches ranging from the lower-card to the main event. Tag-team wrestling was showcased expertly throughout the year, such as Windham/Dustin vs Austin/Zbyszko at Superbrawl II, the combinations of Steamboat/Dustin/Simmons/Koloff vs Austin/Eaton/Rude/Arn on TV, Steiners vs Gordy/Williams @ Beach Blast ’92 & Steamboat/Douglas vs Windham/Pillman Starrcade ’92.

In comparison, the WWF tag division was stagnant and their sole promise was found in the brief Jericho/Benoit duo. Whereas the versatility of WCW’s roster could see the likes of Arn, Steamboat and Dustin offering valuable depth to any card, WWF struggled to achieve significant success anywhere besides their main event scene. The lowercard and midcard singles divisions likewise were left behind by their WCW counterparts, with Cactus/Sting, Arn/Windham, Arn/Borne, Arn/Dustin and Rude/Steamboat producing some of the strongest matches of the year, whilst the WWF struggled to produce a notable midcard match throughout the year.

Whilst WCW’s roster in ’92 had a notable versatility that distinguished itself from ’01 WWF in separate divisions, more notably between the lowercard-uppercard, the main event scene itself achieved considerable highs that contest that of the WWF’s main event roster. Sting/Vader was one of the strongest programs of the year, whilst the Wrestlewar War Games match to conclude the Dangerous Alliance program is one of the company’s greatest matches in its entire 12 year history.

WCW’s roster in ’92 therefore possessed a crucial versatility that distinguished itself from WWF’s ’01 equivalent. Whereas WWF relied on a dependable main event, WCW had a broad spectrum of consistent quality that ensured the roster as a whole contributed to the overwhelming critical success of the calendar year. This untouchable depth and versatility the ’92 WCW roster possessed further separates itself from the WWF ’01 roster, who were clearly unable to reproduce anything of similar value in comparison, and who were rather reliant on Austin’s superlative year to produce their equivalent heights.

When we consider therefore, the consistency throughout the entire WCW ’92 roster, in addition to the respective performances from both rosters in the competing years, it can only be considered that WCW ’92 possessed the better roster. As a whole, the WCW ’92 roster were far more contributory to the overall success WCW enjoyed on a critical level that year, as opposed to a WWF roster which in comparison saw a lower level of respective performances, and which was more dependent on one division to enhance the quality of the year.


References:

1) Arn/Windham - http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x1b...s-6-6-92_sport

2) Arn/Dustin - http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x1y...-04-1992_sport

3) Sting/Cactus - http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xz7...ch-blast_sport

4) Rude/Steamboat - http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xz8...ch-blast_sport

5) 2/22 8 Man tag - http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x1b...steamboa_sport

6) War Games '92 - http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x1q...-5-17-92_sport

7) Sting/Vader Great American Bash - http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xvx...an-vader_sport


Seabs

Which company had a better roster, WCW in 1992 or WWF in 2001?


Before we go into why the '92 roster was superior than the '01 roster, let's first look at what a great roster should look like:

Main-Eventers
Duh. The most important aspect of a roster because it's the one that makes the money and draws viewers in.

Young Prospects
Important because there needs to be journeys from the bottom to the top that fans can get emotionally invested in. Without them you have a very stale roster.

Established Veterans
For the young prospects to effectively progress they need established veterans to improve their knowledge and skills and give them an established name to work against to put over the new names.

Niche Divisions
Rosters need some variety otherwise the norm becomes stale over the course of a 2-3 hour show. This can be achieved through niche divisions such as Tag, Light Heavyweight or Hardcore divisions.

Because of these four factors WCW's 1992 roster was superior.

Main-Eventers
While on paper WWF's '01 roster of main-eventers might look superior, in reality it wasn't. Not during 2001 anyway. In 2001 Hunter and Rocky were both missing for large portions and their biggest superstar was watered down with a shocking but ultimately flat and unsuccessful heel turn. Now while the likes of Sting, Vader and Rude might not be the bigger legacy superstars compared to Austin, Rock & Hunter, they were bigger superstars to their respective promotions during the timeframe in question because Austin, Rock & Hunter weren't allowed to be the massive stars that they were throughout their careers during 2001 either through booking, injuries or other interests. Even Vince was watered down beyond great effect due to the flop of an Invasion angle.

In addition, WWF in '01 struggled to cement anyone in the most valuable position on any roster, the lead babyface, which is why upper mid-carders such as Undertaker, Kane, Benoit and Jericho were drafted in to face the heel champion Austin. WCW meanwhile had an effective structure to their roster. Sting was clearly the #1 guy throughout the year and was responded to as such. WWF in '01 didn't have this and this is part of the reason why their roster wasn't as great. Their main-event scene structurally was a mess.

Young Prospects
This is where it's time to really give some credit to the '01 roster. The tag guys were really breaking out by 2001 and Angle, Jericho and Benoit were all being transitioned towards the top of the card. All 6 acts were on upward journeys that fans could get emotionally invested in on a week-to-week basis. However, the same can be said for the '92 roster. The Steiners, Austin & Dustin were all having breakthrough years at the top of the card with established stars such as Rude, Steamboat & Arn just as Angle, Jericho & Benoit were having with Austin & Rock.

The slight edge once again however resides with the '92 roster, not in terms of quality of bright prospects (for every Austin there was Angle, for every Dustin there was Jericho and so on) but in terms of sheer depth. Where the '01 roster could cite Angle, Jericho, Benoit, Hardys, Dudleys, Edge & Christian, the '92 roster could match them with Austin, Dustin, Pillman, Steiners, Simmons & Foley and even then fall back to the likes of Bagwell, Flamingo & Douglas.

Established Veterans
Here the '01 roster fall really short. They had the rising stars but not necessarily the Anderson's and Eaton's to pair them with. Austin & Rock were the go to main-event guys to pair the new crop of Angle, Jericho & Benoit up with. That was it though. No established veterans to work with guys further down the card either. Triple H was still on the up himself and injured for most of the year anyway and Undertaker was experienced but wasn't being used to establish other guys yet and honestly in 2001 wasn't the legacy star that he became.

Compare this to what the '92 roster had at ALL levels of the card. You had Rude, Steamboat & Windham at the top of the card, Arn, Eaton, Gordy & Williams in the Tag division, Morton and Armstrong in the Light Heavyweight division and Zybszko, Valentine & Slater in the midcard. Wherever WCW had a young prospect be it Austin at the top of the card, Flamingo in the Light Heavyweight division, Dustin in the Tag division or Foley in the midcard, they always had a group of established veterans to pair them with. The '01 roster simply didn't have this strength through an unbalanced roster.

Niche Divisions
The '92 roster also had the edge in variety on their roster. Yes WWF in 2001 had a good tag division but it wasn't something that they could push to the top of the card so they didn't have to cool off their main-eventers by having them in the same spot every show. The '92 roster had teams like Gordy & Williams, Arn & Eaton & The Steiners who could easily main-event a TV Show or even a PPV to enhance the long-term sustainability of guys like Sting & Vader at the top. The '01 roster didn't have this.

Then the 3rd division. While WWF had a tacky Hardcore division which was basically where they threw guys like Test & Rhino who they had no plans for, WCW had a thriving Light Heavyweight division putting on great matches with stars that fans cared about. You could give the belt to a guy like Pillman or Flamingo and put them in a feud with a guy like Z-Man or Armstrong and it mattered. Their side division was having great matches that mattered and making stars out of guys like Pillman. The Hardcore division simply wasn't.

Two all time great rosters, both with their fair share of top stars. The difference in quality comes down to depth, variety and structure which is why WCW's '92 roster was superior. Plus they also had this guy

Spoiler for ARACHNAMAN:


Spoiler for Judging Cards:
BkB Hulk
WOOLCOCK:
I found it interesting the way your argument relied a lot upon the booking to put forth WCW as a better roster. That can be problematic in a way, as you could argue a lot of what you said is down to the booking rather than the actual roster. I guess that comes with using examples to illustrate your point, but it does beg the question about whether that’s necessarily down to the actual roster, or if the booking was just as significant in that?

The strength in depth argument was a strong one, and presented a good case for you. The citing of specific matches again provides examples, while dismissing WWF as just Austin having already proven WCW 1992 matched WWF’s main event scene serves you well.


Seabs:
You took a different approach despite the answer and purely approached it as a roster question. The breaking down of what makes a good roster was a good way to lead into your argument, as you set it up for all things to be pointing in WCW’s direction.

This was the real strength of your debate, as it allowed you to show exactly where WWF’s 2001 roster fell down when compared to 1992 WCW’s, and I think it tackles the question perfectly. It’s asking who has the better roster, and you’ve provided good reasoning in each category as to why WCW just shades it in the case of the youngsters, or that WWF is severely lacking in other spots.

Arachnaman did make me laugh, so it’s a worthwhile way to end. Not as good as the Oxi swerve approach, but funny nonetheless.

Seabs wins, having really attacked the question well and broken down exactly what was asked.

Aid180
WOOLCOCK

Intro: Nice start. I like how you keyed in on ‘better’ and ‘roster’. It sets an interesting tone for the debate and makes me look forward to how both terms play out in your answer. You finish up by making your stance clear. Nice job overall. I don’t think I have anything else to say for this.

The Case for WCW - Performance: I like how you split this up with a WCW paragraph and a WWF paragraph. The intro paragraph for this section sets this up nicely as well. I like how you mention how it was a good year for Austin, but good for many WCW stars as well. The WCW paragraph kept going and going with examples. This helps your point that there was a lot for WCW at the time. As someone way too young at the time to have watched this, I’ll have to go with your word at how great all of these matches were. There were many examples here. So good job. Your arguments are mainly about peak performances. You mention how so many WCW stars were in their prime while WWF stars were still getting into their prime and had better years. This is an interesting choice for argument direction. Taker’s best years were later. Christian certainly peaked later too. Edge got much better during his Rated-R character stint. The Hardys were even better a couple years later too. I guess my only question here is where is the Rock, Triple H, or Kurt Angle? They are pretty big names. I think Triple H was injured most of 2001, but I guess I would have liked a mention of these guys. Very minor negative though.

The Case for WCW - Depth in Divisions: So here’s the mention of Rock, Angle, and Triple H. You do point out that WWF had great depth at Main Event, but it is about the full roster, not just the top of the card. Consistency is your key argument point here. You go into detail on how WCW was great from top to bottom. They had great feuds on all levels. Meanwhile, WWF was stagnant in the tag division and lower card. You bring up WCW’s versatility compared to WWF’s. I think you are spot on here. You bring up more examples with the midcard and point out WCW’s matches with Arn, Cactus, Sting, etc. You continue to key in on depth and quality, pointing out that the Dangerous Alliance program is one of the best and it came from the midcard. I think you are pretty convincing here. This was probably my favorite sentence: “This untouchable depth and versatility the ’92 WCW roster possessed further separates itself from the WWF ’01 roster, who were clearly unable to reproduce anything of similar value in comparison, and who were rather reliant on Austin’s superlative year to produce their equivalent heights.” You clear up how WWF was good, but they were top heavy and not as consistent throughout the whole card as WCW was. Good stuff.

Conclusion: I think you did a great job wrapping this all up. I thought your two points were really strong. I think your counters were really good too. I guess my only negative for this whole debate is the lack of talking about Triple H, Angle, or The Rock at the end of your first point. At least The Rock. If that wasn’t their best years either, than it truly would have helped your point to mention it for these main eventers too. Overall, that’s still a very minor complaint. Great stuff.

Pros:
Nice Intro highlighting the key terms
Nice Style and setup
Great Arguments and counters
Depth Argument was great

Cons:
Where’s The Rock or Triple H for 2001 performance comparison? (Minor)

Seabs

Intro: Very interesting. I see you are setting this up with defining the card by positions. I liked the definitions for each card position too. At the end you picked your stance too. So I’m interested to see how this turns out.

Main-Eventers: Interesting. You say that 2001 wasn’t a good year for Austin while your opponent says it is arguably his best year. Strange that you two are completely opposite on that. I do like how you mention that The Rock and Triple H were missing for part of the year. That’s important to note as we are talking about the whole year. You mention how Sting, Vader and Rude were bigger to WCW in 1992 than Austin, Rock, and HHH were in 2001 to WWF because of these factors. Nice. You then bring up structure and how WCW was more structured compared to WWF. I’m sure that’s because of the absence of the two stars mentioned above, but the point still stands.

Young Prospects: Hm. Interesting argument here. You mention that the two rosters are similar here in prospect quality, but that WCW ended up having more depth. I guess we could say the potential is a tie, but didn’t WWF have a lot of stars with the merger of WCW, ECW, and WWF? Didn’t they have guys like Test, Billy Gunn, RVD, Booker T, along with the other guys mentioned? I guess WCW probably had a lot of depth too in 1992, as you mentioned. I feel like just citing names isn’t quite enough here if both rosters are really stacked. I feel like some sort of mention about despite WWF having three combined promotions of rosters with the mergers, WCW still had more depth or something like that. Maybe it’s a negative with the style choice that you didn’t have space to really get into this. I guess I just don’t think this is your strongest argument in my opinion. I feel like it’s just lacking a key point to really put your point over the top that WCW had more depth than WWF at these times.

Established Veterans: You pick it back up again here. You mention that even the big stars were still on the way up the card while WCW had veterans at all levels. You make a good point that Taker and Triple H weren’t the stars they are known for at the time despite both already having been WWF Champions. Even better mention at how Taker wasn’t being used to establish guys yet. The use of veterans being paired with prospects at each level is a nice touch.

Niche Divisions: The tag divisions and the other niche divisions are a good addition. WCW had a lot of quality in the tag division. Did these guys really main event PPVs? That’s pretty neat. You and your opponent both mention that WCW’s tag division was better than WWF’s. I guess I have to believe you guys :side. I think you made a good case for why the WCW Lightweight division was better than the WWF Hardcore division. You make a good point in saying that the Hardcore division didn’t really make stars like the LW division did. Solid stuff.

Overall, this was interesting. I liked how you broke down each part of the roster. To be negative, this may have hurt you as you didn’t have the space to truly go into depth for your examples. I think going into depth would have helped your Prospects argument a bit more. Overall, great stuff.

Pros:
Nice Setup
The LHW vs. Hardcore Divisions argument was great
Good describing how empty WWF’s Main Event felt with Rock and HHH missing
Argument for Veterans at all levels

Cons:
Argument depth felt a little light due to style (Mostly during Prospects section)

DECISION: This is a tough one. You both picked the same side, but one focused on two points while the other focused on four divisions. Seabs' really focused on the individual divisions and dissected the roster for each division while WOOLCOCK focused on the roster as a whole and their performance. In the end, I think I have to reward the win to WOOLCOCK. They were both great debates, but I think a little too much argument depth was sacrificed with the style choice in Seabs'. WOOLCOCK’s arguments for consistency and versatility were just slightly stronger. So I guess in the end I was more convinced by WOOLCOCK than I was Seabs. The focus on both depth and performance are what really does it for me.

WINNER: WOOLCOCK

ZOMBO
SEABS WINS BECAUSE OF ARACHNAMAN.

Neither of these debates really had any glaring weaknesses, so I can kind of lump in my comments together here.

They were both well-written, as expected, and your points were presented cleanly and efficiently. You each identified what criteria were important in your openings, setting up the stage for your arguments. From the solid openings, you transitioned well into your arguments and right through to your closing. Again, no issues with the writing / presentation here, as expected from a championship match.

So, it comes down to who made the arguments better. WOOLCOCK tended to point out specific matches and feuds, with a heavy focus on showcasing his pick, WCW. Seabs gave honest assessments of each organization, crediting each but indicating how WCW was better at every turn. WOOLCOCK also notably used the word notable (or some derivative thereof) a few times, including twice in one sentence. This doesn't hurt you any, but just watch for repetition when editing in the future.

Although both were well-presented and enjoyable to read, I feel that Seabs' assessment of each organization, and the manner / categories used to neatly break the points down, was slightly more effective than that of WOOLCOCK. It just felt that the debate was a little more well-rounded and deeper in terms of analyzing the question of what makes a great roster, and how WCW's in '92 was better. Debate A did a fine job and answered the question as well, but Seabs' comparative approach really drove home the point for me.

Seabs is my pick, and not because of the Arachnaman reference.


Winner via Split Decision - Seabs

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post #2 of 66 (permalink) Old 06-16-2014, 10:17 AM
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Re: TDL XVIII: THE POINT WAGG LOST INTEREST AT - THE RESULTS

Holy shiznit, a threeway tie!! I am more than just a little content with that result for my first outing. Gonna take my time later today between all the WC madness to read all debates and feedback, good thing I don't have a life to keep me busy


Last edited by Bearodactyl; 06-16-2014 at 10:40 AM.
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post #3 of 66 (permalink) Old 06-16-2014, 10:17 AM
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Re: TDL XVIII: THE POINT WAGG LOST INTEREST AT - THE RESULTS

Daaaaaaaaaaaaaaang

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post #4 of 66 (permalink) Old 06-16-2014, 10:18 AM
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Re: TDL XVIII: THE POINT WAGG LOST INTEREST AT - THE RESULTS


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post #5 of 66 (permalink) Old 06-16-2014, 10:19 AM
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Re: TDL XVIII: THE POINT WAGG LOST INTEREST AT - THE RESULTS

Well FUCK, thought I’d do better here.

I figured the legacy part of the show was already pretty well known and didn’t bear repeating every single detail of its impact plus I thought the vagueness of “decreased quality” needed more touching on to fully answer the actual question, as a result I ended up cutting most of the first part to add to the second, bleh, yep I went and beat myself this time

I wanna take a break from the next card but the entertainment debates are a gas to write so I’m open to them for any that come up in future

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post #6 of 66 (permalink) Old 06-16-2014, 10:24 AM
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Re: TDL XVIII: THE POINT WAGG LOST INTEREST AT - THE RESULTS

Cheers for the feedback. I do feel like I did a poor job of really lending any evidence to this debate, but I had a hard time answering the question. I started going back and looking at old Rumble winners and the Mania events and such to find examples to lend credence to my "sweeping statements" (not disagreeing, I feel all of the feedback I received was pretty spot on). Just didn't have it in me to put that much effort in, hopefully the next question I end up debating is something I'll have more confidence in to really hammer out an A+ debate.

As always thanks for all the work that everyone puts in to this.

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post #7 of 66 (permalink) Old 06-16-2014, 10:25 AM
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Re: TDL XVIII: THE POINT WAGG LOST INTEREST AT - THE RESULTS

Damn

Ah well, no shame in losing to Pez and i look forward to us having a one on one debate sometime

Thanks for all the feedback judges, the rushed late addition of the Benoit argument really wasn't a good idea of my behalf and i really should have researched a bit more into that than trying to go from memory (Also thanks to Seabs for giving me a vote )

[
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post #8 of 66 (permalink) Old 06-16-2014, 10:28 AM
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Re: TDL XVIII: THE POINT WAGG LOST INTEREST AT - THE RESULTS

I thought this was a damn solid card - a lot of the new faces really showed up with promising debates and some of the longer-term debaters are showing improvements as well.

Leading up, I think there was a sense of "oh no, TLK / Andre both stepped away. Clique's done. Headliner is special appearances only. What's going to happen?"

Well, what happened was you all stepped the fuck up, and I'm feeling that TDL will continue to prosper moving forward, with new names to become BIG names in the future.

A couple shout-outs. SEABSY, continuing his dominant run of booking himself victories by knocking off WOOLCOCK again. Two in a row? That's no fluke, and you've established yourself as a GREAT. TLK would probably say LEGIT. Really looking forward to your match with CGS.

Speaking of CGS, congrats on dat continued upward push and breaking into the main event scene slowly but surely. Even if I voted against you, you're still my boy.

Finally, it's time I acknowledge the invisible man himself - Anark - as a LEGEND. Dude just beasted over a confident Hanoi. Congrats BOLO, you sure as hell earned it.




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post #9 of 66 (permalink) Old 06-16-2014, 10:33 AM
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Re: TDL XVIII: THE POINT WAGG LOST INTEREST AT - THE RESULTS


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post #10 of 66 (permalink) Old 06-16-2014, 10:46 AM
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Re: TDL XVIII: THE POINT WAGG LOST INTEREST AT - THE RESULTS

Bringing my streak up to 6.

Good match PP. I struggled a bit with the topic. I wish I had about 200 words to go into the whole counter on the NFL using it to make money and the failed Euro league. It just didn't make the cut.

Good debates from everyone though. Congrats to all of the winners. If anyone who's debate I judged needs anymore detail on why I did or did not pick them let me know. I'll gladly go into a little bit more detail. Overall, I thought the match of the card was the University debate. At least for the ones I judged.

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