Debaters and Coaches,
I am not sure if I have just been more sensitive to the issue or if it has actually gotten worse... But, I have noticed so much card clipping and cross reading lately. It has ranged from "forgetting" to mark cards to serious cheating where people make zero sense in the middle of cards until someone is standing over them.
It stinks for you all to debate these folks--time pressure is such a big element of debate that clipping is a MAJOR advantage. I also know that most judges would prefer to just avoid the issue. So, it seems to carry no consequenses. People win debates, their opponents may be suspicious, but it is rewarded with wins.
As a community, we need to give this some thought...
1) Carry tape recorders to catch and maybe deter offenders?
2) Urge judges to yell "clear" when cards are incoherent and focus in on the issue?
3) Urge judges to unilaterally vote on it when they are positive?
4) Have debaters point it out? Why? Cheating in every other game is up to adults watching the game. Thoughts?
5) Talk more to our own teams about the issue?
The college community went through some major discussions on this issue and it seemed to make a big difference. Clipping became so shameful that most people stopped. The "oh well, it is going to happen" feeling was replaced by "this is a big issue and needs to stop, now." I think that it is time for the same process to happen in HS.
Debaters, I am starting on cross-x because I think that you all may have more influence on this issue than the handful of adults I usually talk to. What norms do we need as a community?