We've come to expect that immediately after a televised debate, all the commentary focuses on a single question - who won. Almost without exception, new networks say their side one. Is there a way to objectively know who won?
Presidential debates are nothing like formal debates where there are preset rules which includes a scoring section to determine who won a debate. In formal debates, there are preset rules which includes a scoring section to determine who won a debate. Of course, the judges their aren't the ones participating so they are as impartial as can be expected. And there are scoring rubrics and guides to judging so that both sides are well prepared for the debate.
But in the P and VP debates, as well as on this site, both sides claim victory. To me, this sounds less like people have a scorecard and scored for and against both but it's basically saying nothing more than "the candidate that I supported before the debate did as expected, said as expected, and thus he/she won".
Here to, in slug.com, we debate, we argue, we "fight" with words. And we see the same issue: two people enter an argument and each one posts a final post claiming they won and the other side lost. This is amusing considering that these are the participant self-declaring themselves winners. And doubly amusing because there is no preset rules upon which "winning" is based upon. A quip, a fact, more often than not an insult, is all it takes to feel like a winner, self declare a winner, and that's that: I'm a winner.
There is another way to view debates and arguments. That is to opposing and supporting ideas and integrate them into your own worldview. To practice presenting your ideas, to practice defending them, to practice attacking other ideas, and sharpen your dialogue skills as well as create a more rational worldview. Under this mentally, neither side ever claims they won or lost an argument but they will often stated they changed their mind, told the other person they are right and they was wrong, complement the other on a point well made (and be complemented in turn), retracted a comment made, and even (gasp) apologize for an ill statement. In this view, slug.com becomes like a dojo: were people take turns being uke (attacker) and nage (defender) to sharpen their respective skills but not beat the other down and each walk away bruised perhaps but with friendship and respect intact.
I wonder if there is a way to change this "winning/losing" mentality.
I wonder if anyone care to use the site this way or if "feeling like a winner" is the true purpose of slug.com
What do you think it means for a person to win a debate, both in real life and online?
What do you think it means for a person to lose a debate, both in real life and online?
How can we more objectively, and civilly, discuss ideas we don't agree with and open ourselves up to the possibility of changing our minds on a topic?