First of all, you need to know that Verbattle is a unique and difficult competition. You cannot win with your arguments alone. There are many other contributing factors, most importantly, the way you argue, your language, your conduct on stage, and the way the audience and the judges see you. If you think a good argument alone can make you win, then you are wrong.
All said and done, Verbattle is about debate, so arguments are the most important parts of the competition. You need to argue well, for which you need to prepare your argument well with your teammate. You cannot win without arguing well.
No. It is also about arguing by taking into consideration your opponent's views. In Verbattle debates, you may have either one team against your statement and one arguing for the statement along with you, or two teams arguing against you. Even if you have just one team against you, you need to also tackle the team that is arguing on your side of the argument. So you need to take the other two teams’ arguments into consideration and plan your argument. So, it is not just about standing and arguing for your side and your point of view.
That is totally up to you. That is your choice, but a healthy mix of your own arguments and some rebuttal and reference to others' arguments may draw the attention of the audience and the judges.
We don't know who can speak perfect English. Decent English is acceptable. We also know that some participants come from second language English backgrounds. This is not an English language test. But the participants’ English cannot be laughable. Some mistakes here and there, either as slip of the tongue or careless, are overlooked by the judges.
Good humour is appreciable and can pep up the argument. But humour that is indecent, crude or objectionable would immediately result in poor results at the judges' desk. Some humour is ok.
You could consider avoiding repeating lines, stopping in between your argument, getting into a private talk with your teammate in-between your argument, being loud, looking at one point all through the speech, low volume, cutting the opponents while they speak, and forgetting your points.
There is no one book that you can read or no one person you can talk to to win in Verbattle. It is just you and your teammate. You need to read many books and newspapers, make notes, watch news, talk to people, and cultivate the art of remembering the right things at the right time. These are more essential than just reading a lot. A wide range of knowledge can attract the audience as well as the judges’ interest.
The unpardonable mistakes are the errors with facts and figures, statistics and names. Attributing a quote to a wrong person, giving wrong data, getting names wrong and saying erroneous things will undoubtedly result in poor marks.
We call judges from all walks of life. We want real people who have lived a life in public space either as leaders, managers of people, or successful professionals or entrepreneurs. We also call academicians, and sometimes, debate and language specialists, too. Our purpose is to make Verbattle as realistic and current as possible. Verbattle debates deal with real issues and we want the opinion of real people in the real world to judge it.
Judges are selected on the basis of the following points. They should…
They are given an orientation before they set out to judge the competition. They are also given a letter from the founder, spelling out what is expected of them and how they are required to judge (the letter is available on the website).
Judges are expected to mark subjectively, as per their wish. There are no actual measurements. The marks are based on general human evaluation response.
Even one mark can make you lose. Verbattle as an organisation does not get involved in the marking process. If Verbattle finds disparity and glaring vagrancies in a judge’s evaluation, then the judge is asked to consider revaluation. Ultimately, it is about what the judges felt about the debate, and not what the participant or the team felt about it.
We have noticed that simple, down-to-earth participants with good knowledge and better arguments win. As we have observed, judges tend to mark down ,students who show off and appear audacious. A sincere, well-thought-out and well-prepared argument is always a better bet.