Maybe you’ve seen me mention The Iron Blog a time or three.
Here’s the deal. In the beginning The Chairman read blog debates. But the debates were without form, and void, and darkness was upon the face of the Blogosphere.
So the Chairman said, “Let there be an adjudicated debate forum” and there was The Iron Blog. And The Chairman saw it and it was good.
And the Chairman said, “Let bloggers come and debate in the arena of ideas. And let them be judges by their peers – people who are not professional politicians or paid pundits but average, inquisitive, and fair-minded people”. And it was so. And The Chairman looked upon the Judges and saw that they were good.
But then an illness befell The Chairman and when he was recovered he returned to The Iron Blog and found that his Judges and, yea, many volunteer Challengers had fled. Why, oh why, had they forsaken him? But there was no answer to be found.
So now the Chairman calls upon you for aid. Do you have an opinion? Can you back up your opinion with fact and wit? Can you judge a debate based on fair guidelines?
If so, then you need to volunteer! Go visit The Iron Blog and read some of the debates (I recommend the latest debate which I believe was one of the finer the site has featured, even though I was the Challenger). E-mail The Chairman and let him know of your interest in either being a Challenger or a Judge.
Here is the time commitment you can expect. A Challenger will have to participate for a week-long debate. You’ll have to write an Opening Argument, two Rebuttals, and a Closing Argument which are spaced out during the week. There is often a good amount of research involved but since you get to give The Chairman an array of topic from which to choose, you can be assured that you’ll be debating a topic with which you’re both familiar and passionate.
As a Judge, you’re expected to read each of the debate posts and score them. This doesn’t take an unreasonable amount of time – less than an hour if you’re a fast reader. You rate each post on a numeric scale that’s provided in the Judges’ Guide. It’s not difficult at all. Think of it as judging a beauty pageant.
Seriously, folks. There are a lot of very opinionated people out there who have very strong writing skills. You should seriously consider entering the ring and giving a topic a good, rigorous debate.
So go. Debate. Keep The Iron Blog alive.