A serious website for rated debate should not open to beta testing where beta-debates aren't rated.

with opposing topic of

Beta testing is a common tool for verifying a maturing product, and a website for debate is no diffe


Creator
nongolf
Creator is trying to prove:
A serious website for rated debate should not open to beta testing where beta-debates aren't rated.
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Contender
Coveny
Contender is trying to prove:
Beta testing is a common tool for verifying a maturing product, and a website for debate is no diffe
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Category : Economics and Money Tags :
Civil or Profane : Civil Casual or Ranked Casual
Style Open Voting Period 14 Days
Characters per round : 1500 Time to respond : 7 Days
Judging score Required : 0 Debate Id #29
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Acceptance Round
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Argument Round
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My position is that this site (and pretty much any other sort of site) would be better off with either a) No beta testing at all, meaning all debates count from day one, or b) Any sort of motivation for beta testers. As it stands, the site does not provide any motivation for beta testers to get involved.


Generally speaking, beta-testers expect some kind of compensation for their time and effort - and they should. The information provided is invaluable to the developers, and sometimes results in changes for the released version that simply isn’t compatible with the previous beta version.

However, this site doesn’t feature some untested game theory or ill-defined mechanic. ELO is a tried and tested method for rating anything with wins, losses and draws - not just debates.


So what possible reason could there be for beta-testing this site? Clearly it isn’t doubts about the game mechanics (are leaderboards fair, that sort of thing).


Perhaps my opponent can enlighten me here, but I myself can see no other reason than technical validation of the site - purely a matter of graphics and functionality of the interactive parts (navigation, submitting text, log-in and such). While that’s a valid reason to do beta-testing, it leaves no argument in favour of resetting all ELO scores once the site go into production.


To conclude, the site should at the very least motivate any and all beta-testers in some way, and and the best way would be to let the ELO scores stand after testing is concluded.

Thanks for creating the debate, and I look forward to having it!

 

There are two parts to the resolution.

  1. A) Should there be a beta
  2. B) Should ELO be reset

 

#A

A1) Faster to market - Word of mouth

Beta allows the product to get to market, and when people start using a product they talk about it.

 

A2) Usability

Results in a better end product. For example, we changed how age is entered because of mobile devices

 

A3) New features - better quality

User feedback allows for a bigger audience. For example, we added quizzes and live chat

 

A4) Bug detection

“Any type of testing before you launch is recommended, but I warn you…the lazier you are on your testing, the less likely you will be to profit from your new creation” [Con1A]

 

A5) Creates content/community

As people create debates, forum posts, and interact in beta the site becomes more appealing. This allows FD to already have content when it officially opens up to the public.

 

B

B1) Fairness

The biggest reason to reset the ELOs is fairness. During beta many debates will be test debates, but if bugs are found in the debating system that prevent a user from completing a debate it’s not fair to hold that lose (or that win) against them.

 

B2) Better customer experience

When the website goes live it gives new users a better experience.

 

B3) ELO doesn’t always matter

FD has been tailored to allow for debate about non-important topics about movies, art, rapping, food, etc. that don’t matter if users receive an ELO or not.

Rebuttal Round 1
  
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Perhaps I should start by apologizing for my lack of experience in formal debates such as this. I don't quite get what those 'Cr1A' and 'Con1A' fields are about, but I suspect that using them might have saved us from this misunderstanding.

I am not going to argue that there should be no beta-testing (your #A). Beta-testing is a good idea, but it can be executed poorly and that's what happened here. That is the only thing I will try to prove.

In light of the above, I will only address your B1 point. The other items under B are part of the argument of whether beta-testing is a good thing, which I don't contend. 

B1) Fairness
This is certainly a valid point which should be taken into account when planning a beta test. However, since there are no other rewards for testers, this approach leaves them with no motivation at all (to test the site). Surely you see the need to create motivation, in order to get past testing as fast as possible?

By choosing to categorically invalidate all debates during beta, you're throwing in bad apples with the good and thereby ruining them all. A far better approach would be to invalidate the debates that are actually flawed, and let the remaining stand.

But ELO isn't the only possible motivation here. The site may opt for 'honourable mention' (like a cool icon by your name), or other site privileges (extended permissions for site functionality, maybe judging).

Beta is for learning how things work, and gaining experience! I created a short video and linked it in the comments.

 

My opponent has conceded #A so I won’t respond to the “a) No beta testing at all” argument.

 

Motivation – Compensation

We have offered cash to use the website. In the first instance no one took up the offer, and in the second only 5 of the required 100 took up the offer. ePixal will are supposed to work on the tournaments this week, and once those are completed we will begin the free cash prize debate tournaments. (join the event list to get updates on tournaments and premium debates) We also reserve the right to provide further compensation for beta testers. (we are open to suggestions on the matter...)

 

ELO

The ELO calculations used here are very different than those used in chess. There is a full break down on the ELO page [Con1B] and you can compare the numeric differences to chess here [Con1C]. The differences in standard ELO and this one includes much large changes (win, tie, loss), bonus to wins, ELO decay, tournament ELO, etc. These extreme changes to ELO alone are enough to warrant beta testing the “numbers”.

 

Game Mechanics

The way that we’ve broken down judging debates and voting on those judgments doesn’t exist in any form. It’s a completely new mechanic which puts judges into a reddit style upvote/downvote system of peer review on their judgements. Judging is very important to us, and we feel like this is an important mechanic to beta test.

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Nice video, thank you :)

I will also thank you to acknowledge that you created a strawman for me and claimed a 'win' by saying I conceded the point (A1). If you read my argument, you'll see I never said beta testing is not a good idea. Poor form mate.

Motivation - Compensation

I'm not sure what you mean by 'offer money to use the site', can you elaborate?But if it means what it sounds like, I'm very surprised people haven't jumped on it. Smells fishy, or else you've been very stingy.

 

ELO

Truth be told, I saw the page on the modified ELO system just after having submitted the argument, and knew I'd lost the debate.
As opposed to your other arguments, I will accept this as a valid reason to reset the scores after beta testing. When there is this much doubt about the usefulness of the rating system, you must take precautions.

 

Game Mechanics

I was (and am) pretty confused about those 3 buttons. But they sound intriguing and this judging of judges is pretty cool. Yay peer reviews!

 

I didn’t feel like it was your position so much as something that needed to be addressed because the resolution stated, “A serious website for rated debate should not open to beta testing where beta-debates aren't rated.” I didn’t say… you said that beta testing was a bad idea either. I was just addressing what I felt like “could” be a point of contention so I addressed right from the beginning. Sorry if you felt like I was putting words in your mouth.

 

Motivation

If you look in “Civil – For Debating” you should two posts about free cash contests. More will be coming down the pipe after they get the tournaments working.

 

ELO

We’ve gotten feedback from that the ELO system is too loose. Chess deals with zero chance, or subjectivity, and there is only one way to play it. Debate on the other hand is judged by people, the chance of their feels about the debater or the topic can make a big difference, and there are many different angles to debate a topic from, not to mention it’s impossible to have the same claims in judging both sides. Making who wins a debate subjective. (unlike chess which is objective)

 

Judging

"Click" is one point and you don’t have to explain why you voted. "Detailed" is two points but you have to explain why you voted, and that explanation has to follow certain rules. To review a detailed win (up/down vote) click the review button. I'll add a detailed vote for you after I submit this so you can what it looks like.

Rebuttal Round 3
  
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