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Top 5 Social Media Platforms for Debate

Yah, you debate (presumably).

Yah, you have debate friends (do you?).

Yah, you follow some debate meme pages on Instagram (you should).

But where else can you connect with speech & debate? And more importantly, do you even want to?

Here’s 5 Social Media platforms where you may be missing out on a Speech & Debate opportunity.

1. Reddit

Have a debate question? As a 5-year debate coach, there’s only one place I’ll go: no wait, there’s probably more than one. But, mmm, one of the places I most often go is Reddit: the biggest, most centralized, most honest, most knowledgeable collection of speech & debate experts.

  • r/debate: everyone doing debate should be in this subreddit

  • r/debatetrade: use this forum for trading evidence— you offer your prep, and others send needed prep in return

  • Event-specific subreddits: look up your specific event to find a subreddit that better matches what you need

2. Discord

While Reddit is the whole-ass debate community, Discord is the student side: if you want to gossip, get real-time updates from tournaments, or learn the culture of debate, Discord is where its at.

  • Public Forum Debate is a large PF discord server— although, of course, limited to PF. Message me for an invite.

  • Ask senior members of your team, or connected debaters at competitions, for your regional or event-specificl Discord.

3. Clubhouse

Clubhouse is the short-term future of debate social. Like speech & debate, it’s voice-based, so practicing— and perhaps competitions— will be easily-adapted to the platform. It’s sure to greatly expand the reach of speech & debate, as unlike Facebook or Instagram or Tiktok, you can actually show real debate events to the world.

Relatedly, the days of emails and blogs like this may be numbered as we increasingly transition to a voice-based world— Clubhouse is a way to get your foot in the door.

The fact that the app is still in the process of blowing up (February 2021) means that there’s a lot of opportunity to make your mark on your niche— debate or otherwise.

  • It’s too new to recommend anyone— but follow my personal account @joelexperience and we’ll create some rooms together!

4. Youtube

I have to put Youtube on my list, even though of course you know about it. Till now, this has been the #1 best resource for learning about debate, learning about new topics, and surveying actual debate rounds. This is the top tool in my arsenal anytime a new topic drops.

  • PF Videos is an indispensable treasure trove of PF rounds.

  • Debatetrack, of course, has the best PF topic analyses (so far…)

5. Podcasts

So, podcasts aren’t social media per se, but they kinda are. At least one-way social. Kinda.

Podcasts are, of course, the best way to learn about anything, including debate, passively, while you’re working out or commuting or if you just don’t want to be staring at your phone.

The biggest downside of podcasts for debate is that there just isn’t much variety in speech & debate. The upside of this is that if you’re looking to start a podcast, this might be the perfect niche!

If you don’t have a podcatcher (or podcast player), I use the Pocketcasts app.

  • The Forensics Experience is one of the sole S&D podcasts, focusing on interviews with people in the scene. It keeps getting better and better!

6. Tiktok

Tiktok gets an honorary mention for being the meme upgrade of the day: most of the S&D jokes that have made me literally for real laugh out loud have been from Tiktok. Of course, given its short time and the fact that it’s not primarily audio-based, Tiktok is better for having a laugh than practicing or hearing debate.

  • @tricksterqqog

  • @speechanddebate

  • @theforensicsguy

Any debate pages you recommend on any social (even if it's you)? Let me know in the comments! I'll give 'em a follow.

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