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Debating on Debate.org can come with a steep learning curve, especially for a newcomer to the website. Don't fret, however, as you too can be on the leaderboard as one of the top debaters on the website.


1. Do your research

Researching a topic before you debate can give you an idea about the controversy surrounding it. Research commonly used, but incorrect, arguments and misconceptions to make sure that you do not fall victim to a logical fallacy.

2. Know common logical fallacies

Logical fallacies refer to errors with logic. Learn about logical fallacies before you debate, so that you can avoid making them and call your opponent out for making such fallacies at the same time.

Here is a table with the definitions and names of common logical fallacies. Please note that there are fallacies that may be wrongfully defined or absent from this list. Please also note that making a fallacy is not the emd of the world, so it's okay to make logical fallacies as long as you correct them.

Fallacy Name Definition
Ad hominem Stating that because the opponent/person making an argument has a certain bad trait, the argument is false, instead of arguing against the argument itself.
Argument from ignorance

Pushing the Burden Of Proof to the opponent by stating that because one cannot know that something is not true, it must be true.

Argument from authority Stating that because an authoritative figure claimed something, the claim must be true. This fallacy is a bit controversial, as it is reasonable to believe that the education or experience of an individual may affect their reliability, according to the Skeptics Guide to logical fallacies.
Argument from consequence Arguing that because A would result in adverse consequence B, A is false. The correct way to argue is arguing that cousequence B did not happen, implying that there was no A to cause it.
Begging the Question Circular reasoning
Post hoc, ergo proper hoc/Confusing causation with correlation Stating that because A correlates with B(or comes before B), be was caused by A.

False Dichotomy/False Dilemma

An argument that relies on the assumption that there are only two, black and white, possibilities when there are many by reducing many possibilities to a black and white choice.
No true scotsman Redefining a word to exclude counterexamples, such as claiming that all of group A has characteristic B, but claiming that counterexample C is not a counterexample at all because C is not a true member of group A.
Non sequitur An argument whose conclusion does not follow from its premises.
Slippery slope Arguing that A will result in a slippery slope to the more extreme concept B, when no such slope exists.
Strawman Misrepresentin, exaggerating, or twisting an argument to make it easier to refute.
Fallacy Fallacy Arguing that because an argument has a logical fallacy, it's conclusion must be false.
Moving the Goalpost Changing the definition or criteria of proof every time new proof appears.
Tu Quoque French for "you too". An argument that argues that because the opponent also made the same mistake, your own mistake is okay.

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Recommended websites

Your fallacy is


Warning: Political/ideological bias may render the following source unreliable:Skeptics Guide to logical fallacies

3. Cite

Cite the sources used for your debate,

4. Add images

To see how to add images such as charts or graphs to your debates, click here.

References

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