New (for 2011) Contest Rulebook issued

TI has issued a new speech contest rulebook effective Jan 1, 2011 It has many very good clarifications and several rule changes. It is overall a very good update making the rulebook better, clearer and more useful.

Some of the clarifications

  • The tiebreaking judge does not attend the judges’ briefing.
  • When the last contestant finishes speaking, the contest chair will ask for silence until the ballot counters have collected all ballots. (no more 1 minute or 2 minute …)
  • Judges are directed to discreetly discard their scoring forms, the chief judge is directed to keep all materials confidential – there is no need for a “motion to destroy the ballots”
  • Protests: Any protest shall be lodged with the chief judge and/or contest chair prior to the announcement of the winner and alternate(s).
  • The Chief Judge ‘provides a list showing placement of all contestants to the contest chair.

Some of the changes

  • Contestants
    To be eligible to compete in ANY contest, a member must have completed at least six speeches from the Competent Communication (Item 225) manual prior to the club contest. (Note, Toastmasters who completed older speaking awards like CTM or Able Toastmaster are considered to have met the 6 speech requirement)
  • The above change was rescinded on November 10, 2010.

  • Judges
    All judges at area, division, district, semifinal, and International speech contests must have been a Toastmasters member in good standing since July 1 of the previous year and have completed at least six Competent Communication (Item 225) manual projects. (Or be CTM, ATM, …)
  • Timing
    Two timers are appointed by the chief judge. One is provided with a stopwatch and the other with a timing device**(will be changed to signaling device) that displays green, yellow, and red colors
  • Tiebreaking
    The tiebreaking judge’s ballot must be collected by the chief judge while the counters are collecting all other judges’ ballots.
  • Official Forms
    Only official forms may be used for speech contests

What more could be done: If we want to be 100 % clear on things – some guidelines:

  • Do NOT announce whether the tie-breaking ballot was used or not
  • There is no need for a “motion to destroy the ballots”

** There is one typo in the timing section and Joe at TI is making sure it is fixed in the print version soon available for purchase. That is where the second timer uses a signaling device’ rather than a ‘timing device’.

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