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  • So if they don't vacate, they set a precedent that the team who invents substantial material facts most ingeniously can win with few repercussions. If they do vacate, people will whine that the offending cross didn't tip the scales, despite their entire theory resting on that cross and despite it being an absolutely egregious violation. AMTA is in a rough spot, but regardless of formal sanctions, I hope we can all agree to thumb our noses at Yale.

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    • Y'all keep playin' Judge Judy and executioner. AMTA first needs to follow their process and determine whether this constitutes material invention of fact. They've got well-defined rules and a committee delegated to enforce them. Just because they don't always agree with your own takes doesn't mean they don't care.

      There's a lot of assumptions getting thrown around this thread that might not mirror how that process actually works out. Just creating drama in this thread and MTC is probably not the best way to ensure some sense of fairness or justice in Mock Trial. If you're here to talk about why rules are important, then at least heed your own advice and respect the process instead of tainting it through polarizing and heated discourse- or by trying to rile up the community against Yale without waiting for or caring about AMTA's official response (which, unlike a Perjuries drama thread or MTC trend, actually has some logic behind it).

      If the consequences are as huge as y'all seem to think they are, then it's more important for AMTA to get this right than it is for them to provide instant gratification. Be patient and let AMTA do its job- or at least hold off on reacting until we get something meaningful and official.
      things are really heating up in the lawyer impersonation fandom

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      • Originally posted by bengarmoe View Post
        As I mentioned earlier in this thread, I want to largely keep away from specifics since we're the only other team to face this defense in its fully realized form. But I will say that I had a conversation before round four with some folks who shall remain nameless but are people who know the rules well. That conversation leads me to think vacating a title is not an option in this circumstance, as that's not really the type of relief the rule is meant to provide. I think it's more likely (based on no inside information, just my own speculation) that any sanction, if one occurs, would be on the program moving forward. Again, not saying there should or shouldn't be one, but I think vacating a title is extremely unlikely.
        Good point. But I think AMTA can find ways to work within the rules they've created. Maybe the available sanctions don't include vacating a title (because they never thought something like this would happen), but they could demand that Yale give up the title on their own - or otherwise face some seriously onerous implementation of the sanctions in 9.5 (3), like a permanent suspension of school membership. If Yale complies with the demand and "voluntarily" gives it up, the board could deem that an act of contrition and reduce the proposed permanent suspension to something less drastic.

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        • I think we're going a bit off course here. I think that we can all debate about whether or not Yale broke the rule -- we saw what happened, we know mock trial, we can have an informed opinion. I'm really hesitant to start weighing in on specific sanctions or punishments beyond saying "I do/don't think this is sanctionable." AMTA has a clear, well-defined process for handling these things, and I trust it. Let them take their time and do their investigation without all of us chiming in on what we think should happen.

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          • I think the most important thing is what was the PD on the ballots. Especially if the PD is within 6-8 points.

            If the Rivers DX and CX appear to have not suffered from the impeachment with written comments giving praise to the portrayal; there’s your smoking gun.

            As for Daniel Elliott’’s cross; watching the round while being familiar with the case materials, it appeared to me that the affidavit became a useless piece of paper after the “”Of course I said that”” line. After that point, regardless of how you interpret the answer meaning, Daniel was just holding some pieces of paper with ink on them.

            That answer took away Daniel’s ability to expose the fact pattern as being untruthful to a judge who is unfamiliar with the case materials.
            Furthermore, judges are told to score higher for witness portrayals they see as being real. To a judge who’s unfamiliar with the specific rules given by AMTA, that performance was the closest to a real life perjury situation I’ve ever seen. (Aptly pointed out during the cross)

            Part of the issues we as competitors have are that we are looking through the lense of someone who has studied these facts since March 18th.

            When invention of fact posts come up in the past, we often ask the question, “”Did you impeach the witness? No? Then sit down.”” I believe Daniel Elliott did impeach the witness, several times in fact. I believe that the effectiveness of his impeachment was directly affected by the answers given during direct examination which planted the seed in the mind of the judges that this witness is not to be trusted.

            If the witness becomes someone who is untruthful on direct examination, then the previous affidavit no longer carries the weight necessary to perform a proper impeachment. Even if the impeachment is carried out to the level of having been written in a Perry Mason episode, it will be counteracted by the fact that the witness is staying so true to the character that he has developed since direct.

            What Yale did was extremely clever. I also do not believe teams without similar talent level could have carried this out. Take that as you will.

            However, I do not believe that the Rivers direct and cross examination events were mutually exclusive. I believe the answers given on direct examination directly contributed to the way that the answers were received on cross-examination. Likewise, I believe that the answers on cross-examination cemented the character that had been portrayed on direct.

            One would not have occurred without the other. The way the events transpired also fit perfectly into how we were told it would from opening statements.

            Whether or not Yale purposely intended for that direct and cross examination to occur in the way that it did is not substantial. The more pressing issue is that this theory created an environment in which this could occur, and after such events the theory would not be hurt. Had Rivers not played out the way that it had, we quite possibly would not have over 10,000 views to this thread.

            Nevertheless, the fifth round did happen that way. The way that it occurred created an unfair advantage outside the closed universe problem created by AMTA. There are clear rules as well as precedent.

            The only difference is Yale has a four foot tall trophy. I hope the CRC keeps that in mind.
            Last edited by ObtainedGrain; April 10th, 2019, 01:39 AM.

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            • I think the most important thing is what was the PD on the ballots. Especially if the PD is within 6-8 points.
              I think it's a serious sanctionable problem, clearly as defined by AMTA rules and precedent, even if Yale won every ballot by 20 points.

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              • I also don't think it matters what the PDs were. Yale blatantly violated the rules, in a way that was obvious to many people watching the round. Whether or not those particular parts of the round determined outcome shouldn't matter when we're talking about this kind of rules violation on AMTA's biggest stage.

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                • I think the best thing AMTA can do here is deduct points from Yale until enough ballots flip for Rhodes to be declared winner. Points should be deducted from Yale's directs, crosses, and speeches as they were all tainted by the invention. That should eliminate any incentive for teams to attempt a similar move in the future.

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                  • I just wanted to apologize for my previous post. I shouldn’t (and normally do not) comment here but my exhaustion got the better of me and I’m mostly just bummed that this has been the primary discussion of the final round. I would rather the conversation be about how Sullivan might be one of the funniest character witnesses I’ve ever seen. Or what a great speaking style Matthew Broussard has. Or how people felt about the cross styles. Instead all of the great things about the round have been glossed over and that takes away the fun of being there. I recall when this forum was first made and the vigorous critiques I received from various members of this forum about my performance and, while it wasn’t fun to hear, it made me a better performer and a better coach of the activity.

                    So to Yale: I apologize for comparing what you did to my attempt at a humorous but hyperbolic example. There were many things about your team that I thought were amazing.

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                    • Originally posted by Nur Rauch View Post

                      I think it's a serious sanctionable problem, clearly as defined by AMTA rules and precedent, even if Yale won every ballot by 20 points.
                      Precisely. Otherwise the rule is effectively "No cheating, unless you know you're so good that it doesn't matter that you cheated because your presentation was better than the other team's."
                      May I please the court?

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                      • Originally posted by Zephaniah View Post
                        Y'all keep playin' Judge Judy and executioner.
                        Underrated line.

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                        • Lmao I know I’m in the minority here but after reviewing the transcriptions posted on this thread, I disagree with the even the initial premise that’s Yale broke the material invention rule at all. For there to have occurred a material fact, it would have needed to have been stated for the record. At not point, I believe, did Rivers ever state, for the record, that he sent the two men to the store to try and get the defendant to run a negative tweet. He did not recant his affidavit either. Arguing that fact in closing, or overpromising it in opening, doesn’t violate the rule either. It serves merely as an indicator as to whether a would-be invention would be material, if it’s ever stated in round.

                          When Elliot was crossing him, the reason it was not clean was because it wasn’t a direct contradiction. Unfortunately, Elliot tried to get Yale’s witness to admit, “<If you had known that Anderson was going to lie, you would have told her not do it.”> The witness said no to this. To me, that’s because the affidavit specifically says, “<If I would have known *what Anderson was going to say*, I would have told her not to do it.”> That’s an entirely different fact than, for example, whether he’d tell her not to do it if she just lied in general. Furthermore, it’s also asking the witness to assert that it was a lie, and while Yale was not disputing the falsity, the witnesses don’t share that burden. The witness has no obligation to say yes to it being a lie just because the crossing attorney said so.

                          Then when Elliot tried to confirm the impeachment again, he said, “<So I need you to answer my question. You would agree with me that had the defendant told you of this post before she made it, you would have told her not to do it. Yes or no?”...>
                          The witness said no. I think the major issue here is that telling someone about a post, and telling someone what they were specifically going to say in the post are two different facts (If I tell someone “I’m going to trash a celebrity online,” I haven’t told them what it was I was going to say). I think I’ve said it before but it comes down to semantics. If Elliot had stuck to the words in the affidavit, instead of trying to backdoor his theory into the impeachment follow-up questions, Rivers would have answered yes. I think Yale did nothing wrong here and contrary to a lot of the beliefs I’ve seen on this thread, I no longer believe Yale’s Rivers “slipped up” on cross. I think he just knew his affidavit so well that he disagreed with Elliot when he misquoted the affidavit during impeachment.

                          Everything else is ancillary to this main question. For those of you jumping to talk about sanctions already, and taking the breaking-of-the-rule as a done deal, I think you underestimate how strong of a case Yale has here in their defense; beginning with the fact that, in my opinion, they didn’t violate 8.9 at all.
                          Last edited by bdopl; April 12th, 2019, 01:36 PM.

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                          • Originally posted by bdopl View Post
                            Lmao I know I’m in the minority here but after reviewing the transcriptions posted on this thread, I disagree with the even the initial premise that’s Yale broke the material invention rule at all. For there to have occurred a material fact, it would have needed to have been stated for the record.

                            I think you underestimate how strong of a case Yale has here in their defense; beginning with the fact that, in my opinion, they didn’t violate 8.9 at all.
                            I very well could be wrong here, but I don't believe anywhere in rule 8.9 that the contradiction has to be "on the record." In fact, it states that if the alleged invention is used in closing arguments, the CRC should consider that when determining whether or not the invention was material. Insofar that closing arguments aren't allowed to contain any information that wasn't already put on the record through the testimony of the witnesses, if the invention was used in the closing argument, then there was an invention.

                            Similarly to how you've described, last year's Bailey that was sanctioned never directly contradicted the affidavit. Instead, rather than saying "yes" to questions on cross, Bailey said things like "that's what I am supposed to say" and "I don't know - what do you want me to say?"

                            In that instance, the CRC took the message in context - in that case, the context was that Bailey was listening to pre-determined statements that Kerry and her lawyers told her to say. In this case, the context was that Rivers was going to put anything in the affidavit that would allow him to not be sued ("of COURSE I said that, I didn't want to get sued, too!") Last year, the CRC determined that "the context here made it clear this was a strategic move to deny that a stated fact in her affidavit occurred." Furthermore, The CRC determined that Bailey's actions "totally separate a trial from the case materials, and eliminates impeachment as an effective remedy. In doing so, it gives teams an unfair competitive advantage for which their opponent has no recourse." In this case, Yale separated the trial from the case materials.

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                            • Originally posted by Doobs View Post
                              Insofar that closing arguments aren't allowed to contain any information that wasn't already put on the record through the testimony of the witnesses, if the invention was used in the closing argument, then there was an invention.
                              I think the distinction here is that it's against the rules for a closing to contain an invention already put onto the record explicitly. There's no rule against a closing spelling out conclusions that the attorney hopes the jury will draw from testimony actually put onto the record. Take the P expert, for example. They can't say that Anderson's post caused the drop in sales. But they can say there was a drop in sales, and that the drop started right after the post. Even though the P expert would be making an egregious invention by explicitly stating the causal link while on the stand, the closing attorney can (and probably should) connect the dots explicitly in closing, and that isn't against the rules even though the expert themselves never said so.

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                              • Sure but context doesn't mean anything when Yale just keeps outplaying everyone on content knowledge. If you've heard the Mock Review episode with Bays it's probably crystal clear how they got to where they got on the Rivers cross and Rivers' behavior is at least consistent with Yale deliberately focusing on the details of the fact pattern at a level that kills almost all opponents' fancy flourishes.

                                Elliot just gave their Rivers a nanometer more wiggle room than he should've gotten, and Rivers ran away with it. The details and context don't matter as much when we're just looking at what's just a fancy variation on the typical "control your witness tightly" scenario that we all learn about as first-years. Yale is the GSW of Mock and accordingly they've mastered an important part of the game that the rest of us have overlooked; it's dismaying that people on Perjuries and MTC are clamoring for AMTA to shut that down with rules when instead we could let the sport evolve and respect a team that's pushing it forward.

                                Honestly, the stuff in here is hardly distinguishable from what you hear bad NBA commentators say about James Harden's game. Trying to label it all a "travel" or "flopping" or just complaining that it "ruins the sport." If it really were that easy and cheap a move, your team would be able to pull it off too. The NBA got past that resistance phase (finally) and this season we saw offenses that are just killing it compared to the NBA of even 2 years ago, let alone 5. Meanwhile, for all the years Yale has had its "reputation" for creativity (i.e., salty accusations of invention that always fail), who's really learned from them? Clearly not most of the people here.

                                Yale didn't just earn that championship, they demonstrated greatness. They deserve respect, not this mob campaign to take them down and hold back the future of the game. /2cents
                                Last edited by Zephaniah; April 12th, 2019, 04:38 PM. Reason: (was drunk when i wrote this, so i took out typos)
                                things are really heating up in the lawyer impersonation fandom

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