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Readers Respond: Should TV viewers be able to alert officials to golf rules violations?

Responses: 84


It happens a few times every year: A golfer commits a rules violation, but nobody notices (including the golfer). Except for someone watching the tournament on television. That viewer manages to make some calls, and brings the rules violation to light. The offending player is penalized, sometimes even disqualified, as a result.

Is that fair? Should a television viewer be able to affect the outcome of a golf tournament? Or does every rules violation deserve to be brought to light, regardless of the way it happens? What's your opinion on home viewers catching rules infractions in televised golf tournaments? What's Your Opinion?

Ultimate Challenges

To allow the TV viewers a chance to challenge a 'play' is ridiculous. Let the officials of the game do their job!
—Guest Nongolfer

Tv Viewers status

TV viewers are outside the tournament and should have no status. Tournament attendees are outside the ropes and also should have no status. We have players and officials who are responsible for the self rulings and penalties being assessed as they occur. We do not need the eyes and rulings of TV pundits to take precedence over the course players and officials.
—Guest MacFore

How Ridiculous

Viewers should absolutely not be allowed to call in rules violations. No other sport allows fans to call in rules violations . Viewers are not part of the tournament. It is absolutely ridiculous that the tournament officials actually allow this and spend their time responding to these idiotic viewers.

tv viewers

TV viewers should not be able to alert officials to rules violations. That is the job of the players and officials only. If the officials miss something during play, then there should be no comeback after the game is finished.
—Guest mh

Not in Football

There is no other sport where viewers can call in and get a player DQ'd or assess penalties upon him. Grow up, you can read the rules, but cannot play golf.
—Guest Ngarin


The on course officials are good enough. Calling infringements after the game and DQing players is frankly ridiculous to me.
—Guest bern

TV Viewers Should Not be Involved

TV viewers should not have access to phone numbers to call about infractions. If they do have the numbers, they should not be used for possible infractions of the rules. Only those golfer that are on TV can be pentalized by these calls. 90% of the golfers, not on TV can break the rules and never be "caught". No CALLERS on rules infraction.


no other sporting contests allow for tv viewers to call in penalties. have every shot reviewed and annouce the tournament winner a week or two later, won't that make watching the masters pointless?
—Guest bill

Only If

ONLY IF ALL players play by the exact same rules and ALL golfers good AND BAD are on air approximately the same amount of time and suject to this scrutiny...and ONLY IF..they go back on EVERY shot of the BAD golfer the exact same way they go back and scrutinize each moment and breath Tiger and Phil take.

Rule call by TV viewer

No - the integrety of the player is part of the game. If it comes in question someone in group that saw infraction should make call.
—Guest Jo Sorrell

No way

There is no way that TV viewers should be able to call violations. The vast majority of players call their own violations anyway. Would these people make the same calls for football, baseball and other sports if they could?
—Guest David Fido


No, put a Rules official in the TV box that is on course to watch for infractions. No other sport allows viewers to call in.
—Guest Alberta Dugo

absolutely not

This has become nonsense - are the results of any other sport changed after the event? Of course not.
—Guest mike sanders

Rules violation

Absolutely not-----some of the rules are insane to begin with......The incident I remember the best was Craig Stadler & the rain pants. I never have figured out how placing your knees on a a pair of rain pants is "building a stance"...
—Guest D E

Viewer Calls

Even as Golf is a Game Honestly played which I know all Players are aware,I think that ALL the Players do Their best to follow all the Rules,I don't think accidental infractions should be accepeted from Viewers calling in. I have seen this occur too often on the Tour,the Viewers are not Golf Officials even if They read the Book.
—Guest Vern

What's Your Opinion?

Should TV viewers be able to alert officials to golf rules violations?

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