Tag Archives: Armchair rules officials



On Tuesday the USGA and R&A announced 87 changes — three new Decisions, 59 revised Decisions, one re-numbered Decision and 24 Decisions withdrawn — to the Rules of Golf that will be effective January 1, 2014, but there were four significant ones, with the most notable involving the use of high-definition or slow-motion video and other visual evidence in enforcing the game’s rules.

Golf’s governing bodies may have been prompted to make this new decision as a result of several controversies during the 2013 season, particularly the Oscillate-gate incident with Tiger Woods receiving a two-shot penalty for his ball moving at the BMW Championship. 

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By Stephanie Wei under FedEx Cup
Where Oscillate-Gate started...

Where Oscillate-Gate started…

Tiger Woods’ rules infraction last Friday at the BMW Championship remained the most-talked-about-two-shot penalty (since earlier this year at The Masters) on the eve of the Tour Championship. Woods remains adamant that his ball oscillated and didn’t move despite the obvious video evidence, and while this rules violation was caught by a “freelance videographer” for PGA Tour Entertainment, this incident has heightened the discussion about armchair rules officials calling in penalties.

Prior to his chat with the media, Woods met with PGA Tour Commissioner Tim Finchem for about an hour, and though Tiger didn’t divulge many details about their conversation, it’s safe to assume that the main topic was the Tour’s policy on viewers calling in potential rules infractions. 

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See a rules infraction on the telecast? Call 1-800-THIS-POLICY-SUCKS

PGA Tour Commissioner Tim Finchem won’t bring an end to allowing fans phone in rules infractions they see on the telecast from their homes. The practice has already triggered controversy early in 2011 after Camilo Villegas and Padraig Harrington were both disqualified for signing incorrect scorecards after viewers notified tournament officials of the violations. Though Finchem still welcomes fan involvement in enforcing the rules, he’d like to see more common sense applied in enforcing the infractions called in by vigilant armchair officials, according to the AP.

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Tiger's last appearance at Torrey Pines was the 2008 US Open

For the few who haven’t read it yet (because I know it’s just about everyone’s first stop on Monday morning), check out the latest edition of PGA Tour Confidential. We discuss the world’s No. 3 making his first start this week at the Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines, Padraig Harrington and Dimplegate, Captain Davis and the 2012 US Ryder Cup team (a bit premature), and of course, the thrilling finish at the Bob Hope Classic. Below are some excerpts to get a lively discussion started. First, let’s go to the incorrect scorecard rule and armchair rules officials:

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