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Television Replays being Abused

Mikel92

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So this might get a few people wound up. (not hard to do on here seemingly!)
We live in an age of technology, and it would be almost criminal not to utilize it in the sports that we love. Years ago, the prospect of technology and video replay was exciting for all the things that were missed. But in recent times, I feel, we’ve got another extreme outcome. Technology in itself as an aide is a good thing. But who utilizes it, and for what agenda is becoming very concerning.

There have been a couple of incidents this year that I've noticed where Broadcast Companies have played an altercation (that has long been forgotten about) and they play it ... over, and over, and over. Yes, one technically shouldn't be reckless or dangerously dive into the ruck. But that's a separate conversation and not what I'm talking about. My issue is .. ok, if Broadcasters are going to do that then be consistent. Because at the moment you're seeing replays being rammed down referees throats, riled crowds and gigantic implications that a penalty should be awarded. Home advantage should not translate to "unfair advantage". That goes for ALL teams at ALL venues. Yes, even Eden Park. If you're going to show unfavorable replays on what the Away team has done, then do it for the Home team too. You think that just because they're at home they're Saints? It has, and will continue to cost teams their matches.

Yes I've probably noticed it more because it's been effecting my team. So sue me. I've also heard whispers it happened again in the Ireland/South Africa game, although I haven't seen that for myself. Bottom line, if we're so concerned about indiscretions that get missed then let's bring in an appeal system which the Captain and/or Coach has authority over. That way, we can go back and check properly. Too many Broadcasters are becoming Cowboys, and if they wanted to officiate Rugby matches then they're in the wrong industry. It should really be stamped out before the World Cup rolls around.
 

Shaggy

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Yes, I quite like the idea of the challenge system, where the Captain or Coach gets a couple of challenges per match.

As for the television producers replays influencing the referee/inciting the crowd to influence the referee, it shouldn't be a problem to restrict the number of replays or the speed of the replays, at the ground ... let them do what they want for their television audiences.

I would also like to see some form of formal protocol introduced and adhered too, where the TMO and the Ref differ in their opinions of whether a team or player should be penalised/carded or what the punishment should be ... if the Ref is the sole judge/makes the final decision, fine, but it does beg the question, why have the TMO at all, if the Ref can see it on the big screen/see what the TMO sees, anyway
 

smartcooky

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IMO, the big screen replay and crowd reaction thing is getting completely out of hand. "'Home" TV producers are being allowed far too much latitude to show whatever they want, repeating perceived infringements by the visiting team over and over and over, but, in many cases, not showing infringements by the home team at all. I am sure this is with the intention to pressurise match officials.

There are a number of things as relates to the TMO and use of technology which I believe ought to be implemented before the RWC, otherwise it could become a farce.

► 1. TMO try-no try reviews are not shown on in-stadium screens until after the referee's/TMO decision is made. This would necessarily mean that the referee does not see the big screen replay (an issue dealt with in Bullet Point 4)

► 2. Replays of foul play are not allowed to be shown straight away on in-stadium screens. If not dealt with by the TMO, they are not to be shown at all. If they are dealt with by a TMO Foul Play review, they can be shown after the decision had been made.

► 3. The TMO and both AR's may bring any foul play, or anything relating to a score to the attention of the referee. The review is not to be shown on in-stadium screens until after a decision is made.

► 4. No more back and forth discussions between the TMO and the referee. When the referee asks for a TMO review, he says what he thinks he saw, then he hands the decision making responsibility to the TMO, it is now the TMO who now makes the decision. The TMO has the final say.

► 5. Place a hard time limit for the TMO review.. say 60 seconds from the time the referee calls for a review. If the TMO cannot decide after seeing the same replay three times, then its inconclusive and the referee's original decision stands.

Point 4 works well in NRL. The referee makes an on-field decision; and then says "we have a try" (signalled by making a "T" with his fist and forearm) or "we have no-try" (signalled by crossing his forearms in front of his chest). He also says what he wants checked, e.g. "check the grounding and possible obstruction at the second to last pass".

The Video Ref can only overturn the referee's decision if he sees clear evidence that the on-field decision is wrong. If it is inconclusive, the on field decisions stands. Also, the Video Ref's decision is final; once he is called to make a decision, it is his decision alone.

Point 5 is right out of NFL
 
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donmcdazzle

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Well I think rule is that the ref can review anything he sees on the big screen. You don't have to be a genius to work out which team's indiscretions the home broadcasters are likely to show and therefore the ref is more likely to see and punish.

That is the problem in a nutshell for me. I'm not sure how they solve it. It would seem weird if the ref looked up and could clearly see a replay of something he missed, but then he is also by default never going to see such an incident done by the home side. Maybe the challenge system is the answer, and remove the ability of the broadcasters to show replays of anything other than tries (in the ground).
 

easy2288

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Yes, I quite like the idea of the challenge system, where the Captain or Coach gets a couple of challenges per match.

As for the television producers replays influencing the referee/inciting the crowd to influence the referee, it shouldn't be a problem to restrict the number of replays or the speed of the replays, at the ground ... let them do what they want for their television audiences.

I would also like to see some form of formal protocol introduced and adhered too, where the TMO and the Ref differ in their opinions of whether a team or player should be penalised/carded or what the punishment should be ... if the Ref is the sole judge/makes the final decision, fine, but it does beg the question, why have the TMO at all, if the Ref can see it on the big screen/see what the TMO sees, anyway

Yes, fully support. Get this done before the next world cup. In fact I don't understand why there is a need for the big screen to show the match to the spectators concurrent when the match is been played.
 

Shaggy

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Yes, fully support. Get this done before the next world cup. In fact I don't understand why there is a need for the big screen to show the match to the spectators concurrent when the match is been played.

Normally I'd agree, but in some stadiums, it's the only way to see all of the game when other start standing up in front of you :)
 

TRF Mr Fish

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I think the problem is being overstated a wee bit.

The thing is, the only thing that's being shown on the big screen is foul play, it's not like minor offences are being show. This would be a problem as there are quite a few minor offences which are not picked up on by referees during the match, so the home would get a big advantage is this was common practice.

Foul play is fairly infrequent - it might occur once or twice a game. Regardless, it is something that we should be trying to stomp out all together. If the visiting teams' fouls are shown on the big screen it does give an advantage to the home team, yes, but is this really such a problem? You can't reasonably expect to see a game played without penalties - flankers are inevitably going to be penalised for stealing the ball (rightly or wrongly), but foul play is something we should be able to get rid of. If this has the effect of decreasing foul play then to be honest I'm all for it. For these reasons I think it is totally fine for replays to be shown on the big screen.

That being said, I certainly think there is room for improvement when it comes to how referees handle foul play/using the TMO to review foul play. I very much agree with smartcooky - once something has been referred to the TMO it should be their job (and their job alone) to decide the outcome.

Yes, fully support. Get this done before the next world cup. In fact I don't understand why there is a need for the big screen to show the match to the spectators concurrent when the match is been played.

That'd be just another reason not to go see live matches.
 

Mikel92

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I think the problem is being overstated a wee bit.

The thing is, the only thing that's being shown on the big screen is foul play, it's not like minor offences are being show. This would be a problem as there are quite a few minor offences which are not picked up on by referees during the match, so the home would get a big advantage is this was common practice.

Foul play is fairly infrequent - it might occur once or twice a game. Regardless, it is something that we should be trying to stomp out all together. If the visiting teams' fouls are shown on the big screen it does give an advantage to the home team, yes, but is this really such a problem? You can't reasonably expect to see a game played without penalties - flankers are inevitably going to be penalised for stealing the ball (rightly or wrongly), but foul play is something we should be able to get rid of. If this has the effect of decreasing foul play then to be honest I'm all for it. For these reasons I think it is totally fine for replays to be shown on the big screen..

Totally agree on some of the points there. We should absolutely stamp out foul play, we don't want that becoming more frequent in our sport. Penalties will always play a part in the game, and it's important that we have them. And hey, they'll even decide match outcomes sometimes. But there is just something wrong with what is starting to creep in, particularly this year. It's like the Home team gets an extra set of eyes. And that isn't fair, no matter the team, no matter the venue. Just my opinion. Restricting this would be tricky though, I totally understand. I'm sure there is some legislation or rules or contract arrangements for Broadcaster freedom. But still....worth addressing at the very least.

If we can't do that, then I'd still be into the referral idea. I think I read it was tried in South Africa? Perhaps players like Dane Coles would feel less inclined to take matters into their own hands if they knew there was a proper way of dealing with it. Also acting as a disincentive for players to be prats at ruck time and hold players down. Maybe 1 or 2 appeals a game or something so we're not checking something every 5 minutes?
 

TRF_heineken

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I think the easiest way to sort this thing out is to have a neutral tv producer, or 2 tv producers, one for each country.

The fact is, these things being shown, might favour the home team, but that doesn't necessarily mean that it's unlawful. The things being shown, did happen in the match, and had to be dealt with.
 

William18

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I think the easiest way to sort this thing out is to have a neutral tv producer, or 2 tv producers, one for each country.

The fact is, these things being shown, might favour the home team, but that doesn't necessarily mean that it's unlawful. The things being shown, did happen in the match, and had to be dealt with.

You are correct that in most cases where video replays have been used the decision has been correctly made. The Messam case is a prime example. The referee got the call right and upon seeing it on the big screen could hardly not turn around and give a penalty for it. However, the problem is that Liam Messam would not have been penalised at Eden Park. Bismarck would also not have been red carded at Ellis Park.

I feel a challenge system would ensure that the right decision is made more often. This way challenges would only be used when teams are confident that the referee had made the wrong call (although there may be some hopeful challenges towards the end of the game). I think that a referee should just be allowed to get on, referee the game and call everything as they see it. I feel the current system causes the referees to doubt what they see with their own two eyes.
 

The Jones Boy

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Something needs to be done because all the big teams are getting a home advantage from it.
 

goodNumber10

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The challenge system is already being discussed by the IRB.

It just needs a Seperate TV feed to TMO, the issues your taking about are because it gets replayed by TV producers for home viewers as analysts discuss.

On the ref making the decision it used to be the other way around, when the TMO protocol was extended the to reefs requested they be allowed to make decisions on what they see as they are the guy out in the middle.

You are correct that in most cases where video replays have been used the decision has been correctly made. The Messam case is a prime example. The referee got the call right and upon seeing it on the big screen could hardly not turn around and give a penalty for it. However, the problem is that Liam Messam would not have been penalised at Eden Park. Bismarck would also not have been red carded at Ellis Park.

So it's fine for foul play to not be penalised if the ref doesn't see it? How is that cleaning the game up?

Citing post match is one thing but a game can turn on foul play not being punished... And it's too late for the losing team at that point.
 
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TRF_heineken

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You are correct that in most cases where video replays have been used the decision has been correctly made. The Messam case is a prime example. The referee got the call right and upon seeing it on the big screen could hardly not turn around and give a penalty for it. However, the problem is that Liam Messam would not have been penalised at Eden Park. Bismarck would also not have been red carded at Ellis Park.

I feel a challenge system would ensure that the right decision is made more often. This way challenges would only be used when teams are confident that the referee had made the wrong call (although there may be some hopeful challenges towards the end of the game). I think that a referee should just be allowed to get on, referee the game and call everything as they see it. I feel the current system causes the referees to doubt what they see with their own two eyes.

Well the challenge system was used as an experiment a few years ago during the Varsity Cup in South Africa. They used white cards, when captains wanted to challenge a decision or report foul play. Each captain got 2 challenges, and if he was correct, the challenge remained available. Much like the DRS system in cricket.

But the fact of the matter is that there could still be manipulation from the producer. How often do we hear the TMO saying "that is the only angle available"?? While we all know there are so many cameras at the stadium all focused on the area where the ball is. That is why I say rather focus on the production team and find ways to use the technology available to make the right calls.

The challenge system might become a problem for the referees as a blatant way of undermining his calls. It would discourage referees even more, and at this stage where they are in the limelight just as much as the players, encouragement and discipline is of vital importance...
 

William18

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Well the challenge system was used as an experiment a few years ago during the Varsity Cup in South Africa. They used white cards, when captains wanted to challenge a decision or report foul play. Each captain got 2 challenges, and if he was correct, the challenge remained available. Much like the DRS system in cricket.

But the fact of the matter is that there could still be manipulation from the producer. How often do we hear the TMO saying "that is the only angle available"?? While we all know there are so many cameras at the stadium all focused on the area where the ball is. That is why I say rather focus on the production team and find ways to use the technology available to make the right calls.

The challenge system might become a problem for the referees as a blatant way of undermining his calls. It would discourage referees even more, and at this stage where they are in the limelight just as much as the players, encouragement and discipline is of vital importance...

I feel (and this is only a feel as I have no way of proving this) that a challenge system would affect a referee less. In a challenge system it would be the TMO ruling against the ref rather then the referee himself. I think it would make the referee more confident because if the referee makes the wrong call it would be that team's fault for not challenging that call or for using up their challengers earlier in the game.

One major problem I can see is the question of what can be challenged. I don't think you want to have a penalty for hands in the ruck challenged.
 

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I loved the challenge system in the Varsity cup. I'm all for blatantly undermining the ref's calls if they are not up too scratch and the TMO can confirm that. The Maties- UCT final in 2011/2? was a brilliant example. If I remember correctly two tries were disallowed because the defending captain knew of knocks ons and illegal play leading up to the try. Correct decision made and it doesn't even take that long since the ref can now back himself rather than go to the TMO after every try knowing the onus is on the defending captain and he'll challenge if he feels there is a legit challenge.

It cuts out the anti climax of tries these days being refered 70% of the time. I'm all for instant celebration and then the drama of a score being overturned if the call was incorrect.
 

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I feel (and this is only a feel as I have no way of proving this) that a challenge system would affect a referee less. In a challenge system it would be the TMO ruling against the ref rather then the referee himself. I think it would make the referee more confident because if the referee makes the wrong call it would be that team's fault for not challenging that call or for using up their challengers earlier in the game.

One major problem I can see is the question of what can be challenged. I don't think you want to have a penalty for hands in the ruck challenged.

Why not? Hands in the ruck is one of the penalties that are most often a 50/50 call... Why not get it right to a 100%??

The referee's appointment is to take charge of the match, if he doesn't have the confidence to do that, and make the correct calls, then he should be behind the whistle in the first place and get paid for it.
 

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When it comes to something like hands in the ruck there are clear cut instances of foul play and then you get 50/50's where it's a case of timing or interpretation. In those instances it'd make sense for the TMo to uphold the ref's initial decision or lack thereof IMO; I think captain's won't be refering those if they start losing their referals. Clear foul play and clear cases of knock ons, massively forward passes and suuch were the things being refered in the Varisty cup. You didn't really get any 50/50's being challenged.

And it's not really a challenge is it? Or at least it shouldn't be seen as challenging the ref. Ego's shouldn't come into play here. The motivation for having a challenge system is acknowledging the limitations of one person to effectively referee a match of rugby completely faultless and this is a system to assist the ref to do so; a case of 'let me assist you to make the right decision' rather than 'i challenge your wrong decision' if that makes any sense? You effectly have all 33 men on the field monitoring the game as the players can go through their captains to highlight an issue that the ref missed.
 

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When it comes to something like hands in the ruck there are clear cut instances of foul play and then you get 50/50's where it's a case of timing or interpretation. In those instances it'd make sense for the TMo to uphold the ref's initial decision or lack thereof IMO; I think captain's won't be refering those if they start losing their referals. Clear foul play and clear cases of knock ons, massively forward passes and suuch were the things being refered in the Varisty cup. You didn't really get any 50/50's being challenged.

And it's not really a challenge is it? Or at least it shouldn't be seen as challenging the ref. Ego's shouldn't come into play here. The motivation for having a challenge system is acknowledging the limitations of one person to effectively referee a match of rugby completely faultless and this is a system to assist the ref to do so; a case of 'let me assist you to make the right decision' rather than 'i challenge your wrong decision' if that makes any sense? You effectly have all 33 men on the field monitoring the game as the players can go through their captains to highlight an issue that the ref missed.

Seriously??

With the type of game being played and where testosterone levels are at an all time high?? Ego's will come into play... A guy like Bismarck is prime example...
 

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Seriously??

With the type of game being played and where testosterone levels are at an all time high?? Ego's will come into play... A guy like Bismarck is prime example...
I'm saying the ref should accept his decisions being overturned without getting all uppity about it if it's the right call; it's about taking steps to ensure the correct decision, not what's best for Walsh's ego... just as an example
 

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I'm saying the ref should accept his decisions being overturned without getting all uppity about it if it's the right call; it's about taking steps to ensure the correct decision, not what's best for Walsh's ego... just as an example

And I agree with you, but it's part of being human, and I don't know any person who likes it when they are proven wrong, or when their ego gets a bit deflated.

Walsh as another example would be one where the 50/50 calls would be mostly challenged. How often have we heard him over the microphone apologised to the captains with the words "i thought that"... He apologises a lot!
 

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