Text Message Sank Tiger Woods

Jewel Samad/AFP/Getty

Don’t call golf fans passive viewers. A New York Times report illuminated just how involved they are in their sport, often affecting the outcome of tournaments. Unlike any other sport, golf officials are allowed to make or alter rulings after receiving texts from keen-eyed viewers at home (usually friends) who flag a rule violation. Case in point: the controversial ruling at Saturday’s Masters tournament that penalized Tiger Woods for a ball-drop incident a day after it occurred. The Times article reveals that it was a friend of an official who spotted the violation and sent a text message notifying him about it. The PGA even fields phone calls from viewers about rule violations and says it takes the complaints seriously.