Umpiring Umpirage - Keep or drop the 'mike'

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Grand Uncle Horace

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May 24, 2017
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Rule changes, their interpretation and umpirage* are accentuated via the continued use of microphones on umpires.

* Umpirage is the perceived increase in the centrality of umpiring and umpires as the dominant feature of our game.

I cannot recall a season so dominated by umpirage. The barking of 'stand' and the 50s penalties are the drivers. The miking of the Umps really underlines this. For me the umps should be invisible.

Hearing an ump deliver a poor decision does not help 'respect' for them. I think it is time to switch off the mikes. Thoughts?
 

Hubnester

...and here come the pretzels.
Jul 11, 2010
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I find it really frustrating not knowing what a call was for. Whether it's a good decision or not I think it's much better knowing what the umpire was actually paying.
 

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Mitchell Madness

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Apr 17, 2006
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I hate the mic, but the problem is that due to so many possible infringements due to interpretations, you need the mic to figure out what is what.

A better thing would be the umpires stop knowing every players name. No more mates etc. It's just "holding, player number, point"
 

Generalissimo

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Jul 14, 2002
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I just wish the umps understood that they're there for the benefit of the game. A lot of these fluoro clowns think it's the other way round.
 

Couch Coach

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Apr 26, 2006
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Get rid of the umpire numbers.
The umpires should be a team (ground, boundary, goal, coach, etc.) should just be seen as umpires.
The benefit to the umps is that it becomes harder to blame one ump for bad calls and it also discourages attention seeking umps who want to be over zealous and make it all about them.

Cut the mike feed (keep the mikes so they can coordinate each other). Change them back to all white with no advertising or distracting patterns. Just make them as bland and unobtrusive as possible.

Umpires are essential for the game especially good ones and they should be celebrated but not at the expense of the game. Celebrate them after the grandfinal but until then I want unobtrusive white blobs doing the best they can while staying out of the spotlight.
 

Millky95

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Jul 6, 2014
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Cut the mike feed (keep the mikes so they can coordinate each other). Change them back to all white with no advertising or distracting patterns. Just make them as bland and unobtrusive as possible.
White would cause clashes with some sides. They are green because no one else wears green
 

Lavender Bushranger

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Aug 25, 2005
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Rule changes, their interpretation and umpirage* are accentuated via the continued use of microphones on umpires.

* Umpirage is the perceived increase in the centrality of umpiring and umpires as the dominant feature of our game.

I cannot recall a season so dominated by umpirage. The barking of 'stand' and the 50s penalties are the drivers. The miking of the Umps really underlines this. For me the umps should be invisible.

Hearing an ump deliver a poor decision does not help 'respect' for them. I think it is time to switch off the mikes. Thoughts?
I can't think of a single reason why umpires need to be mic'd up.

Not one.


They have signals that they use, very dramatised ones in fact, so we know what the decision was for.

They mute the juicy stuff anyway, so it's hardly some interesting insight.


It adds absolutely nothing. If it helps, get the commentators to eavesdrop on the mics, then tell us anything that may add value or reduce any confusion.


There's no doubt in my mind that it's made the umpiring seem worse than it is, because they're seemingly front and centre all the time.
 

Couch Coach

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Apr 26, 2006
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White would cause clashes with some sides. They are green because no one else wears green
They were white for a hundred years and the reason was simple. Players got muddy on old poor draining grounds where as umpires generally never got muddy so the best contrasting color was white.

The clash has been caused by the AFL first bringing in the white away shorts policy and then the white/light away strip.

What happens if Tasmania gets a team? Generally Tasmanian teams colors has been green.

The AFL changed the umpires from white to white with blue and red stripes to yellow/green/blue/red and then to green.

Here are some lovely clashes caused by the AFL:
No clash with Bulldogs here:
images

Yellow umpires for Hawthorn vs Richmond:
2179bff8ef434735a6f24d58ea39c3fbfb11eed6

Green umpires for Richmond vs. Teal Port:
1f395bf7c8dfa151c7b0b75dec9ec4cd41006dc4

Blue umpires for Bulldogs vs. Hawthorn:
1528448950162_GP21LMDAA.2-2.jpg

Red umpires for Melbourne vs. Bulldogs:
8b52783748715a47dd14e365b6cc54d9d60580ee


Then there is the AFL putting large sponsor panels on the umpires:
images

Great big red panel. Wouldn't want this in a GC game.

Then there is the indigenous round:
1655247460155.jpeg

Just to water down the visibility of the umpires.

Keep them one whole color with no watering down of their visibility and stop changing it. I'm surprised there hasn't been more umpire contact issues caused by the changes.
 

Millky95

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images

Yellow umpires for Hawthorn vs Richmond:
2179bff8ef434735a6f24d58ea39c3fbfb11eed6

Green umpires for Richmond vs. Teal Port:
1f395bf7c8dfa151c7b0b75dec9ec4cd41006dc4

Blue umpires for Bulldogs vs. Hawthorn:
1528448950162_GP21LMDAA.2-2.jpg

Red umpires for Melbourne vs. Bulldogs:
8b52783748715a47dd14e365b6cc54d9d60580ee
A lot of the ones here were incredibly stupid sponsorship kits for umps which were putrid. I don't see why umps couldn't have a 2nd or 3rd kits to help. Having the red one for the Richmond/Hawks game for example would be better than the fluro green

That light blue one was ******* stupid in every sense of the word

They were white for a hundred years and the reason was simple. Players got muddy on old poor draining grounds where as umpires generally never got muddy so the best contrasting color was white.
Players don't really get muddy anymore. At least compared to 50-70 years ago
 

Woolly Mammoth

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I've hated the umpires being miced up from day dot , now 20 years later we have the situation we are in, where there is a generation of young umpires who just take it for granted that they are celebrities by proxy and are a costar of the show. Switching off the mic might be a first step in reminding them what their role is. This is not an episode of WWF Saturday night's main event, and they are not evil Dave Hebner.
 
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FreddyTwoShoes

Team Captain
May 1, 2012
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I know footy and basketball are very different, but I recently heard a fascinating podcast relating to NBA referees.

Fun fact out of that: the performance (correct/incorrect calls) of every referee over the last 2 minutes of every game is publicly available, and their performance across the whole match is available to the clubs.

My personal view is that I don't mind hearing umps, but think it could be improved by having an umpire / ex-umpire in the commentary box to balance the hysteric carry-on the ex-footballers come up with.

If you want to hear that podcast yourself, go to the "this american life" website, and search for the "No Fair" episode. Act one: "Hoop Reams"
 

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FreddyTwoShoes

Team Captain
May 1, 2012
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Ch 7 used to do that occasionally in the late 90s

Can I suggest they got rid of it as it was a barrier to the generation of hysteria about this free-kick or that free-kick that drives talk-back radio and footy panel shows all week until the next round.

A great example of the industry prioritising itself above fans.
 

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