USGA plans to experiment at U.S. Women's Open
By mustang6560 on 6/12/12
The USGA, unlike the PGA Tour, does not allow fans to bring their cell phones inside the gates of the tournaments it organizes, and since the U.S. Open is staged by the USGA, spectators will have to leave their lifelines mobile devices at home (or in the car).

But, USGA executive director Mike Davis said the organization plans to experiment with its cell phone policy at the U.S. Women's Open next month.
"We're going to allow them for the [U.S.] Women's Open, so we're not opposed to it," said USGA executive director Mike Davis while watching Tiger Woods play a practice round Monday at the Olympic Club. "You've been to enough big sporting events to know, when you start to congregate 40, 50, 60,000 people, all of a sudden nobody's cellphones work.

"We need to get more comfortable from a technology side. It's one thing to do it at the Women's Open when you don't have near the crowds. We didn't want a scenario where we're promoting it, people bring them, and all of a sudden they don't work. The NFL has issues with it. This is something that will correct itself in time."
Does anyone else think it's a little weird that the USGA is using the U.S. Women's Open as its "testing grounds"?

Regardless, the USGA should stay strong and maintain its ban on cell phones. There is no place in golf for cell phones, except to call a book tee time.

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Image via USGA

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[ comments ]
mjaber says:
I'm curious what they consider a "cell phone." If you've got a tablet (which is not a phone), it could be maintained that since it is not a phone, that it would be OK to bring it with you, or even an iPod touch. Perhaps they need to update their wording to wireless mobile electronic devices.
mustang6560 says:
Good question. I imagine a tablet would be considered a "cell phone" for all intents and purposes. How funny would it be if someone pulled out their iPad to take a picture. Can you say *discrete*?
bducharm says:
Can people not go for a few hours with out their damn phones??? I relish the idea!!! When I was at The Masters this year, I found it refreshing that I wasn't checking my phone every 2 minutes. I am also planning a vacation later this year where we cannot get cell phone access!!! Stay home if it's that damn important!!!
Matt McGee says:
I agree completely with bducharm.
Beekeeper45 says:
I second what bducharm wrote!!
pyjlee says:
Bducharm Is right on...
bcrosby007 says:
This isnt 15 years ago anymore. I am an IT professional and I need to be able to communicate virtually 24/7 with my clients. Just because some of you can go all day without checking in, does not mean everyone can.
As long as people can use discretion, I see zero problems with haveing cell access at events.
clevelandstever says:
@bducharm- Went to Alaska a few years ago. No cell service for a week. It was liberating and glorious!
golfingbumunderpar64 says:
I do agree that not having your phone(s) is peaceful and enjoying and that's why you attend an event, because its peaceful and enjoying. A phone is more than a phone now days. I'm part of the 30 and under group where most of us have had cell phone since we could drive.So not having my phone makes me feel naked. I don't see a prob with them having phone on the course as long as everyone respects the rules. But we all know there's always someone who thinks they can get away with something and ruin it for everyone. So as much as I hate to say it, leave them in the car.
RyanJ says:
The tough part about allowing phones is enforcing the rule uniformly across the course and events. The rule not allowing phones is easy to enforce, because it can largely be controlled at the gate, and if an offense is witnessed the phone can be locked up, there is very little grey area. Now when phones are allowed, but only in certain areas, but no pictures, or pictures only in certain areas you begin introducing ambiguity. This puts a lot of pressure on the marshalls? responsible for enforcing the guidelines, to make the correct call every time at every venue.
bkuehn1952 says:
"Does anyone else think it's a little weird that the USGA is using the U.S. Women's Open as its 'testing grounds'?"

I doubt the USGA makes a dime running the Women's Open. So why not use it as a platform to test procedures for the event that makes all the money?
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