Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Ask Linda #1256-Information about the Rules

Good morning Linda,

Recently I was playing in a group where two of the players were in a match competition. At one point, one player’s ball came to rest up against a tree trunk. As he was not familiar with the Rules, he asked what his options were. As I proceeded to explain his unplayable options, his fellow-competitor asked me to stop, as he believed I was giving advice.

Was I giving advice or was I giving information?

Thank you,
Lou from Toronto, Canada

Dear Lou,

Information about the Rules of Golf is not advice [Definition of “Advice”]. Telling another player his options under the Unplayable Rule is not advice unless you go one step further and suggest which option he should choose.

You may explain any Rule to any player at any time. I find myself doing so quite often. I also make a special effort to warn a player who is about to infringe a Rule, as should everyone. What better way to make a friend on a golf course than saving him from a penalty of which he was unaware.

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