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Self-Officiating is one of the most debated rules in Ultimate that many people have split opinions on. In ultimate there are no referees, at least at the high school, college and club level, the AUDL has referees and some slightly different rules that I may go over on another week. Basically these self-officiated games are played much like a pickup game of basketball, you call your own fouls, meaning you call the fouls that affect you. At that point, the player who you call the foul on can either agree (no contest) or disagree (contest), from there the disc my go back to the thrower or stay where the foul occurred. This idea of self-officiating is one thing that makes ultimate so unique in comparison to all major sports. There are some people that really love the way ultimate does this, and there are some who hate it. I personally land in the hating it category. For people that love it, it is because of Spirit of the Game, this is basically the idea that all players will be truthful and honest when making calls and not take advantage of the game. This is a great idea in theory but is impossible to attain, there are and always have been people who do not like to lose, when these people are playing ultimate and losing, they can make up a call at any time to hurt the other team. Some people could also make a call due to being angry with another player, the point is that there is no way all players are always being truthful and honest. I think that referees are also a necessary component in games to keep players from getting mad at one another for self-made calls, with refs people are going to be mad at them and not mad at the other players as much. This is something that needs to change for ultimate to grow as a sport and make it more appealing to all potential players. Below I was going to post a video about a player talking about why self-officiating and Spirit of the Game doesn’t work, but it was both boring and long. So instead I posted a highlight video of Nathan Kwon who was a 5’4 player from the University of North Carolina, that shows height isn’t everything.

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