Observers

Observers
OBSERVER DUTIES
Please share the following with your team, which will help to reduce confusion in the event that Observers are assigned to one or more of your games.
  • Observer’s Primary Purpose – To keep the game moving; intervene where requested or necessary to avoid protracted disputes, and overall to uphold the players’ spirit of the game.
  • Active calls – For time limits and boundary calls (including force-out fouls), the Observer will make the call directly and play continues.
  • Line calls – Observers actively call in- and out-of-bounds and out-of-the-end-zone, based on first point of contact after gaining possession; inactive(player-made) calls, such as up/down, strip, or loss-of-possession, are still the responsibility of players. Particularly note that in-the-end-zone signal is NOT a “goal” signal; the goal signal is only made subsequently after determining there are no calls on the field.
  • Turnovers – Observers actively count the 10- and 20-second pre-stall; a marker may start and continue the stall count after this pre-stall count, regardless of whether a thrower has possession or not.
  • Time limits – Observers will actively track and announce time limits between points and during timeouts (including 20 and 10 second warnings for each team to stop/show readiness and for play to restart or for the pull to be made). Time violations will result in a time-out being charged to the offending team, or a field position penalty if no time-outs remain.
  • Off-sides – Observers stop play automatically if either team is off-side on the pull, regardless of whether the pull is good or bad; the other team does not have the option to decline. The first off-side results in a automatic re-pull, and any further off-side by the same team results in a field position penalty.
  • Inactive/Player Calls – Players (i.e., the 14 on the field) make all other calls (e.g., fouls, violations, up/down); players decide whether to make these calls and how to resolve them, unless an Observer is called in. The Observer will not intervene on a player-resolved call (or non-call) unless requested even if the resolution is technically incorrect.
  • Observer rulings – Players should attempt to work out any call or dispute first before an Observer is called in. Players need not agree to request Observer intervention; if one player requests, then the Observer decides, and the ruling is final. Observers may step in to ask if a ruling is needed even if not requested, if a dispute is not resolved quickly. If an Observer did not see the play clearly enough to make a definitive ruling, they will not “guess”, and may need to send the disc back for a “do-over” as would be done on a contested call.
  • Misconduct – Players remain responsible for fair play; unsportsmanlike behaviour may result in misconduct fouls, with repeated or serious instances resulting in field position penalties or ejection. There are two types of misconduct fouls that may be assessed:
  • Team Misconduct Foul (TMF): A TMF can be assessed against a team for unsportsmanlike conduct by one of its players, such as deliberate fouling, dangerous play, taunting, fighting (which will also typically result in an automatic ejection), swearing, repeated marking fouls, or unwarranted calls and/or contests. The first two TMFs are warnings; additional TMFs will result in field position penalties.
  • Player Misconduct Foul (PMF): A Personal Misconduct Foul (PMF) can be assessed against a specific player for particularly egregious conduct or a pattern of such behaviour. A PMF is a formal warning for unacceptable behaviour and puts the player on notice that any further such actions will result in ejection from the game (similar to a yellow card in soccer). Note that extreme cases such as deliberately striking an opponent may result in immediate ejection without a first warning.