Today's date: Wednesday March 21, 2018
column width padding column width padding
The Wellington Advertiser Masthead Logo

We Cover The County...
40,251 Audited Circulation

WEEKLY POLL   |   Community News   |   EQUINE   |   Schools & Buses

Facebook Slug
column width padding column width padding

Split Decision

by Olivia Rutt and Jaime Myslik

Judged sports in the Olympics

Losing is frustrating

The past several days have been a blur of activity on the Olympic front. The 2018 Winter Olympic Games in PyeongChang, South Korea are a reminder of how sports of this calibre can bring together people from all over the world.

It can also be a reminder that in a split second the work of the athletes can come to a complete stop.

The Games are the peak of any athletic career. Losing based on a judge’s decision can be frustrating. But so can losing out by one one-hundredth of a second, having a non-simultaneous touch (which can happen in swimming), having a clock get wiped at the last second (actually happened) or even falling.

The Games are rough, and what the athletes do is incredible, but there will only be three winners.

Getting rid of judged sports in the Olympics will not eradicate the disappointment that athletes can feel if they don’t medal.

There have been some high-profile judging scandals in the Olympic Games’ history, including the most well-known scandal from the 2002 Winter Olympics.

These scandals are exceptions, not the rule; they don’t happen as frequently as we think they do. The scores awarded to the competitors are based on actual parameters.

These judges are chosen from former athletes and coaches who know the sport extensively. It can be easy for us to criticize from our couch, but the athletes know going into the competition that their sport is judged. All you can do is to go out there and do your best.

– Olivia


Out with judged sports

The Olympic Games are a spectacle, no doubt. It’s a time for countries to show off their best athletes and vie for the highest medal counts and most prestigious wins.

But what about when those sports are rigged, with judges deciding one team should win regardless of the actual performance?

In sports like curling and hockey there are no judges. Those sports are won based on rocks closest to the button and pucks in the net. That can’t be fudged.

But in sports like figure skating and freestyle skiing and snowboarding, athletes’ skills are evaluated by a human judge. That’s subjective by definition, no matter how “objective” the process appears.

As a huge figure skating fan, it’s hard to say, but it’s time for judged sports to be removed from the Olympics.

Reform has been attempted. The entire evaluation process for figure skating was revamped after Canadian pairs skaters Jamie Salé and David Pelletier, silver medalists at the 2002 Olympics, were awarded the gold medal after allegations surfaced that the competition was fixed.

There were calls of judge bias in PyeongChang during the ice dance free skate on Feb. 20 prior to Canadians Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir taking home the gold.

There will always be bias in sports judged by humans. Everyone has different preferences.

It’s time for the Olympics to take a hard look and rethink the inclusion of judged sports. 

– Jaime

Vol 51 Issue 08


Tell Us What You Think

Login to submit a comment

Comments appearing on this website are the opinion of the comment writer and do not represent the opinion of the Wellington Advertiser. Comments that attack other individuals or are offensive, unsubstantiated or otherwise inappropriate will be removed. You must register or log in in order to post a comment. For more information, read our detailed Comment Policy and Guidelines.




Wellington County


Barrie Hopkins
Barrie Hopkins
Barrie Hopkins
Barrie Hopkins
Bruce Whitestone
Ray Wiseman
Ray Wiseman
Ray Wiseman
Stephen Thorning
Stephen Thorning

Recent Columns

Bits and Pieces

  • Signature bonnet
  • Digital pantomime
  • Connect the dots
  • Generation gap
  • Little things
  • Tylenol kick
  • This Little Piggy
  • Nature's best
  • Canada's Business

  • The decline of civility
  • Irrational exuberance II
  • Speak up
  • An enduring register
  • A government assessment after one year in office
  • Gauge signals
  • Unpatriotic
  • Inevitable
  • Comment from Ottawa

  • The Syria question
  • Reflecting on 2016
  • Open, transparent combat mission?
  • Bad for businesses
  • Have your voice heard on electoral reform
  • Open and transparent?
  • Assisted dying
  • Leadership bid
  • Life-wise

  • Retirement
  • Canadas scarcity of calamity
  • Often we mirror our parents
  • Putting up with put-downs
  • A tale of two landlords
  • A letter from the campsite
  • Two shades of black
  • Precious memories
  • Queen's Park Report

  • Back to work
  • Merry Christmas
  • Remembering them
  • High-cost hydro
  • Six important issues
  • Emancipation Day
  • Great Lakes
  • Happy Canada Day
  • Special to the Advertiser

  • Death of JFK changed the world
  • Split Decision

  • Receiving Belgian royals
  • PC Party leadership vote
  • Judged sports in the Olympics
  • Jury selection process changes
  • Changes to the national anthem
  • Political campaign debts
  • Summer Jobs funding
  • Regulation of energy drinks
  • Staying Connected

  • It’s all about staying connected.
  • Stray Casts

  • Final lines: Its been great
  • Thorning Revisited

  • Community news from the Mapleton Township area
  • Dr. McQuibban a remarkable figure in Wellington
  • Arthur loaned $8,000 to start shoe factory in 1918
  • Old photo offers glimpse of development of Elora
  • Pike Lake a summer sanctuary for over a century
  • Fergus council had to mediate 1951 Beatty strike
  • 1951 strike shook Beatty dominance in Fergus
  • Fergus’ Beecher Parkhouse a memorable character
  • Valuing Our History

  • Hustonville founded, thrived, vanished in 20 years
  • Lack of railway siding frustrated Fergus’ James Gow
  • Fergus mill made oat flour for Cheerios, other brands
  • Railway passenger service waxed and waned over the 1900s
  • Tanner’s woolen mill in Mount Forest burned twice in a year
  • Elora principal George Edgcumbe ended his career in disgrace
  • Peter Perry a memorable principal of Fergus High School
  • Fire gutted Fergus building owned by Robert Kerr in 1931
  • WriteOut of Her Mind

  • Parenting 101
  • Across the pond
  • Hope
  • The lab
  • Family Day
  • Hopeless (romantic)
  • Fandom
  • Boy toy
  • column width padding column width padding column width padding

    The Wellington Advertiser





    Digital Publications


    Twitter Logo

    Free Press News Network Logo