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LPGA to require players to speak English...

Discussion in 'General Golf Talk' started by TheWOAT, Aug 26, 2008.

  1. TheWOAT

    TheWOAT Well-Known Member

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  2. SCGolfer

    SCGolfer Well-Known Member

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    The only thing I thought of was basically a professional golfer is it's own entity I suppose...you work essentially for yourself...so could the LPGA deny membership or the opportunity to work because you don't speak english?? I am guessing a company....even the company I work for....could not hire someone based on the fact they do not speak english. I don't know, you would think that most of these ladies are making an effort to learn english anyway since they will presumably be staying here to play golf for a long time.

    Jason
     
  3. Harry Longshanks

    Harry Longshanks bow-chicka-bow-wow

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    Ugghh, I hate people who cross-posts across forums, but I had already posted this elsewhere when I saw the topic here, and I can't bring myself to re-write it. But I feel that the topic is deserving of discussion, so I will copy and paste. Sorry about that.

     
  4. TheWOAT

    TheWOAT Well-Known Member

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    No one really cares if the foreign born players speak English or not. Will people watch a tourney just because the post tourney interview wont require a translator? I think not. The LPGA seems to require the services of one Michelle Wie.
     
  5. Harry Longshanks

    Harry Longshanks bow-chicka-bow-wow

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    Yes, they do.

    If they didn't, this wouldn't be an issue, and the LPGA never would have imposed the rule.


    Perhaps not, but the PGA and LPGA are much more than the tournament itself. There is the pro-am (which requires large contributions by the amateur players), there is marketing (e.g., "These Girls Rock"), there is sponsorship (title sponsors, presenting sponsors) and the sponsors expect a return on their investment, and there are the charities.

    And while the hardcore fan (like me) may be willing to watch regardless of who is in the field, the vast majority of viewers want players they can identify with. And they can't identify with someone they can't communicate with. Communication = marketing = popularity. Popularity of players and the LPGA boosts money and grows the sport.

    Disagree? Well then, look at the example of Tiger Woods. Viewership of PGA events has dropped off the table since he stopped competing. Why, because the average viewer knows him and indentifies with him. He is articulate and the PGA markets the hell out of him. Do you see that happening with the LPGA and Yani Tseng? Do you ever recall hering Yani Tseng speak? Any commercials for Gatorade?
     
  6. Bakemono36

    Bakemono36 New Member

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    IMO, this will only hurt the LPGA. I could see a lot of international players choosing to simply not join the LPGA and not play in America because of this rule.
    I understand the desire to make the international players more marketable to an American audience, but IMO this goes too far.
     
  7. Stooonne

    Stooonne Well-Known Member

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    I'm not against it but I am surprised they are doing that.
     
  8. FATC1TY

    FATC1TY Taylormade Ho' Magnet

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    Bring it on. You come here to compete regularly, and you want to make the money, and life here. Learn english atleast. Atleast learn enough to communicate effectively.

    I think it's pretty simple to understand.
     
  9. TheWOAT

    TheWOAT Well-Known Member

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    I think the fact they are foreigners is more important to the American audience than whether they speak English or not.

    Communication is one thing, but the fact that these women arent Americans is the overriding factor. In my opinion... right now, but it could change.
     
  10. slickpitt

    slickpitt Well-Known Member

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    A bit surprising, but I agree with the move. In my opinion... these players are showmen(show-women?)... just like anyone else putting on a show, be it theater, golf, having an entertainer that can relate to the fans is key in being successful.

    Look at John Daly... he's one of the most popular players STILL.. and it sure as hell isn't because of his golf game. If John Daly didn't speak English he would have been forgotten long, long ago. Imagine all the revenue the PGA Tour would have lost had he not been able to speak English and was long forgotten. I know his game isn't even a shadow of what it used to be... but he still draws fans and sponsorship dollars.

    So in a nutshell I completely understand the LPGA's move in this and don't think it's too much to ask. Chances are most of the foreign players already speak English anyway.
     
  11. David Hillman

    David Hillman Well-Known Member

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    That's not why Woods is popular, and probably not even correct anyway. Can you identify with him? On what grounds? I can identify a lot more with your average Tour player, who wasn't born and bred to be a golfer, than I can with Woods. I can identify a lot more with a guy struggling to get and keep his card than I can with a guy who could shoot 100 in every round for the rest of his life and still get a sponsors' exemption to every tournament.

    No, the reason why Woods is popular is because, at the end of the day, sports fans want to be rooting for the team/guy who wins. It makes us feel somehow better about ourselves to have backed the right horse. This is why the Yankees have more fans than the rest of baseball combined. It's why, until recently, golf has sucked for typical sports fans. You never knew who might win a given tournament, and your odds of backing the right horse were incredibly slim ( compared to, effectively, 50% in any team sport game ). People just want to be on the winning side.
     
  12. rubber314chicken

    rubber314chicken Thats what she said

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    many foreign countries speak english as a second language.
     
  13. JEFF4i

    JEFF4i She lives! Supporting Member

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    I disagree, without getting off-topic...

    Why did most people hate the Patriots throughout the season if they were the ones who always won?
    And you think that nearly any member on the PGA wasn't born and bred to golf? Go hit up some junior tournaments, tell me what you see. I feel bad that I only started golfing at 14. I digress the point though, since we are getting off-topic.

    Anyway, I somewhat agree, since the LPGA is a strongly US Institution.
     
  14. Bakemono36

    Bakemono36 New Member

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    Last time I checked, English wasnt the, "official" language of the United States of America. In some ways, this new rule is discriminatory towards the international players.
    Does this also mean that in LPGA events that are in other countries, that the American players are expected to learn the native language of that country? If not, I think its pretty unfair to expect the international players to learn how to speak English.
     
  15. FATC1TY

    FATC1TY Taylormade Ho' Magnet

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    You must be a liberal then, and have no problem with giving drivers licenses to illegals. :)

    In any case-- the LPGA has the right to ask their players to do so. If you don't want to do it, you have a choice. The LPGA isn't a huge association that is widely followed. It's not the Olympics, where you expect to have a melting pot of competators.

    However, since you mentioned LPGA events in other countries, should they all learn that language...

    No.. because the LPGA is based in the USA, and is to be run so.

    Thats like asking the Spains soccer leagues to learn english, just because they play an event in England, even though the majority of the events are in Spain and surrounding area.

    If the players on the LPGA are just doing events here and there, and are LIVING outside the US, I don't think they need to be perfectly fluent. However, if you LIVE HERE, and CLAIM RESIDENCY, I believe in every right, LPGA should ask them to learn English.

    If I move to Mexico, I expect to learn spanish, not rely on people to aid me day in and day out, and to have a translator every waking minute. Just because I go play and party in Mexico 3 times a year, doesn't mean I need to learn spanish, it just means it would be a good idea. :)
     
  16. David Hillman

    David Hillman Well-Known Member

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    First, just because there's a counter-example doesn't mean the phenomenon doesn't exist. Second, there are other factors involved with the Patriots, specifically, the fact that they've repeatedly been caught cheating and the League has gone out of their way to destroy the evidence while barely slapping them on the wrist.

    That has nothing to do with your average golf fan being able to identify with Woods; it just means, that say, Sean O'hair can identify with him ( to some degree, anyway ). I'd be interested to see an "average age started golfing" stat on current Tour members, but I'm willing to bet it's higher than 18 months ( or whatever it was for Woods ).

    It's pretty straight-forward. Part of the 'job' of being a golfer is marketing, both yourself and your Tour. In order to do that, you really need to speak English. I would not have been hired for my job if I couldn't speak English, because it's part of the job. We've had applicants that we passed on because they couldn't speak English well enough to communicate. We have an overseas office where the local langauge is required. Same deal.
     
  17. xamilo

    xamilo Right Curving Driver.... Supporting Member

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    I agree the LPGA has the right to do anything they want, but that would be like prohibiting asians to play or denying participation o any golfer shorter than 5'9, or something like that.

    I don't want to get involved in an issue, but some people from English speaking countries (I said SOME, no everyone) tend to think its an obligation to learn English. As an English as a foreign language speaker, I know it has helped me a lot (got me to UNI, got me to med school), but still I think not everyone has such opportunity, and you might have a lot of talent for golf, but not many for speaking languages.

    At the end, I watch golf to see golf, not to hear them speaking. I prefer a beautiful 25yd putt rather than a perfect British accent on n interview.
     
  18. Bakemono36

    Bakemono36 New Member

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    I think it boils down to the LPGA wants to see American golfers win more, so they are doing what they can to throw a roadblock in the way of certain international golfers (namely, the Koreans).
    Id love to see the American ladies (especially Paula and Natalie) winning more, but I still dont think its right to turn away anyone who has the talent to play on tour just because they dont speak a certain language.
     
  19. DouginGA

    DouginGA dont tread on me

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    The LPGA is a private organization that has the right to run itself any way it sees fit.

    The English language requirement is probably good business but not necessarily good for golf.

    Consider the winner now of an LPGA championship as opposed to the winner of the US women’s open. One is the best English speaking golfer and the other is the best golfer period.

    Language and communication mean every thing to business but mean nothing to golf itself.
     
  20. FATC1TY

    FATC1TY Taylormade Ho' Magnet

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    I think people are really trying to look for discrimination.

    Playing on the LPGA tour is a JOB. Take it in the regards to an employer. If you work for an American company, who deals with China as a means of buisness, it's expected on the premise that you KNOW HOW TO SPEAK CHINESE.

    Correct? Do people have the right to NOT take the job, or learn Chinese and apply?

    You don't simply toss out a law suit and scream prejudice because you don't qualify for the position.


    It's not about wanting Americans to win, or people to learn to speak English because it's expected. It's not discrimination by any means. If they don't want to learn it, go play elsewhere. It's and easy decision. If you don't have the skills to complete the job, that is asked of you, or required.. you don't need to be doing that job.

    Try and apply that to other things, rather than just thinking the LPGA is trying to nix all the non-american players. It's their job, and they work for an American 'company' with 'american customers'..

    Imagine your footing the bill for some foreign golfer. Your company is spending tons of money on them. You do ads, commercials, VIP booths, tickets.. the whole nine.

    Your tour player never gets interviewed, never gets to do meet and greets, and never gets on tv other than walking around the green and to the tee box..

    It's simply not good buisness to essentially sponser a mute. Who wants to watch someone just smile and nod when asked a simple question?
     

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