Players no longer will be penalized two shots for an incorrect scorecard if they were not aware of a rules violation when they signed their card.

The USGA and R&A also will no longer respond to most TV viewers’ calls during the tournament.

The changes are part of a local rule effective Jan. 1.

Rescinding the scorecard penalty, famously applied to Lexi Thompson at the LPGA Tour’s first major in April, is part of a broader standard for using video.

Thompson had a three-shot lead with six holes to play in the final round of the ANA Inspiration when a TV viewer noticed she had improperly replaced her ball on the green during the third round. She was penalized two shots for the infraction, and an additional two shots because enforcement of the penalty meant she signed an incorrect scorecard.

That became a four-shot penalty in the final hour of the tournament. Thompson rallied, but eventually lost to So Yeon Ryu on the first hole of a playoff.

Leaders from all major tours and organizations began meeting later that month.

The USGA and R&A are leading a group of top officials who are modernizing the Rules of Golf. The proposal currently is under public review and is expected to be effective in 2019. The two-shot scorecard error would have been eliminated under the proposed rules.

The USGA and R&A also said only video from the telecast – not smart phones or other video from fans – can be used as evidence of a violation. It will also be harder for fans to call in if they think they see a violation on TV.

Each tournament will assign one or more officials to monitor the video broadcast and help identify violations or rules issues that might arise.

The PGA Tour has done this from time to time, but found that it often loses the use of a rules official on the course as he sits in a room watching TV for a violation that is rare.

According to video review protocol for tournaments on TV, officials will not monitor or review any calls from viewers at home. That doesn’t prevent TV viewers from notifying officials about violations – such as the incorrect drop by Tiger Woods at the 2013 Masters – but there will be no publicly available method for fans to call, email or text tournament officials.

In the case of the 2013 Masters, the viewer was a former rules expert who knew who to call at the course.

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