Sunday, April 21, 2019

I am Inspired

I have just finished serving as one of three "old farts" on an International Jury.

One of the members was a (oops PC moment) a young person of the opposite gender. Girl if you want to be non PC - anyway considerably younger than this "old fart". That aside, she has my absolute admiration for even attempting to Chair a Jury - in a foreign language, anyone not brought up in an English speaking country will make errors. I don't even dare to attempt foreign languages, so can only stand back in admiration to those who try. It is inspirational.

However, the thought was that the advice of the "old farts" might be more generally useful- hence a blog.

The advice was - write only the facts needed to make a decision. Which is OK, as far as it goes, but has a more general application.

The key to our Jury room kept going missing - on coming ashore we were regularly locked out and I would find competitors asking me for a protest form. Sailors were really quite shocked when I gave them a piece of paper and said "There you go. Write it out". Always remember - "A protest has to be in writing and identify the incident" THAT'S IT! 61.2

The identity of the protestor and protestee can be met at any time before the hearing (but how you call a hearing without it seems a mystery to me, so it would be useful to put it in) Where and when can be stated at any time before or during the hearing.

So scribble it down and get it IN!! Because if it ain't lodged in time it is invalid (61.3 It's a different rule). Even if the SI's say it must be on the "Official Form" chances are they have failed to comply with 85.1 and specifically say that this is in addition to rule 61. (also useful if they want you to tell the finish boat and you forgot)

So we got distracted with writing.

When writing facts for a decision I will tend to write the indisputable facts first. Most protest decisions revolve around one critical fact. If you do all the facts around this, the ones that are not disputed, it can simplify discussion and concentrate minds, making the decision process easier. The trick is to identify the critical fact. (I guess that is where Umpiring helps, as when umpiring, your whole approach is to position your boat so that you can see the critical fact.)

That's it. Except to mention that commas are important. I put a number in while reviewing this post. So maybe I shouldn't be too reticent about suggesting them for SI's but again, when the SI's are written by someome who is using a second language, it seems very petty, as long as the sense is there.