Given recent concerns about coronavirus, it'd be good to have some guidance on how to properly conduct skippers' meetings and protest hearings using videoconference technology. Here's why I ask:
Keeping sailors out of an enclosed space for skippers' meetings and protest hearings, and away from each other and race officials, means that everyone is much less likely to get sick and regattas can continue on as planned.
The technology piece of the puzzle is pretty much solved. Videoconferencing is today widely available: Facetime, Zoom, Webex, Skype, etc. All these can be run on mobile devices (phones, tablets, laptops) that sailors can bring to regatta venues. Most yacht clubs have good WiFi and/or cellular network coverage. Portable batteries mean that devices should still have power at the end of the day when protest meetings are held.
My question are around what guidance does World Sailing, or other national authorities like US Sailing or RYA have for ensuring that the notice of race and sailing instructions are properly written to accommodate videoconferencing.
Some specific questions:
Is it okay for a sailor to submit a photo of their protest form to the protest committee? Can the protest committee then distribute this photo to the competitor(s) being protested?
When explaining a protest situation, is it okay for sailors to video plastic boats moving on a table, similar to what they do in an in-person protest hearing?
Any guidance welcome. Thanks.