BountyFishing.com

Online Tournament Angling - Not allowed in Tennessee

Saturday, July 21, 2007 - by Jim Shepherd, The Fishing Wire

Like online poker competitions, it looks like online fishing will be a new trend - at least if Canadian-based BountyFishing.com has anything to do with it.



BountyFishing is a website founded earlier this year to provide "the world's largest online fishing tournaments" giving anglers the opportunity to compete against other anglers from across the continent. BountyFishing may be web-based, but the fishing and cash rewards are real.

The BountyFishing concept is based on using the internet and digital photography -along with some extremely high-tech digital forensics, some assorted proprietary code and technology for measuring fish that ensures the legitimacy of the photos submitted by the contestants.

FYI, currently they do not offer a blue catfish or flathead category... only channel cats.

It sounds like "CSI:Fishing" but it's actually the first online application I've seen of existing computer-based forensic technologies. When a competitor enters a fishing photo into the database, it is imported into Bounty's forensics software. There, it is inspected to make certain it is, in fact, the original photo.

At that point, pretty complicated computer technology takes over, measuring the human eyes and "other reference points" in the photo of you holding your catch, verifying the accuracy of your ruler (a ruler has to be included in the photo).

Finally, the length of your catch is measured and validated from the image of the fish and the image of the ruler.

Simple, huh? Me neither.

I spoke with BountyFishing's Stephen Morganstein and Lorne Bienstock (Vps of Strategic and Business Development, respectively) about BountyFishing and how they came up with the idea.

Here's their explanation:

Q: So who came up with this idea?

A: (Morganstein) People are out there going fishing all the time but they don't necessarily have the opportunity to compete in tournaments. So we thought why not create something for them to make some cash while they were out there, and started working on the concept and building it up from there. Spent a lot of time working with a lot of good people, including professional fishermen and Fisheries Canada and started building.

Then we were fortunate enough to meet someone from the digital and visual forensics community. They were funded by a federal law enforcement agency in the U-S and modeled up a way for people to come together and brag about their catches, and maybe even try to win some money.

Q: So you can brag but you can't cheat?

A: (Bienstock) You can brag, but you can't cheat. If you cheat, you will get caught. Forensic science will keep you from cheating. If you want to brag, brag all you want, but don't enter that image in a tournament. It becomes a regular bragging into an online community with thousands of other anglers.

Actually, if you try to cheat, the community anglers will probably catch you as quickly as anyone. They know what they're doing, too.

Q: So how do you learn more about BountyFishing?

A: The website's the best way to learn about who we are, what we do, and how we work - it's also a good place to see where other anglers are talking about Bounty - and you can see the whole idea's real - and it's possible to win money - good money - by entering your catches in online tournaments.

There are some stringent rules for entering, primarily focusing on the equipment you use to photograph your catch (4 Megapixel minimums, no camera phones, no video stills) and how you must photograph your catch (2 photos - one with the fish lying flat alongside a ruler clearly showing the length of the fish and a BountyFishing Code number assigned to each angler, the second shows the angler holding their catch horizontally, chest high, with the fish as close to the body as possible). Another sign that they're serious about the forensic measurements is the fact that photo number two must be with the angler facing forward and eyes clearly visible - that means no sunglasses and the typical hat brim pushed up and away from the eyes.

Images must also be uploaded before midnight on the day of the catch for Daily Code tournaments, images must be uploaded prior to the weekly tournament close on midnight-Saturday.

All fish must be caught according to all state/provincial laws and game regulations, and taken "alive and in a legal and sporting manner, by proper angling methods."

Like any competition, this one's not necessarily acceptable in all areas. As of today, Vermont, Maryland, North Dakota, Delaware, Colorado, South Dakota, Tennessee, Quebec and Mexico don't allow their anglers to compete in online events. The tournaments are also out of bounds for anyone under eighteen years of age.

If you're looking to become a tournament angler - without the possible humiliation associated with being a rookie in a complicated event, you might want to consider this as a way to, well, get your feet wet in tournament fishing.

Learn more at www.bountyfishing.com


TWRA Introduces Tackett Creek Unit Of North Cumberland Wildlife Management Area

The TWRA has entered into a lease agreement with Molpus Timberlands Management, LLC to lease 43,000 acres, which is being utilized as the Tackett Creek unit of the North Cumberland Wildlife Management Area. Located in both northeastern Campbell and northwestern Claiborne counties, the property, which has been historically used as a Public Hunting Area, is now in a five-year lease ... (click for more)

Tennessee Highway Patrol Urges Motorists To Watch Out For Deer

The Tennessee Highway Patrol urges motorists to exercise caution on the roadways this time of year due to deer-mating and -hunting season. Last year, two people were killed in traffic crashes involving deer on state roadways.  “The fall season is the most active time of year for deer-related crashes. We want to remind drivers to watch out for deer on or around the roadways, ... (click for more)

Chattanooga Firm Gets $1,010,000 Contract For Overseeing VW Expansion For New SUV Line

A Chattanooga firm is getting the contract for overseeing the construction work for the new SUV line at the Volkswagen plant. Officials said the EMJ Corporation has been selected for the project that will give a new surge of activity and employment at the plant at the Enterprise South Industrial Park. The work includes additions to the body shop and tech center and adding ... (click for more)

Man Airlifted To Erlanger After Early Morning Crash In Bradley County

Bradley County EMS responded to an early morning crash Thursday at 7 a.m. at the intersection of Lauderdale Memorial Highway and Walker Valley Road in Charleston. Three ambulances and an EMS supervisor responded to the scene. There were three vehicles involved and one car left the roadway.   One adult man suffered serious injuries and it was determined that he needed ... (click for more)

Chairs Cost How Much?

Many times while growing up, I would go to the store with my parents. More often than not, I would see something I wanted, and ask my parents to buy it for me. More often than not, they said no. “Why?” I asked. “Son, money doesn’t grow on trees.” That’s a phrase I’m sure many of us have heard more than once over the course of our lives. However, I have since learned that they were ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: My Dear Friend Luther

One sunny morning in June years ago, the renowned radio icon Luther Masingill was on his way back to the WDEF studios on South Broad Street when he stopped for a red light and noticed a young couple in a car idling next to his familiar light blue Ford pickup. “What caught my eye was a buck-toothed boy eating a banana in the back seat,” he explained in an aside to that day’s lunchtime ... (click for more)