The International Rugby Board has reaffirmed its commitment to address public criticism of match officials by team management and players at international level.
Chairman Bernard Lapasset issued a letter to Unions reminding them of their responsibility to uphold the sport's values of discipline, integrity and respect when it comes to comments on match official performance.
In line with Regulation 20 and the IRB Code of Conduct, Unions have been reminded that any published criticism of match officials or comments that demonstrate the potential to bring the Game into disrepute will be investigated and addressed by the tournament organiser and, as appropriate, the IRB.
Lapasset said: "Rugby values its culture of respect for the opposition and match officials, which is at the very heart of the Game, but there has been a slow increase in the level and intensity of public criticism of match officials and their performances from coaches and players."
"Match officials, like players, do make mistakes, but it is important that we work with our Unions to ensure that match official performance is discussed within the appropriate and established framework for feedback and appraisal that operates between coaches, match officials and the IRB.
"We would like to thank our Unions and international tournament organisers for their full commitment and collaboration."
- Friday 29 August 2014 - Women's RWC 2014
Ensuring an Impact Beyond WRWC 2014
- Friday 29 August 2014 - South America
Super Week lives up to name in Buenos Aires
- Thursday 28 August 2014 - Press Releases
IRB to change name to World Rugby
- Wednesday 27 August 2014 - RWC 2015
Birmingham ready to welcome the world
- Tuesday 26 August 2014 - RWC 2015
South Africa reunited with Webb Ellis Cup
- 29 August - CEO Brett Gosper on the name change from 'IRB' to 'World Rugby'
- 29 August - Feature on Argentina's Manuel Montero
- Listen to this week's Total Rugby show
- 25 August - Bhubesi Pride takes rugby to children across Africa
- 25 August - Argentina legend Hugo Porta on his career
- 24 August - (FUN) England's Women talk about what makes them tick
- 23 August - Rugby World Cup volunteers feature
- 22 August - A round-up of the action at the Youth Olympic Games in China
- 22 August - A report looking back on the Women's Rugby World Cup
- 20 August - England's Maggie Alphonsi and Emily Scarratt on winning the Women's Rugby World Cup