Is an music player an apt item to include with fishing tackle? In essence, tackle dangling ought to be a perfect hobby with which to use one, being a private and concentrated sport and so to push in the headset and switch on the tunes should be great as, unless the vibrations can travel down the arm, into the fishing rods and along the fishing line to be broadcast to the fish, it will not affect the day’s sport.
But, and it’s a sizable one, what if you are tackle dangling in a popular location? Is the custom to keep the iPod in the fishing tackle bag and just take pleasure in the noises of the riverside and stick to birdsong for musical entertainment? I reckon, in the dearth of a code of conduct, that type of concord must be negotiated between the various parties. There would obviously not be an issue if the maggot drowner next to one were also playing an MP3 player as well, but otherwise, trying to concentrate on fishing rods and being diverted by an incessant tch-tch-tch-tch from the next peg would be extremely vexing.
Angling bodies of course could make the issue clear in one fell swoop, by having a bar on any kind of electronic entertainment device written into the rules for members and guests and insist that the only items that may be taken to the riverbank consists of proper fishing tackle, something to sit on and refreshments. As a overall rule, if it does not attach to fishing line it isn’t coming in! That should do it, and transgressors will be warned in the first instance and after that have their membership cancelled.
And then another problem lifts it’s head. Obviously any sport depends on a constant stream of new blood coming into it and makers of fishing tackle will get them to desire their gear. But of course, we acknowledge that the modern youngsters loves it’s music in the same way that it’s forebears did, but they have so much more available to them now to play it on and it’s a conundrum as to whether they can be convinced that songs and fishing rods are mutually exclusive!
Naturally, where music players are permitted then they could simply be turned down, but of course being in the open, there will always be good deal of background noise. This will make whatever is playing more difficult to hear and then the inducement comes to turn it up to overcome it. And as soon as that happens then it risks carrying across the neighbours. Anglers are by habit a placid breed, pleased to sit peacefully over their fishing line but they do want to be able to monitor what’s happening with the fishing tackle that is in the water and tinny noise pollution will test the good nature of a saint.
So, where hard and fast rules don’t cover this kind of occurrence, the only resort is to common sense, which is of course being undermined as somebody likely to take offence with being asked or instructed to knock off the tunes is likely to begin complaining about human rights or banging on about ‘entitlements’. This is likely to engender deep disagreement and resentment. Perhaps the Department of Environment can stipulate a condition regarding music player protocol when issuing fishing rods licenses. But that would be rational, so don’t hold your breath!