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judgment call

Sports. an observational ruling by a referee or umpire that is necessarily subjective because of the disputable nature of the play in question, and one that may be appealed but not protested, as opposed to a matter of official rule interpretation:
Balks and close plays at first are of course judgment calls, and umpires are human.
any subjective or debatable determination; personal opinion or interpretation.
Origin of judgment call
1840-50 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for judgment call
  • It is a judgment call based on knowledge of the river, local flow patterns, and experience.
  • For the future, a judgment call has to be made as to how rapidly the add factors should decay.
  • And then there's the judgment call as to when you're going to be courageous and when you're not.
  • It was a judgment call, based on a perception that our students suddenly faced a grave threat.
  • And it is always a judgment call involving a balance of the four factors.
  • Shutting a bank down is usually, then, in some sense a judgment call on the part of regulators.
  • To the informed consumer, dessert becomes a judgment call between low fat and high sugar, or full fat and average sugar.
  • It comes down to a judgment call on the part of parents.
  • At the same time, each case must be appraised on its own merits and a judgment call made quickly.
  • Note also that the size range for symbols is a judgment call.

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