GolfMagic reported yesterday that the PGA Tour have introduced a new bonus system, known as the 'Player Impact Program', which will reward 10 players based on a number of different variables.
The system was reportedly implemented in January and it uses each players' 'Impact Score' to determine the rankings and how the $40 million purse is divided.
Golf fans on social media made their feelings known about the announcement:
What’s next? Maybe a two-shot penalty if you don’t get at least 100 likes and retweets during a tournament??— Keith Jackson (@KeithDJackson) April 21, 2021
"So ... the most popular players on Tour, who are already making millions, are going to be rewarded even further at the expense of the "rank and file" players? It certainly "pays to be popular!" one fan said.
"Ridiculous and with all the hunger, illness and misery in the world, golfers do not need more!" another fan commented.
"Just give Tiger the 40M and be done with it," one fan commented.
"Players should donate that money to charities," another fan said.
There are six factors that are used in the bonus system: FedEx Cup year-end rank, Google Search popularity, Nielsen Brand Exposure, Q-rating, MVP Index and Meltwater mention.
This new system was brought in to rival the attempts from Saudi-based investors to create a Premier Golf League that tried to take the best golfers in the world away from the PGA Tour.
The announcement came as a shock to many golf fans because the concept of rewarding players on popularity and engagement is something that has never been tried before.
According to a simulation of the 2019 season where each player's 'Impact Score' was considered, it was found that Tiger Woods would have won the first-place prize money of $8 million, with Rory McIlroy and Brooks Koepka in second and third position.