As in the past refereeing decisions have marred key matches in the ongoing 2010 World Cup in South Africa.
FIFA says it will not embrace technology until it is proven to be extremely efficient and 100% reliable. Now obviously human referees (without help of technology) have proven to be much less efficient and reliable than this high standard being set for technology.
Football has always seen a lot of refereeing errors: Handballs result in goals, offside goals are given, and balls crossing the line aren't given. These errors change the outcome. Such controversy can easily be avoided by using technology.
Other games have embraced technology. In cricket the third umpire has access to action replays based on which controversial catches, run-outs, stumpings and boundaries are decided. In tennis Hawkeye is used to make line calls. Ice hockey and field hockey also use action replays to decide controversial goals. Several other sports like basketball and American football have embraced technology to reduce error.
Just as in football, do we try to avoid technology as far as possible? Is there an inherent fear of technology?
We expect 100% reliability from technology but for the same task we are fine if a human performs far less reliably? We are willing to live with a poor system that is totally under our control than adopt a better system that involves the use of technology.
This seems to stem from the human desire to be on top of things. We like to be in control. Technology is used as a last resort. Technology is only brought in when the perceived threat to human superiority is totally removed.
This fear of technology is often misplaced. In the case of football it is clear that technology will improve decision making. The idea that technology will reduce the authority of the human referee is misplaced. If anything it will result in players having more confidence in the referee.