In an ideal sporting world, athletes and those who govern them work in harmony to produce entertaining spectacles, improved achievements and, ideally, an atmosphere that attracts new generations of followers and participants.
When that sense of harmony is lost, the sound - and consequences - can be distressing.
Case in point, one. At the Tour de France yesterday, towards the end of a long and testing stage 17 conducted in stifling conditions, the road captains of Jumbo-Visma and Team Ineos, respectively (but momentarily mutually disrespectfully) Tony Martin and Luke Rowe, were involved in a clash.
Footage shows the German appearing to run his opponent off towards the side of the road with Rowe, who is championing the cause of defending champion and fellow Welshman Geraint Thomas, then grabbing hold of Martin.
Not good. But it was not an interaction that had any consequences for other riders, nor for either of its participants, both of whom have subsequently been expelled from the Tour by International Cycliing Union (UCI) commissaires.
The riders have recorded a joint video apologising for their actions.
The teams have said they are "looking to appeal" and have issued a joint statement.
"We believe this is a very harsh decision by the race commissaries and against the spirit of what has been such a fantastic race to date," it reads.
"It was the sort of incident that merits a fine and a warning but certainly not expulsion from the race - a 'yellow card' but not a 'red'.
"Luke and Tony recognised it for what it was – a minor spat on the road at the end of a sweltering day in the saddle.
"It didn't affect any other rider and it didn't disadvantage any other team.
"They rode to the end of the stage together where they both shook hands. There was no ill will and they clearly still have a lot of respect for one another. We believe it is unjust that their Tour could come to an end over something like this at this point in the race."
On the face of it, a case of athletes and authorities in disharmony.
But if there is discordance to be heard in cycling – where the recently ensconced UCI President David Lappartient had to go through the gears last September to mollify groups representing elite riders – there is a veritable symphony of jarring sounds currently emanating from the sport of aquatics, and more particularly swimming.
The controversial decision to allow China's Sun Yang to defend his titles at the current World Aquatics Championships currently running in Gwangju in South Korea, despite allegations that a hammer was taken to a vial of his blood that was due to be analysed for anti-doping purposes, has, by all reports, generated enormous anger within the rank and file of swimmers attending the event.
That anger has manifested itself in successive podium protests against Sun from, firstly, Australia's Mack Horton, a silver medallist behind the Chinese swimmer in the men's 400 metres freestyle final on Sunday (July 21), and then Britain's Duncan Scott, who took bronze behind Sun in the men's 200m freestyle on Tuesday (July 23).
Neither swimmer shook hands with Sun, who gesticulated angrily at Scott in the aftermath of the 200m medal ceremony, allegedly calling him a "loser".
There have been some magnificent performances at these Championships. None more so than those of Britain's Adam Peaty, who yesterday added the 50m breaststroke title to the one he had already won over 100m, where he had become the first man to go under 57 seconds in the semi-finals.
But the overriding impact of an event that has not been widely or easily accessible on television after the financial demands of the sport's international governing body, the International Swimming Federation (FINA), proved too high, is likely to be a negative one.
The images of swimmers standing apart from swimmers will linger.
FINA's response was to send letters of warning to Horton, Scott and Sun.
After the Horton protest it responded: "While FINA respects the principle of freedom of speech, it has to be conducted in the right context.
"As in all major sports organisations, our athletes and their entourages are aware of their responsibilities to respect FINA regulations and not use FINA events to make personal statements or gestures.
"The matter over which Mack Horton was allegedly protesting is currently under review by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) and therefore it is not appropriate for FINA to prejudice this hearing by commenting further."
Sun avoided punishment from FINA and its doping panel over the alleged smashed sample, instead receiving a warning.
The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) has filed an appeal against this decision to the CAS.
If CAS rules in WADA's favour Sun could receive a lifetime ban after his earlier three-month suspension for prohibited substance trimetazidine.
In the wake of his second gold medal performance, Peaty responded defiantly to a new rule ushered in by FINA to prevent a repeat of the podium protests, describing it as "meaningless".
It had been revealed on Tuesday that the governing body had fast-tracked a new Code of Conduct rule stating that athletes can receive a ban or lose their medal if they indulge in "any political, religious or discriminatory statement or behaviour" at the podium.
Every national swimming President and secretary general was issued the new edict at 9.46pm, according to The Australian.
But Peaty subsequently told Swimming World magazine: "We're here to swim and we're not going to get involved in a code of conduct that ain't gonna change anything - [it is] meaningless.
"Athletes are always entitled to freedom of speech and when we detect that something is wrong and there's cheating, then why shouldn't we have a voice?"
The latest discord comes after months of wrangling in swimming between FINA and athletes wanting to set up independent, rival competitions offering greater flexibility and financial reward.
To be fair to FINA, new competitions have been created within the Federation that do more to satisfy swimmers' demands - but only because there appeared to be no other option.
The signals coming out of FINA are still vexed. The draconian edict regarding behaviour at the podium - while understandable to a degree - follows hard on the announcement that the federation's 83-year-old President, Julio Maglione, due to remain in office until 2021, will thereafter sit on the FINA Executive Board as "Immediate Past President" following a change agreed by the FINA Congress.
What kind of message does that send out?
The underlying problem appears to be a widespread lack of trust by swimmers in their Federation.
Two-times Olympic champion Lilly King has been another outspoken critic on doping in general and of the Chinese swimmer's participation in Gwangju in particular.
The American told reporters that the dining hall erupted in applause for Horton when he returned to the Athletes' Village.
She added: "I don't think anyone at FINA's going to stand up for the athletes so the athletes have to stand up for themselves."
It remains to be seen whether that is a fair judgement. But the signs are not good.
The sound of applause in the athletes' restaurant. That is something that should put the scent of fear into the nose of the sport's international governing body and prompt swift and proper attention.