At sea, no, because the clubs I belong to have both given dispensation to wear it at the starboard cross trees (subject to rules of precedence) when at sea if, to wear it at the masthead, would interfer with the proper working of wind indicating equipment and communication aerials.
I thought by definition a Burgee was something flown at the top of the mast for indicating wind direction. (The fact it has a design indicating you claim to belong to a club is secondary.)Hence you cannot fly a 'burgee' from the crosstrees, it is a house or club flag in that position and if you are bothering about flag positions it must flown inferior to any national courtesey flag.
I have never been turned down for membership and have been accepted as a member by all yacht clubs that I have applied for. I have belonged to several yacht clubs over many years throughout the world, and some with the "Royal" thing in their name. While a lot of good people are club members and clubs provide much for them, sorry they are not for me. I have resigned from them all on my own volution, with no pressure or menace or prejudice. They are just not for me, and no longer provide for my needs. I am afraid that I have little tolerance nowadays, in my twilight years, for some of the the pomp and circumstance, one-up-manship, reefer jackets, flannels and posing that unfortunately I have found in many of these erstwhile institutions. I now pick my own company and my company picks me. I am happier, they are happier and probably the yacht clubs are happier as well. Maybe one day I may find the ideal yacht club but it is not high in my priorities and I do not feel naked if I am not flying a burgee. Spleen? No. Yacht clubs, I bear them no malace, I just have no attraction nor interest in poofters.
I realise that this subject is almost dead. However we flew our burgee across the Atlantic last year without detriment to the instruments. We bought a smaller than normal (for our boat size) version so that it wouldn't hit the VHF aerial. It was (and is) on a 4 ft long piece of dowelling and is hoisted well clear of the mast head.
We get a minor pleasure from flying our club burgee which means that we can, on the few occasions that we want to (because of the high cost of the thing) fly our defaced blue ensign quite legally.
I also helps us see our boat amongst others in a crowded anchorage as so few other boats wear a burgee.
I dont THINK all that makes me a pooftah! I love my sailing and I enjoy the traditions that go with it and so TRY to do things 'properly'.