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ESL aligns with ESIC’s recommendation on sanctions for cheating in esports

Hans Oelschlägel
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The Esports Integrity Coalition (ESIC) has closed its survey canvassing community opinion on the appropriate sanctions for those caught cheating in esports. The survey served as a platform to get esports fans’ opinion on what appropriate repercussions for cheating, match fixing, or using doping in esports should be. As part of that process, ESL and ESEA also held a meeting with a number of professional Counter-Strike: Global Offensive teams in June, where they discussed Players’ point of view on this matter.  

Answers of over 7,000 participants to the survey, as well as the outcomes of individual talks with Players, were analyzed and ESIC has published a recommendation for appropriate sanctions today. ESL and ESIC are happy to confirm that they will align its official stance on the topic with ESIC’s guidance.

Tournament rules for all events in IEM, ESL One, ESL Pro League series, as well as the ESEA Leagues and amateur competitions, will be updated to reflect ESIC’s recommendation, effective August 1st, 2017. Additionally, all indefinite match-fixing bans placed on players before February 15, 2015, have been lifted. This also includes bans placed on ex-IBUYPOWER players.

We believe that integrity and fair play are of the utmost importance in esports, and our updated catalogue of sanctions reflects that commitment”, said Ulrich Schulze, Senior Vice President Product at ESL.”All of these adjustments do not apply to bans and punishments issued by Valve directly though, which will still be in place for all Valve sponsored tournaments run by ESL, such as Majors.”  

The following sanctions for the first offence will be implemented:

  • Cheating: Disqualification from the tournament, results voided, forfeiture of prize money, ban between 2 year and lifetime depending on age and level of player and nature/size of tournament and how the player cheated. Cheating at a competition played above an amateur level (i.e. where significant prize pool is involved, or a qualification for a professional event is at stake) should normally result in a 5 year ban, but, in aggravating circumstances, can result in a lifetime ban.
  • Match-Fixing/betting fraud: Results voided, 5 year ban unless significant mitigating factors in line with the ESIC Anti-Corruption Code or, in the presence of aggravating circumstances, a longer ban, forfeiture of prize money and monetary fine (if discovered before the end of a tournament, disqualification).
  • Doping by using performance-enhancing substances: Results voided, ban of between 1 and 2 years, forfeiture of prize money (if discovered before the end of a tournament, disqualification).
  • Competition manipulation and bribery: Results voided, ban of between 1 and 2 years, forfeiture of prize money and monetary fine (if discovered before the end of a tournament, disqualification)

For second and subsequent offences, participants should expect far harsher sanctions and, in the cases of (a) and (b) above, in all likelihood, a lifetime ban from esports.

For more information on ESIC’s position on cheating in esports, please visit ESIC’s official website.