Imperial CS:GO coach Luis ‘peacemaker’ Tadeu has revealed that he has been cleared by the Esports Integrity Commission (ESIC) after being suspended ahead of PGL Major Antwerp for encountering the spectator bug.
peacemaker was one of the three CS:GO coaches attending PGL Major Antwerp who were provisionally suspended just days before the start of the event as part of ESIC’s investigation into the historical use of the spectator bug.
The Brazilian coach encountered the free roam bug – a “far more serious” variant of the bug than the static and the third-person view variants in ESIC’s opinion – in one round while coaching Heroic in a 2018 online match. He faced a ban of up to 24 months from all ESIC member competitions.
According to ESIC, only three coaches experienced the free roam variant of the bug. One of the other two coaches is Soham ‘valens’ Chowdhury, a retired coach who guided Cloud9 to victory at ELEAGUE Major Boston in 2018.
Because of the suspension, peacemaker was unable to coach Imperial at PGL Major Antwerp. The Brazilian team, featuring two-time Major champions Gabriel ‘FalleN’ Toledo, Fernando ‘fer’ Alvarenga, and Lincoln ‘fnx’ Lau, made it to the final round of the Legends Stage before losing to Copenhagen Flames.
Cleared by ESIC
In a statement, peacemaker said that ESIC Integrity Commissioner Ian Smith “accepted the arguments provided”, adding that the esports watchdog will comment on this matter “soon”.
The Brazilian coach described this outcome as “the biggest victory of my career”.
“This morning, I was told through my attorney, Luis Felipe Maia from Maia Yoshiyasu Advogados, that we had successfully obtained the immediate removal of my provisional suspension,” peacemaker added.
“I am no longer at risk of being banned and I will be able to continue my career as normal.”
In a video posted on Twitter, peacemaker said that he was able to prove that he never shared any information with his players during the round. He added that his attempts to reconnect to the game server while in a bugged state prove that he was trying to fix the problem.
peacemaker also posted a video from Danny ‘mahone’ Hsieh, a content creator and former NIP analyst, analyzing the round in which he had the bug.
“From a purely analytical standpoint, there is no clear evidence that the players of Heroic used any information that could only be obtained through peacemaker’s point of view,” Hsieh said. “It was entirely possible to play the round the way they did without any extra information.”
It remains unclear whether the other two coaches who were suspended from PGL Major Antwerp, 9z’s Rafael ‘zakk’ Fernandes, and Spirit’s Sergey ‘hally’ Shavaev, have also been cleared by ESIC. Unlike peacemaker, they encountered the static variant of the bug.
This development marks a significant shift in the way ESIC looks at the spectator bug and deals with these cases.
On May 5, ESIC said that all occurrences of the bug, “regardless of apparent harm (or harmlessness) (…) should be dealt with swiftly and immediately”. In describing the static variant (a less serious variant than the free roam), it noted that, even if the bug was not abused, “the mere potential for exploitation and utilization” created an “unrectified opportunity for an unfair advantage”.
The following day, ESIC doubled down on that position. The esports watchdog stated that it did “not view the outcome of an unfair advantage being achieved as a necessary factor of the threat” created by the bug. It added that the affected coaches should have “immediately” attempted to rectify the bugged state in which they found themselves.
peacemaker said that he hopes to return to competition “as soon as possible.” Imperial are due to compete at IEM Dallas, which will take place from May 30 through June 5.