The Esports Integrity Commission have fined Team Vitality $10,000 “in response to stream-sniping breach of the ESIC Code,” the commission confirmed on January 23.
During their match against Team Liquid at the BLAST Premier Global Final, viewers spotted a screen behind the Vitality players which appeared to display the live broadcast of the match.
This is strictly against tournament rules, as teams may be able to gain an advantage by seeing the opposing team’s point of view – even with a delay on the broadcast.
Although ESIC did not find any “malicious intent” from Vitality, their zero-tolerance approach “mandates accountability from the organisation for the breach.”
ESIC fines Vitality
In their statement, ESIC says it “received and assessed VOD footage and player camera footage and found that this breach occurred in [the match against Team Liquid], as well as having occurred in map 2 of Team Vitality’s game against Complexity.”
ESIC’s review “does not suggest that the players were information derived from the stream or that they gained any advantage in their matches as a result of the code violation.”
They confirm that Team Vitality has accepted responsibility for the breach.
ESIC issues $10,000 fine to team Vitality in response to stream-sniping breach of the ESIC Code.
While there was no malicious intention detected by ESIC in its examination of evidence, ESIC’s zero tolerance approach mandates accountability from the organisation for the breach. pic.twitter.com/Gs7Kwut0le
— ESIC (@ESIC_Official) January 23, 2021
BLAST’s commissioner Andrew Haworth said that they immediately told Vitality to turn off the stream and referred the incident to ESIC and assisted in the investigation.
Richard Lewis, in a reaction for Dexerto, argued that Team Vitality should have been disqualified for the breach, to maintain competitive integrity.
Team Vitality still move on ahead of Team Liquid, who drop to the lower bracket. Vitality will face Astralis in the winner’s final, while Team Liquid take on NaVi for a spot in the loser’s final.
You can keep up with all the action at the BLAST Premier Global Finals with our coverage hub.