A new rule has been implemented for the FACEIT London CS:GO Major qualifiers which tackles the issue of teams and players conflicts of interest.
The Counter-Strike: Global Offensive scene, like many others, has had conflict of interest concerns in recent years with organizations like ESL and WESA making the early moves to try to tackle them.
The most common conflicts of interest seem to involve management companies owning stakes or rights to various different different teams (think ESforce or RFRSH).
However, there have been situations where players hold shares in one company or team while playing for another one, or even individual investors holding small shares in multiple teams.
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Clearly, this open up the possibility for collusion at the highest level of the game and Valve has now decided to introduce a new rule preventing any conflicts of interest at the FACEIT London Major or any of its qualifiers.
Very few people had actually noticed the change in ruling until Richard Lewis released a YouTube video discussing it on May 13th. Lewis made it clear that he believes the decision is a step in the right direction but pointed out that some prominent teams could be affected.
“Organizations that immediately come to mind are gonna be ESforce. You know, potential interests, well certainly in Virtus.Pro and SK Gaming, and of course there’s this whole ‘Are they? Aren’t they?’ with Na’Vi.
Then you’ve got obviously RFRSH. Certainly with the European Minors there’s a chance that we might see RFRSH teams qualify. They still haven’t sold GODSENT, they still own Heroic, obviously they own Astralis. This could create this conflict of interest that may mean one of these teams has to drop out or they have to push through a super fast sale to such a degree that it satisfies Valve that there is no shared ownership or anything like that.”
Lewis explains that some of the concerns with the RFRSH owned teams is that they have often used “player owned” models which gave players small shares in their teams which they could potentially still own after having moved on to other teams.
He also points out that this is yet more evidence of a new shift in focus from Valve as they continue to increase their community interaction with the likes of John McDonald regularly taking to Twitter to answer questions on everything from Panorama UI to anticheat.
The full Richard Lewis video on the new ruling can be found below.