Esports Certification Institute pulls $400 certificate after viral backlash

Esports Certification InstituteUnsplash / Esports Certification Institute

Just 24 hours after its launch, the Esports Certification Institute has removed its controversial exam and begun offering refunds in light of viral backlash.

A mere 24 hours after its launch, the ECI’s initial examination — and its now-viral $400 ‘esports certificate’ — has since been pulled, with the institute now offering refunds.

The inaugural exam from the Esports Certification Institute consisted of 120 multiple choice questions, one essay, and tests on the following topics: esports knowledge, statistical literacy, and problem-solving. It’s this exam that led to a great deal of backlash online before ultimately being pulled down.

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“We hear you,” the official EsportsCI account said in a lengthy Twitter thread on April 29. “We have plenty to fix and much to iterate through. We messed up.

“The certification exam in its current form, isn’t it.

“We’re pausing and going back to the drawing board in order to retool everything we’ve done. For the many people who have signed up for the exam or paid for the study guide, we’ll be refunding your purchases immediately.”

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While the exam itself was central to the controversy across the internet, the institution remains steadfast in its overall ambitions.

“We launched ECI with the belief that it could further promote professionalism,” the recent Twitter thread continued. “We hope the conversation generated about hiring practices in esports continues to happen.”

Esports Certification InstituteEsports Certification Institute
The ECI certification was devised to help people show that they’re qualified when applying for a job in esports.

Former Clutch, DIG execs launch org to help esports careers

The organization was originally created to administer a “merit-based examination and certification program” for esports, assessing entry-level candidates and outside professionals on their esports expertise.

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The ambitions of their overall efforts were promoting meritocracy, fostering professionalism, and increasing diversity and inclusion, according to a release.

The institute was founded by Dignitas’ former chief of staff Ryan Friedman and Houston Rockets’ former vice of president of esports Sebastian Park, and has appointed plenty of familiar faces in esports as advisors.

G2 founder Carlos Rodriguez, Enlight founder Eunice Chen, Evil Geniuses’ Nicole LaPointe Jameson, FlyQuest’s Tricia Sugita, Gen.G’s Chris Park, and Cloud9 VP Donald Boyce were all named to the advisory board at launch.

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