Players' Association announced
Around 90 top players have already joined the Counter-Strike Professional Players' Association (CSPPA). Now, seven players have agreed to form the association's board and go public.
After being a hot topic in the professional CS:GO community for years, a union that looks to serve the needs of players now finally sees the light of day.
The CSPPA was officially set up earlier this year by veteran esports personality Scott "SirScoots" Smith in collaboration with an organisation called 'Danish Elite Athletes Association' and a group of players with Andreas "Xyp9x" Højsleth at the helm, and it has been increasing its membership count since then.
Seven players, two of whom were in the HLTV Top 20 for 2017, have now formed the founding board, which will make all decisions on behalf of the association and its members to ensure the 'best possible conditions for players', according to the CSPPA.
The founding board members of the Counter Strike Professional Players' Association are:
Andreas "Xyp9x" Højsleth
Epitacio "TACO" de Melo
Tarik "tarik" Celik
Jonathan "EliGE" Jablonowski
Jordan "n0thing" Gilbert
Chris "chrisJ" de Jong
Nathan "NBK-" Schmitt
The CSPPA's daily operations, including legal counsel for players, will be run by legal advisor Michael Døi and by Mads Øland, CEO of the Danish Elite Athletes Association, a Danish umbrella organisation that acts as a union for sports athletes in Denmark.
According to Døi, members of the association will elect a new board, or confirm the existing one, within the first year of operation.
Døi says that the CSPPA's main objective is to help players with legal advice and assist them in signing contracts with teams and organisations, as well as to 'become the collective voice of the players in CS:GO and an important stakeholder in the industry.'
"As any other players’ association, we will work to secure the best possible working conditions for players in CS:GO, while of course taking into account the special nature of the industry," Døi added.
"In any sport, it makes sense that players can influence their employment conditions. There is certainly a huge difference in how CS:GO contracts are structured, and there will definitely be players that could benefit from guidance when signing them.
"Our goal is to represent the players in the best possible way and help the entire scene grow in a positive direction. We see a lot of possibilities for doing that."
As for membership requirements, Døi says that any player who is contracted or actively seeking a contract as a professional Counter-Strike player and 'who competes at an elite level' is eligible to be an active member of the CSPPA.
And according to him, the association is still in the process of reaching out to players who are not yet members and 'letting them know about the association.'
The Danish Elite Athletes Association already runs a similar union for Danish esports athletes, which was revealed a year ago by Dust2.dk.
The association and its CEO Mads Øland claim 'experience in setting up and managing international player's associations', being part of the board of FIFPro, the international football players’ association, as well as working with the World Players Association, an international umbrella organization for players’ associations.
Øland and Døi are also a part of 'Spillerforeningen', a union for Danish football players. Over the years, the union has had several clashes with Danish football clubs and the country's football association over matters pertaining to player contracts and agreements.