ESIC to investigate historical coaching bug abuse; opens confession period for offenders
The esports watchdog's investigation will go far back as 2016 to identify all cases of the spectator bug abuse.
The Esports Integrity Commission (ESIC) has announced that it will contract the services of Michal Slowinski and Steve Dudenhoeffer to examine demos dating back to 2016 in order to find any instances of the coaching bug being used. The duo played a key role in uncovering the scandal following claims made by players in private.
After the initial wave of discoveries that led to ESL and ESIC banning Nicolai "HUNDEN" Petersen, Ricardo "dead" Sinigaglia, and Aleksandr "zoneR" Bogatiryev, more potential wrongdoers have been found, most notably K23 coach Aset "Solaar" Sembiyev, who has since been suspended by the organisation.
"After careful consideration of the volumes of material available to ESIC for review, we have reason to believe that exploitation of the Spectator Bug by other parties than those already sanctioned, may have existed historically", ESIC said in a statement.
The goal is to analyse approximately 25,000 demos from games played between 2016 and 2020, through use of AI and visual inspection, starting with the more recent demos. Based on the evidence found, ESIC will decide standardised sanctions, before doing a manual review of key suspect demos and making determinations in accordance to the standardized sanctions, and finally releasing the tranches of standardized sanction on a monthly basis.
Due to the immense workload, ESIC estimates the investigation will take approximately eight months to complete, and will issue "a monthly report (if substantial determinations are required) or a quarterly report (if unsubstantial determinations are required)".
The investigation into the coaching bug abuse will include tournaments by all of ESIC members, "including ESL, DreamHack, BLAST, WePlay, Eden Esports, UMG, UCC, and more".
ESIC's appeal process will be available to any individual who wants to appeal the Independent Disciplinary Panel's ruling. Additionally, ESIC called on those who have abused the bug in the past to admit it, as it has opened a Confession Period that will run until September 13 at 23:00 .
"In ESIC’s view, wherever possible, it is important to work towards reform and rehabilitation of offending parties into individuals who value competitive integrity and can recommence serving the CS:GO community," the organisation added.
"ESIC may choose to apply a concession to any sanction that may apply to the offending party based on the presence and quality of the admission provided".
Admissions of guilt can be made directly to the commissioner by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
HLTV.org will be assisting ESIC by providing complete access to approximately five terabytes of demo footage stored in our servers.