BLAST denied access to teams' voice and video recordings ahead of Fall Finals
Voice communications and screen recordings will not be shared with the tournament organizer without an agreement on how the information is handled.
The Counter-Strike Professional Players' Association (CSPPA) announced on Tuesday that the players competing in the BLAST Premier Fall 2020 Finals will not grant the tournament organiser permission to access voice communications and will not record their screen "without clear agreements" on how that information will be handled.
While it appreciates the need for measures that "safeguard the integrity of the game", the player association says that such recording could cause PC performance issues, "when there are other measures available that would not". It adds that players have no control over who accesses these files, which contain "sensitive tactical information and personal information", and that sections of these files have been broadcast "without prior knowledge of players".
The CSPPA states that it has repeatedly attempted to begin a dialogue with BLAST about the topic, but to no avail. Without a clear agreement, the players "do not trust BLAST with this information", the CSPPA said.
"The CSPPA has repeatedly tried to get BLAST to engage with the players regarding the use and storage of voice comms recordings and videos of players, pointing out that the measures that they have implemented are both harmful and illegal if they do not have clear agreements with players on how to store and use information including personal information," the association said. "BLAST have declined to discuss this with the players."
The announcement comes just days after the Esports Integrity Commission (ESIC), of which BLAST is a member, suggested that live video feeds of every team should be recorded and stored "for a minimum of 90 days" in case of tier-one tournaments. This is one of the esports watchdog group's recommendations to tackle the issue of stream-sniping, which became a "widespread" practice in the online era caused by the coronavirus pandemic.