ESIC has recently closed its survey asking opinions about sanctions for those cheating in the world of esports, and the results have been summarised by the organisation, some of which have surprised the organisation itself.
Firstly, the results found that a "significant number" feel lifetime bans for match-fixing was too harsh "and, while a significant number of comments support lifetime bans for such activity overall, many more are critical of the publisher's decision in these cases." ESIC is concerned, then, that the community doesn't think match-fixing is as serious as cheating to win, while they view it as just as serous, so an effort will be made to try to convince the community to change this view, as fraud and match-fixing are a threat to esports.
Another surprising announcement by ESIC is that they recommend that banned players are unbanned from August 1 and allowed to play again, with the reasoning that "whilst the players are clearly culpable and should have known better, the rules surrounding this sort of activity were not clear at the time, no education had been provided to the players and the procedures used to sanction them were not transparent and did not comply with principles of natural justice."
ESIC also recommends that organisations adopt their Anti-Corruption Code and indepedent procedure, so rules are clear in regards to betting and corruption in the field. The ESIC Disciplinary Panel will be a part of this, which is independent.
A full list of recommended sanctions for cheating have also been provided as well, which are as follows (from the press release):
a.Cheating: Disqualification from the tournament, results voided, forfeiture of prize money, ban between 2 year and lifetime depending on age and level of player and nature/size of tournament and how the player cheated (this offence includes "smurfing" where both parties involved are liable to sanctions). Cheating at a competition played above an amateur level (i.e. where significant prize pool is involved or qualification for a professional event is at stake) should normally result in a 5 year ban, but, in aggravating circumstances, can result in a lifetime ban.
b.Match-Fixing/betting fraud: Results voided, 5 year ban unless significant mitigating factors in line with the ESIC Anti-Corruption Code or, in the presence of aggravating circumstances, a longer ban, forfeiture of prize money and monetary fine (if discovered before the end of a tournament, disqualification).
c.Doping: Results voided, ban of between 1 and 2 years, forfeiture of prize money (if discovered before the end of a tournament, disqualification).
d.Competition manipulation and bribery: Results voided, ban of between 1 and 2 years, forfeiture of prize money and monetary fine (if discovered before the end of a tournament, disqualification).
Lastly, ESIC also advises that for subsequent offences, harsher sanctions should be enforced, and in the case of (a) and (b), perhaps a lifetime ban should be implemented too.
"ESIC published a position paper on cheating in April 2017 and the principle thrust of that paper was that the esports industry needs a consistent, fair and proportionate approach to how it deals with cheating, both to win and to lose (match-fixing)," Integrity Commissioner Ian Smith said. "Taking the community's views is a significant part of determining what is proportionate within esports. It is not, however, the only view that matters and ESIC also takes into account the practices of other traditional sports integrity efforts and prosecutions and the consequences of match-fixing on those sports affected by it historically. In particular, we have witnessed sports and leagues lose credibility because of widespread fixing and, consequently, take a harder line on what is appropriate as a punishment for match manipulation than the esports community currently appears to do. Also, we must take into account the legal environment in which we operate and, in particular, how sporting sanctions have historically been dealt with by the civil courts around the world."
For more on ESIC's statement check out this link. Do you agree with ESIC's stance on cheating?