A team was eliminated from a CS:GO tournament due to streaming platform exclusivity for what is believed to be the first time ever.
Team Just Make it Fast (JMIF) was playing Cloud9 in a best of three for the Counter-Strike: Global Offensive Game Show Global eSports Cup on January 13th 2016 when JMIF player Launders began streaming from his point of view on Twitch.
This is not typically an issue except in this case the tournament is sponsored by and intended to be streamed exclusively on Azubu.
To Azubu’s credit, they did not disqualify JMIF on the first occurrence. They gave Launders a clear warning to stop his stream – which he did – just before starting it back up again. Upon this happening, Azubu pulled the cord and DQed JMIF from the rest of the tournament and gave Cloud9 the forfeit win.
This only got more interesting when the rule book was analyzed and it was found to NOT be against the rules for a player to stream their point of view on a service other than Azubu, which many on Reddit and elsewhere the internet called them out on. However, the tournament’s first rule states that “…we reserve the right to change, modify, or adapt all rules as deemed appropriate…”
I believe this is the first time we have seen a streaming platform (or any sponsor) step in to disqualify a team during a tournament, but I think it was Azubu’s right to do so. Since they are streaming with an exclusivity agreement with the Game Show Global eSports Cup, Azubu has every right to protect their investment as such. In the future I would like to see – and I would imagine others do too – a clear cut rule that players are aware of so that we can see these tournaments played out as they are meant to be, instead of disqualifications based on technicalities.