The full, signed copy of the letter, can be viewed here.
The Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS:GO) teams and community members listed below, have jointly decided to publish this letter after recently being told by ELEAGUE and Valve that the Asia Minor Championship, occurring between October 26th – 29th, will not include any open qualifiers. We have selected CSGO2ASIA to represent us, and they are posting this letter on our behalf.
RE: THE ELEAGUE BOSTON MAJOR 2018 – ASIA MINOR CHAMPIONSHIP
To all relevant parties at Valve, Mr. Min-Sik Ko and executives at ELEAGUE:
We write to you today as members of not only the Asia-Pacific region, but as members of the worldwide CS:GO community.
CS:GO has a tremendous influence on all of us who have signed this letter. From establishing long time friendships, respect and mutual understanding of our differences, to driving competitiveness in all aspects of our lives. Our experiences vary greatly in depth and breadth, but ultimately, it is the love for CS:GO that unites us.
The recent announcement of the ELEAGUE Boston Major, and its lack of qualifying process for the Asia Minor, is simply disappointing.
It is disheartening that we find ourselves here today having to write this letter. While we do not wish to impede on what is already planned, and we can accept that this letter will not change anything about the current situation; moving forward, we cannot accept a system that does not value every member of the community and give fair and equal opportunities to all.
WHAT WE SEE IS LACK OF OVERSIGHT
On the morning of October 6th 2017, many of us woke up to the news that the Asia Minor was to be held in just three short weeks, as an invite-only competition. Through various channels, we were able to determine whom these invites were sent to, and it was quickly apparent through the confusion of it all that there was simply no method to the madness. Furthermore, those teams that were invited were given a mere 24-hours to both respond and accept their invitation.
Various members of our community quickly reached out to representatives at ELEAGUE for answers. The replies they received painted a picture of negligence, a lack of knowledge of the competitive Asian CS:GO landscape and almost no due diligence done.
THE REASONS PROVIDED BY ELEAGUE TO SKIP OPEN QUALIFIERS:
- A lack of time and scheduling constraints
THE NEGATIVE IMPACTS OF SUCH A DECISION:
- Unclear method of determining “the best teams” in Asia
- Disproportionate representation – No South Asian, Middle Eastern or South-East Asian teams
- Disheartened player base, as they are unable to prove themselves
- Regression in formalizing an esport, it compromises the minor-major system
THE SOLUTIONS EXIST
This begs the question then, what could have been done, factoring in the extremely tight scheduling and assumingly late notice from Valve to ELEAGUE regarding the timeline of the CS:GO Major?
Most importantly, it is asking those on the ground. Between just the individuals, players, managers, and owners of teams endorsing this letter, we have over 200 years of combined experience in all capacities of Counter-Strike. In all these various capacities, an open qualifier could have been announced, planned and executed in just a few days.
Perhaps the number of teams signing up would’ve been less, and perhaps viewership would’ve suffered, but it is the integrity of the competition that is in question here, and that would surely not have been an issue even if a rushed open qualifier was all that could be arranged. The fact is, there are organizations that exist which can easily deploy servers rapidly and have the manpower to efficiently run these types of qualifiers.
Following the pattern of the previous minor system, an open qualifier for Asia should resemble the following structure:
- 2 Invited Teams (previous winner and runner-up)
- 1 Slot for Oceania
- 1 Slot for China
- 1 Slot for East Asia
- 2 Slots for South-East Asia
- 1 Slot for Middle-East / South Asia
Neglecting an entire region is bad for the fairness of competition, and with regards to Valve and ELEAGUE, it is bad for branding. It has tarnished the view that many of us in Asia have of both your esteemed organizations, and it leaves a sour taste in our mouths for being the only region excluded from the normal practices of the Minor – Major system. We won’t even begin to delve into what our colleagues in the CIS region are facing, too.
What we ask is to for you to plan carefully, to not be hasty, and reach out to us if you need to. This is an ideal opportunity to benefit from the support of our collective fan base which extends into the hundreds of thousands.
The Asian & Oceanic CS:GO Community