ESL And Pro Teams Form Esports Governing Body

ESL have announced the formation of the World Esports Association (WESA), an organisation which aims to “oversee standardized tournament regulations, player representation as well as revenue sharing for teams.” If you’re aware of the mishmash of acronyms that forms the world of esports tournaments, this might not seem of much interest, but WESA is different in that it’s not a new league but a regulatory body hoping to work with all the existing players, teams and leagues.

Essentially, it’s trying to do what FIFA does with world football – except hopefully without the decades of institutional corruption.

“WESA will offer the chance to bring all esports stakeholders – players, teams, organizers and broadcasters – to the discussion table in order to bring much needed structure, predictable schedules and transparency to the scene,” says the announcement.

The organisation is being formed as a partnership between ESL and eight founding esports teams: Fnatic, Natus Vincere, EnVyUs, Virtus.pro, G2 Esports, FaZe, Mousesports and Ninjas in Pyjamas. Those are some of the biggest teams around, with “the Association aiming to add more members and negotiations continu[ing] with various organizations.”

WESA will also involve a player council, “which will represent, strengthen and advocate on behalf of pro gamers on a number of important topics, such as league policies, rulesets, player transfers and more.” The ESL Pro League for CS:GO will be the first tournament to adopt WESA regulations.

If other organisations get on board, WESA could be a big deal for esports, which currently suffers from a lack of regulation. “”It’s a bit of like the wild west how a player moves to another team, or when a player has a dispute with a team because he hasn’t been paid or whatever, there’s no organisation he can turn to,” Ralf Reichert, CEO of the Electronic Sports League told Newsbeat, from which I get all my news.

This was demonstrated recently when Riot banned members of three teams from competing in North America, one of them Team Impulse who “repeatedly failed to pay their players on time and to provide valid contracts for their players.” Consider that not every game or esports league has a Riot tightly controlling it, and there are a lot of opportunities for abuses.

What’s not clear so far is how likely other organisations are to sign up with WESA, or where WESA’s money will come from to enforce the regulations they’re proposing, but it could be a good thing for the long-term future of esports if it works.

From this site

3 Comments

  1. Zankman says:

    Wonder if this will affect LoL in any way at all.

  2. Timofee says:

    It’d be nice if this works but unfortunately it appears to be land grab by ESL and team owners to create a monopoly.

    I can only really speak to CS GO, but there, ESL have a very poor reputation for this kind of thing and if reports about the teams being paid to enter are true, they’re hardly unbiased in their desire to band together and control things.

    The fact other tournament organisers have immediately gone on record to state they were not consulted and ESL have clearly stated the organisation is not open to other tournament hosts is further evidence toward this being nothing more than a (thinly) veiled attempt to gain complete control of the scene.

    What’s most worrying is the players have been given a seat at the table and, based on a handful of tweets from those in the founding teams, seem to think this is a good thing. However it strikes me as nothing more than ESL paying lip service to them while conspiring with team owners to maximise profits at the cost of players and fans. I believe the average age of pro CS GO players is around 21-22. These are young guys and I worry they won’t realise just how little power / control they will have.

  3. axiomatic says:

    “WESA gonna’ play games now?” -Jar Jar Binks