Esports organisation ESL run some of the biggest competitions in the world, including the ESL One and Intel Extreme Masters events, but their recent decision to commit to Facebook as a streaming partner for the ESL One events and their CS:GO Pro League was met with some concern, especially after fans watching ESL One's Dota 2 competition in Genting last month had some issues. ESL even responded with a statement after people criticised their takedown notices of people sharing streams of the tournament themselves, and now the company has released another post on Reddit apologising to the Dota 2 community about their handling of the tournament.
The post starts by explaining to the fans that their handling of the tournament was wrong on multiple occasions, and that the streamers and fans alike deserve an apology, especially considering the start of streaming on Facebook and the DMCA takedown notices to streamers (which have since been retracted).
"The introduction of Facebook as our new broadcast platform did not go as it should have," the statement says. "Instead of focusing on ironing out the kinks, engaging in the right kind of dialogue with you and incorporating your legitimate feedback we were busy following protocol and defending our actions. We should have simply let the community streamers do their thing while focusing on getting our end right. Regardless of having or not having the right to do so, taking down streamers that provide a good experience while we aren't is not the way to go about things."
ESL admits they were in the wrong in this instance and that they'll learn, but they also want to clarify their stance on the topic of streaming since it will resurface as a concern:
"ESL's goal is to elevate esports. It's been that way for the past 18 years and many of the same people that started the company in 2000 are still the same ones working behind the scenes at ESL today. We're not in it for short-term profits but want to help build an industry. Helping to create esports is not only the core of our efforts, it is all we do. Our mission is to give players and teams a platform to create big moments that you enjoy, talk about and remember."
"Expanding the amount of streaming platforms which show and promote esports and building an environment where platforms compete to show esports is part of that process. Working with companies that can help us bring esports to the mainstream, is part of that process. Yet if the things we do come at the expense of our relationship with the audience, we need to critically re-evaluate our approach."
The company expressed their wish to do better for the rest of the year, taking on feedback and working with Facebook to better the experience, and thanks the fans for watching ESL One Genting.
Did you have major issues with Facebook as a platform?