ESL commits to improving player rights with landmark CS:GO agreement

ESL One Cologne

Counter-Strike: Global Offensive teams attending ESL Pro Tour events will continue to have travel and accomodation, including group stage tournament areas and private practise areas, paid for by ESL and Dreamhack. The tournament organisers signed the esports’ first framework agreement with the Counter-Strike Professional Players’ Association (CSPPA) earlier today to standardise the way players are treated at events.

As per the agreement, which is the first of its kind in the esports industry, ESL will work with the players’ association to define player rights and obligations at ESL Pro Tour events, which include ESL One Cologne and Intel Extreme Masters Katowice. They will also commit to a set standard of tournament conditions and player breaks.

Although the CSPPA is yet to agree on more pressing matters, such as the standardisation of player contracts, intellectual rights, and more, the framework has been put in place by ESL and will be discussed at a later date. For now, as part of the agreement, ESL and DreamHack will continue to provide hotels a set distance away from the playing venue and much more.

“The life of a professional CS:GO player revolves around tournament participation all over the world,” Mads Oland, CEO of the CSPPA, says in the press release. “This makes the working conditions of players in connection with tournaments a key priority of the CSPPA. In the current tournament landscape, ESL sets the industry standard for such working conditions and with this partnership ESL has committed to maintain and develop such standards in close cooperation with the CSPPA.”

The framework agreement is a key milestone for the professionalisation of esports. Although there’s more to come from ESL and DreamHack, the efforts of committing to a high-level of player care will not only be respected by players but also shaped by it.