Recent Events, Misconceptions, and Updates

   exa_   - 3/7/2020
In league article publications, it takes time to concisely and clearly address concerns that players have on our league. This is done to ensure that any investigations that needed are done thoroughly, the right steps and changes are made, and for a clear statement to be made.

When players have constructive criticisms of the league, it is welcomed, as this only assists to improve the league in a meaningful way. In more recent events, players have pointed out issues regarding a particular part of our league, the Discord and the PUGs that are run inside of the Main RGL Discord. More specifically, complaints have been towards how the system of chat privilege, mutes, and PUG bans have been previously handled. There were also concerns regarding specific league bans and match disputes, which will be clarified later in this article. In all, this article serves to have an open discussion of these complaints and what RGL will do moving forward.


Harassment


  • civil war - Minimum 6 months - Persistent harassment of other members in the TF2 community, including the use of racial slurs. Has also received four warnings in the last month inside of the RGL discord, resulting in multiple mutes.


For this case in particular, the deliberate and continuous attempts of a player to constantly harass a player through many different platforms does constitute harassment. This is an aspect that the league does step in, as these cases often involve a genuine intent to harm or threaten players playing inside of our league. It should be reiterated that we do not police the isolated usage of racial slurs on off-platforms. This harassment case in particular involved the explicit usage of racial slurs that was used to target individuals that played into the context of the overall report. RGL has never banned a player outside of our platforms for standalone comments regarding the usage of slurs.

"Context (evidence, details, etc.) plays a significant role in how a case is investigated. For sexual harassment cases and harassment cases, those tend to contain much more sensitive material and are cases that we keep within the Head Admins to protect the victim(s). Verifying the information involved can be time-consuming but is something that we do to ensure that the reports sent in are legitimate. It is undeniable that actions such as doxing and harassment are not tolerated in this league. These are cases that we examine carefully, since the possible action we take, and the severity of the ban lengths depend on the content and the circumstances of the report." - Recent Events and Saturday Night Bans.


RGL Discord General Chat


More recently, it should be noted that the #general channel of the RGL.gg NA discord has been repurposed into a channel for serious discussions. For any visible league or rule change, having an open notice about these changes is an aspect that is important to the league. It allows the organization to be transparent about the direction that we are striving towards. However, it seemed that the intentions and reasoning for the change of the chat was not communicated properly.

This is an aspect that sigafoo has admitted fault to in his response here:

The #general channel in the RGL discord, and the muting of players in #help for repeatedly asking what happened to #general. That was a situation that I could have handled better. I put up a message in the #help channel that our chats were removed temporarily, and to ask players to not misuse other channels during this time. I handed out a couple of short mutes to spare a conversation from forming in the #help channel, about people asking for the channel back. However, I should have explained better why the #general channel was removed in the original message, that #general was not matching the type of general chat that we're aiming to have in the RGL discord. I take ownership of that mistake and the couple of players affected should no longer be muted, and please DM me otherwise if I'm wrong on that.

sigafoo

Going forward after this article goes live, there will be a Discord announcement about the #serious-discussions channel, the rules of the channel, clear violations for breaking said rules, and why the general chat was removed. Ensuring that players do not get muted for reasons as above will be discussed more thoroughly with the Discord moderation team and is an aspect that I will personally make sure is clear moving forward.


Ashville Incident


In the Ashville match between Chill Penguins vs. Sweatshop Sadface :(, there was an incident that caused a match to be overturned due to a map or server issue. In context, a player was killed at full health, with nobody on the opposing team shooting him. Players pointed to the likelihood of a kill bind being executed or to possible match issues. Whether inconsequential, the death played an impact in the outcome of the match as the timing of the death occurred near the conclusion of the round.

When a player uses a kill bind (a macro on a mouse also works), it is subsequently logged in the console as a demo command while viewing the POV demo of said player.


Using an explode command.


Using a kill command.


Here are the keypresses from the Player's POV prior to the death.

As demonstrated, there were no instances of the player using a kill bind, class switch death (would also be logged if done so), or another manual action that would have caused the player to lose their life. This leads to evidence on the contrary of a manual death from a player and to possible issues with the map or server. Throughout the entire investigation, thorough communication was had with both teams, mappers were contacted, both teams were notified about the details of the findings, and both teams agreed with the decision and played a rematch of the round.


PUG Runners


PUG runners are volunteers in our RGL Discord that help facilitate, moderate, and ultimately run the PUGs inside of the Discord. It should be noted that these PUG runners are not league administrators, as such, they have no control over the direction of league and decisions made by the league, which is a misconception that must be cleared. They only have moderator privileges inside of the PUGs that are being run and are unable to moderate the text channels. It is apparent that a growing disconnect between these runners and league staff has grown -- often leading to miscommunication between the two groups. League division admins ultimately have much more of a focus on their format and specific divisions and are not necessarily boggled down or have the time to look over how pickup games in the Discord are run and moderated. This is why the growing concern of the runners making wrong decisions, interacting with the public in inappropriate or unprofessional manners, or exerting themselves in a wrongful way to the community can be seen as an issue in RGL as a whole.

It is clear through recent events that certain runners are acting in manners that are not seen as appropriate to the standard that we hold our division admins accountable for. As these individuals are interacting the most with our player base through voice channels, it creates a direct and dynamic bridge of communication from RGL to the player, which results in an image of how these newer players may view the volunteers in the league as. The Head Admins have done a thorough internal review of certain PUG ban issues and the runners themselves.

As such, the following individual will have their runner privileges revoked:


The above individual has been involved with hypocritical use of their moderation tools, inappropriate and unprofessional conduct within the community, and further behavioral issues. It should be noted that in the past, the individual has been given many notices about their relations with the public, in which they have continued to overstep their boundaries as a volunteer in our league. They will not be involved with any public (including administrative roles) projects in RGL from now on.

It should be noted that BLANK3T has been removed several weeks prior for their conduct as well.

In addition, the following changes to the pickup games and the Discord will occur:

  • PUG runners can no longer issue PUG bans on players. Cases must be brought to the head PUG runners and staff members before a ban can be issued.
  • A more comprehensive vetting process will also be employed for new runner recruits. This will coincide with checkups to current runners to ensure a level of reliability and commitment.
  • There will also be updated guidelines on how pug runners deal with PUG issues. What this entails is a better defined structure and roles for players participating in the games.

Ultimately, the goal is to ensure runners can make changes in the moment to fix things, while having oversight from other PUG runners and league administrators for bigger and more persistent cases. This is to bring this more in line with how the league is operated. Pickup games will be on standby until we fully implement these changes.


Other Cases


PoliteTim - The following player was muted for one day for spamming in the general text channel and refused to stop when approached by a league administrator.

Not all chat mutes or PUG bans issued in our Discord may be issued appropriately. We acknowledge that. If this applies to you, please contact a head league administrator or post in our help channel in our Discord.


Open, constructive dialogues about criticism of our league is good. RGL is a league that has roots and foundations for constantly changing, evolving, and never settling -- which is an aspect that makes RGL what it is today. It would be presumptuous to say that any league, including RGL, is perfect, because it is not. If there are concerns regarding certain areas of the league, whether it be how the text channels or PUGs are running, we will look into those as to the best of our ability. If you have specific complaints or feedback, please do not hesitate to contact a division admin or post in our #help-and-feedback channel using the " ?feedback" command. We just ask that you are constructive, critical, and patient with our volunteer staff that are doing their best given the time that they have.