SEA Games: Sibol clears LoL rep of 'stream sniping' allegations during qualifiers

Angela Coloma, ABS-CBN News

Posted at May 11 2022 04:03 PM | Updated as of May 12 2022 12:54 PM

'Whistleblower' claims Sibol unresponsive to their request to be involved in investigation

MANILA -- (UPDATE) National esports team Sibol on Wednesday cleared League of Legends (LoL) representatives West Point Esports (WPE) of "stream sniping allegations" during the Southeast Asian Games qualifiers. 

Stream sniping is watching a stream to monitor an opponent's whereabouts while in-game. 

This means that WPE is cleared to participate in the Vietnam tilt, with the tournament for LoL slated for May 20-22. 

In a statement, Sibol said it had "multiple security protocols" that "would have made cheating during the event impossible or impractical and futile."

For one, it said there was a default 3-minute delay as "organizers were not able to secure a tournament server or account from Riot for the Sibol qualifiers." 

The broadcast director also added a 3-minute delay for the Facebook broadcast -- something which they claimed was "more than enough time to avoid stream sniping." 

Sibol's broadcast and league operations project manager, who was not named, also issued a statement reiterating that the allegations were false. 

"From the number of evidence I mentioned, I'm confident that there was no cheating involved during the Sibol National Team Selection 2022 for League of Legends PC. Before sending this email, I also consulted with Sibol head of league ops, and Sibol director for broadcast, and they all confirmed the evidence I presented," the project manager said. 

Sibol also pointed out that one of the players wanted to stream the match through Facebook, but marshals asked him to turn it off after the draft phase. 

"The marshals also subsequently checked his Facebook profile to check if he indeed livestreamed but the player did not," they added. 

For the project manager, it would still be "impossible" for WPE to get any information about its opponents if the player got around and livestreamed their match. 

"If in case that the player was able to livestream their match, it will still just be the point of view of that player and WPE. It would still be impossible for them to get any information on their opponents," the project manager said. 

After the ruling, Sibol said it will remain vigilant in checking malpractices of Filipino athletes. 

"Should other substantial matters come to light we will not hesitate to act in the interest of protecting the sanctity of Philippine esports," Sibol said. 

Jerem Malig, a content creator from Alpha Esports, earlier called out WPE for stream sniping during his Facebook livestream, with a supposed "whistleblower" coming forward to allege that they also did this during the SEA Games qualifiers. 

After that, members of the LoL community tried to call on Sibol to address the concerns and disqualify WPE. 

Following the incident, Sibol said it would look into the issue. 

WHISTLEBLOWER DECRIES SIBOL 'UNRESPONSIVENESS' 

In comments to Sibol's statement posted on its Facebook page, Malig reiterated that WPE's head coach admitted that they had a watch party of the qualifiers in the Discord app, which Malig said was an admission to stream sniping. 

"Kausap ni Yin (my manager) 'yung head coach. Nagka-watch party sila sa Discord kasama 'yung Singapore coach after paalisin nung moderators 'yung coaches sa SIBOL Discord, WPE Acad pati kalahatan ng mga members sa WPE kasama. Head coach na mismo nung West Point 'yung umamin," Malig said. 

While Sibol did not respond to Malig's comment, it replied to another commentor saying the same thing with: "Hello, may I ask where did they admit this?" 

He also posted the video on his Facebook page. 

 

In separate posts, Malig claimed Sibol failed to coordinate with them after the national esports organization announced it would look into the matter. 

Malig posted screenshots of an e-mail thread between Sibol's manager and George Obusan, Leaguepedia's PCS Regional Lead his Facebook page, claiming that the manager said the matter should be directed to WPE's management. 

"Riot Games took action, League of Legends Philippines took action and banned them. Only you didn't care. We reached out and you only listened to the people who you think is a convenience to you," Malig said in a post at 6:05 p.m. of Wednesday. 

As comments poured in questioning the national team's verdict, Sibol said it stood by its decision, while not responding to Malig. 

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"Please understand that we can only decide fairly upon matters that are under our watch. And we have done so regarding this matter. We stand by our decision," Sibol said, in a comment posted 6:19 p.m.