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Overwatch League names-and-shames rulebreakers with new 'player discipline tracker'

The Overwatch League will shine a brighter light on its rulebreakers in 2019 with a "player discipline tracker" that will keep a running record of players who violate the league's code of conduct, and the penalties they incur. And even though the tracker just went live today, there are already seven players on it.

"As players join the Overwatch League, the league office conducts a full review of their conduct and, where appropriate, takes disciplinary action. While the league reviews each case on its own, key factors informing the level of discipline include both the severity and recency of the actions under review," the league wrote. "During the season, the league office will continue to evaluate infractions and take action as needed." 

As that statement suggests, activity that occurred prior to joining the Overwatch League can still lead to sanctions, as some of the players on the list, including Shilong "Krystal" Cai (one game for account boosting) and Kelsey "Colourhex" Birse (two games for account boosting), weren't playing in the league when the infractions took place. However, "players who have previously served penalties while playing in Contenders are generally not subject to further discipline upon joining the Overwatch League," the league said. 

The tracker doesn't get into the specifics of individual offenses: Riku "Ripa" Toivanen of the Los Angeles Gladiators, for instance, got a list-leading five games for "throwing matches and toxicity," which sounds like a pretty big deal, but nothing more is said about it. Nor is there any insight into how punishments are determined. But it will be useful for OWL fans who want to stay on top of league happenings—and maybe the risk of being named-and-shamed will help cut down on bad behavior, too. 

The Mayhem, Spark, Charge, and Shock have all issued statements apologizing for (or at least, in the case of the Mayhem, acknowledging) their player's infractions. 

Andy covers the day-to-day happenings in the big, wide world of PC gaming—the stuff we call "news." In his off hours, he wishes he had time to play the 80-hour RPGs and immersive sims he used to love so much.