Co-Chief Excecutive of ESL has reportedly told his staff to avoid discussing Hong Kong
Conflicts.


“All of you might have heard [about] the political discussions and strikes surrounding the situation in Hong Kong, China,” wrote ESL co-CEO and co-founder Ralf Reichert, according to an October 9 Slack message viewed by HKFP. “As a global company being active in many countries around the globe, we naturally do abstain from political discussions and setting the best example by living our values.” “All of you might have heard [about] the political discussions and strikes surrounding the situation in Hong Kong, China,” wrote ESL co-CEO and co-founder Ralf Reichert, according to an October 9 Slack message viewed by HKFP. “As a global company being active in many countries around the globe, we naturally do abstain from political discussions and setting the best example by living our values. Therefore, we would like to suggest to not actively engage in the discussion, especially on social media,” wrote Reichert. ”

ESL is the world’s largest ESports Company. It is responsible for organizing most of the Competitive tournaments throughout the year. In September, ESL announced its partnership with Chinese Streaming Company Huya. Huya is part of the Chinese Mega Giant Company Tencent. Apart from this Huya also purchased US $30 million worth of ESL Shares. ESL wanted to expand its company marketing in China, and it has been quite successful.

HongKongFp asked ESL, if they were concerned about their Chinese market, and whether they respected free speech, a spokesperson replied saying “ESL maintains Social Media policies for staff”.


“Mr. Reichert’s internal message on Slack was a reminder to ESL employees about the general social media policies that have been in place for many years; that we do not use ESL’s brand or platform for personal political statements, and to show respect for colleagues with views different than our own,” the spokesperson said via email. “ESL’s team members are of course free to harbor personal views on private social media accounts.”



If you don’t know why companies are being asked about their connection to China, it is because of the recent outrage against Blizzard. Blizzard banned Hong Kong pro player “Blitzchung” after he said “liberate Hong Kong” on a tournament’s live stream. He was banned by Blizzard and his winnings were cancelled. The World flamed against this decision because they stood with Blitzchung freedom of speech. After a lot of criticism and protests, Blizzard decided to reduce his ban and return his winnings. A few days later, Epic Games and Riot also gave their respected statements on the matter. You can read everything about that in the following articles

Riot warns players and casters to avoid discussing “sensitive issues” during Livestreams
Blizzard will return Blitzchung’s money, the suspension is also reduced.
Protest against Blizzard keeps growing bigger, Epic Games speak.
World Protests After Hearthstone player banned over supporting Hong Kong Protests