ESIC Shares Behind The Scenes CS:GO Doping Control Video, Reveals Surprising Truth
The Esports Integrity Coalition (ESIC) shared their experience in the fight against doping, and what their results reveal may be surprising. According to Integrity Commissioner Ian Smith, player doping in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive matches is less prevalent than previously they suspected.
The ESIC conducts expensive drug screening for multiple major esports tournaments including ESL and IEM events. To date, the coalition has tested more than 260 players, only one of which failed.
In addition to testing, the coalition has surveyed around 400 players, said Smith, and found the responses did not support concerns over doping in the highest levels of CS:GO.
The coalition also collects exemption applications from all teams on behalf of players who take drugs for therapeutic use. The drugs they are screening for include Adderall, Ritalin, and any drug used to treat Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder. Smith reports the number of exemption applications he receives is far below the national prescription average in North America.
Smith's personal assessment is that top-tier esports is largely doping-free. For Smith to prove his opinion, additional expensive testing would have to become standard practice among major tournament operators, but the coalition's results may prove such an expense is unnecessary.
ESL is currently the only esports tournament operator footing the bill for ESIC drug testing and surveys. Smith points out that their findings are beneficial to the entire industry, which he says is a raw deal for ESL. Smith says the organization now spends more than $40,000 per year to drug test players.