Riot Games reversed a policy today that prohibited contracted professional League of Legends players who compete in the League of Legends Championship Series (LCS) from live-streaming gameplay from its competitor's titles.
Posting an update to the League of Legends page on Reddit, Riot's director of eSports Whalen Rozelle said the company listened to feedback and, after internally debating the issue, decided to change the LCS team requirements. Under the new regulations, players who are contracted to the LCS cannot accept sponsorship from other companies to promote other titles, but are free to stream content from any game they wish. Rozelle's full statement can be viewed below.
There's been a ton of discussion around our LCS team contracts, which stipulated active LCS players couldn't stream a variety of other games.
First, background on why we did this: there've been instances of other game studios trying to buy access to League fans by using (or trying to use) LCS teams/players to promote their competing games on stream.
The way we chose to deal with this was clearly an overreach. It hit our goal of preventing companies from advertising through LCS players, but it also encroached on pros' ability to have fun and entertain viewers during long Challenger queues — and we realize that's not cool.
After reading all of your comments and having a LOT of internal debate over the last 24 hours, we're going to be changing the LCS team requirement to something that more closely matches our intent. While under contract to the LCS, teams and players can't accept sponsorship from other game companies to promote other titles. Besides that, they are free to stream any games they want.
I'll be hanging around to answer questions if you guys have any. Thanks for helping us make a better decision on this.
Riot Games announced earlier this week that it was imposing a restriction on contracted LCS players from live-streaming video game content from other games, regardless of whether it was sponsored. The original statement and explanation can be read here.