For those of you who do not already know or are not in the loop when it comes to the Counter Strike: Global Offensive scene, I will briefly explain how CS:GO skins and betting works. As players play the game, they earn case drops. When these case drops are opened it grants the player a random skin for their weapon. Opening these cases costs real money to pay for a key, typically around three US dollars. Once the player obtains the random skin, they are then able to trade that skin with other players around the world on the Steam Market. Over the past few years, betting sites have been created that allow users to bet their skins against match outcomes or use them in online jackpot mini-games, ergo skin gambling. Valve has recently issued cease and desist letters to twenty-three CS:GO skin betting websites that have been improperly using their Steam API and Steam subscriber accounts. Valve is asking that all parties cease and desist further use of their accounts for commercial purposes within ten days and if not they will terminate the accounts.
This, of course, is going to leave the CS:GO skin betting community in a hole and the industry at a huge loss of revenue. Some of these sites, as many may already know, generated large sums of money and some CS:GO professional teams, which will not be named, own or sponsor these sites and channeled the revenue to pay their players’ salaries. This is due to the fact that there just is not enough money being made in esports alone to compensate all the professional players justly yet. Sure, this may not affect big names such as Fnatic and Na’Vi; however, it is an issue that causes smaller teams to suffer financially.
Understandably, Valve is trying to clean up their community and eliminate all the bad exposure they have been getting in regards to the skin gambling and unethical behavior that followed it. Nonetheless, in the near future there needs to be a great deal of thought put towards supplementing the loss of the gambling sites revenue streams that was aiding teams financially.
Whether it is Valve that needs to step up and begin to support teams directly or it is team owners that need to brainstorm new ways to monetise, this money is going to have to come from somewhere eventually. Thankfully, esports and its giant viewer base has generated enough interest from high-wealth investors as of late, suggesting that there are big plans in the works aiming to generate more revenue streams for teams.
Written by Dylan Didiano
Edited by Williaf
Featured Image provided by GameZone
Video provided by iCrazyTeddy2