A Call for Accountability and Improvement
As stakeholders within the Scottish Esports industry and proud members of the Scottish gaming community, we feel compelled to address the ongoing challenges and conduct of Esports Scotland, which have come to light through recent reports from ENUK, UKCS, public Tweets and the private conversations that have been held regarding their conduct.
Let us be clear: Esports Scotland and James Hood irrefutably do not represent Scotland, our standards, ambition, culture, business practices, talent or our community.
We, the undersigned stakeholders, stand united against incompetence and actions that tarnish the reputation of the Scottish Esports industry. Esports Scotland does not represent us, and we refuse to accept their conduct as reflective of our community's values.
Esports Scotland has been facing persistent challenges, notably in delayed payments dating back to 2018, as highlighted in the ENUK article dated November 3rd, 2023. The issues surrounding payments from SEL5 have brought to light a series of missteps, affecting not only players, but also talent, staff, contractors and the reputation of our nation's esports scene.
Beyond these published issues, there are years of complaints about Esports Scotland and CEO James Hood’s conduct beyond that which has been made public to date. At this time we do not want to share information beyond that which has been journalistically backed and made public by those affected, so will remain focused on that which is public information.
As stakeholders our involvement in Scottish Esports is driven by a commitment to collectively improve the Scottish competitive gaming industry.
As the Scottish Esports Network, we aim to do this by giving opportunities for transparent communication to enable collective growth, to collaborate and improve as an industry. We envision a community that thrives on opportunities and mutual respect, and can stand toe to toe with any major esports nation in the world.
The recent revelations about Esports Scotland's conduct, particularly regarding the delayed payments and the handling of SEL5, do not align with the standards we, as stakeholders, aim to uphold. The reported actions and decisions by Esports Scotland and CEO James Hood do not reflect the ideals we seek for the Scottish competitive gaming community, for fans, competitors, professionals, non-endemic and endemic brands alike.
Following the ENUK articles release in Nov 2023, The Scottish Esports Network hosted a first National Esports forum on Jan 11th 2024. Together, twenty one industry stakeholders shared their concerns in an open discussion, both about Esports Scotland and other challenges we face collectively as an industry - One major talking point being Esports Scotland’s claim of representing the industry, but nobody agreeing.
On Feb 1st 2024, Jon Winkle, Managing Director at Epic.Lan said the following on twitter.
Call to Action:
One of the largest collective concerns is the perception that Esports Scotland represents our industry as a governing body or a representation of our nation and the people behind the scenes making things a reality.
In light of these revelations, and any potential resulting legal actions being taken against Esports Scotland and CEO James Hood, we believe it is crucial for the Scottish Esports community to come together and voice our concerns. Our collective voice can bring about positive change and demand accountability from entities claiming to represent our interests.
Beyond the issues highlighted in the November 3rd, 2023 article from ENUK, in private a wide number of issues have been discussed beyond lacking payments. With complete understanding for those who have chosen not to voice these issues and experiences publically, we believe now is the time to discuss them as much as possible and end the fear of reprisal Esports Scotland has created.
Esports Scotland as a governing body:
It is understood from conversation and a deleted tweet by Esports Scotland that they intend to reform into a governing association.*
We the undersigned do not acknowledge Esports Scotland as a governing body and any association or reformation of the business will likely deem the same results. In 7 years Esports Scotland with CEO James Hood at the helm has failed to represent us and will continue to do so.
*UPDATE: Since releasing this statement Esports Scotland reached out to state they do not intend to reform as an association.
Unifying Against Gross Incompetence:
We are in the process of gathering signatures from stakeholders across the industry who have been impacted by Esports Scotland's incompetence. By joining our collective voice, we aim to show that the actions of Esports Scotland are not endorsed by the broader Scottish esports community.
If you share our concerns and desire for improvement, we encourage you to join the conversation. You can express your interest by reaching out to us via DM or email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Together, let us work towards a Scottish esports industry that thrives on integrity, professionalism, and mutual respect. We believe in the potential for positive change, and it starts with our collective commitment to a better future.
Dale R Murray
Jade Marie-Claire Cavanagh