Most EVE Players who pay any attention to social media would be aware of the Brisc Rubal saga.
On April 8th (2019), CCP Dopamine published a since removed Dev-blog, announcing Brisc had been removed from CSM 13 and had all of his accounts permanently banned from the game after being found to have shared confidential information. Two members of his Alliance were also given one-year bans.
CCP Dopamine went on to say it was the CSM itself who alerted them to Brisc’s lack of integrity, that CCP valued the CSM, and that they would put extra procedures in place to reduce the chance of this happening again.
I did not know Brisc Rubal from a bar of soap – but I did not take what CCP had said on face value. I’ve wondered previously about the quality of their investigations and the level of natural justice in some of their public banning’s.
So, I took the time to read what was being written on the blogs, forums, social media and gaming sites. The general impression I got – right or wrong, was that Brisc was more actively engaged with the EVE community than some of the other CSM members, and that there was some genuine surprise – and even doubt – about the situation.
There were also plenty of detractors – many gleeful about the situation – but none seemed to be saying anything compelling.
Then Brisc Rubal spoke up. He said he had not been aware of the accusation until CCP had published their Dev-blog, that they had not spoken to him as part of their investigation, that he denied it, and that he was waiting for someone at CCP to respond to his urgent queries.
It is seemingly becoming a lost art – but I still find it possible to put myself in the shoes of others. I know how I would feel if I was suddenly banned from EVE after many years of investment – in time, money and social interaction, possibly unfairly, without any opportunity to defend myself.
On April 17th (2019), CCP, via their communications team, released a new Dev-blog. This stated that subsequent to the banning they had held “further” discussions with the affected parties, and that they would be conducting an internal review to substantiate the evidence available and to evaluate their handling of the situation.
The court of public opinion seemed to have made their own conclusions by this point – but the conciliatory tone of the Dev-blog suggested at CCP feeling the situation might not have been as black and white as they had first alleged.
Last, on April 26th, CCP Grendel announced in a Dev-blog that CCP had too hastily acted upon unsubstantiated assumptions, and that their initial findings and actions were incorrect. None of the players punished had breached the rules as suggested.
CCP apologised, restored the accounts and assets of the three impacted players, and would provide appropriate rectification. That was to be their final statement on the event.
All’s well that ends well.
But of course, it is not. Understandably Brisc subsequently resigned from the CSM, and opinions and reactions from the EVE player and once were player base have flown thick and fast. Another (to some extent) damaging own goal by CCP.
Up until now I had not planned to remark on it. There was already more than enough thoughts and comments available online, but then I read an article on EVENews24 by Seraph IX Basarab.
I will paraphrase using selective quotes.
“When Brisc Rubal was removed from the CSM and banned from Eve I avoided rushing to judgement”
“CCP back tracked its claim regarding Brisc and the two other players in question and unbanned them all completely”
“Brisc has resigned as CSM as a result.”
“Here is another possibility”
“Maybe Brisc and company did knowingly take advantage of privileged knowledge”
“Maybe CCP had enough evidence to ban them by CCP standards. Question is would they have enough evidence to stand up in a real life court of law?”
“so CCP officially forgives/unbans Brisc while the deal is made that he resigns as CSM”
“there’s really not much else to address on the matter specifically”
Lots of maybes, but a bucket of defamation thrown anyway.
Conspiracy theory, fake news, insightful truth? Who knows – but it is a noteworthy example of what I found wrapped up around the situation Brisc found themselves in. A diverse and complex narrative, different agendas, and a community disinclined to stop and put themselves in the shoes of others. Equal measure of fascinating and disheartening.