Flashpoint reportedly withholds $165,000 licensing payment from the CSPPA

Flashpoint claims it will withhold the payment until their grievances with the CSPPA are addressed.

Image via Flashpoint

Flashpoint, a Counter-Strike: Global Offensive tournament series owned by B-Site, is reportedly holding a $165,000 payment which is owed to the Counter-Strike Professional Players Association (CSPPA) for the rights to use the intellectual property and images of their players.

According to a letter obtained by DBTLTAP, Flashpoint intends to withhold the payment until the CSPPA addresses a number of their complaints.

Flashpoint’s allegations against the CSPPA

Flashpoint brought up four primary compaints about the CSPPA’s conduct.

  1. The CSPPA were allegedly unresponsive to requests to sign paperwork to test the product of a sponsor, causing the loss of the sponsorship.

    Flashpoint claimed it “spent significant time and energy working with this prospective sponsor and convincing them to ship test monitors to the players for free. Your failure to tell us whether you would or would not cooperate with this offer significantly delayed and damaged these sponsorship negotiations.”
  2. The CSPPA was allegedly unresponsive when Flashpoint attempted to create fining procedures, which in turn disrupted tournament operations.

    According to Flashpoint, the CSPPA “refused to participate in any reasonable discussions regarding the Flashpoint rules, specifically those surrounding Flashpoint’s fine procedures.” As a result, Flashpoint had no mechanism to ensure players comply with the rules.
  3. The CSPPA allegedly failed to create an independent, transparent, third-party ranking system which it agreed to create.

    Flashpoint claimed that this during the negotiations, the CSPPA had agreed to create a new ranking system which would lead to less player burnout. According to the letter, however, “it appears the CSPPA has done nothing whatsoever to bring this ranking system into fruition. This is damage for the entire CS:GO ecosystem, but especially for the players, who are left with no reliable ranking method other than a system that encourages player burnout.”
  4. The CSPPA allegedly maintained conflicts of interest, with its core leadership acting as player agents.

    Flashpoint pointed specifically to the situation surrounding the sale of Heroic’s roster to FunPlus from earlier in 2020. According to Flashpoint, “the players later disregarded [the agreement with funplus] by making new, severely above-market salary demands. These new demands were, apparently, based on advice from your leadership.” They also accused CSPPA as being a key reason for those negotiations later collapsing.

Flashpoint argued these complaints show the CSPPA breached of the agreement, and that those breaches must be resolved before payment can be issued. 

The CSPPA’s initial response

The CSPPA published a response to the accusations on Wednesday, in which it confirmed that Flashpoint is indeed withholding the payment and denied any allegations of wrong doing. According to the CSPPA, regardless of how true those accusations are, Flashpoint is legally required to pay the sum, since the payment is owed soley on the basis of the licensing agreement between Flashpoint and the CSPPA.

“I can confirm that Flashpoint has failed to honor its obligation to make a payment of USD $165,000 under a Danish law license agreement between Flashpoint and CSPPA dated March, 6 2020,” said Martin Pedersen, Danish legal counsel to the CSPPA. “I further confirm that the baseless allegations made by Flashpoint against CSPPA are completely unrelated to and in no way relieves Flashpoint from its obligation to make the agreed Payment when due. ”

https://twitter.com/CSPPAgg/status/1278375817333129216/photo/1

The CSPPA promised it will release a full statement on Thursday, addressing each allegation in detail.