EVE Online is a game where big headlines, word record-breaking player-counts, and political schemes are the norm. This is also a game where a team of trusted players work closely with the developers to improve the experience for everyone. It’s an important position to hold and one that you can only obtain by being elected by your fellow players, much like running for a government position.
CCP released a dev blog this morning announcing that one of their most productive and respected members, Brisc Rubal, has been permanently banned for breaching a non-disclosure-agreement. You may remember Brisc from a previous article where he was a key player in the eviction of Hard Knocks. CCP’s official wording on the matter is as follows:
Brisc Rubal has been found to be sharing confidential information with a member of his alliance that was later used by another alliance [The Initiative] member to conduct illicit in-game transactions. As a result, the following actions have been taken:
- Brisc Rubal has been removed from his role as a CSM 13 representative effective immediately and will not be able to run in any future CSM elections.
- All his in-game accounts have been permanently banned from the game.
- Two other players involved in this incident have received a one-year ban.
- All the illicit assets and ISK gained from this incident have been confiscated.
Since the dev blog, I have heard that the other two players mentioned are known as Darkshines and – muddying the waters further – Pando a second lynchpin in the Hard Knocks eviction and an Initiative Fleet Commander. CCP certainly have sufficient evidence to put these plans into motion, but the community is yet to see what really went down behind closed doors.
The CSM is built on trust and we expect a high level of confidentiality from each member at all times. This requirement is imperative for a few reasons. Firstly, to ensure uninterrupted, close collaboration as we work together on setting up EVE Online for the best possible future. Secondly, to not have our players worry that information shared with the CSM is misappropriated and that the non-disclosure agreement is respected. Lastly, to provide all council members with a safe environment where they can freely discuss all the game-related matters without the risk of details being passed on outside the closed circle.
Obviously, Reddit and related social media have been up in arms about the event. Such a high-profile data breach doesn’t go unnoticed and the Eve community has already been the first to start making connections to Brisc’s “real-life” career. In a game that’s larger-than-life in many ways, it does beg the question “should this breach affect how he is trusted as a person in general?” What I will say about this is that people should exercise caution and remember the human behind the screen.
Regardless, the investigation is one that is ongoing and Brisc’s stance here is: “I have never to my knowledge leaked any NDA material, any information that any CCP dev has shared in confidence to any of the CSM, to any other players.” He is adamant that he is innocent in this matter. “It’s frustrating that I was the one to have to go through this but hopefully we can shine some light here,” Brisc says, “the damage to my reputation has been considerable.”
Speaking on the Talking in Stations livestream, Brisc mentioned that he has not yet received direct word from CCP. “I’ve had no chance to explain whatever they think they see that looks damning. All this information was out there in the public domain before I knew about it.” “I hope I get the chance to talk to [CCP] to resolve this,” he says. The full interview can be found on Soundcloud.
Further action by CCP is yet to be seen, although the remaining CSM members have started drafting a statement to be released this week regarding the event in a hope to soothe the speculation going forwards. It has also been confirmed that being close to the new election season, this year will finish with just nine on the Council. They have also made clear that further measures will be put in place to help ensure that this does not happen again any time soon:
We would like to take the opportunity to thank CSM 13 for their transparency and their respect for the council as an institution, which was demonstrated by their coming together to condemn this kind of
behaviorand report it to CCP.
Some additional steps to help prevent similar conduct in future will be implemented. Starting from the next summit, we will impose a rule that prohibits electronics during CSM sessions and will take extra time to educate everyone about confidentiality, insider trading and general do’s and don’ts when it comes to operating under NDA.
It’s clear that this is a developing story, one that is difficult to make any clear statements on until definite facts are released. Until then, we can only speculate. Brisc categorically denies having knowingly breached terms of the NDA, but without contact from CCP it’s his word against theirs.