South Korea has some major influence over the esports community with many highly successful players over a wide span of titles. The competitive landscape of esports must be maintained with integrity as South Korea had many problems with players using hacks and ELO boosting, which is basically a way to increase their in-game “rank” by using various means.
South Korea isn’t the only place plagued by this, but the government is looking to control the problem of unfair competition in the region. Korea introduced a new law that would fine hack distributors with a $50K fine or 5 years in jail. Now, they’re going after account boosting.
A report on ThisIsGame says that an amendment has been created that would allow penalties of a fine or jail time for players that are found to be boosting accounts for cash. ELO boosting is commonly allowing a skilled player to take over an account and raise the rank. The amendment to the Law On Game Business Development bill states that anything that has do with “disturbing the normal process of games” could be jail time up to 2 years or up to $18K in fines:
“Seeking profit in a fashion that the game business did not provide or sanction, by earning points or achievements so that it disturbs the normal process of games, as well as the promotion/offering of such activities”
The bill will attempt to stop boosting farms and enable fair competition that have ranking systems like League of Legends and Overwatch, among other games. Assemblyman Lee Dong-seop:
“This bill, if passed, will help create a healthy game ecosystem. If the bill passes then all those ads for boosting services on the major portal sites will also be illegal.” The extension of the country’s laws, which recently criminalized hacking and hack distribution in competitive gaming, is just another frontier in South Korea’s attempts to create a fair competitive gaming culture in their country.
The amendment still must go through the Culture, Sports, and Tourism Committee and the Legislation and Judiciary Committee before finally getting to the National Assembly on December 30th.
Riot Games Korea has responded positively saying that “boosters are already suppressed within League of Legends, but this law will help us catch them even better once it’s passed.”
Many players have already been suspended for account boosting including Team Impulse’s XiaoWeiXiao and Dallas Fuel’s OGE.