The following reflects my personal opinion, not the one of ETF2L or any of its staffmembers:
I have been struggling with banning these two players up until fairly close to when we published the post. I am aware that it seems arbitrary to ban these two players for something that happened on twitter.
For me, what really pushed me over the edge is that not only did they not apologise, pred kept taking the piss on the previous thread. Degu, while posting a statement, also did not show a hint of remorse for his actions.
For the people thinking degu "only posted a picture": he also liked pred's tweet, showing that he did not only post a meme, he also openly supported the racist insult of his friend (acquaintance?). He made a conscious decision when he did both of those things.
Degu's ban is 2 months. One of which is the off-season. So we are effectively banning him from the league for one month, aka 3-4 weeks of ETF2L gameplay. He has been dropped by his Highlander team "Strong Opinions" before we even made our decision.
Pred's ban is not even 5 months long. I do not understand how some people think he is banned for 12 months (seriously, he is banned "until the end of the year" and it is august), which basically means: you are not allowed to play Season 31.
Pred has been labelled as a "leader" in "the bin"s roster. As such, although he is not actively playing most of the matches, he has the power to schedule matches, accept or deny mercs (for our NA friends: ringers), request demos.... etc. The team that gives a man like him these kind of powers cannot complain if they are held accountable for his actions. Of course I am aware that there are people on the team who do not support the way he behaved, but we also didn't scratch 100% of the earnings. From what I understand at least muuki (a teammate), if not others, still do not see how any of this warrants an action from our side.
Is this treatment harsh? Yeah. Have we not treated similar or related cases like this in the past? Likely. We do not deny that this case is a matter of setting a precedence. Sometimes it takes an additional shove to second-guess yourself. However, just because we made mistakes in the past, it doesn't mean we should keep doing them in the future. And it's not like we have deleted the two players forever: they have a chance to redeem themselves after 2 and 4 months.
The goal has to be to learn from our past mistakes. And this case, for numerous reasons, marks a change in the way we are looking at these behaviors.