A courier is supposed to be a trusty battlefield companion, but one Dota 2 pro has paid a steep price for giving it a racist name.
South American Dota 2 team Infamous received a penalty in the qualifiers for The International 2022 for using a Name Tag item to apply a racial epithet name onto a courier. As a result of Leonardo “Leostyle-” Sifuentes’s poor name choice, Infamous completely lost out on pre-game selections for the TI11 South American qualifiers finals. While not the only factor in the outcome, it likely played a role in Hokori’s 3-0 victory. The move could cost Infamous a trip to the richest Dota 2 tournament of the year.
The racist name was first noticed by tournament staff at the regional qualifiers for The International 2022. It belongs to Leostyle-, the team’s mid laner. The courier is usually just named Mok and its appearance is based on a mandrill monkey. However, Leostyle used a custom nametag to add a racist epithet to its title. Anyone who clicked on it in-game would be able to see it, though Valve’s stock word filter still censors slurs in custom name tags.
Racist courier may have lead to Infamous missing direct TI11 qualification
After losing out on pre-game selections as punishment for the racist courier, Infamous would up losing to Hokori 3-0 in the grand final.
The punishment comes at a unique time in the Dota 2 esports scene. Unlike previous The Internationals, PGL has full control over the qualifiers and group stage this year. That means bringing in third-party sponsors to fund the event who won’t want their name attached to events where egregiously racist language is normalized. Even if Valve was still in charge, it’s highly likely that Leostyle- would still be reprimanded.
Instead of a dressing down or heavy fine, Leostyle-’s team Infamous bore the brunt of the punishment. Hokori was allowed to choose both pick order and side for each match of the qualifier grand final. Hokori opted for dire and first-phase combo pick every match. Each game was relatively close, so the lack of pre-game choices may have titled the odds in Hokori’s favor. Infamous still has a chance to attend The International 2022 through the last chance qualifier.