EVE Online developer CCP Games issued a ban against Brian Schoeneman earlier this month for breach of contract. Schoeneman is a real-world politician and was elected to office on EVE's in-game advisory council in part due to his political experience outside of the game.
CCP Games has since issued a retraction after investigating claims that Schoeneman (known in-game as "Brisc Rubal") violated the Council of Stellar Management (CSM)'s elaborate non-disclosure agreement by sharing confidential information with other players. CCP stated in their apology that "it's now clear that our initial actions were based on unsubstantiated assumptions," and they will be "returning any confiscated assets and providing rectification as appropriate," for Schoeneman and the two other players most affected by the investigation.
Both Schoeneman and CCP issued a joint statement to Polygon:
"We made a mistake," wrote George Kelion, senior manager of communications at CCP Games, in a blog post last week. "We offer our formal apologies. First, to Brisc Rubal and the two other players involved, both for making the allegations and for the disturbance and stress caused by the way in which we handled this situation. Second, for not collaborating with due care with the members of CSM 13, who have acted responsibly throughout. Lastly, we owe our sincere apology to the Eve community for this error. We take full responsibility for any confusion and mistrust caused by our initial assessment of the situation."
A joint statement issued by both CCP and Schoeneman, sent this week to Polygon, makes it clear that both parties are eager to move on.
"CCP Games apologizes to all involved parties and retracts the allegations," CCP said in the statement. "All information provided leading to the initial action declaring wrongdoing was unsubstantiated. CCP Games will be providing reparations, including the reinstatement of Schoeneman's Brisc Rubal game accounts in Eve Online and rescinding the one-year bans placed upon the other two players.
"Brian Schoeneman has accepted CCP Games' apology," the joint statement continues. "Schoeneman understands that while CCP's response was in error, it was not conducted with prejudice or intent to harm, and Schoeneman holds no ill-will or residual acrimony against CCP."
Despite being cleared of any wrongdoing, Schoeneman will not be returning to finish out his term on the Council of Stellar Management.