Our list of off-topic or prohibited questions does not include:

"Can you send me, or direct me to, a free copy of a game I would like?"

Is it possible to have this sort of thing added, so that we can close these questions as off-topic per our On/Off Topic guidance? This is distinct from inquiries about free or "starter set" RPGs; I'm talking about requests for passing around copyrighted material.

  • \$\begingroup\$ I support prohibiting questions about "How to steal copyrighted material" (which could prose a legal issue for stackexchange.com), but questions about copies of free material or questions about "Where can I buy" e.g. something (RPG-related) out of print should stay on topic imho. \$\endgroup\$
    – Stephen
    Jan 29 '12 at 17:44

To me, questions about locating hard to find material should be on topic for the site.

Answers as to how to find such material should not give directions as to how to obtain grey or black market copies of such material.

Where can I find a copy of "The Dragon, Issue 1"

Would be (probably, I'm only guessing it's hard to find) on topic.

Answers should fall into categories, like: "occasionally available on sites like ebay", "in PDF form on the (insert real CDROM here) that was released with (insert product here)", "for free on the WotC website if you purchase a DDI subscription (I wish...)"

And answers should not include: "here's a megaupload link", "in this torrent" ect...


I would say that updating the FAQ item about what kind of questions not to ask indicating that questions download links to pirated IP don't belong here, would be fine, if we were getting such questions on a regular enough basis.

And so to answer the question, given that we don't get many such questions, and given that there is (in the question that prompted this discussion) some evidence that the original poster believed that the material in question may have been free to distribute, I don't see the need for a FAQ update.

  • \$\begingroup\$ My take on the question that prompted this, is that with some clarification indicating that it's looking for legal download links, it would be an on topic question, and both Jadasc's and Stephen's comments become useful answers to the question. \$\endgroup\$ Jan 30 '12 at 11:44

I don't know we need that spelled out. In this case, the poster seems to have believed in good faith that GOO had released it for free, as they did that with their other properties when they went under.

  • \$\begingroup\$ I still don't know what he means by that. The rights to all their properties were either sold to White Wolf/CCP or reverted to their authors or licensors. There was a big commotion on RPG.Net recently when it was discovered that GoO PDFs were still being sold on DriveThru, when all monies from those properties should have gone to pay off the debts of the bankrupt company. Jenna Moran still hasn't gotten the copies of 2e Nobilis that were produced and went AWOL. If there's a citation that shows they were put up for free, I'd love to see it. \$\endgroup\$
    – Jadasc
    Jan 30 '12 at 1:07
  • \$\begingroup\$ OP said he had some, ask him. \$\endgroup\$
    – mxyzplk
    Jan 30 '12 at 2:40
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ I will note that I personally remember some period where TriStat and stuff like that were up on the usual stores for $0 when they went under; not sure about GoT. \$\endgroup\$
    – mxyzplk
    Jan 30 '12 at 12:29

Questions asking the users to simply find a link should be ruled off topic, whether for copyrighted or non-copyrighted material. I think the problem with this question is not that it was asking for copyrighted material, but it was asking for something that requires no RPG expertise and doesn't exactly encourage good quality on the site.

  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ Not sure I agree with that, there's the previous questions on finding that podcast that went missing etc. If it's hard to find and RPG related, seems like it's on topic. \$\endgroup\$
    – mxyzplk
    Jan 30 '12 at 2:41

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