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TSR TSR3.5 Launches IndieGogo Campaign to "Stop" WotC

The latest in the TSR3 saga, which has gone quiet for a while, is a new IndieGoGo campaign launched to "stop Wizards of the Coast". They cite wrongful bullying of TSR, and refusal to answer requests that WotC show TSR "proof of their claims" (although the campaign page doesn't mention what those claims are). The IndieGoGo campaign was launched yesterday and has so far raised $675 (at the time...

The latest in the TSR3 saga, which has gone quiet for a while, is a new IndieGoGo campaign launched to "stop Wizards of the Coast". They cite wrongful bullying of TSR, and refusal to answer requests that WotC show TSR "proof of their claims" (although the campaign page doesn't mention what those claims are).

The IndieGoGo campaign was launched yesterday and has so far raised $675 (at the time of writing).

The action TSR seeks is a "Trademark Declaratory Judgement of Ownership" which is a court declaration about the status of something in dispute.

TSR has launched a campaign to stop Wizards of the Coast

Become a Champion of TSR and Support TSR’s campaign against Wizards of the Coast!

TSR is taking a stand against Wizards of the Coast (“WOTC”) and its wrongful bullying of TSR, our trademarks, and its public libeling and slander of all those who helped create TSR based Dungeons & Dragons and products.

Wizards of the Coast has continually bullied TSR regarding TSR’s legally owned Trademarks. Wizards of the Coast has refused to answer all of TSR's repeated requests that they show any proof of their claims. Wizards of the Coast has the vast resources behind them and is implying to bring them to bear down on TSR.


The new TSR suffered widespread pushback when it launched, which they blamed on WotC, claiming that they were under a "coordinated assault across various channels being mounted.... by [WotC]" The company announced itself earlier this year, having acquired the TSR trademark after the previous holder accidentally let it lapse. It was run by Ernie Gygax, Justin LaNasa, and Stephen Dinehart. After several weeks of controversy, the company split into two -- Wonderfilled (Stephen Dinehart), and TSR (Ernie Gygax and Justin LaNasa).


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The page also indicates an intention to "fight to have WotC's legacy product disclaimer removed" from older products (that's the disclaimer on the older books available on DMs Guild which indicates that those books are products of their time) by claiming that the disclaimer portrays the creators of those older products as "as supporting those alleged prejudices, stereotypes and bigotry, wrongfully claimed to be part of those products".


TSR will also Fight to Have the WOTC Legacy Disclaimer Removed

TSR is suing WOTC for Trademark Declaratory Judgement of Ownership . TSR will also pursue in the near future having WOTC remove the legacy content disclaimer placed on TSR based Dungeons & Dragons and other products, and retractions of any other libel and slander which alleges that racism and other heinous beliefs are incorporated into those products.

This disclaimer attempts to make a statement of fact argument, and therefore paints all of the writers, editors, artists and consumers of those products as supporting those alleged prejudices, stereotypes and bigotry, wrongfully claimed to be part of those products. This statement by Wizards of the Coast opens the possibility for the producers and players of these "Legacy Products" to face ridicule, and face the labeling as "bigots", "racists", "misogynists", and worse Cyber & Physical Attacks!

Wizards of the Coast legacy content disclaimer.

"We (Wizards) recognize that some of the legacy content available on this website does not reflect the values of the Dungeons & Dragons franchise today. Some older content may reflect ethnic, racial, and gender prejudice that were commonplace in American society at that time. These depictions were wrong then and are wrong today. This content is presented as it was originally created, because to do otherwise would be the same as claiming these prejudices never existed. Dungeons & Dragons teaches that diversity is a strength, and we strive to make our D&D products as welcoming and inclusive as possible. This part of our work will never end".


TSR3's Justin LaNasa spoke about the campaign in a YouTube video.


 

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Sacrosanct

Legend
Based on what they're saying, they seem to really believe that they are the original TSR (or want to present it as if they do). Which is one heck of a delusion.

That's what the exploitation of Ernie is for. As long as they have Ernie, they can say they are part of the original D&D creators (despite Ernie never really creating anything outside of an NPC and a couple of spells).

If Ernie ever comes to his senses, they will have nothing left. They won't be any different than all the rest of us who started back then and have no connection to the original creators. Heck, most of the people who WERE there and have their names on TSR products want nothing to do with these jokers.
 

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Sacrosanct

Legend
It's sure easy to mock these guys, and it's no secret how I feel about them is, but it's sort of low hanging fruit. As much as I myself am guilty of tearing into them, it actually does hurt our hobby. I hobby I love dearly.

So this is serious advice. Not malicious, not sarcastic, not hurtful, but honest to God advise to try to mend rifts and actually [gasp] help Justin.

First is to immediately drop the suit and ask WoTC if they won't ask for damages if you comply immediately with removal of any WotC IP. yeah, that means getting rid of all those TSR logos and changing your business name. You have no way out of this but that. Besides, you've already destroyed TSR's brand image, so no point in holding on to it. Rebrand yourself as an OSR publisher under a different name, stay away from any IP violations and keep your nose clean. I'd suggest staying away from this whole "the woke culture is ruining D&D", but I doubt that would happen.

Get an editor. Seriously, this is super important. Your "in the near future" products are horribly written. I don't say that to be mean, but as constructive criticism. I don't do most of the art I use because I know that's not my strength. No shame in admitting grammar is a weakness. That's what editors are for. Because right now, to the masses, your products come off as super amateur, and that costs a ton of potential sales. Even if I didn't know who you were and didn't know all of this backstory, if I saw a game I might buy like Rot Hole Dungeon, and saw how it was presented, I wouldn't buy it, nor anything else from you because of the image is sends.

Ernie needs to get away as fast as he can. Stay away from people like Benoist and people who fail to deliver on their products they are working on with you. Get away from LaNasa for two reasons: 1. the aforementioned horrible presentation of the products, because your name is on that box and the amateurism is thus associated with you, and 2. He's only using you for sales. I am sure he doesn't care about you one whit past what you can monetize for him. Prior to your partnership with him, you had a reputation as a likeable guy who loved to game old school D&D and was friendly to everyone. Now? With each passing day that LaNasa continues to pull this crap, your reputation suffers as well by association. I have the impression that your legacy is extremely important to you. Take a look at what's happened to it. There are A LOT of publishers out there who have actually created products (professional products) who would be willing to work with you and help achieve your goals of getting your ideas published. Work with professionals, and you'll find better success. You don't have to go far. Your own brother has put out products, so ask him. If everyone truly is welcome at your table, then show it. Don't say it, and then regurgitate talking points from people like LaNasa that completely counter it.
 


Froderik

Explorer
As long as they have Ernie, they can say they are part of the original D&D creators (despite Ernie never really creating anything outside of an NPC and a couple of spells).

You're selling Ernie short. According to wikipedia he co-authored Dungeon Geomorphs, Set Two: Caves & Caverns with his father.

(Edit: I thought my comment was funny. But Tenkar's much more interesting news in the next comment totally drowned it out. Doh!)
 
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