CD Projekt RED have been pretty vocal when it comes to piracy, and even went a step further recently, utilising lawyers to contact individuals they alleged had acquired a copy of The Witcher 2 illegally, and asking for monetary restitution.
The idea, they argued, was to continue to avoid using DRM in favour of a better play experience, but that as developers, they still needed to maintain some sense of income while also combating piracy in some form - a topic they've been very passionate about since forming as a premier game developer. Targeting individuals who'd broken the law then, seemed like a good idea.
The community, however, did not see it this way and voiced concerns over the potential for false accusations given the large number of ways an individual could acquire a copy of the game without paying.
Putting community ahead of even their own concerns, CD Projekt RED's Marcin Iwinski has issued an open letter to gamers and CDPR fans alike, assuring they put the fans first.
In early December, an article was published about a law firm acting on behalf of CD Projekt RED, contacting individuals who had downloaded The Witcher 2 illegally and seeking financial compensation for copyright infringement. The news about our decision to combat piracy directly, instead of with DRM, spread quickly and with it came a number of concerns from the community. Repeatedly, gamers just like you have said that our methods might wrongly accuse people who have never violated our copyright and expressed serious concern about our actions.
Being part of a community is a give-and-take process. We only succeed because you have faith in us, and we have worked hard over the years to build up that trust. We were sorry to see that many gamers felt that our actions didn't respect the faith that they have put into CD Projekt RED. Our fans always have been and remain our greatest concern, and we pride ourselves on the fact that you all know that we listen to you and take your opinions to heart. While we are confident that no one who legally owns one of our games has been required to compensate us for copyright infringement, we value our fans, our supporters, and our community too highly to take the chance that we might ever falsely accuse even one individual.
So we've decided that we will immediately cease identifying and contacting pirates.
Let's make this clear: we don't support piracy. It hurts us, the developers. It hurts the industry as a whole. Though we are staunch opponents of DRM because we don't believe it has any effect on reducing piracy, we still do not condone copying games illegally. We're doing our part to keep our relationship with you, our gaming audience, a positive one. We've heard your concerns, listened to your voices, and we're responding to them. But you need to help us and do your part: don't be indifferent to piracy. If you see a friend playing an illegal copy of a game--any game--tell your friend that they're undermining the possible success of the developer who created the very game that they are enjoying. Unless you support the developers who make the games you play, unless you pay for those games, we won't be able to produce new excellent titles for you.
Keep on playing,
CD Projekt RED
We decided to run the whole letter in its entirety for you to read, instead of shortening it, because it's pretty cool that a developer would put community and fans ahead of their own stance for something as red hot a topic as piracy.