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The 2019 Sage Advice Compendium has been released. Previously, the SAC has indicated that Jeremy Crawford's tweets were considered to be official rulings. Is this still true?

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No, official rulings now come only from the published Sage Advice Compendium

Previously, the Sage Advice Compendium has said this concerning the sources of official rulings:

Official rulings on how to interpret unclear rules are made in Sage Advice. The public statements of the D&D team, or anyone else at Wizards of the Coast, are not official rulings; they are advice. One exception: the game’s rules manager, Jeremy Crawford (@JeremyECrawford), can make official rulings and usually does so in Sage Advice and on Twitter.

However, the most recent version has changed this subtly but significantly to say:

Official rulings on how to interpret rules are made here in the Sage Advice Compendium by the game’s lead rules designer, Jeremy Crawford (@JeremyECrawford on Twitter). The public statements of the D&D team, or anyone else at Wizards of the Coast, are not official rulings; they are advice. Jeremy Crawford’s tweets are often a preview of rulings that will appear here.

This is saying that no longer are the tweets of any of the WotC staff considered official, including Crawford. Tweets are now "advice" and/or "preview [s] of [official] rulings". Instead, official rulings are now only found in the published Sage Advice Compendium.

JC has confirmed this change, ironically, on Twitter1:

As of the January edition of the Sage Advice Compendium PDF, my tweets aren't official rulings. I don't want people having to sift through my tweets for official rules calls.

My tweets will preview official rulings in the compendium. And remember, the DM has the final say.

This of course implies that even past tweets are no longer considered official. Presumably, Crawford has moved all the old tweets he wants to be considered official to the document (many new rulings were added in the update).

So, be aware that using a tweet means using a rough(er) form of ruling that might be changed or reversed later.

Using rulings hasn't changed

Of course nothing has changed regarding how these official rulings are supposed to be used:

A Dungeon Master adjudicates the game and determines whether to use an official ruling in play. The DM always has the final say on rules questions.

And, of course, it is always worth noting that Crawford's rulings, whether official or not, are not RAW.

As always, the best ruling to use at your table is the one that results in the most fun and enjoyment no matter what source it comes from (official or not).


1 - Thanks @DavidCoffron for spotting this!

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  • \$\begingroup\$ so I'm assuming going forward then, we should link directly to the Sage Advice compendium when relevant and avoid linking to tweets (unless the "ruling" hasn't made it to SA just yet)? \$\endgroup\$ – G. Moylan Jan 30 at 22:25
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    \$\begingroup\$ @G.Moylan Or skip sage advice compendium and use your own logic. It's just an official ruling and not errata :) But yeah, the compendium is your source, not twitter. \$\endgroup\$ – NautArch Jan 30 at 22:35
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    \$\begingroup\$ Joking aside, this is a great change. He’s exactly right about what’s wrong with delivering rules via Twitter or other social media like forum posts—it makes it impossible to find and be confident you’ve found it all. \$\endgroup\$ – KRyan Jan 31 at 16:52
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    \$\begingroup\$ I think it's still fine to reference Crawford's tweets as "here are Crawford's thoughts", but in general most answers shouldn't rely on such a tweet alone to justify its point. \$\endgroup\$ – V2Blast Jan 31 at 22:17
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    \$\begingroup\$ Crawford again clarifies his position here \$\endgroup\$ – David Coffron Mar 17 at 21:25
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They should not be, based on Crawford's own words

In January of 2016, Jeremy Crawford pointed out that sometimes when he makes a response via a Tweet, he doesn't get it quite right. {Bolding mine, for emphasis}.

TAKING A SECOND LOOK AT A RULING

I’m constantly revisiting the rules of the game. As a DM, I use them in the games I run. As a designer and editor, I refer to them every week to ensure that future D&D books are on course. As the Sage, I consider them from different angles when new questions arrive in my inbox and on Twitter. This sometimes leads me to reconsider a ruling I’ve made.

In this installment of Sage Advice, there’s an example of me revisiting a ruling. On Twitter, I recently gave a different explanation for how barkskin works and, by extension, how shields work. What I said was based on the game’s text, but the text is sometimes inconsistent on how shields are treated. In my official ruling here in Sage Advice, I’ve decided to counter what I said on Twitter about barkskin and shields to go with a simpler explanation—one that is also supported by the text and that more closely aligns with our design intent.

In the Sage Advice Compendium below, I’ve also changed my ruling on the Savage Attacker feat, which I originally addressed in November 2015. The original ruling was simply off-baseI read the feat too fast—so I’ve fixed it.

Based on what Crawford describes in that post, it makes more sense to refer to the official rulings in the Sage Advice Compendium, when referring to official rulings, since that has given Crawford, and any other members of the team, enough time to digest and revise the issue at hand in a more coherent form. Tweets suffer from a variety of shortcomings in this regard in the interest of brevity.

Jeremy Crawford has (finally) acknowledged that using tweets as a reference, now that he's four years into using that medium to answer rules questions, has its shortcomings.

Yes, I decided I don't want people feeling they need to dig through my tweets for official answers.

Consistent with the above points is this guidance from the 2019 Sage Advice Compendium:

Jeremy Crawford’s tweets are often a preview of rulings that will appear here.

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