OGL and translation





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  1. #1

    OGL and translation

    Hello
    First sorry for my english. I read much better then write.

    I have one question abount OGL and translation of OGL's terms:
    Oficiall publisher translated and publish the core books. Can I use the OGL stuff with that translation?
    For example: In this translation "Smart Hero" become "Madrala". Can I use the term "Madrala"?

 

  • #2
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    Ignore HalWhitewyrm
    I am not a lawyer.

    If I recall correctly, you can use open gaming content in any language, but the OGL MUST be in English for it to be legal. If you want to include a translation in your language, I believe that is allowed, but the OGL that binds and rules the product must be in English.

    Perhaps others with more knowledge on the matter will add their thoughts as well.

  • #3
    OK, i write it not clear.
    I know that the OGLicence must be in English,
    My question is abount open game content (fe. from SRD).
    I know that i can use it as is (in English). But can I use the translation (from official corebook) of fe. skils, feats, class names?
    This way it will be compatybile with "national" core books. But what about translation copyrights?

  • #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Sid
    OK, i write it not clear.
    I know that the OGLicence must be in English,
    My question is abount open game content (fe. from SRD).
    I know that i can use it as is (in English). But can I use the translation (from official corebook) of fe. skils, feats, class names?
    This way it will be compatybile with "national" core books. But what about translation copyrights?
    I'm not a lawyer, but I guess what you're saying is okay. You can use a translation of the SRD (Core rules) as long as you include an English OGL.

    Correct me if I'm wrong, but if the only OGC you were allowed to use was in English, referring to English game mechanics, then you wouldn't be able to have OGC in languages other than English, which is stupid.
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  • #5
    Oh, and your English is very good. Better than I can write in any other language anyway!

  • #6
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    Ignore Mark
    Quote Originally Posted by Sid
    OK, i write it not clear.
    I know that the OGLicence must be in English,
    My question is abount open game content (fe. from SRD).
    I know that i can use it as is (in English). But can I use the translation (from official corebook) of fe. skils, feats, class names?
    This way it will be compatybile with "national" core books. But what about translation copyrights?
    You can only use OGC from the SRD and from books that have released OGC. You CANNOT use any information from ANY "Core Book" no matter whether it is in English or one of the translated books from WotC.

    I believe that you can translate the SRD and use that as OGC (and it might, as the most "natural" translation, resemble material from elsewhere) but you should check with a lawyer.

    I haven't looked deeply (though somewhat, as HalWhitewyrm is aware) into translating and do not know if they have additional terms that are declared as PI or closed content, nor do I know if they have released any translated versions of the SRD. I have conversed with bilingual (sometimes multilingual) people about translations into a handful of other languages and have found that such translation work does not lend itself to being easily done, eften because of the tendancy for the English language to borrow and reshape words from other languages, and for the game designers (back to 1974) to have not only done some borrowing of their own but to completely reassign definitions to words that in their native language would seemingly suit other definitions entirely.

    You might try contacting WotC's legal department but I believe that must be done by posted letters, and not electronically. I should warn you that WotC knows they are under no obligation to assist you in avoiding the legal pitfalls of publishing and are as like as not to ignore any questions as to find a way to simply say "No" to anything you might ask. Given the limits of your English, you should probably only communicate with WotC legal through your own (bilingual) legal counsel to avoid giving them the wrong understanding of what you wish to ask, and to avoid misunderstanding any answers.

    You, particularly if you wish to pursue publishing under the OGL legally, should use a lawyer because of the increased chance/risk of misunderstanding that can arise from communicating in a second language.

    Good luck!
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  • #7
    Quote Originally Posted by DragonSword
    Correct me if I'm wrong, but if the only OGC you were allowed to use was in English, referring to English game mechanics, then you wouldn't be able to have OGC in languages other than English, which is stupid.
    Well according to the claims of the two German firms who were/are translating D&D there are apparently MANY problems with a German SRD, so even if fans would want to "publish" d20 stuff in German they would HAVE to disallow the fans to use "their" (official) translated terms.

    At least that's the impression I got from them.
    It has been said that there are few situations in life that cannot be honourably settled, and without loss of time, either by suicide, a bag of gold, or by thrusting a despised antagonist over the edge of a precipice upon a dark night.

  • #8
    On the other hand Asmodee/Spellbooks, the official publisher of the French version of D&D has released a translation of the SRD 3.5. It is available on their site : www.asmodee.com. Translation of the SRD is possible under the license.

  • #9
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    Ignore afstanton
    The OGL allows for creating a derivative work and not merely exact quoting of OGC. A translation of OGC is a derived work, so it is allowed.

    (If the OGL did not allow for creating derivative works, the entire third party industry would be a violation of the OGL.)

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    Help or get out of the way.

  • #10
    Apparently in Germany it's not that easy...

    The translation seems to be copyrighted by German laws. And if you use it you violate these laws (or at least so Amigo and Feder&Schwert, the companies that got the license to translate D&D, claim)

    AND I've heard them say that WotC "forces" them to even forbid "fan projects" where fans try to get a "German <-> English"-List of the terms and their official translations, even if they are just a few words used in postings on boards.
    It has been said that there are few situations in life that cannot be honourably settled, and without loss of time, either by suicide, a bag of gold, or by thrusting a despised antagonist over the edge of a precipice upon a dark night.

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