GSL - unintended loophole

Brown Jenkin

First Post
It occurred to me that there are several products that were previously not published under the OGL but with the addition of the D&D logo could do well. Following the rules of the GSL Section 3: roleplaying supplement that is a hard or softcover book or accessory not banned in section 5.5.

Diaries and journals: Nice books with fancy covers and 99% blank pages. These books would be accessories for use as character journals. Page 1 would have the legal text and logo on it. Page 2 would have a title along the lines of "Eladrin Journal" thus meeting the requirement that SRD material be in the product. The product would have the GSL D&D logo on the back and in advertisements and marketing to improve sales.

Address books: Much like the diaries all that is needed is the page 2 "Eladrin Contacts" title and then pages of blank contact spaces with alphabetical dividers on the side. The product would have the GSL D&D logo on the back and in advertisements and marketing to improve sales.

Novels: To make this a supplement or accessory would only require stating up the main character as an NPC at the end of the book to meet the SRD usage requirements. The product would have the GSL D&D logo on the back and in advertisements and marketing to improve sales.

When the license is terminated section 6 is irrelevant because products would never try to go OGL and future printings can be done without the SRD materials or GSL logos. Section 11.3 is only an issue if large quantities are kept in stock.
 

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Jraynack

Explorer
The GSL also refers to product lines. For example, I might take a core character class from one of our Feudal Lords products and not make it a character class, but something else in 4th Edition. However, if I market it as a Feudal Lords product using the GSL, I must terminate all previous Feudal Lords products.

You could make a journal, diary, etc. with the GSL in mind, but once the GSL is revoked you must destroy (yes, destroy - no grace period) those materials and it is at your cost and the cost of your distributors. You then couldn't use the GSL anymore to sell your products or sell your future products with the 3rd Ed. d20 logo (which is dead or soon to be) or make journals, diaries, etc. using the previous OGL.

Even though parts of the GSL is destroyed once WotC revokes it, the parts that prevent you to going back to OGL prevents this).

So, for my previous example - I make a 4th Ed. Feudal Lords product line, terminate my previous 3rd edition Feudal Lords product line, and 5th Edition comes out. I don't like the 5th Edition rules, but I can no longer make 4th Ed. rules since WotC pulled the GSL, and I cannot make another Feudal Lords product line for 3rd Ed. So, I can either go forth with 5th Edition or make my own rules system for my Feudal Lords product line.

Nothing like a little plug ;) . Anyway, I am not a lawyer, and this is how I interpret the GSL after reading it a couple of times. I still have to go through it with a fine tooth comb.
 

Brown Jenkin

First Post
Section 6 only applies to the OGL. In my examples there is no need to ever release those products as OGL content. I am looking at this in a non-IP based product line as well and I realize that it wouldn't work if you used IP that may want to go to the OGL someday. I am talking here about generic stuff not tied to any other 3E or 4e products.
 

webrunner

First Post
Jraynack said:
The GSL also refers to product lines. For example, I might take a core character class from one of our Feudal Lords products and not make it a character class, but something else in 4th Edition. However, if I market it as a Feudal Lords product using the GSL, I must terminate all previous Feudal Lords products.

You could make a journal, diary, etc. with the GSL in mind, but once the GSL is revoked you must destroy (yes, destroy - no grace period) those materials and it is at your cost and the cost of your distributors. You then couldn't use the GSL anymore to sell your products or sell your future products with the 3rd Ed. d20 logo (which is dead or soon to be) or make journals, diaries, etc. using the previous OGL.

Even though parts of the GSL is destroyed once WotC revokes it, the parts that prevent you to going back to OGL prevents this).

So, for my previous example - I make a 4th Ed. Feudal Lords product line, terminate my previous 3rd edition Feudal Lords product line, and 5th Edition comes out. I don't like the 5th Edition rules, but I can no longer make 4th Ed. rules since WotC pulled the GSL, and I cannot make another Feudal Lords product line for 3rd Ed. So, I can either go forth with 5th Edition or make my own rules system for my Feudal Lords product line.

Nothing like a little plug ;) . Anyway, I am not a lawyer, and this is how I interpret the GSL after reading it a couple of times. I still have to go through it with a fine tooth comb.

Being that there's no definition of 'product line', other than 'reasonbly determined by wisards', there's a lot of question as to what counts as the same product line

would something called "Return of the Feudal Lords Revenge 2: The Further Feudal Lordening" be in the same product line? What if it was the same concept but an entirely different name?
 

pawsplay

Banned
Banned
Every time you find a "loophole" you have simply discovered a good reason for WotC to put you, personally, out of business without recourse, explanation or any particular cost to them.
 


CapnZapp

Legend
Every time you find a "loophole" you have simply discovered a good reason for WotC to put you, personally, out of business without recourse, explanation or any particular cost to them.
Agreed.

You're forgetting again and again WotC has the power to terminate your license for any reason at any time without having to explain themselves. Or, as a big-time publisher (Green Ronin) stated it: by signing the GSL you open yourself up the possibility Wizards will sue you for no real reason, lose the case, and hand over the bill to you, ruining your company.

In other words...

There are no loopholes in the GSL. Period.
 

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