OGL What is the most scathing feedback you left?(+)


Rules-lawyering drama queen but not a munchkin
For example, to the question "Do you feel comfortable creating content with the OGL 1.2?" I answered something along the lines of:

No, the personal risk is too big, and the balance of power is too unequal. Losing the right to publish my content is unacceptable, and as it is happening once already I cannot trust you to this not happening again in the future. And lacking access to existing OGC makes it even less worth it.

log in or register to remove this ad

My group is rewriting so we can coordinate now but the two we plan on hitting the most (and as often as we can) is:

There needs to be a open/transparent way to appeal any use of the morality clause when/if it needs to be used, and I suggest having a known 3rd party arbiter.


Something needs to be done about all the open content that WAS released by others under your OGL and now is in a grey zone where we have content that was realsed into the open content and now is both 'been opened' and has been 'deauthorized' by a third party (you)


My replies in the first and last box

"Monte Cook said it best when he said "Say person A pointed a gun at person B and pulled the trigger, but the gun jammed. Person A then gave a half-hearted apology. Should person B trust person A ever again?"

This is what you did, yet here you are asking us to trust you again. Trust is not given, it is earned, it is deserved. All trust you accumulated the last 20 years you squandered with your reckless, hostile act of the OGL 1.1 release. If you want us to trust you, you need to earn it again.

A good first step would be to release an OGL 1.0b which is identical with 1.0a except for the following changes

- you add that the license is fully irrevocable
- you clarify that an authorized license is any license released by WotC that does not clearly state that it is a draft, and that an authorized version cannot be revoked or withdrawn

This would go a long way towards establishing some level of trust again."


"All my comments are in 2. already. I think you screwed this up majorly and none of this was necessary. D&D thrived with the OGL 1.0a and would have continued to do so, this is just pure greed and abuse of power."
Last edited:

In the last comment I said something to the effect of "I do not think that this move will give you the results you are looking for. If not, D&D has survived one company losing profits because it did know what gamers wanted. People played the older edition until a new company came in that truly understood gamers and made a game people wanted. If need be we can do that again"


I think I said that creating the OGL and providing the SRDs was a huge mutual benefit for D&D players, 3rd party publishers, and WotC that generated great good will towards WotC and confidence in the future of D&D. Attempting to de-authorize the OGL is a blow against all of that. As a customer of WotC and OGL material I feel betrayed by WotC, I am livid at WotC over this. I hope WotC drops this attempt. If not I hope it is litigated in court and WotC loses.


For the most part, I simply took the "disappointed parent" tone in my replies. I also informed them that they have betrayed the trust of 3PPs and the rest of the D&D community and questioned how can they ask us to trust them to honor any future license when they can't even honor the license the created 23 years ago.


I mean, I don't think anything I left was scathing. But I guess one person's "honest" is another person's "scathing" so you know ymmv.

I tried to be nice. Most of my ire was directed at their "Harmful content" policy since it's so bad. I probably can't get into what I said without violating the politics ban here, but I reminded them that these kind of policies are often weaponized against the very groups they purport to help and laid out some very obvious ways that LBGTQ creators (among others) have to trust that nobody in the exec team ever decides their existence on social media is "bad for Wizards bottom line" and therefore violates the hate speech rules and yanks their license. And how that "trust" is hard to have when we're seeing how they're going back on their promises now. I also went into some discussion of why the OGL is about trust and how breaking that trust can only hurt them in a variety of other ways. Also I kind of went in heavy on reminding them that they own the D&D brand and seem to underestimate how much fans want "official" material and will probably use their VTT just because it has that name on it even if others are technically better.

I also pointed out that their desire to keep their names off of products from "harmful actors" doesn't jibe with their decision to use a CC-BY license for the content they're talking about putting into the CC because that license requires attribution and so will require a "harmful actor" to stick Wizards name on their product and Wizards literally won't be able to stop them. I suggested using a CC0 for that material instead if they're actually worried about that, or dropping that argument entirely if it's just a pose to try to get the community on their side because it's kind of insulting our intelligence when they do things like that.

I put in some strong suggestions that they consider creating a brand license for their new Creator badges that have the extra restrictions on them - the carrot for using those badges is actually really good if it isn't combined with the poison pill of revoking the OGL altogether and a lot of folks will willingly agree to those extra terms to get the extra "seal of approval" from Wizards. And then release the OGL 1.0b which includes a very large disclaimer indicating that the license is intended to be irrevocable in perpetuity on anything that it is applied to and include lots of legal synonyms for "irrevocable" and "in perpetuity" so future lawyers can't try to wiggle out of the commitment. And then release their current SRDs (3.x and 5.1) under it and then never release anything new under the OGL again because this is the second time they've had buyers remorse about it and tried to mess with it so just stop using it to get back in good with the community when you screw up.


I wasn't particularly scathing. I had been tempted to ask why WotC want a monopoly on publishing hateful content, but that probably wouldn't have been helpful.

I did note that we could no longer take anything on trust from WotC any longer. And I also noted that the "morality clause" was only acceptable if they also removed any books that were found to be hateful from circulation and didn't publish revised versions - and that they should start with Spelljammer. (And if that's not acceptable to them, why would they think it would be acceptable to anyone else?)

In the final question I also noted TSR's major blunders in going after fan sites (that gave rise to the OGL), and then their blunder in abandoning the OGL for 4e (which, in part, gave rise to Pathfinder) - and then noted that this latest blunder eclipses both of those.


I said that WotC had demonstrated neither the sensitivity or the trustworthiness needed to qualify them as sole arbiters of decency and good taste. I recommended third-party administration of the hateful conduct policy, and that they remove their right to de-licence anyone without notice in favour of such measures being universally on a 30-day basis with the option for the publisher to remove the offending content from their work.

To the question of what WotC could do to win back my trust I made it clear that the attempt to de-authorise the existing OGLs must be removed, as this was the foundation of their breach of trust.

I described their VTT policy as far too vague and that its premise of requiring VTTs to not provide a better experience than face-to-face play was a flawed one. I also stated that, so long as this policy remained separate from the OGL and subject to change, it was impossible for anyone to rely upon it as a basis for their business decisions, saying that they needed to set the policy in stone and integrate it into the OGL. I also suggested that, in order to avoid the appearance of being anti-competitive, they should include in this policy a commitment that they would apply it to their own VTT tools.

As my closing comment, I said that it would take a great deal of work for them to restore my trust to the point that I would consider spending money with them again.

Snarf Zagyg

Notorious Liquefactionist
(I am just going to mention that this might not be the optimal use of a "+" thread. Generally, it is for soliciting positive feedback without thread derailment. Not sure, however righteous the cause, we want to use it to use it for soliciting negative remarks.)


(I am just going to mention that this might not be the optimal use of a "+" thread. Generally, it is for soliciting positive feedback without thread derailment. Not sure, however righteous the cause, we want to use it to use it for soliciting negative remarks.)
Really? I always thought the "+" was more about providing constructive contributions to the thread's topic rather than questioning or opposing its basic premise. It doesn't mean the topic itself needs to be uplifting or positive.

Snarf Zagyg

Notorious Liquefactionist
Really? I always thought the "+" was more about providing constructive contributions to the thread's topic rather than questioning or opposing its basic premise. It doesn't mean the topic itself needs to be uplifting or positive.

(I think this is more of a topic for meta, but the point of "+" threads is to provide positive feedback, to avoid threadcra**ing, and to keep people from questioning the premise of a thread. If, however, the thread is being used to solicit negative comments then I have to question why we are using a marker to solicit positive feedback. Again, however noble the cause, I don't think, "What's the worst thing you said in a comment to WoTC," or, "What's the best way to get someone at Hasbro fired?" are appropriate uses for that. Seems like that's more of a regular thread topic.)

I told them any form of a VTT policy is a non-starter for me. During the pandemic when a lot of game shops were forced to close and many people were unable to meet in person to play, existing VTTs like Roll20 were there to do the heavy lifting to allow people to continue to play during the best years the brand has EVER enjoyed and WotC should be bending over backwards to support those products as thanks.


Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
Probably the most scathing feedback in the survey is:

The "Content Creator Badge" is how I will know who to boycott.
In the future there will be new 3PP who may have no choice in which OGL they use. I hold my problems to what WotC is doing, not others who want to publish and need access to a SRD.

An Advertisement