OGL WotC Talks OGL... Again! Draft Coming Jan 20th With Feedback Survey; v1 De-Auth Still On

Following last week's partial walk-back on the upcoming Open Game Licence terms, WotC has posted another update about the way forward.

Screen Shot 2023-01-09 at 10.45.12 AM.png

The new update begins with another apology and a promise to be more transparent. To that end, WotC proposes to release the draft of the new OGL this week, with a two-week survey feedback period following it.


They also list a number of points of clarity --
  • Videos, accessories, VTT content, DMs Guild will not be affected by the new license, none of which is related to the OGL
  • The royalties and ownership rights clauses are, as previously noted, going away
OGL v1 Still Being 'De-Authorized'
However, OGL v1.0a still looks like it's being de-authorized. As with the previous announcement, that specific term is carefully avoided, and like that announcement it states that previously published OGL v1 content will continue to be valid; however it notably doesn't mention that the OGL v1 can be used for content going forward, which is a de-authorization.

The phrase used is "Nothing will impact any content you have published under OGL 1.0a. That will always be licensed under OGL 1.0a." -- as noted, this does not make any mention of future content. If you can't publish future content under OGL 1.0a, then it has been de-authorized. The architect of the OGL, Ryan Dancey, along with WotC itself at the time, clearly indicated that the license could not be revoked or de-authorized.

While the royalty and ownership clauses were, indeed, important to OGL content creators and publishers such as myself and many others, it is also very important not to let that overshadow the main goal: the OGL v1.0a.

Per Ryan Dancey in response this announcement: "They must not. They can only stop the bleeding by making a clear and simple statement that they cannot and will not deauthorize or revoke v1.0a".


Amend At-Will
Also not mentioned is the leaked draft's ability to be amended at-will by WotC. An agreement which can be unilaterally changed in any way by one party is not an agreement, it's a blank cheque. They could simply add the royalties or ownership clauses back in at any time, or add even more onerous clauses.

All-in-all this is mainly just a rephrasing of last week's announcement addressing some of the tonal criticisms widely made about it. However, it will be interesting to see the new draft later this week. I would encourage people to take the feedback survey and clearly indicate that the OGL v1.0a must be left intact.
 
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Russ Morrissey

Russ Morrissey

Reynard

Legend
Board Game? Not going to be SRD.
Card Game? Not going to be SRD.
You absolutely could design either of these things from elements of the SRD, and would be both totally legal under the license and probably pretty awesome. For example: Pathfinder Card Game.
Action RPG (Computer Game)? Based on SRD.
We have a good one. It is pretty cool and has lots of neat ideas because the developers had to fill in the non SRD gaps. More of these please.
Gacha? Not SRD.
What is this?
TV Show? Not SRD.
Completely unrelated to the SRD in any way.
 

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Scribe

Legend
Again, if it uses a lot of SRD named things it will be.

Read the OGL 1.0a Legal Information section 1. definitions. It includes derivative material in any form in which the work can be recast, transformed or adapted. Movies and board games fall into that.

The names within the SRD, are generic to the point of irrelevancy.

"We call this one the Fighter, his buddy is a Druid." - Amazon/Disney "Not D&D" Movie/Game/Cartoon.

in no Wizards lawyers office ever, in all of history

Leonardo Dicaprio Reaction GIF by Once Upon A Time In Hollywood
 



Jer

Legend
Supporter
Wait, someone saw that toy and thought it looked like a mix between an owl and a bear? Has this person ever seen either of those animals?
There's a whole article about the toys that inspired the owlbear, the bullette, the rust monster and some others here: The Plastic Ancestry of the Owlbear

They were very likely cheap knock-offs of Ultraman monsters that were then repurposed for D&D.
 

Micah Sweet

Legend
We can understand that what we might like and might prefer as an easier path for the publishers we like might not be beneficial to even the nicest IP holder.

WOTC is taking a bad route. But even a good WOTC would eventually want to get out the OGL. That's one of the reasons why the OGL was created.
Understandable but, no matter why they might want to get out of it, they really can't without the individual permission of its users (through a new contract that explicitly prevents its users from making use of the 1.0a).
 






Micah Sweet

Legend
You can mock it all you like, but it doesn't have to be in one line like that.

:: Party finds a sword:::

Wizard says, "This is an ancient frost brand. A weapon forged with the cold of a frozen star in it." - Frost brand mentioned.

::sometime later in the movie::

Halfling Rogue: "Look out! A red dragon is diving at us using the sun as cover." - Red dragon mentioned(and yes I know the dialogue is bad, it could be better).

Bard: "Grooloo, use Otiluke's Resilient Sphere! It will help us." - Otiluke's Resilient Sphere mentioned.

Wizard: "Great idea. Sing us a countercharm to aid us against the dragon fear. We got this!" - Countercharm and dragon fear mentioned.

That's still a bit exaggerated. All it takes is enough mention over the 2 hour movie of things D&D related to get you into dicey water and not all of it will sound silly when said. Though as you did above, it's easy to exaggerate things to the point of silliness.
Can't use Otiluke. Everything else above is fine.
 

Reynard

Legend
The names within the SRD, are generic to the point of irrelevancy.

"We call this one the Fighter, his buddy is a Druid." - Amazon/Disney "Not D&D" Movie/Game/Cartoon.

in no Wizards lawyers office ever, in all of history

Leonardo Dicaprio Reaction GIF by Once Upon A Time In Hollywood
I can absolutely see some WotC suit runing into the conference room yelling about how they need to sue Pixar over Onward.
 




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