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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Again. I KNOW they have read comments.


View attachment 273017
I remember Dan Dillon on Twitter at one point right after a UA closed saying something along the lines of "nothing like hearing how bad you are at your job", so he seemed to be someone who reviewed them. It wouldn't surprise me if they mostly focused on scores and skimmed a portion of the results based on some parameters but who knows.
 


Oofta

Legend
My "sources" I can't tell about.
It shouldn't come as a surprise that many entities have a vested interest in feeding the anti-WOTC flames.

I plan on reading the proposal and giving honest feedback - which may well end up being something along the lines of "why the **** are you changing anything". But to think that other companies wouldn't push alternative agendas to suit their own needs seems to be a tad naive.
 



Morrus

Well, that was fun
Staff member
Cool story. I have a couple of questions.

1. What previous stories have you broken?
2. Can you get independent verification of those sources from prominent community figures?

If not, your word is worthless.
Your overall aggressiveness in this thread is, frankly, obnoxious. I see you have several warnings already for insulting other members, so clearly they don't work. Tone it down, or we'll ask you to leave the thread.
 


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