Wizards of the Coast, publisher of Dungeons & Dragons, announced today that they will no longer pursue the cancellation of the authorization of the Open Gaming License 1.0a, the abandonment of the plans previously stated in the project OGL 1.2. This statement comes after relentless fan backlash against the deauthorization decision which was revealed after io9 reported OGL 1.1 leak. After three weeks of near-constant pressure, it looks like Wizards of the Coast are giving their fanbase their full attention.
The deauthorization of OGL 1.0a was a huge sticking point for fans and third-party publishers who made a living from the license granted nearly two decades ago. Opinions varied on whether Wizards of the Coast could even legally revoke, with many people including Ryan Dancey saying out loud that it was never intended to revoke and that the very act of doing so was not incorporated into the legal wording of the license. .
Brink said in the statement that “these live survey results are clear. You want OGL 1.0a. You want finality. You like Creative Commons. This sentiment was expressed so overwhelmingly in the OGL 1.2 playtest that Wizards of the Coast had to pay attention. They were originally going to keep the playtest open for two weeks, but Brink writes, “The feedback is so overwhelming and its direction so clear that we are taking action now.”
The concessions D&D makes in this announcement are huge: they won’t try to deauthorize OGL 1.0a, they place the entire systems reference document for D&D 5.1 in Creative Commons, and they give up his previously stated intentions for Virtual Table Set.
One thing to note is that Brink states that putting the entire 400-page SRD into Creative Commons means fans don’t need to “take [Dungeons & Dragons’] word for it. That Brink explicitly acknowledges the lack of trust between fans and publishers and Wizards of the Coast is incredible.
Finally, the company ended the statement with an olive branch, publish the SRD immediately, and stating: “Here is a PDF of SRD 5.1 with the Creative Commons license. By simply publishing it, we place it under an irrevocable Creative Commons license. We will host it in a more convenient location next week. It was important that we take this step now, so there is no doubt about it.
Since the OGL 1.1 rumors that started circulating at the end of November last year, third-party content publishers and Fans of Dungeons & Dragons had begun to mobilize. After the leaks, flashbacks and general confusion, everyone was ready to defend their hobby. And they did. Fans rallied around hashtags, influencers and, we admit, journalists, as they sought to open up D&D and preserve OGL 1.0a and its legacy. Whether Dungeons & Dragons delivers on all of their promises in this statementit is possible that they can restore the clientele they have lost in the meantime and today.
In the end, it’s a huge victory for the fans. And while the the battle is won, the war may not be over, everyone is waiting to see the four corners of the contract, despite the entry of the SRD into the CC. But the fans are ready. And Wizards of the Coast will think twice before pushing that particular point. dragon.
[Editor’s Note: This article is part of the developing story. The information cited on this page may change as the breaking story unfolds.]
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