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"Apologies for your apology" Topic

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704 hits since 19 Jan 2023
©1994-2023 Bill Armintrout
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Mr Elmo19 Jan 2023 5:11 a.m. PST

OK, you know it's bad when you apologize for your apology.


Conspicuously absent is "we aren't going to do anything." OH you're getting a new OGL…now bend over.

Personal logo Parzival Supporting Member of TMP19 Jan 2023 6:43 a.m. PST

Not enough. Not nearly enough.

WotC is dead as "stewards" of anything, IMHO, and they killed themselves with this garbage deal.

Who cares about "non-published materials"? Like WotC/Hasbro had any ability or legal authority whatsoever to monitor or act upon my notes for my own campaign settings, adventures, or other original game elements.

Or how about no attempt to address the "Go woke or we'll cancel you" part of the new, "improved" OGL? If we don't allow our government to police our thoughts or opinions, why in the name of Samuel Adams would we allow a corporation of unelected, unaccountable, unrestrainable anonymous radicalized ex-Twitter busybodies to arbitrarily decide what we can or cannot express in our own writings?

And I notice also that this new "apology" says NOTHING about new, published materials. That's the crux of this. I will write and publish what I desire to write and publish, and if it is original in expression and content— and it will be— there's not anything Hasbro/WotC can do about it. I'll let the marketplace decide what they like and what they don't. I'm not affiliated with any company anyway, and I don't think the vast majority of gamers are so stupid that they can't recognize an "official" Hasbro/WotC product from an unofficial one.

No, Hasbro/WotC, I won't sign any "OGL" from you or anybody else. I do NOT agree. End of statement.

Bunkermeister Supporting Member of TMP19 Jan 2023 1:50 p.m. PST

All of this is a good reason why our whole copyright system is broken and needs reform. A patent only lasts for 20 years and copyright should not last any longer than that. Read any of these license agreements to let you use their property and you need two lawyers and an accountant to tell you what they mean.

And they always have some sort of "if it is offense" clause, which means anything they want it to mean.
It seems to me WotC forgot the rule "If it ain't broke, don't fix it." All they have done is poke a hornets nest and hurt their product. They learned nothing from Paramount and their Star Trek licensing fiasco from a few years ago that killed off most fan films and angered their most passionate fans.

Mike Bunkermeister Creek

Personal logo Parzival Supporting Member of TMP19 Jan 2023 2:14 p.m. PST

The interesting thing is, copyright only applies to expressive, artistic wording and art. If nobody copies that, Hasbro/WotC have no leg to stand on, because game mechanics are uncopyrightable, as established by a hundred years or so of legal precedent (and recently re-established in a directly relatable case— one RPG game publisher suing another for using identical mechanics but changing all the fluff. The plaintiff lost the suit, as game mechanics and processes aren't protected by copyright. Period.)

And ironically, WotC still publishes the original TSR materials (as PDF and POD), with a caveat statement that they aren't responsible for the supposed bigotry they claim is in the original products. Well, if that's the case, just say the same thing about third party products and let it go. The marketplace will decide if they're actually offensive, or if people don't care. (There's plenty of stuff in the realm of entertainment which I find offensive, but I don't get to cancel any of it. I just don't buy it. Duh.)

Striker19 Jan 2023 3:22 p.m. PST

Looking around the rpg forums the "go woke or else" plays well there and I'd bet their apology containing that is just to stop the internet shriekers. While I never went looking for official wotc products I'm guessing that's not the case with new players that came in because DnD is "the cool thing to do" now. They only know Wotc, DnD = Wotc, much like mini gamers that only know GW; if it doesn't have the stamp of approval it doesn't get bought. Some of the youtubers brought that up but not many, but since this effects products
to be sold any person not looking to make any money off it shouldn't be effected. I feel that all the yelling was more about people's favorite big company showing that it's a big company, like when Twitter came under Musk's control. The "community" was fine with Wotc saying and doing what they wanted until Wotc went for the big grab.

Personal logo Parzival Supporting Member of TMP20 Jan 2023 5:50 a.m. PST

Can't disagree with you on some of that, but I don't go to the 5e sites as I don't play that edition any more. I hang out on sites dedicated to earlier, TSR editions and Old School Renaissance "retro-clones"— and the concern there is great and very deep and discerning.

The interesting thing is why anybody would want a corporation which is unelected, unrestrained, and unaccountable to the people to be in charge of policing anyone's political thoughts, statements and actions. If we shouldn't want government bureaucrats* doing so, why would we want anyone else to have that power?

*I realize that the Woke crowd does want that, but stupid people gonna stupid…

Stryderg20 Jan 2023 6:49 a.m. PST

It's easier to be 'taken care of' than to have to deal with freedom. If the entity 'taking care of' you is faceless and unaccountable, then it must be right and good; questioning that might lead to freedom of thought and disagreements. The horror!

Striker20 Jan 2023 10:52 a.m. PST

People have been letting big faceless corporate machines control their thought and determine what speech rights they have for at least the last 3 years. The only time they care is when they fall under the "eye of CORP". Until the OGL came up nobody cared and I've seen plenty of pro-wotc moderation.

I can see a publisher or youtuber making a living from DnD content being anxious about the OGL but as players who own their books why can't they just play? There's nothing that requires anyone to buy more wotc stuff unless someone has to be buy adventures and keep up with any changes wotc makes.

Personal logo Parzival Supporting Member of TMP20 Jan 2023 12:54 p.m. PST

Story has now reached The Washington Post: link

Not looking good for WotC. This kind of press causes heads to roll.

Zephyr120 Jan 2023 9:30 p.m. PST

It wouldn't surprise me if this was all engineered (though the backlash was more than expected) to give Hasbro an excuse to dump DnD. I guess time will tell… ;-)

Personal logo Parzival Supporting Member of TMP21 Jan 2023 11:16 a.m. PST

Hasbro doesn't want to dump D&D. The Wizards of the Coast division accounts for 20% or Hasbro's yearly revenues, but 72% of its yearly profits! If they dump that, they will collapse. They just made the Fortune 500. They want to stay there. D&D is essential to that position.

No, this is a royal screw up by executives with little understanding of the tabletop gamer community.

I have long been of the opinion that when a company hires executives who do not use and love the product that company is destined to crumble.

The first question for an executive position in Wizards of the Coast should be: "When was the last time you played either Magic:The Gathering or D&D?"
If they don't have an answer, the interview ends.

Striker22 Jan 2023 8:30 a.m. PST

But does it matter how much Wotc execs like or play a game? They're going to market to the spending youth and they seem those consumers appear have different views on brands and they seem to react in a way that older folks don't regarding companies continuously charging for things that were one-time purchases. If Wotc starts cranking out the VTT products along with all the little add-ons people love (skins, celebrity faces, more customization, etc) will that be the ticket to $$ vs publishing more products of value for DnD? Subscriptions are coming for the books, just like Office and almost everything else has a monthly/yearly subscription vs physical product. That seems contradictory to many older gamers but is it normal to younger players who will happily pay it without a thought?

Personal logo Parzival Supporting Member of TMP24 Jan 2023 7:23 a.m. PST

I think it matters very much that a company's leadership appreciates and likes the product or service they are offering. If I see a company where that is not the case, I expect that company to rapidly decline in quality, service and ultimately value. It's like a professional sports team— everybody involved better love the sport and love their part in it, or your team is going to lose games, lose fans, and lose money.

Quality is a universal expectation, regardless of market and demographics. People will pursue what they perceive as the best product which they can afford, if they care at all about the product.
Which doesn't mean that crappy products don't sell— they do. But only to people who can't afford better products, or who don't care about quality because the product isn't important to them, for whatever reason.

Yes, short term Hasbro/WotC can make money off of little add-ons. And then people will tire of the add ons very quickly, and pffffft— there goes the money.

Now, if WotC combines quality with quantity, they'll strike gold. But without executives who want to experience that quality themselves, they'll miss the motherlode every time.
If you chase quality as well as money, you will find both.
If you chase only money, it will evade you every time.

Personal logo Parzival Supporting Member of TMP26 Jan 2023 3:53 p.m. PST

This is spot on. And hilarious: YouTube link


(Contains a very minor amount of mild profanity.)

Striker27 Jan 2023 12:08 p.m. PST

They can follow the WoW and other online gaming models, they'll ditch the print books and write more plan IMO. Youth buy into those online games and then a new hotness comes and they move on, but the company doesn't have to keep investing in the product b/c they know it's of limited lifespan. Rainbow 6, War Thunder, WoT, etc. For that crowd quality is less relevant than latest upgrades. I would say chasing money works very well with low quality (Amazon, Wal-Mart, fast food, hell, even cars). Good RPGs are nice, I own many, but they are small outfits and have a small player base and will probably die off (rpgnow has kept a lot on life support) but if someone not looking for an obscure rpg comes along they'll hit up Wotc.

Striker27 Jan 2023 12:09 p.m. PST

That youtube hits it. Wotc did the mask removal "it's old man Jenkins!" reveal.

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