Spouses Sharing PDFs


Pathfinder Society

Dark Archive

I picked up several PDFs last year (legal and watermarked to me) and this year started Society play. The wife is thinking of joining me in Society play. Do my legal watermarked PDFs count for her as well. If we're at the same table I honestly wouldn't think it an issue, but if we were at different tables do I actually need to buy her the PDFs as well or as we share a last name would my watermark count for her as well on her tablet or laptop? My youngest is also interested in gaming and one day might join society as well would the three of us be legal with just my legal watermarked PDFs or would there need to be multiple watermarks to be considered legal?

We're going with the PDFs for ease of use and portability, I used to carry all my 3.5 library with me to each session and that was tiring and heavy, and Pathfinder is now a fairly large catalog of books as well.

I know this is likely answered somewhere else as I cannot have been the first to ask this question in 8 (9 including season 0) seasons of play. So if this counts as a duplicate post I apologize I was just on lunch with a couple minutes to spare and was wondering.

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*dig dig dig dig...*

BONE!

And if it needs to be clarified, watermarked PDFs may not be distributed electronically by anyone. If two members of the same household wish to share a PDF, and find themselves playing at separate tables, one can utilize an electronic version on an iPad or similar item, while the other utilizes a printed watermarked copy.

BNW Speculation: I'd imagine you could also just hand your wife one of your tablets, as long as it's not on her tablet. I'm a luddite and i still bring two tablets to conventions.

Silver Crusade 4/5 5/55/55/5 RPG Superstar 2013 Top 8

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Here is Mike Brock's post on the subject. Mike Brock is a former campaign coordinator, and his rulings stand unless they are specifically overturned.

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Michael Eshleman wrote:
Here is Mike Brock's post on the subject. Mike Brock is a former campaign coordinator, and his rulings stand unless they are specifically overturned.

that post seems to have become the FAQ (makes it easier to find later)

Dark Archive

So as long as they have the pages (with paizo watermark), or tablet, or laptop with it on it as long as it is hardware I am the owner of (it's not being transferred to another person it's still on hardware I own or otherwise I'd need a copy for each tablet and laptop I own or to move it instead of copy between devices) it's all good. Roger that.
and Thank you for the pointing me in the right direction.

3/5

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He's married. Let's face it, what's his is hers and what's hers is hers as well. Are we really going to be splitting hairs on the ownership of non-titled properties within an immediate nuclear familial unit?

4/5 *

It's just not ownership, it's also having them accessible at the table.

5/5 5/55/55/5

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GM Lamplighter wrote:
It's just not ownership, it's also having them accessible at the table.

Most people seem to use google for that because it's faster.

Silver Crusade 4/5 Venture-Captain, Pennsylvania—Pittsburgh

BigNorseWolf wrote:
GM Lamplighter wrote:
It's just not ownership, it's also having them accessible at the table.

Most people seem to use google for that because it's faster.

Yeah, search technology and databases are far superior to loading up a molasses-slow PDF and then trying to search it. Especially if nobody has a laptop on the table. I can count the number of times I've seen PDFs referenced during play on two hands, and I think we only check those in cases where either ownership is in doubt, or an option hasn't hit d20pfsrd yet. But they usually beat Additional Resources to the punch, so it doesn't come up much.

Sovereign Court 4/5 5/5 *

Pathfinder Maps, Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
DrakeRoberts wrote:
He's married. Let's face it, what's his is hers and what's hers is hers as well. Are we really going to be splitting hairs on the ownership of non-titled properties within an immediate nuclear familial unit?

It really depends 99% of the time I've never see this an issue, I think I've had in 4 years of playing only one GM question either me or my significant other on our PDFs because our last names don't match. I think that was more the cursory question with immediate follow up acceptable answer.

The only lawyer-ish part of me that twitches at this is the PDF/Physical copy if you get table split. I have everything loaded on our two iPads (mostly as backup/batteries occasionally die). I'd rather save mostly my printer ink but also a tree by not having the dead paper copy when I've never needed it. I think this is more just the advancement since 2013 of how electronic ownership is interpreted in regards to households. I'm not transferring electronically to anyone else they are household devices. (I also never expect this to actually be an issue.)

Grand Lodge 4/5 **** Venture-Captain, California—Sacramento

BigNorseWolf wrote:
GM Lamplighter wrote:
It's just not ownership, it's also having them accessible at the table.

Most people seem to use google for that because it's faster.

Except google usually takes you to d20pfsrd, and periodically it is wrong, or lacking context.

Dark Archive

Jared Thaler wrote:
BigNorseWolf wrote:
GM Lamplighter wrote:
It's just not ownership, it's also having them accessible at the table.

Most people seem to use google for that because it's faster.

Except google usually takes you to d20pfsrd, and periodically it is wrong, or lacking context.

It is still a reliable, easy, and searchable source. That last bit is the most important. I almost never reference my stuff via pdf at a table. Either I brought a physical copy because I wanted to, or I search it. It saves a ton of time compared to opening dozens of pdfs.

Silver Crusade 5/5

All I can speak for is myself, but when I ask to read something a player is using (whether a spell, archetype, or whatever) if someone pulls up something that is not either the book or a PDF (or a printout of the thing used from the pdf), I will ask them for one of those two before I allow its use. Part of it is to verify they own the source, and part of it is because d20pfsrd and the like have been known to have errors sometimes. If they cannot

I know a number of local players simply print out the page or two they need from a PDF, which is also acceptable. I would have no problem if a someone had a print out from their SO's PDF.

Silver Crusade 4/5 Venture-Captain, Pennsylvania—Pittsburgh

Mitch Mutrux wrote:
[...] if someone pulls up something that is not either the book or a PDF (or a printout of the thing used from the pdf), I will ask them for one of those two before I allow its use. Part of it is to verify they own the source, and part of it is because d20pfsrd and the like have been known to have errors sometimes.

To be quite honest, I think d20pfsrd may be more accurate than a lot of PDFs after all the errata, FAQs, forum posts from developers/leadership, and campaign clarifications. I'm sure you are relatively up-to-speed on them but someone less aware of the state of PFS may be better off checking a database or the PRD.

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Jared Thaler wrote:
BigNorseWolf wrote:
GM Lamplighter wrote:
It's just not ownership, it's also having them accessible at the table.

Most people seem to use google for that because it's faster.

Except google usually takes you to d20pfsrd, and periodically it is wrong, or lacking context.

and sometimes a PDF is out of date, lacks erratta, or misses a clarification that d20pfsrd will point to. If I"m looking up a rule during the game fast is better than perfect. Close enough for state work.

Silver Crusade 5/5

Terminalmancer wrote:
Mitch Mutrux wrote:
[...] if someone pulls up something that is not either the book or a PDF (or a printout of the thing used from the pdf), I will ask them for one of those two before I allow its use. Part of it is to verify they own the source, and part of it is because d20pfsrd and the like have been known to have errors sometimes.
To be quite honest, I think d20pfsrd may be more accurate than a lot of PDFs after all the errata, FAQs, forum posts from developers/leadership, and campaign clarifications. I'm sure you are relatively up-to-speed on them but someone less aware of the state of PFS may be better off checking a database or the PRD.

Like I said, that's only one reason. Still, if they don't have the source with them in a legal form (book, watermarked PDF, or a printout of the relevant pages from a watermarked PDF), then they can't use things from that source at my tables.

Liberty's Edge 3/5

I make use of the srd when making table rulings, but only after the player has proven ownership of the material. Like other before me have stated, after all of the errata, updates and clarifications, it is, a lot of the time, more accurate.

Scarab Sages

Related, are children of gamers allowed to share PDFs and books for the purposes of PFS ownership requirements?

Silver Crusade 5/5

Yes.

Liberty's Edge 5/5

Starfinder Superscriber

Speaking of d20pfsrd and other online resources -- has anybody heard from the maintainer of Archives of Nethys recently? The last update he posted is from August, and it sounds like he was perhaps starting to work out some of his back problems. Anybody now how he's doing?

I know in the past people have offered to help him, and he's said that managing other folks helping would actually be more work than doing it all himself. (I fully understand this. If you want to have lots of people working on something together, you have to design the thing to support that way of working... and designing something to work that way is much harder and much more work than designing it for just you.) I wonder if he might be willing to take on a knowledgeable partner, however.

I always found archivesofnethys to be the best online reference that included things beyond what is in the PRD. It doesn't have the name change and such that d20pfsrod has to have, and even marks what's PFS legal. However, it's obviously starting to fall behind new releases.

Sovereign Court 4/5 5/5 ** Venture-Lieutenant, Netherlands—Leiden

Well there is some quiet progress on Nethys, for example Horror Adventures is up there although not officially announced that way. But some of the backlog is still backlogged. Sadly that makes it rather inaccurate for errata and such right now.

Personally I like PDFs exactly for errata reasons: when errata happens you'll get an email saying which of your PDFs have changed.

Shadow Lodge *

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Steven Stewart wrote:
I make use of the srd when making table rulings, but only after the player has proven ownership of the material. Like other before me have stated, after all of the errata, updates and clarifications, it is, a lot of the time, more accurate.

Honestly, I don't care if the book or PDF doesn't reflect recent errata. If that's what the player has, that is what I will use. If I am aware of an errata that changes something in their book, we will begin using the errata next time. I don't undercut people for relying on what should be a definitive source. I will always preference what a PDF or book says over something on pfsrd or AoN.

Obviously, that changes if I believe someone is manipulating the system.

Sovereign Court 3/5

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Instead of searching through pdfs you could always note not just what book but what page an ability is on

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crashcanuck wrote:
Instead of searching through pdfs you could always note not just what book but what page an ability is on

depends on the character and the sheet layout. ALso kind of goes out the window on a prepared caster

Scarab Sages

So if families can share PDFs and books without issue, can we create a library for a local club and just have one set of books for everyone?

Liberty's Edge 4/5 5/5

Murdock Mudeater wrote:
So if families can share PDFs and books without issue, can we create a library for a local club and just have one set of books for everyone?

Have you read the FAQ?

Sovereign Court 4/5 5/5 ** Venture-Lieutenant, Netherlands—Leiden

BigNorseWolf wrote:
crashcanuck wrote:
Instead of searching through pdfs you could always note not just what book but what page an ability is on
depends on the character and the sheet layout. ALso kind of goes out the window on a prepared caster

I copy-paste all my spells into a single document along with book and page reference. That's 32 pages on my wizard actually, and he doesn't have level 6 spells yet.

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Lau Bannenberg wrote:


I copy-paste all my spells into a single document along with book and page reference. That's 32 pages on my wizard actually, and he doesn't have level 6 spells yet.

That is kinda nuts if you're doing that for multiple characters on public transport. Or non pack mule transport...

It gets launched even further on a divine prepared caster.

Scarab Sages

Matt Lewis wrote:
Murdock Mudeater wrote:
So if families can share PDFs and books without issue, can we create a library for a local club and just have one set of books for everyone?
Have you read the FAQ?

I had not. I've found the FAQs hard to find and usually off topic with my actual questions, so I tend not to reference them unless someone links it in a thread.

Thanks.

Grand Lodge 2/5

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Terminalmancer wrote:
To be quite honest, I think d20pfsrd may be more accurate than a lot of PDFs

I've never seen anyone claim that before. I can think of two examples off hand where the errata was either missed or willfully ignored. It's been pointed out and nothing has been done about it for years (all of the errata except a very important tidbit was left out). Another is a case where they've intentionally mashed up two items into one entry.

Silver Crusade 4/5 Venture-Captain, Pennsylvania—Pittsburgh

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claudekennilol wrote:
Terminalmancer wrote:
To be quite honest, I think d20pfsrd may be more accurate than a lot of PDFs
I've never seen anyone claim that before. I can think of two examples off hand where the errata was either missed or willfully ignored. It's been pointed out and nothing has been done about it for years (all of the errata except a very important tidbit was left out). Another is a case where they've intentionally mashed up two items into one entry.

I'm not trying to argue that it's perfect! But when I wrote "a lot of PDFs" I didn't mean "PDFs downloaded directly from Paizo after the most recent errata release." Most of my interactions with people bringing up PDFs has been when they don't like how I think something works, how it's listed on d20pfsrd, in Herolab, or in some other resource. They crack open their own PDF to prove their point. What usually happens is that they haven't downloaded the errata.

Another thing that sometimes comes up is that there are some FAQs and forum posts that replace text in a hardcover, but that haven't made it into the PDF. d20pfsrd has some of these FAQs listed (like the sunder-as-part-of-a-full-attack one) where if you just checked the PDF, even a fully-updated PDF, you would get the opposite impression.

Perhaps you have more faith in your fellow man's ability to download the most recent version of errata'd PDFs and then use it than I do?


Suddenly I want to redownload Ultimate Equipment to see if my PDF updates to the current printing.

For science!!!

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claudekennilol wrote:
Terminalmancer wrote:
To be quite honest, I think d20pfsrd may be more accurate than a lot of PDFs
I've never seen anyone claim that before.

Its not the first time i've made it.

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