by Owen Wengerd
One of the less heralded new features of AutoCAD 2012 is the redesigned End User License Agreement (EULA). The EULA generally evolves (or devolves, as the case may be) from release to release, but AutoCAD 2012 sports a completely redrafted EULA.
Not only is the EULA new, it's bigger. A lot bigger:
If the EULA continues to double with each release, and releases continue to ship every year, then the EULA for AutoCAD 2020 will contain more words than a dozen copies of War and Peace!
Despite its heft, this EULA has clearly been rewritten to a higher standard of quality than previous versions. I've made fun of poorly drafted EULA wording in the past, and while this one is no work of art, it does have some redeeming qualities.
- The presentation is more efficient and consistent, and the style is more refined -- albeit the content continues to stick it to the little guy.
- The AutoCAD 2012 EULA removes the EXCESSIVE SHOUTING that was introduced in AutoCAD 2010.
- Definitions and license-type specifics have been moved into appendices.
- The confusing and obviously incorrect "API Module" wording (introduced in AutoCAD 2010 and surprisingly remained in the AutoCAD 2011 EULA) is removed completely.
Unfortunately, all this moving around and renumering of sections makes it more difficult to compare the new EULA to the previous one, but by and large the legal aspects of the agreement remain the same, just with more prose and coverage for new license types and new usage scenarios.
- The audit clause is still there.
- You can still install a standalone license on both a main desktop computer and a laptop.
- You still can't take your AutoCAD with you when you leave your "territory".
- You can't transfer a license, and the license automatically terminates if you become insolvent or bankrupt.
It's interesting to note the addition of the "Fixed Term/Limited Duration/Rental License" and "Session Specific Network License", and the increased attention paid to the effects of a maintenance subscription on the license agreement.
The new EULA contains numerous changes in language that in some cases are intended to make the language legally more watertight, in some cases to clarify a term, and in other cases intended to broaden the scope to make it more versatile -- probably in an effort to unify the EULA terms among disparate products.