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Advice please?

Postby scmc2010 » Sun May 30, 2010 5:18 pm

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Hello,

I just joined the forum and I'm seeking advice please. I've had alot of ideas in the past and really never had the capital to put them to market and only later to see my same idea on TV or on the shelves at a local store, etc. As some can relate it's very frustrating to know that you had that same idea whether I was first or not remains unseen but just to know I had also thought of it and could of possibly done something with it if I only had the money at the time to pursue my idea/product.

Anyway, here I am again with what I feel may be my best idea to date and once again do not have the money to get this one off the ground so to speak. So my question is this, is there anyway to bring this product to the market without having the capital myself to do so? Can I seek backers and how is this process done without having a patent? Letter of disclosure, confidentiality agreement, etc., and will this even hold up? Who's to say they wont steal the idea themselves? I just really want to make this one count, I have to atleast give it a shot regardless of the outcome. Any suggestions, advice, etc. would be greatly appreciated.

I have been searching through the patent database online and so far this idea/product has not been patented although I still have about 1000 more patents to search through but so far so good as the most relevant patents matching my search criteria or displayed first which I've searched and no match yet. So as of this time my idea/product seems to be available which makes me want to do this even more before I once again see it brought to market without me. Your advice (help) is greatly appreciated, thank you.

Regards,
Steve

PS. Any backers out there???

Re: Advice please?

Postby Scrupulous » Tue Jun 01, 2010 9:05 am

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This is a position that many inventors find themselves in. Here's the gist of it...

A) It would take a phenomenal concept for others to jump at the chance to invest in it for you. B) Not every successfully-marketed product started off being a phenomenal concept.

So, why not offer a percentage of ownership in your concept up front, in exchange for the money or services you need? Chances are, your business partner(s) will be acquiring a percentage anyway, somewhere down the line. Why not cut to the chase, and get your idea going? (If you'd like some help assigning ownership, I can assist you.)

Secondly, going straight to a company with only an NDA in hand is almost like giving your idea to them on a silver platter. Think about it. You are approaching a company that is actually in business to compete with similar products. It is often their DUTY to work around your invention, and to avoid putting themselves under your control. They are practically OBLIGATED to do that, as a competent business/corporation. If you think it's not good business to work around your idea, my friend, that IS business.

By the way, if you have 1000 patents still to research, you are probably spinning your wheels with the patent search. A more efficient search will likely give you a more manageable chunk, from which you can reference forward, to later patents. (Use the "referenced by" in the text patents at the USPTO site, for example.)

Re: Advice please?

Postby scmc2010 » Sun Jun 13, 2010 1:41 pm

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Hi thanks for the reply and sorry for the delayed response. Well, let me first start off by saying someone beat me to it. As I mentioned I was searching the patent database and there it was, the same idea/product patented in 2000, amazing, once again someone beat me too it . Although there is a slight difference maybe I still have a chance with a product modification but really feel that would be a stretch. Oh well, back to the drawing board.

Which brings me to my next question, maybe you could help. I live along the gulf coast (Pensacola Bch, FL.) and as you may of heard, we are experiencing a natural disaster with the BP oil spill. As you can imagine we along with several coastal states and beyond are not happy with the efforts being made to contain and prevent further damage. My question is this. I've come up with a bumper sticker idea that would use a likeness of BPs logo, colors, not their exact logo or name (BP) but a similar design that resembles their logo. What are the laws here, is this any type of infringement, etc.? Basically, my design is different but laid out the same as BPs colors, green, transparent yellow, yellow and white with green lettering. I can email you a picture of the artwork if needed.

My plan is of course to sell the stickers with a percentage going to wildlife rescue and cleanup. I already have a charity on board but need to know the legalities first.

Thank you for your help,
Steve

Re: Advice please?

Postby Bizzy B » Tue Aug 31, 2010 9:35 am

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Scrupulous wrote:Secondly, going straight to a company with only an NDA in hand is almost like giving your idea to them on a silver platter. Think about it. You are approaching a company that is actually in business to compete with similar products. It is often their DUTY to work around your invention, and to avoid putting themselves under your control. They are practically OBLIGATED to do that, as a competent business/corporation. If you think it's not good business to work around your idea, my friend, that IS business.


I'm sure I'm missing something. You make it sound like all companies will try to work around your patent so they don't have to involve you. If that is the case, how does anyone license a product to any company? There has to be a way. Any chance you could share how?

Re: Advice please?

Postby Scrupulous » Tue Aug 31, 2010 6:47 pm

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The NDA does nothing for you, if you're not sure what your claim is.

Most if not all companies have no incentive to publicize a good idea before it is ready to sell. So, you're not really gaining anything with the few companies willing to keep your idea explicitly confidential. Instead, you would be limiting your project to only those people.

I'd say just be clear on what you bring to the table, above and beyond what's already out there. If you're in the US, you can go about it as if you're not bound by the need for confidentiality or priority for an entire year from your first publicization (new word).

There are many topics on licensing here in the forums, though. And, I'm sure you'll find the answers you need if you dig around a bit. But yes, the companies that have the integrity to politely honor your concept seem to be the exception to the rule.

cron