NDA Obsessions

If I got a dollar every time someone told me to sign an NDA (non-disclosure agreement), I’d retire right now. The irony is that NDAs, trademarks, patents or copyrights are very expensive to defend for a small business. Many aspiring entrepreneurs are concerned that their startup will come across predators who will steal their idea. Little do they realize that protecting their idea could cause them to go out of business!

Last year, we were sued by a Fortune 500 company for a trademark application we naively filed. Although lawyers said we had a fighting chance, we couldn't justify the $250K in fighting dollars to take the case to court. The Fortune 500 company shut down our operations. The moral of the story is NDAs/trademarks/patents/copyrights are great in theory, but unless you have the pockets to defend them, they are nothing but an expensive hobby.

As the CEO of Skillshare, Michael Karnjanaprakorn mentioned once, it didn't matter if others were copying his company because his vision and execution were always farther ahead. Skip the NDA, get the work done, launch and become a success. (Note: it's probably best to get the final word from a lawyer since this is just our opinion!)

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