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Vendayan

A rough legality issue

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I've currently started working on am ASP.NET driven site where various teams of independant developers are encouraged to collaborate efforts. Team A might have 4 coders and no artists where Team B might have a more mixed talent, but a less experienced coder. While helping to facilitate their development needs by offering various services, my site will also reward these 2 teams for collaborating. Team A could assist Team B's inexperienced coder if Team B can help out with artwork. My question then regards the legality of it all. I'm wondering if it's possible to cover all copyright issues and protect the teams with a terms of agreement contract. Can anyone offer any insight as to what problems I'm likely to encounter and what would be the best way of dealing with this? I don't want any teams to have to give up any rights to their work and when they do collaborate, all rights to work done for another team should be FORFEITED TO THE RECIPIENT TEAM. Also no teams are allowed to make open sourced projects. This is to protect those who wouldn't want their contributions shared with the global community, but only the associate team.

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If I get this right, you want to become a match-maker of some sort between various indy groups. Each group (or company) has its own legal structure for IP ownership, and one group is to potentially become a contractor for another group.

In essence, a group that needs the services of another should contract them out as such. I don't know why you would want to get involved at all, besides simply providing access to a database of groups they can select from and contact.

In this sort of service, what you want is to limit your liabilities. Each group should recognize - in writing preferably - that your services only covers the match-making process and not the results of the collaboration. That liability coverage should also specify that the data that you gather for that match-making process is no more valid that what each group has put in. In other words, you don't want to get sued for false claims because some group advertized themselves as veterans from Blizzard when in fact they are a bunch of n00bs.

Hope this helps.

-cb

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Quote:
Original post by cbenoi1
In this sort of service, what you want is to limit your liabilities. Each group should recognize - in writing preferably - that your services only covers the match-making process and not the results of the collaboration. That liability coverage should also specify that the data that you gather for that match-making process is no more valid that what each group has put in. In other words, you don't want to get sued for false claims because some group advertized themselves as veterans from Blizzard when in fact they are a bunch of n00bs.

And as mentioned in the earlier thread link...

the only person who can properly write that type of agreement is a qualified lawyer. There are probably many other legal issues, and those can be explained to you by a competent lawyer.

Go find a competent lawyer in your area. For the services you need it will only cost a few hundred bucks (my lawyer is $125/hr), and legal help up front is really cheap compared to any costs you will face when problems happen.

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Quote:
Original post by frob
And as mentioned in the earlier thread link...

the only person who can properly write that type of agreement is a qualified lawyer. There are probably many other legal issues, and those can be explained to you by a competent lawyer.

Go find a competent lawyer in your area. For the services you need it will only cost a few hundred bucks (my lawyer is $125/hr), and legal help up front is really cheap compared to any costs you will face when problems happen.


And on that, you should always find out as much as you can, and prepare as much as you can, before you see the lawyer. Legal services can be had for a very reasonable price ("a few hundred bucks"), if you have a clue before you walk into their office. If you don't then you'll be burning money while the lawyer is wasting time trying to get all the required information from you, and it will likely end up with you make several trips back and forth.

Oh, and of course find a lawyer who knows the industry - just going to a "lawyer" won't work because law is a huge area. Specifically you want a lawyer who understands IP law both in relation to artistic (i.e. a hollywood lawyer) and to technical property (i.e. a lawyer for an engineering firm).

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