Recently I was faced with a number of requests to sign NDA’s by businessmen willing to discuss strategies with me.
While we understand the good intentions behind the reason to do NDA’s, I find them simply redundant and not worth the time.
This is because of three reasons:
1. Ideas are i. Worth nothing and ii. not transferrable.
2. Your idea will never be unique. It is the application/implementation of the same that will stand out.
3. Startups don’t have the budget to mitigate against an NDA.
Here’s how I really think and NDA should be written.
This agreement is entered into this ___ day of ___ 20__ by and between _____________ (hereinafter “The Advisor”) and _____________ (hereinafter “The Keeper of the Idea” or “I”) regarding information The Keeper of The Idea is choosing to share with The Advisor (hereinafter “The Idea”).
WHEREAS I possess a bright idea that I am choosing to disclose to you, The Advisor, with the mutual understanding that you are my friend and that you will not screw me.
Manners of screwing include, but are not limited to:
- Adapting some or all of The Idea for your own purposes.
- Choosing to share some or all of The Idea with those who are not bound to this agreement.
- Failing to do your best to protect The Idea.
This is a “warm blanket” agreement with which, by requesting your agreement to it, I am helping myself sleep at night by placing a small amount of formality on the sharing of The Idea. I believe The Idea will only improve as a result of having solicited your honest and clear feedback.
The term of this agreement shall continue until The Idea is no longer confidential.
This agreement has absolutely no legal binding. However, upon breach or violation of the agreement, I will feel free to do any of the following:
- Curse you under my breath.
- Publicly disclose the manner of your screw-i-tude.
- Write about your transgressions in ALL CAPS.
- No longer consider you a person with whom I can share my ideas.
Sharing of some or all of The Idea with third parties may occur provided that you have cleared this with me and the third parties agree to the principles of the FriendDA.
Termination of this FriendDA can be executed by either party, but don’t be a douche.
You are acknowledging and agreeing to this disclosure by reading it. If you find any part of this agreement uncomfortable or confusing, don’t sweat it. We’ll talk about something else.