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FEAR OF SHARING IDEAS! How do you deal with it?

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FEAR OF SHARING IDEAS! How do you deal with it?

Post  nimblejack on Mon 21 Mar 2011 - 18:07

This information has been copied in from the Linked In Inventors United Group:


Do you still have fear about someone stealing your idea even if you have properly protected it? If you don't get the word out it will just stay in your brain and remain "intellectual" forever. I still have fear from time to time. It helps me to keep moving forward by recognizing the risks and potential at the same time. What do you do about the fear?

James Filbird

You pose a very good question Jeff. The simple answer about what to do with the fear of sharing your idea to others is to overcome your fear and make intelligent choices about who and what you share about your idea to. I have a "million dollar idea" that I have only told a handful of people and am hesitant to tell anyone else because I don't know them well enough to trust them with my concept. Unfortunately, even signed NDAs don't keep people from stealing your idea and beating you to market with it.

I am currently looking for a trustworthy mechanical engineer to design my product for prototyping and patent purposes. I need to find someone to do this otherwise my idea goes no further. I have worked with some designers in the past but they are not qualified for this particular product idea and I have parted ways with the others. So, I suppose fear is keeping me from moving forward with my concept but it's temporary. Fear is a great motivator and sooner or later I will find the right person to do what I need so I can proceed with my "million dollar idea." I need to be smart, patient and cautious in finding this person. This is my suggestion to you.

Meredith Freeman

Excellent comment from James. My response to the question is to think about why (and how you felt when) you invented the concept in the first place and use that motivation to move forward. Not to put too fine a point on it, but did you invent for monetary gain, fame, or a philanthropic reason? Is it enough to sustain you through the process? Finally, do your homework. Fear is mostly the result of lack of information.

Jack D'Alelio

A certain amount of fear will always be there. You just have to use an NDA whenever in doubt and hope that people will abide by it. The key is to leave a good paper trail that proves you're the originator of your ideas. You have to hope you don't end up like the guy in the movie Flash of Genius. Ideas do sometimes get stolen, but I think that's by far the exception rather than the norm. Nobody gets far in the long run by stealing other people's intellectual property. Stick with people that have a good reputation in the inventing community like the Big Idea Group for instance. And always stay away from invention promotion companies like Davison et all. You all should take discussions like this to the UIA Inventors Education forum. There are several people there with a LOT of experience in these matters who can help!

Gary McCallum

After recieving my first patent a friend once asked me if I knew where most of the good ideas were. A curious "no" was the responce and "in the grave yard" was the reply.
What is probably stoping you from persuing this $1,000,000 idea is financing and financing will probably prevent anyone else from exploiting it. If some one did want to profit from your IP and they have half a brain they would be better of paying you a royality.
As Jack said protect yourself with a paper trail.
The biggest reason for secrecy is so as not to invalidate the ability to obtain a patent.
NDA all the way. First outline and draw the concept then send it to yourself regestered mail and put it in a safety deposit box. This gives you proof of conceiving the idea and documented dated historical evidence all in one.

Roger Brown

I believe fear comes from lack of research, not willing to accept the risk involved and what do they do if they get rejected. Everyone has heard someone deathly afraid that once the genie is out of the bottle every company on the planet is going to steal their idea. So, others hear these horror stories and want to build a fortress around their idea so no one gets in. All this does is put them in debt building the fortress of paperwork around their idea and wasted time they spend inside this fortress waiting the the paperwork to all be approved before the idea sees the light of day. Meanwhile others willing to take a calculated risk are beating them to the market.
Rejection of their baby is the final straw and it is normally the Inventors theory that the public just isn't ready to see the miracle of their product or the people reviewing this idea are just to stupid to know a great product when they see it.

If you look at what is considered the traditional method of get an idea, tell no one until it is patented, have a prototype or factory sample made, do a market analysis, hire a company to represent you and then go after a company I have to be the highest risk route you can take. Yet, I have 9 products licensed and on the market and have spent the least amount of money of anyone I have talked to on their product. Is it because I have the dumbest luck of anyone on the planet or am fearless? No, I still have the same fears of anyone else. I have just learned to do my research up front to minimize my hurdles and make informed decisions.

Jack D'Alelio

Hey Roger! I'm glad to hear you chiming in on this! When I said in my last post: "You all should take discussions like this to the UIA Inventors Education forum. There are several people there with a LOT of experience in these matters who can help!" Roger Brown is one of the people I was referring to! What do you think Roger? Should these guys join us over in the UIA forum? Wink

Howard Davis

Gary McCallum wrote: "First outline and draw the concept then send it to yourself regestered mail and put it in a safety deposit box. This gives you proof of conceiving the idea and documented dated historical evidence all in one."
I haven't heard the "mail it to yourself" protection scheme mentioned in quite some time. As proof of inventorship, it is problematic. The purpose of mailing yourself a letter is to prove that you are the first to invent since the US is a first-to-invent country. However, it is not good proof since the Post Office doesn't check to see if the envelope is well sealed. It would not be difficult for someone to mail one's self an empty envelope and then later fill it with the description of an invention one wishes to steal.
The method I currently use is to write out a description and have it notarized. A better way is to do this in a bound journal format and make periodic notations describing efforts to improve the invention and efforts to get a patent.
Another method I am thinking of using is to file a claim of ownership at the county court house. This would probably be considered a publication, so you would lose the ability to file in countries other than the US and one would need file a US patent application within a year. However, it would be a strong proof of the date of invention.

Jack D'Alelio

I'm inclined to agree with Howard, I know some people subscribe to the "mail it to yourself" approach and in theory at least it seems to make sense, but for the reason just given it's far from bullet proof. Perhaps a lot of this fear will all go away once the US aligns itself with the rest of the world and goes to a "first to file" system which we probably should have done a long time ago. If you think about it almost anything used to prove “first to invent” can be foiled somehow. I think it would be pretty easy to backdate any sort of bound notebook and even a notary's stamp and signature. Roger makes a good point when he says that doing good research can do a lot to alleviate (though never totally remove) an inventor's fear about disclosing an idea. In this day and age where we have so much information at our fingertips thanks to the internet, it has become ever more difficult to scam, cheat or steal from people without being discovered and exposed rather quickly. But the fear, much like any sort risk one undertakes will never completely go away. All we can do it MANAGE it to best of our abilities and that includes doing a lot of due diligence on ANY entity you plan on disclosing your ideas to!


Posts : 34
Join date : 2011-02-20
Age : 61
Location : Massachusetts

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Fear Of Sharing....My Thoughts

Post  Ready2Invent on Thu 7 Apr 2011 - 11:33

When I originally started out on this venture a couple years back I was given what I would call "Bad Advice". I was told not to submit without getting NDA's with a Non Compete Clause. The person I was being guided by had been burned once in the past, and was very skeptical about sharing ideas with ANYONE.....Even A Trusted Family Member.

I beg you to try to get a company to add in a Non Compete Clause, and revise their already existing NDA. They look at ideas daily, and they are not fixing to change protocol for you or me.

The way I feel about it is this........Had I have sat on my idea, it would not have a licensing deal on it as we speak. I would not advise anyone to just shout it from the roof tops, but how else do you get feedback on it, if you never speak of it.

A million dollar idea stuck in a notebook, is just a thought on paper, and it is still only worth zero!

I have realized there are not near as many people out to steal your ideas as one may think. Why would a company steal your idea this day in age. The power of the internet is in your hands, and within minutes you could expose them.

Trust your instincts.....You can leave it in a notebook, or you can share it with someone that just may get it to market for you Smile. When you find a company, do your research, find out what they are all about, the power of the internet is in your hands. You can find out all kinds of stats on companies now that 15 years ago would have been very difficult to find. Once you are comfortable, share your ideas with them, how else do you ever know what may happen.

"In This World
We have to take a chance,
Sometimes they're worth it,
And sometimes they're not,
But I'm telling you now,
You will NEVER know

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Join date : 2011-03-09

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Fear Of Sharing....My Thoughts

Post  Roger Brown on Fri 8 Apr 2011 - 7:42

You are quite correct. In this day and age of instant info why do Inventors still use companies known for making millions of dollars from the Inventor and returning little to no results for the Inventor? All to often I have Inventors contact me that in debt over their head and have nothing to show for it. Spending 2 hours or less on the internet could have saved them thousands and they don't do it.
Glad to see you moving forward and finding success.
Roger Brown

Posts : 95
Join date : 2011-02-20
Location : South Carolina

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another good link on this issue!

Post  Guest on Wed 13 Apr 2011 - 6:23

another good link on this issue!


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Re: FEAR OF SHARING IDEAS! How do you deal with it?

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