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Thread: What's my great idea worth and how do i pitch it without it getting stolen?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mikl View Post
    But surely registering a patent is different from pitching an idea to an investor. A patent is a detailed design for something that you know can be implemented (at least, that's my understanding). Presumably, you wouldn't go to the trouble and expense of registering a patent unless you had the means to follow it through (or you were confident you could license it to someone who had the means). An idea, on the other hand, is just an idea.

    Also, isn't there some provision that says that a patent will lapse if it's not implemented within a certain period?

    What I'm trying to say is that registering a patent involves a certain commitment on the part of the inventor that tossing ideas around doesn't.

    Mike
    'Tossing ideas around' will be of no interest to a potential investor - in fact you will burn your investment opportunity for ever with that person...
    If you pop back to my post at #12 on the thread above - page 2 - you will see the order that is not unusual in a business involving investment monies...
    investor doesn't come in until stage 5
    'tossing ideas around' is stage 1
    patent is stage 3
    so there is an order to these things...

    so you are right, you wouldn't look at patents until after the ideas phase and after developing the concept - you should by the end of stage 2 know as acurately as you can that at a conceptual level it works - then it is worth a patent as the actual product detail can be ironed out later - as it works conceptually a product will be possible - so worth patenting...

    but you don't even talk to an investor until way beyond that
    they want to know:
    -that conceptually it works (stages 1 & 2)
    - that you have the IP protected (stage 3)
    - that you can demonstrate that the concept will work in reality (prototype - stage 4)
    - then there is something worth investing in... stage 5.

    of course with an online business it is a bit different - as mentioned above, patenting processes is not a universal approach - but you can still take the same principles - you just need your IP to be protected...
    the investor wants to know that the business is as risk free at that stage as possible - there is enough risk in a new business in the running of it to not need additional / controllable risk...
    so proof of concept / proof of code / proof of IP protection / etc. will all be important

    so, even online there will be a number of stages prior to talking to an investor - they will almost never be involved at the ideas stage - unless they are wearing a different hat at that point

    Alasdair

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