Crowdfunding and Its Current Deal with Intellectual Property

With the many crowdfunding platforms around the world, to understate its impact is a sin, a mortal sin.

For those who remain unfamiliar with crowdfunding, it is a way to pool funds for a certain project. In a way, you pitch your ideas to other people and if they like it, they’ll help you realize that vision. Since crowdfunding started, only one word can describe its effect: a phenomenon.

CrowdThe Crowdfunding Phenomenon

A better illustration of how crowdfunding is shaping the world today is a look at the different projects that platforms, such as Kickstarter and GoFundMe have helped fulfill. There’s one person from Ohio who simply wanted to make potato salad (he had a goal of $10), but the campaign gained enough traction that its budget has climbed past $43,000 – all because of crowdfunding.

The $40K potato salad is just one string of the many projects crowdfunding achieved. There’s the (sadly) now-Facebook-owned virtual reality headset Oculus Rift, which could herald a new era in gaming. Singer Amanda Palmer achieved one of the highest funded projects in the history of crowdfunding, a $1 million music deal plus a lot of bonuses.

Thousands of other crowdfunding projects reach their targets every month, too.

The Intellectual Property Conundrum

Nonetheless, crowdfunding is not without any challenges. Apart from gaining traction amidst thousands of other projects, you also have to protect your ideas. With how people depend on the Internet today, almost everyone has an idea worth implementing. But once you post something on the Internet, it’s there forever – that includes your ideas.

LegalBrains.com suggests coming up with an IP strategy before you publicize your idea on a website. This advice has its merits, but how exactly do you plan such a strategy?

The trick to this is to go back to the basics of protecting your ideas. This means understanding all statutes concerning patents and copyrights. Without these simple guidelines, your idea can simply be lost in the fuzz and claimed by someone else. Protecting your idea before it reaches the Internet is the best way to guard yourself.

Crowdfunding is a relatively new field. Lapses are still existent, although the authorities are working on these already. Soon enough, these flaws will be no more, and crowdfunding will continue to be one of the finest examples of philanthropy and entrepreneurship in one.

Posted on by Earnest Walsh in Digi-Serve

About Earnest Walsh

Earnest works as a legal associate in Surrey. He keeps a close watch on the stock market's movements as well.

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