Tag Archives: specifications

Why use an attorney in the negotiation process?

It is important to analyze what is happening during a business transaction at the negotiation table. 1. People are bartering about price for a service. 2. People are attempting to “sell” or “upsell” a particular service. and lastly 3. They are trying to close the deal.

Where does an attorney fit in?

When a good attorney is at the table, the attorney is going to attempt to define the service provided as best as possible. In an IT world, we are going for concrete specifications, whether that is passed on packet loss, satisfactory performance, or goods manufactured to specific details. This is going to help in bartering for the price. Maybe the other party is worried that the price is too high and won't get the performance while paying large fees. If the attorney were there, they could contribute by adding in clauses to the deal that would allocate recourse if the contract was not performed up to specification. In defining those specifications and working out the recourses at the negotiation table, not only with the service provider be happier in knowing exactly what they are committing to, and striving to meet that performance goal, the other party is going to feel comfortable in knowing that he hasn't just thrown a large amount of money out the window without a guarantee of product.

If you have a business minded attorney that knows your product and knows your business, the attorney should be able to sell and upsell your product as good, if not better than your sales team. After all, Attorney's are trained in the art of persuasion. Some shine in the courtroom, others shine at the negotiation table, choose the right attorney for the right job.

Lastly, they can help close the deal. That is one thing that attorneys are generally very good at. After all, they got their clients to sign on the dotted line. I would assume they can add that incentive to help close your deal as well.

In the end, get your attorney in there early. Define the objectives, sell the service, and close the deal. After all, business is supposed to be fun, isn't it?


Safe Harbor for Websites

The DMCA provides in section 17 U.S.C. section 512(c) several “safe harbor” provisions for service provider's connection to infringing online materials. These safe harbor provisions are usually applicable when a service provider is either unaware, unable to be aware, or unable to regulate the content that is being transmitted or shared. However, the DMCA safe harbor provisions were initially intended to protect for Web Hosts and service providers, and not necessarily the web sites themselves, but that was before the introduction of user content based websites such as YouTube, Myspace, Craigslist, and many others.

However, the DMCA does require that service providers adopts and utilizes policies to both terminate repeat infringers and apply standardized acceptable procedures in the prevention of copyright infringement.

If you are planning on developing, operating, or maintaining a website which authorizes, encourages, our utilizes user generated content, there several things which one should take into account in regards to protecting yourself from law suit.

1. Ensure that your website and its use falls under the specifications of the DMCA “safe harbor” provisions, whether that be section 512(c) or any other provision.

2. Develop a policy and procedure in which the website is able to remove content which has been flagged as infringing material and notification of both the content provider and the user who submitted the infringing material.

3. Let your site take its natural course. In other words, it would behoove the website owner to minimize the control of material submitted by users on the website. The more control the Owner and maintainers of a website exert, the more the owner/maintainer will be responsible for the content which users upload.

4. Do not target any revenue generating plans at infringing or potentially infringing content. One of the major downfalls of Grokster were the advertisements which encouraged users to infringe on copyrighted materials.

5. Do not directly infringe either by content posted by the owner or maintainer of the website, or encouraged. If you encourage infringement or post the content yourself, it is more likely that a court will deny any “safe harbor” provision protections.

6. Attempt to the largest degree possible the licensing of content from providers. The more licensing agreements a website is able to sign, the less likely someone will bring suit.

Please consult an attorney for any specific advice in regards to the DMCA, or Website Compliance.


*This article was written by Jeffrey C. Neu, Esq. an Internet and Technology Lawyer in New Jersey.