You know what’s the fastest way to kill a new product? Spending over a year in licensing negotiations with corporations that know you need them more than they need you. An article on the Music Business Worldwide blog recently took aim at comments by the founder of Flipagram: “We did it kind of like entrepreneurs do sometimes, we kind of just did it and [decided] we’d ask for permission after.”
I understand how those comments sound provocative. Venture capitalists (VCs) have a lot of money, right? Startups do pay staff and other types of bills, right? The problem is not that startups don’t want to pay; it’s that the unpredictable nature and length of negotiations is worth the significant legal risk of not licensing straight away. If licensing was transparent and predictable, VCs would gladly spend some extra money in funding startups if it were to take away a big risk like this. Not only would music startups be able to secure more funding, but more music startups would get funded.
Validating product and market assumptions is the most important activity for startups in their early years. Waiting for negotiations that can last a year or more, before being able to launch and test assumptions is idiotic. Especially since you will likely need to adjust features or do a pivot after you actually get to validate assumptions, which means you have to go to the negotiation tables AGAIN.
Curated from Why Startup Founders Ignore Copyright [Hypebot]
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