Facebook egg on face?
The past week’s stir about the Facebook ownership should make obvious for any company that clearing ownership issues and keeping a manageable database of all signed agreements should be on their top priority list.
A short version of the story, for those of you not familiar with the issue: Paul Celia, a former employer of Mark Zuckerberg sued Facebook claims that he owns 84% ownership rights in the business. His claims are based on a “Work for hire” contract signed by the two parties some years back. While the battle is carried out in court, public opinion is divided in two: one questioning the highly promoted success story of Zuckerberg’s social network and another questioning the validity of Celia’s claims.
Extrapolating from this story, one lesson can be drawn: as the stakes get bigger with a company’s growth so will the malicious threats against you and your company. It is therefore crucial to be prepared by creating a map of all possible legal claims surrounding your company. From this map structural control can be achieved through property construction and the creation and effective management of any and all agreements. In this way you can assure stable base of growth for your company and a fast response to outside attacks.
Please do add your comments – and in case you need it, here’s a copy of the contract “Work for hire” contract. I am looking forward to any comments.