When we think of creating an app, the first thing that comes to our mind is, why should I protect an idea, and from whom? You may wonder that while it is still in conceptual form, how can someone steal my idea? You may be right, but you need to protect your idea of an app before disclosing it to developers or investors. It is essential to develop a relationship of trust with the developers. There are different legal ways to protect an app idea before making it available for the users.
Appropriate And Legal Ways To Protect An App Idea
Discussed below are some of the legal ways to safeguard your app idea.
Mark It as an Intellectual Property
It is the best way to protect an idea legally, but you must ensure that your idea is new, original, and unique. Intellectual property gives you the time and opportunity to launch your idea in public discourse without being stolen in the middle. Many countries have formulated the laws and act under the intellectual property to save the effort of entrepreneurs and encourage them.
It is the easiest way to protect an app idea. It ensures that no one can use your ideas commercially. You can have trademarks of any of the following related to your unique app idea.
A letter, word or phrases
The list may include features that make your idea unique from others. Before applying for a trademark, do extensive research on the search system of respective countries. If your app idea turns out to be unique, then you can apply for a trademark with a minimal cost.
It is easier to get a copyright for an idea to develop an app. For this, you don't need to have official registration. Many ideas, like a computer program including app idea, writing, visual images, sound recording, broadcast, etc. can be protected through copyright. All these forms of expression fall under the copyright act, and it is free to get. All that you need to do is fulfill some guidelines to get a copyright and protect an app idea.
These guidelines are-
The concept of the app idea must be yours, and it includes your skills and efforts. This clause itself provides a substantial safeguard to the efforts of the original creator.
Today, there are ample apps in the market, and therefore, it isn't easy to differentiate between the app of a particular field. However, you must come up with the idea of having unique functions.
Patent Your App Idea
The patent covers an idea and protects its functionality. A patent right is expensive, and getting approval for it is time taking. Therefore, it is recommended to apply for a patent after the successful launch of your idea.
Sign Confidentiality Agreement
You must sign the confidentiality agreement with the developer with whom you will disclose your app idea.
It may take several sessions with many developers to finalize the contract. So, you must sign this agreement with everyone with whom you are disclosing your app idea. Under this agreement, all the parties involved cannot reveal the idea or even its part to a third-party.
It has similarities with confidentiality agreements with little difference. It is generally a one-way agreement and covers a stricter privacy level than the former. And it is also shorter than the confidentiality agreement, containing only relevant information to protect an app idea.
Proprietary information and invention agreement (PIIA)
If you have started to work on your idea, then it prohibits your employees from revealing the secret in the outside world.
Before exposing your app idea to developers, you must think about confidentiality, as it is the only way to protect an app idea.