Copyright: varijanta

This column is a lawyer's lament.  I'm getting soooo tired of bad contracts and bad contracting practices.  Yet, they are what I see every day in the world of technology contracts, and things are not getting any better after all these years.   READ MORE >


Seemingly innocuous documents can haunt your company in a courtroom. The best defense is destroying documents. If you do it right, you're legal and safe. If you get it wrong, you may find a judge accusing you of destroying relevant evidence. The answer is a well-formulated document retention policy (DRP).

While I admit that nobody will ever win a business leadership and vision award from the Chamber of Commerce for giving time and attention to the development of a DRP, you need to do it. It's like sleep. You may not feel like it's productive time, but you shouldn't try to live without it.  READ MORE >


Providing access for employees to email, the Internet, and other technology has become indispensable to your company’s business operations. Your employees use of technologies like email, cloud computing, SaaS systems, and external social networks can greatly increase their productivity. But beware; potential liability may follow such use in ways you can’t imagine. What follows are some hints for staying out of trouble.

Many employers have reacted to the risks associated with the employee’s use of technologies such as email and the Internet by installing filtering and monitoring devices. While this may be the right step for some, it’s not the most important step to take and it’s not right for everybody.  READ MORE >


It is time for companies to take their blinders off.  Social networking is not going away.  You can choose to embrace it now or wait until your company is the last one in.  Either way, your company will use social networking at some point.  Why wait? READ MORE >


Enterprises are increasingly willing to rely on data storage in the cloud and software as a service (“SaaS”) solutions.  These are significant changes from the traditional software model where you store your data locally and your enterprise licenses the software it uses.  This article will discuss some unique contract considerations in SaaS deals and how SaaS deals differ from traditional software licenses. READ MORE >


In the world of software, things always change.  All too often, Vendors introduce new products with new features, give the new product a new name, and then leave you without an upgrade or migration path that you find desirable.  Having spent six, seven, or eight figures on your enterprise software you could find yourself in a weak negotiating position if you did not consider this possibility when you negotiated your original deal. READ MORE >


Have you ever had the feeling that your outsourced tech project would never stop growing? Have you ever felt like it’ll never be finished? Your project may be suffering from “scope creep.” READ MORE >


You have finally signed that big deal that took forever to negotiate.  Regardless of whether it was a SaaS, managed services, or cloud computing deal, you are just glad the deal is finally wrapped.  After pen is put to paper and the contracts are all signed, you pop the corks, thank your tech lawyer for his great work, send him home, and get back to your “normal” duties as CIO.  The legal part is mercifully over and now you can get back to business sans lawyers. READ MORE >


The world of computers and information technology (“IT”) has developed some unusual norms in warranties and allocating risk. In other industries, they might seem absurd, but not in IT. As long as you understand the significance of the way IT contracts are done, you can come to a fair deal. READ MORE >


In the world of tech deals — more than other types of deals — my clients want to sign nondisclosure agreements quickly. I'm sure that many people will disagree with me on this one, but I like to avoid NDAs in the early stages of a deal. My feeling is that you shouldn't be exchanging secrets with strangers and that doesn't change no matter what they've signed. READ MORE >


Tech related deals sometimes lead to disputes just like any other type of agreement. It might be a software development deal gone sour, an outsourcing deal straight from hell or whatever, but things go wrong. When they do, lawsuits often follow. This is your "how to" on negotiating your way out of a major dispute involving technology. READ MORE >


I started my career in a mid-sized law firm doing sophisticated corporate deals about 28 years ago.  Just over 20 years ago, my practice evolved into doing sophisticated tech, telecom and outsourcing deals.  With this evolution, I found new contracting norms.  The most significant was that I went from a world of good first drafts of agreements prepared by competent lawyers to a world where first drafts often came from illiterates.  This article is a how-to guide to get you from illiteracy to a workable and fair agreement. READ MORE >


As a tech lawyer, the thing that I do more than anything else is negotiate.  Almost every time I take a phone call or meet with somebody, I’m negotiating something.  Most people are so unskilled at it that sometimes it feels like taking candy from a baby.  Here’s a primer on improving your skills. READ MORE >


When clients come to me asking for an evaluation of their remedies because their tech deal has gone sour, the single worst remedy and lawsuit killer I often find in existing tech contracts is that “standard” limitation of liability clause. It never ceases to amaze me how people do not pay attention to these provisions as they blithely sign-off on a one-sided agreement. It’s just one little clause and yet it can cause so much damage. READ MORE >


An improperly created website can breed lawsuits. It's not the place to test the limits of the law. Once you put information out on the Net, it's there for anybody to see. It's the ultimate in unrestricted access. You might create a site for potential customers, but your competitors and enemies get to see it too. A cautious and conservative approach is the way to go. How cautious you need to be will vary depending on several things. The preventive medicine is a legal audit of your website. READ MORE >


In the connected world that is 2009, almost every company has a trade secret that it wants to keep. Between BlackBerries, home email accounts, and USB ports that can write gigs of data to a flash drive, it’s only getting harder to protect those trade secrets. READ MORE >