cupcake with pink icing on top 
Photo byAmerican Heritage Chocolate on Unsplash

Reading your own contracts

To avoid self embarrassment

Once upon a time, in fact, this very morning, we were asked to sign an NDA.

We are a California corporation located in (you guessed it) California.

They are also a California corporation located in (and you are two for two in guessing) California.

The contract specifies that all legal action will take place in (bet you won’t be three of three) West Virginia.

The contracts lists the confidential information as “factory processes and recipes for making cupcakes.”  It also covers “the distribution channels and packing methods for cupcakes.”

So, of course, the primary (and only) business of the company is (bet you can’t get three out of four) translating children’s story books.

They’ve been using this NDA for many years.  They haven’t changed location. They haven’t changed industries.

I’m thinking of adding a clause to our NDA requiring that the counter-party wear a top hat to all meetings and bake me a chocolate cake on my birthday. I wonder how long it will be before anyone notices.

Have you signed any of our agreements recently?

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Written by Russell Brand

Russell has started three successful companies, one of which helped agencies of the federal government become very early adopters of open source software, long before that term was coined. His first project saved The American taxpayer 250 million dollars. In his work within federal agency, he was often called, “the arbiter of truth,” facilitating historically hostile groups and factions to effectively work together towards common goals


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