OSS friendly IP Assignment for Employment Agreements

@kemitchell has created Switchmode Developer Agreement | Common Form – which is great – but I am looking for hints, examples, guidance and other prognostications around IP assignment as regards open source work by staff.

Specifically, there are default terms in many cases around “if you use a work computer we own it”.

I actually ended up with some pretty good back channeled examples, at least one of which I hope will trun into

Does anyone have examples of IP Assignment docs of their own to share?

Reference ongoing Twitter thread: https://twitter.com/bmann/status/1481419035141033986

I am likely to turn some of this into a default Canadian agreement that will itself be available for open re-use.

squareoneforms.com for USA employees and contractors. This is more like the usual: company owns it, unless it’s clearly unrelated to work or the law says it can’t.

I’m all for revisiting worker IP terms, but see this as the perfectly reasonable approach the overwhelming majority of the time. Especially for employees and contractors working regularly enough to engage with, or even help reform, a company open source release process. The company owning the rights doesn’t mean they can’t be released. It means the release has to be a company decision, rather than an individual one.

I have clients who hire in Canada. They’re constantly having to tap lawyers in each new province and territory to get even basic hiring terms without any IP innovations. Seems like the US situation, where each subdivision mostly regulates labor for itself. But with heavier overall regulation, Euro-style. So while it takes work to make a nationwide USA hiring form, in Canada it’s much harder, or just plain impractical.

I have requests from staff / potential staff for clarity. Not caring about whether a device is a work or personal item was one of them.

I read through Square One Standard Confidentiality and Intellectual Property Terms

And it has that work computer clause:

  1. work you create using company equipment, supplies, facilities, or Confidential Information

I got one really great document. I am encouraging the people behind it to make it available.

I have access to templates for cross Canada employment. There are a few little Ontario / Quebec differences but they’re not bad. I can recommend better lawyers for your clients if they like :wink:

1 Like

Much appreciated! I’d like to see those.