> From: "Zobarich, Richard M." <rzobarich at shaw.ca> > Date: Tue, 26 Jul 2005 18:34:16 -0500 > To: Todd Warfel <lists at toddwarfel.com> > Cc: <discuss at interactiondesigners.com> > Subject: Re: [ID Discuss] Intellectual Property and Usability Testing > > [Please voluntarily trim replies to include only relevant quoted material.] > > Todd Warfel wrote: > >> This is the part I'm struggling with. Perhaps I'm not clear on what >> you're asking. >> >> Is the company stating that there's IP in the product you're testing, >> or that there's IP in the method you're using to do the usability >> testing? If the later, you're probably going to run into problems with >> a little thing called "prior work." Unless you come up with an >> entirely new method of usability testing. >> >> What am I missing? > > Perhaps I wasn't clear. An influential person is trying to assert the > latter, in the interest of securing University "know how (to do > usability testing)"; assuming the "know how" exists only in University > Land. Others argue that there is no University know how to license, > period. For example, I know how to conduct Usability Tests and I am not > a University Researcher. Are you suggesting that if University > Researchers have an "entirely" new way of doing usability tests, that > they might be able to license the methodology as IP? Could you > elaborate on what you mean by "an entirely new method of usability > testing"? > > Also, could you elaborate on "prior work" and how that might correspond > to IP? > > Thank again. > Richard Richard et.al.;
One of the things I am struggling with is: what are you testing?
Intellectual property usually only applies to something tangible: a process
(step by step) or a thing (Pokemon). "Know-how" seems intangible and would
usually be covered under a consulting" agreement: you get paid for using
your know how. The output of the "know how" now that would be a different
matter: your consulting agreement should have lots of words about who owns
So in broad strokes: you provide the item to be tested, we perform the
test: who owns the results? Do you share them? Does your client own them
exclusively? Or (more preferred) do they remain yours that you have licensed
to your client for their private review.
I am sure Nielsen has language in his contracts that prevents clients from
using his recommendations in advertising: Jakob says its lovely...4 out of 5
usability specialists say...
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