Best of luck.
Mr. Howard gives a fine answer.
For a lawyer, it is much more difficult to identify what is missing than to comment on what is there. The reason long term relationships with one's attorney, CPA and other professionals is so that they can raise issues you may not perceive.
We normally interview our prospective clients for an hour at no charge. Not every client and every attorney is a good mix. After one has scratched the surface one can begin to make meaninful, non-generic recommendations.
Good luck in your endeavor.
First don't violate the intellectual property rights of other entities, second ensure your IP rights are protected, third make written contracts with vendors and customers (lawyers are better at that you are and it's pretty cheap), fourth you're probably working by yourself, but if you have a few employees ensure that they sign either an application you can buy at an office supply store or some other form that confirms they are employed at will, fifth ensure that the employees have signed an agreement not to use your trade secrets for personal gain or take them with them when they leave your employ, sixth if you need an EULA, have one drafted by a pro, seventh ensure all possible permutations of your website name are owned by you.
Best of luck. I attach some links to articles that will be helpful.
The answers here by colleagues illustrate many of the issues your company's legal and business affairs department, comprising of you and your trusted and knowledge tech, media and startup lawyer, can handle.
While I like the checklist above, not all the items may apply to the current stage of the venture. As this point, a review of the business plan, which will include production notes on the videos, and the revenue model, along with a description of the website, can determine the legal issues to address based on those activities. Whatever your legal & business affairs strategy is, I venture it will include whether your trademark is legally protected and non-infringing, whether you should forma corporation or LLC, a contract with your developer to build the website which will deliver your content (web developer services agreement), your content production plans and copyright clearances related thereto (very important) and legal considerations related to the promotion and distribution strategy.
This is a publishing play, no different than a series of exercise VHS videos sold in 1993. But the web of course brings exponential opportunities for content distribution.
I have experience working with several companies who published videos of this nature, and pending no conflict of interest, would be happy to discuss your business model, production plan and distribution strategy in more detail.
Are You Planning on Opening a New Website?
Below is a checklist for legal issues I use for new e-commerce clients.
1. Busines entity - Are you going to be a C corp, an LLC or a sole proprietorship?
2. Terms of Service - This is your contract with your visitors and is the most important item for any e-commerce site. A little work here brings big dividends in the future.
4. FTC guidlines - The FTC has been regulating business advertising for almost a century. All of their advertising guidlines apply to e-commerce sites.
5. Trademark - Start with a commmon law trademark "TM" and register your mark if you are successful.
6. Copyright - If it is on the web, it already belongs to somebody. Did you buy a license for the images you are using? Do you have a DMCA notice on your web site?
7. Do you need and have an EIN? You can get that for free.
8. Do you have employees? - If so you need written policies regarding their authority and use of the internet.
9. Do you know the difference between a "browser wrap" and a "click wrap" and which do you need?
When I discuss this list with clients other issues arise. Finally, I always discuss with my clients their need for good accounting services. An accountant's advice as you start up can save you many dollars in tax that you might not save if you wait to speak to an accountant until your first tax return is due.
I hope this list will give you pause to think about those issues for which you might need to seek professional advice.
Please feel free to contact me concerning your issues (No Charge.) I also offer a new client special to perform this work.
Andrew M. Jaffe
Attorney at Law
E-commerce (short for “electronic commerce”) refers to business which is conducted using computer networks, most typically the Internet.
A sole proprietorship is a business owned and operated by one person in which there is no legal distinction between the business and owner.
Written by attorney Robert Scharf
New businesses are flocking to Vermont farmer’s markets. From soap-making to prepared foods and traditional farm produce stands, today’s farmer’s market is the best micro-enterprise... more
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