[nycphp-talk] how much to charge?

inforequest 1j0lkq002 at
Tue Jan 18 17:52:23 EST 2005

Original Message:
From: harvey |nyphp dev/internal group use|
Date: Tue, 18 Jan 2005 17:15:21 -0500
To: talk at
Subject: Re: [nycphp-talk] how much to charge?

> >Knowing that I "developed" it while I was at work (though web
> >programming is NOT the core of my work, it was more like a side
> >project).
>You should look into who legally owns your work.  It may be the company 
>and not you the individual.

If you developed the code at work while "on the clock", it is not yours. 
 it's a "work for hire" and the copyright belongs to your employer.

the better question is... why do those other people want to use it?

1. They know how your company has been using it, so they are comfortable
choosing it as well.

2. They know you, and are choosing you to make it work for them, too.

3. They have considered all other options (commercial, free/os CMS, blogs,
groupware) and determined that yours is the best choice.

I would bet it is #1 and #2, in which case you should recognize it is YOU
that have value, and not your code. Ask your boss if he wants to be in the
business of providing web services like this. If he is, perhaps you'll lead
up a new division. If he is not, negotiate a deal where you are free (with
written permission) to do this, with this code, and with his clients, on
your own. Of course put the raw codd into that document, so that there is a
record of exactly what the code is that you worked on while on the clock.
later, wen yu re-write the whole thing from scratch without a single copied
line of code, this will be important.

If it really is #3, then figure out what it is that makes it so unique and
ask your boss to either a) pay to get a patent and/or file formal copyright
or b) give you a written statement that he does not want to purse
intellectual property ownership of it, and you can.

The idea that company time means company ownership is not absolute. In many
cases the company has to either pursue it or drop it. Of course the hard
part is when they know this and they file just enough paper to retain the
rights but not enough to make it happen (big corps are already setup that
way). It doesn't sound like you are in that spot.

Of course I am not a lawyer and have never built a megablockbuster software
app or stewarded a dot com success or anything else for that matter, so
take this advice for the value of the bandwidth it was ransfered over 9the
first time).

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