IPR for a new Google business service?
December 4, 2009 6:17 AM   Subscribe

How do I go about proposing a new business service concept to Google?

So I got this great idea for a new business service on Google. See http://www.google.com/friendconnect/home/overview?hl=en for an example. My question is how to go about protecting my idea and entering into a meaningful discussion with them on feasability. Apologies for being vague about the idea itself, for obvious reasons.
posted by Eltulipan to Work & Money (10 answers total)
 
Based on other Google properties (Docs, Voice, Maps, etc), the best way would appear to be to develop it yourself, and then be acquired.
posted by rokusan at 6:24 AM on December 4, 2009


The common wisdom seems to be that ideas are a dime a dozen, i.e. nobody is really interested in your idea. If, on the other hand, you can implement and execute, people might start to listen.
posted by dhoe at 6:43 AM on December 4, 2009


Or you could get a job at Google and then work on your idea as a 20% project.

If your idea is good, does it need to be done by google? like Rokusan said, you could develop it yourself and then sell it.

But no one buys "ideas" they buy things that already exist, even for physical inventions (which are the easiest to patent) people want a working prototype to buy.
posted by delmoi at 7:11 AM on December 4, 2009 [2 favorites]


But no one buys "ideas" they buy things that already exist, even for physical inventions (which are the easiest to patent) people want a working prototype to buy.

This is the only point that matters. No major business will listen to an unsolicited idea pitch because it exposes all sorts of problems regarding ownership.

You've gotta build it. If you're not in it for the money (you just want to see it done), host it on Google Code.
posted by mkultra at 7:42 AM on December 4, 2009


Another one to emphasize that every great idea has already come into being; it's the ability to make it happen that makes it valuable, nothing less.
posted by davejay at 10:10 AM on December 4, 2009


As everyone said above, no one will buy an idea. But one method I've heard to monetize an idea like this is to research and write a killer business plan that not only sells the idea and the market, but demonstrates that you are by far the best person to develop it: you have the skills, you know the market inside-out, you have a realistic plan for implementation that requires only reasonable risk, etc. Then you send it to the company you hope to impress along with a resume and ask them to hire you to develop it.

I have no idea whether this would work with Google, and you may just convince them that the idea is worth pursuing but not that you're the person to pursue it. It also raises the question of why, if you could do this at Google, you can't just do it yourself and get acquired. But it's better than just showing up with your idea in a letter and trying to get money for it.
posted by hayvac at 10:28 AM on December 4, 2009


Valid points all, especially about ability to execute. There is one snatch with this: I can not develop it myself as I would need to datamine raw Google *queries* for the idea to work. I do not believe this capability is open with the Google API's.
posted by Eltulipan at 11:14 AM on December 4, 2009


...then you need to acquire enough venture capital and business acumen to persuade Google to sell you access to that data, so you can develop your product idea.
posted by skintension at 11:32 AM on December 4, 2009


Valid points all, especially about ability to execute. There is one snatch with this: I can not develop it myself as I would need to datamine raw Google *queries* for the idea to work. I do not believe this capability is open with the Google API's.

Woah, you mean you're not aware of the massive AOL search data release/scandal? Perhaps rather then trying to get Google to give you access to it's data, you could just use google to find a copy.

Whatever technique you're planning to do, you can probably do using that dataset, it's 20 million records with about 650k uniquely identified individuals.

Anyway, there are lots of search engines that are not google. You could probably work with one of them, or you could start your own search engine perhaps using Nutch, advertise it enough to get some people to use it, and then get the data that way (I'm sure it would be very expensive)

If you're idea would work, it would probably work on the AOL data.
posted by delmoi at 12:04 PM on December 4, 2009 [1 favorite]


Big companies (with deep pockets) really don't want to receive unsolicited ideas or inventions. Here is Apple's policy. The reason is easy to understand, they want to eliminate the risk of "you stole my idea" lawsuits. These type of companies work on many ideas, maybe even yours, they don't want to 'contaminate' themselves with whatever you know opening themselves up to a lawsuit.

Your options are:

1) Get a job at Google
2) Get a job at a competitor or start-up that could use your idea so helping them to get acquired by Google.
3) Start your own company with this or similar (but executable without internal Google data) idea and get acquired.

And just a final note to echo the points above - ideas are a dime a dozen. People that turn ideas into companies & profits are very rare.

Good luck!
posted by Long Way To Go at 12:24 PM on December 5, 2009


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