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This is the first communication I received about Andrew Abrams, AKA Agent Andy

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Riley editorial note: All of Mr. Dunn's feelings, which he annotated, are coded in red. This document is exactly as received except for formatting and coding for web display. 

----- Original Message -----
From: "James Dunn" <jamesd@ALPHALINK.COM.AU>
To: <INVENTORS@HOME.EASE.LSOFT.COM>
Sent: Wednesday, September 29, 1999 2:41 AM
Subject: [I-NET] Read this and make up your own mind

Please read this and make up your own mind and let us put an end to the
matter.

>From Agent Andy to James Dunn

My (Mr. Dunn's) comments are in brackets and are to let you know what I was feeling
reading this email.

Re: *********************...
Do you have a fax number where I can send the signed NDA?

Otherwise, I may be able to scan it and attach it to an e-mail. But fax is easier for me.

<><><><>

The concept is valid. Sometimes it's the simple ones that are best.

( This makes me feel good about the invention)

Have you searched the IBM patent website for similar devices?

I see some problems; and I have the design solutions. Shall we co-invent? I
can send an NDA on my concept to you.

( 2 lines later I feel a bit nervous)

James - Please be advised that co-invention is really not an objective of my
business. My inventiveness would serve me best, if I would apply it to my own
projects. Perhaps due to my industrial design background, or simply creative
abilities, this improvement on inventions  of others is happening more
frequently. I'm sorry to muddy the waters of our mutual pleasure of creating
and marketing concepts by discussing business matters. This is the third such
situation that has come up for me this week; and I have to know what to do
about it. This is new to me because of my recent switch from doing business
mostly with designers to doing business with inventors.

( Probably a valid point from his view, but not what I asked for at the
start. Still nervous)

My business is based upon inventions of others; and I partner with the inventor
by contributing my licensing skills. However, when I see weaknesses in concepts
that otherwise have some merit, I am faced with a dilemma. Do I say nothing;
and proceed with licensing something that I know is not as good as the
improved version? ...not too exciting. Do I say nothing; and legally pursue
the improved concept independent of the inventor? ...Does not sound like
something Andrew Abrams would enjoy doing ...doesn't sound very ethical to
me.

( This paragraph said to me I had better do as he suggests or he may take
the idea and peruse his improved version if I do not. Nerves are turning
into fear)

I would like to propose the following business option that I feel would
benefit

1) I will present the improvement to you under the same conditions of
confidentiality that you have presented your concept to me. I will send a
written and/or sketched description on an NDA for your signature.

2) You decide if my improvement is valid, or not.

3) a) You "do not" think that my revision is important enough ...we proceed
with my standard licensing procedure ...and you agree that I can do anything I
want with my invention provided it does not in any manner violate your rights
to your concept either legally, or ethically.

( Well this part had me shaking in my boots. I read into this that my
invention is no good and he will shelve it and pursue his own version
unless I do as he asks)

3) b) You "do not" think that my revision is important enough ...I say that I
can't, in my heart of hearts, proceed with licensing something that I know is
inferior ...and we each go on our merry way ...you are free to pursue
licensing your concept ...and I am free to pursue my concept (or do nothing)  ...all the
while we will maintain the mutual confidentiality of each individual concept.
( I feel like this is some sort of blackmail. I am in no position to refuse his concept)

3) c) You "do" think that my revision is important ...We proceed as
co-inventors and co-owners of the new intellectual property ...I create the
presentation materials (drawings, samples, etc.) or, we each do pieces as is
practical ...I will charge you a design fee (co-invention fee?) for improving
your concept ...I will proceed with attempting to license our jointly owned
concept. If I don't license it, you are free to license it. Upon closing a
licensing agreement (by either one of us) with a manufacturer,  the sharing of
royalties will be on the same equal sharing basis as in my normal licensing
agent business.

( Well now I feel I have been put into a position where I am paying for the
right to use his concept. A concept he would not have had unless he had
seen my invention.

What do I do? Put yourself in the newbie class here and what would you do?
Do as he asked and pay for the so-called improvements, he is dangling a big
carrot.  Lucky I am not that much of a newbie and asked a few other people
what they thought of this)

James - Please don't misunderstand this circumstance. My creation of this
business mode is not because I think anything in particular about you, your
abilities, or your projects. It's simply a matter of approximately two dozen
such projects that I'm helping others with; and yours tipped the scale a
bit. I will be making this same proposal to the others. As always, I am most happy to
review projects and offer professional feedback without charging a fee. I
consider that an investment in the input end of my business. The more I can
help people like yourself; the better off I will be also. The creation of
improvements or additional intellectual property however, is beyond the scope
of either coaching or licensing.

If you are interested in proceeding in the manner described, let me know and I
will prepare a NDA and a fee proposal for the ********** project. Otherwise,
we can simply proceed without my improvements. The integrity of our
relationship and confidentiality of your project will be assured by me, under
any circumstance.

( This sounds ok but by now my brain is rushing neurons all over the place
trying to workout how in one email I may have lost my invention if I do not
tow the line)

Thank you in advance for your understanding in this matter.

(I am having a panic attack right now, I could not right my name never mind
understanding).

(I have not changed anything in any way that Agent Andy put in this email.
I only tried to put down my feelings at the time of receiving it. I sent
questions to Andy regarding this email, see Mr. Riley's site for these. I
have also sent a few more emails to Andy saying we may look again at this
in the future just to try to keep him onside as I fear that he may just do
his own thing with my invention. This all stopped when Mr. Riley's page was
put up. I was not able to see all the goings on during that time as I was
in the U.K. for 6 weeks and moved interstate on my return. I have not wanted
to get into a slugging match with anyone and so I did not reply to Andy's
emails. I will not put them on as he may regret what he said and it may
just be a heat of the moment thing. The point of this matter was not the
payment asked for but the way it was asked for "Do it my way or I will take
the concept and do it myself".
Now you have read the proposal you make up your own mind and let us finish
with this fighting and get back to inventing).
James Dunn.


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