Article on Intellectual Property & Entrepreneurship: -Very often I come across this question “What if someone steals my idea”???. And I always try toreason out with the concerned Entrepreneur or Innovator.But I realize the whole issue of about ‘TRUST’; rather ‘LACK OF TRUST’ in the other person,organisation and the system itself is the biggest spanner in the works.And that will not change overnight so the thumb rule should be your comfort level dealing withperson on the other side of the table. Beyond agreements and paper work!!Also follow the Science of ‘protecting your idea’ and Art of disclosing ‘What and not How of youridea’. This will take a lot of your worries away and help you explore possibilities. Because unless yougo out and take to your Mentor, Experts, Businesses and most importantly Users your idea will notmove forward which surely is not the intention of an Ideator.Do keep in mind that Intellectual Property laws are getting transformed in India and the officesmodernized as we speak and Courts have started taking a favourable view of the rights of anIntellectual Property owner so protecting your idea is definitely a good starting point in most cases.Also you can smartly overcome systemic issues For e.g. Copyright filing process in India is still veryslow and inefficient since the office is under HRD Ministry with only one office in New Delhi and itcan take upto 3 months just to get confirmation of your application (called Diary Number). SinceIndia is part of the Berne Convention (covering Literary & Artistic Work) covering more than 160countries, one can make an online application (for e.g. on US Copyright website) and complete theprocess in 30 minutes flat at a fee of USD 35 for basic claim in an original work of authorship and getprotection in India!!Another smart way which I have found is used practically to prove ownership of an idea is to signyour idea on paper and send it to yourself by Post which will come back to you with PostalDepartment stamp and date which can be used as proof of ownership of idea.Also an important piece of advice for Technology Entrepreneurs & Innovators, you can file aProvisional Patent in the Patent Office at the cost of Rs.1000 with or without claims within a dayitself in case you are take a lot more time to get the documentation in place or make up your mindwhether you want to pursue your idea and buy yourself 12 months for filing a Complete Patentapplication.And lastly it is the message you send out to the outside world, your intention which counts morethan anything else. So imagine if you have protected your idea, have a format of Non DisclosureAgreement (NDA), read up on interesting Intellectual Property matters in India or globally and have abroad understanding of the market you wish to sell to; wouldn’t you get taken seriously.Of course you would and then you will not have to worry “What if someone steals my idea” butrather “How can others help get my idea off the ground”.An original article created by Rajeev Surana on 29-July-2011 (E: Rajeev@scinnovation.in)1/18, Samrat Ashok CHS, 7, R. R. Thakkar Marg, Malabar Hill, Mumbai 400006. (India)Please acknowledge the author in case you choose to reproduce the article in part or whole.