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In Case You Missed It: Launch Links - Week of August 14, 2016

  • 8.19.2016

Some interesting links we found across the web this week:

When a Tech Patent is Neither
Founders should always be thinking about how best to protect their intellectual property, because a startup’s ideas are often its most valuable assets. Registered copyrights (protecting fixed creative works) and trademarks (protecting brand names) offer weaker rights than patents (protecting inventions), and therefore patents are much harder to obtain. Patents on software are even more unlikely to be granted, especially in light of a 2014 Supreme Court decision on the subject. Bloomberg has a nice summary of the fallout from that decision—if you’re a software company, keep an eye on this issue in years to come.

On the EU’s Net Neutrality Law
We’ve mentioned the US debate over net neutrality many times, but did you know there’s a parallel law across the pond? If you’ve been following the EU “Privacy Shield” debate, you probably won’t be shocked to hear that European net neutrality is a little less favorable to telecom companies than our own.

The Government Has Its Own Tech Startup, and It’s Fixing a Lot
Recently we’ve noticed an increasing push to employ top tech talent in federal government initiatives, particularly in the defense space. The latest such initiative to be publicized, the US Digital Service, employs a small team of engineers and project squeezing all kinds of efficiencies out of a sprawling bureaucracy. And they even wear hoodies inside the Pentagon!

Use Big Data to Create Value for Customers, Not Just Target Them
Big data analytics are all the rage in marketing just about any kind of startup (and especially in FinTech), but when will they shift focus from pushing an immediate purchase to building lifetime customer loyalty? Here’s a thinkpiece worth saving from the Harvard Business Review.

An Ecosystem Where Startups Help Other Startups
This New York Times profile of a pair of Chicago-based startup founders who became fund caught our eye for two reasons. First, if you’re not generating interest with traditional VCs, don’t forget that successful fellow founders can be a very strong substitute. And second, never forget to keep an eye on markets outside of Silcon Valley and Silicon Alley. (Bonus link: Chattanooga’s just the latest smaller city to court the startup crowd with incubators and coworking spaces galore. And, by the way, the real estate developer building them is also a venture investor!)

Links compiled by Jared Brenner.