You can't afford to skip through the terms and conditions when signing up for a developer program; no-one wants to suddenly discover that all their code belongs to someone else. But what are you supposed to do if that contract runs to hundreds of pages?
BlackBerry developer relations chief Alec Saunders raised this point during a media briefing this week. He noted that back when he was running his own startup and decided to investigate developing BlackBerry applications, the contract was ridiculously complicated:
When I first signed my contract to be a developer on the BB platform, it was a 144-page contract. I thought 'I'm an 8-man startup, I don't think I can afford the legal fees to check this out'. It was almost a Monty Python way of approaching working with developers.
Saunders eventually told BlackBerry that he was going to rely on it to let him know if the contract was a problem, a risky approach although it had no immediate consequences in his case. When he joined BlackBerry, one of his first tasks was having the legal team simplify the documentation. According to Saunders, the developer contract is now a more manageable ten pages or so.
Have you resisted signing up to for a particular developer program or platform purely because the conditions were too onerous, or just too damn long to read? Tell us in the comments.
Disclosure: Angus Kidman travelled to Canada as a guest of BlackBerry.