I've shared a few ideas and i feel that it isn't the smartest thing to do. But also I'm a 19 year old coming up with multiple ideas at a time that arent "out there" that have potential. I had an epiphany about another product that could be a game changer. And me being who I am would blab about it because I feel like I could eventually come up with another idea. (also I'm a broke college student, so any ideas I come up with probably wouldn't be able to come to life for years)


When it comes to sharing your ideas, I think a lot depends on who you share them with.

If your looking for advice then giving them a general outline of your plans should be enough for them to be able to help, you don't have to go into specifics.

On the other hand, if you want investment then you will be expected to divulde every part of your idea as they'll want to make sure they're not being asked to invest in a scam or a business that hasn't got a chance of working.

T J Tutor

Then why have a forum labeled "ideas"

First, to answer your question, not all ideas are unique. Discussing ideas that are already out there doesn't put anyone at risk of losing an idea. I was referencing new ideas, uniques ideas, as I thought this is what you were referencing in your original post when you said you often have multiple ideas.

I'll rephrase. When you're discussing your own unique ideas, it's wise to leave out pertinent information that may be proprietary or any key element that is unique to your idea. One can discuss unique ideas in general, but we all must be cautious about the amount of information we share. It is a difficult thing to do. Just don't disclose anything that can enable another person to run with your unique idea.

When it comes time for a more detailed discussion, you need to not do it in a public forum and you must have them sign nondisclosures. To confirm this, you can find this information all over the net.

Once your idea is a business, you will have established your unique idea as your own and everyone may discuss that.

We have an ideas forum to discuss ideas both old and new. Just remember those that you must protect those that are unique and your own.


Well, it depends. If you're looking for opinions regarding your business ideas because you aren't so sure about it yet, then I think it's just wise to share your ideas to other entrepreneurs out there.


I don't know. It really depends of your idea. If you are actively looking forward to implementing, then no, because obvious reasons. But if you are just exploring, then sure, why not? Chances are they have been already explored a similar idea. It really depends of the circle of people you're hanging with.

As for signing and NDA, I wouldn't do it. If you want to talk to me about something, implictly you want my time and my opinion on something, you'd better tell me the whole thing, or otherwise you can get an opinion from somebody else.


If you find that your idea is unique to the extent that you can't find anything like it online when doing a Google search, then you might or might not want to share it in its entirety. Sometimes even the basics may be too revealing to certain individuals that might pick it up before you are able to implement it.

Although I would like to think that people are still honorable and moral, the fact remains that people steal ideas and they do it all the time, so please be careful.

I've had ideas stolen and used before in ways that were not normal and not ethical by any means. 15 years ago, I trusted a business advisor who worked for the Small Business Association in my town. He signed an NDA and was trusted with the information he was provided. He promptly gave the idea to his brother, stopped answering phone calls, left town, then the country. He went to that other country to join his brother and start manufacturing the product. You might say it was a million dollar idea...because it was. They realized what they had after I gave it to them, and they took it all the way to the bank at my expense.

Their product which was 95% mine ended up at Walmart on their shelves between 2003 to 2006. I was furious. Several years ago I had my lawyer trace the address of one of the brothers to an area in Thailand where they had a manufacturing hub. It was (and still is) a grey area on whether I can do anything about it or not due to the laws there and the time that has passed on it, but if something like that can happen to me, it can happen to you too if you're not careful.

Another item I had an NDA on was patent-pending device back in 2003, but for personal reasons (personal relationship) I was talked out of the pursuit to complete the 3rd part of it financially. That too found its way onto shelves in a relative fashion, but so much time had passed (6 or 7 years since it was presented) and the fact that it had significant differences made it uncertain whether it was copied or released by someone who just got around to implementing it their own way.

So there are at least two things to watch out for: 1) People trying to steal and implement things, and 2) Time, because eventually someone is going to try and do what you plan to do if you don't do it before your dream is shared by them closely enough to where they do. Whoever follows it through first is the one who wins.

There's some good professional people and a strong mix of talent from all walks of life on this forum, so the interest and desire for already successful people to help others achieve their individual business goals may be stronger than the desire to take someone else's. But be that as it may, this is still a public place and forum on the internet where anyone in the world can join or read with or without participating, and you have to keep that in mind if you're disclosing anything sensitive or a million dollar idea that a reader may be interested in.

My advice on a personal level would be to think about what you plan to reveal in advance, and then do a safety estimate on the information from every angle to know if it's truly safe to disclose. Can you protect your business idea if you just provide the basics and preclude certain aspects that would give away the "secret recipe" to how you intend to do it or not? Are you able to obfuscate anything you put out there to make it impossible for anyone to copy or duplicate, but still deliver the idea to get feedback on while keeping it safe from harm?

You really should always sign an NDA if you're going to disclose something sensitive even to a private party. But I can't stress enough that if you have any type of gut feeling telling you that they might do to you what they did to me (even after signing an NDA) or evade the laws and binding by it, then don't reveal it online or in person until you have something on the recipient party which they wager in your presence that is even more important to them to lose than what you would reveal that they might gain from at your expense.

When someone stands to lose more than they gain by screwing you over, they are forced to be honest and forthcoming even if it's not their intent.

Make it their intent.
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People are forgetting, you can talk about something, an idea or business plan you have but not go into that much detail though.

I think discussing different ideas with others is a way to come up with new ways of doing things, and while you do have to be a bit wary, not everyone is out there to rip you off.
It depends on what kind of entrepreneurs they are. If you are sharing your idea because you want to lure than so that they can finance your project, it is good to share. However, if you are sharing because you want to impress them with your idea, your idea could be stolen.

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