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Banned From Blog Networks?

Duncan Riley, whom I consider to be one of the pillars of the blog network industry (which is quite young, if I may say), has recently left b5media, a blog network which he co-founded. Thing is, in the aftermath of his resignation, there were a lot of speculations on the details behind his leaving the network. He has clarified that he’s legally unable to share such details. However, there’s more.

Not surprisingly, I won’t be doing a blog network again, not only because I’ve probably got a dose of once bitten, twice shy, but because legally I can’t…

What I will say is that there is a legal reason to my silence, and as much as I wish I could come clean and speak the truth but I can’t go into the details.

I’ve had my share of signing NDA‘s and non-compete clauses, but this is intriguing. I think being banned from blog networks is just too much. Of course, Duncan can simply work around this by either: writing for independent blogs (and not those under a network); writing for a set of online publications that’s technically not a “blog network”; or writing under a pseudonym.

I’ll be watching for updates.

Categories: Blogging News

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Comments

  1. franky ) says: 12/3/2006

    That is bad, because now I even have to read The Blogging Times to read Duncan regularly outside of his blog. :(

    Reply

  2. Erik says: 12/3/2006

    Interesting. I believe legally, now I know this only to be true in the US, but no contract that requires you from disclosing information to a competitor, working for a competitor, or anything like that, can keep you from making a living.

    Meaning if that’s what your skills are and thats what your trained for, even though you said in a contract you never would, they can’t legally keep you from it. Blogging that is.

    Now I don’t know the technicalities of blog networks, but no one can keep him from blogging. Especially if that’s how he makes a living, not even a contract signed in blood.

    So come to the US Duncan, I’d love to have you write for blogtown press:)

    It’s common in tech industries to have these type of contracts signed, one biotech doesn’t want you taking their trade secrets to the next biotech startup. But they can’t legally stop you from making a living using the skills in which you make your livlihood.

    Someone correct me if I’m wrong but, I believe that’s the facts jack.

    Reply

  3. Vincent says: 12/3/2006

    I assume when he finished with B5 he was given some type of payout and that would have come with a non-compete clause. A lot of people who sell part or all of a business sign a non-compete to maintain the value of what they are selling. Our local pizza shop changed hands and the outgoing owner signed one. It is a standard business practice.

    He might only be restricted from starting a blog network and not from joining one as a blogger. He is certainly not restricted from blogging as he is clearly still blogging.

    As to losing a livelihood, usually you sign a non-compete because you are being offered a bundle of money, any theoretical loss of income from the non-compete is more than made up for by the money from the sale.

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  4. Shane says: 12/3/2006

    Vincent,

    You’re take is bang on. And typically a non-compete agreement has a duration of 5 years. It doesn’t sound like Duncan wanted out. It sounds like the other guys initiated the shotgun clause in their partnership agreement.

    Usually a partner will get squeezed out when they’re not pulling their weight. Or sometimes a couple of partners decide they want a bigger slice of an impending windfall profit – so they stage a coup and force a partner out.

    And sometimes there are just differences in the vision and direction that the company should take.

    I don’t know any of them to make a judgement call but those are the typical reasons why this kind of thing happens.

    Reply

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  6. mikeyaozm says: 9/20/2009

    ey’re not pulling their weight. Or sometimes a couple of partners decide they want a bigger slice of

    Reply

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