Unfortunately, in most states, the contract
is left to determine the
level of this "relation" to work. Meaning that if you sign a contract
(such as it sounds like Tilly has so unfortunately done) it can define
"works" extremely generally, yes - almost everything you do CAN be
deemed as "theirs". This sounds preposterous, but it is sadly
true. The best thing is to read those contracts very
have your own
lawyer look at it before signing, as I do now.
This is a point of law I have had a run in with myself not to long ago, with
a company in Portland Oregon. For me, the final result was - I walked off, left
my hard work behind and went to new pastures - because I lacked the cash/desire
to fight it, and had done a similar "my really bad". Since then,
I have found that most employers know they have you at a disadvantage and will
press the issue of allowing them this feudal "right" of choice over
your creations - or deny you employment. I think that some legislature to
prevent such bullying is needed, and have written my congress-people concerning
this. However, I think it will take a mass outcry before anyone really takes it
seriously. Till then - read carefully, push back as much as you can on the
issue and find a balance of earning a living and keeping your freedom of
creation. Perhaps, write your own congress people with your fears and add
to the urgency for them to listen
Tilly - I really feel for you man. This sucks bad - and it sounds like
you are even more entrenched than I was and cannot extricate yourself with out
extreme cost. This frustration must hurt terribly - I wish there
was something we could do for you.
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