June 19th: Discussion About Non-Competes at Harvard Law
Here's the description:
The use of employee non-compete agreements by Massachusetts companies is routine, with employers mandating that employees steer clear of any business of a competitive nature once they leave their present jobs, typically for a year or more. Many believe these agreements are critical to guarding a company’s hard-earned intellectual property — protecting legitimate business interests, and thus our region’s economy. Others, however, believe that non-competes are nothing more than handcuffs that prevent talented entrepreneurs from bringing new innovations to market and, in some cases, even driving entrepreneurs to leave the region to pursue their innovations elsewhere. In this session, we’ll bring together some of the area’s best known venture capitalists, entrepreneurs and executives to explore the issue of non-competes and weigh the pros and cons of their use here in the Commonwealth. Are non-competes protecting innovation and economic growth in Massachusetts? Or stifling it?
Panelists will include:
- Jeremy Allaire, founder & CEO, Brightcove
- Melanie Haratunian, general counsel, Akamai
- Paul Maeder, general partner, Highland Capital Partners
- Lee Fleming, associate professor of business administration, Harvard University
- Bijan Sabet, general partner, Spark Capital
- Moderator: John Palfrey, Clinical Professor of Law and Executive Director of the Berkman Center for Internet & Society, Harvard Law School
Akamai CEO Paul Sagan was definitively for non-competes when I asked him about the issue last fall... not sure where Jeremy Allaire stands... but having someone from EMC, the most active enforcer of non-competes in our state, would be good. Perhaps they'll at least attend, and contribute from the audience...