Enterprise Lawyers and trying to get EULA sign-off

amigan_99
amigan_99 used Ask the Experts™
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It seems like legal departments have been getting more and more picky about EULA agreements.
Vendors are reluctant to change their boiler plate. The IT people are getting ulcers waiting for
the EULA to be agreed to and signed off. Two questions:

Is there a reason legal departments seem to be becoming more persnickety about EULA terms
for enterprise software?

Has anyone on EE found a way to more efficiently work with their legal department and vendors?
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Principal Software Engineer
Commented:
Is there a reason legal departments seem to be becoming more persnickety about EULA terms
for enterprise software?


Yes.  We might call it the "watchdog effect."

If there is no issue and the watchdog doesn't bark, he receives nothing.
If there is an issue and the watchdog doesn't bark, he receives severe punishment.
If there is no issue and the watchdog barks, he receives punishment.
If there is an issue and the watchdog barks, he has done his job and may or may not receive a small reward.

The legal department is in the same position.  They are playing a negative-sum game where the best outcome is either nothing or a small reward, and the other two outcomes are punishment or severe punishment.  Therefore, it is in their best interest (and not, we may note, the company's best interest) to drag things out as long as possible before letting go of the agreement (thus delaying their possible later punishment) and be as nit-picking as they can to minimize the chances of their punishment later on.
amigan_99Network Engineer

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Commented:
Really well put. Thanks.

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