A Business Technology Place

Best Buy wants your ideas

Checkout the new crowd sourcing site launched by Best Buy call Idea X. Similar to the Starbucks idea site that I wrote about earlier this year, Best Buy is looking to use the power of bulk thinking to generate new and innovative ideas for its business. As with Starbucks, the ideas submitted to Best Buy are posted for everyone to see. This allows others to read, comment, and vote on their favorite ideas.

Be mindful of the fine print though in the terms of use. Ideas you submit become the property of Best Buy. Here is a small excerpt of that language:

Furthermore, by submitting the Materials using IdeaX, you grant Best Buy and its designees an irrevocable, unrestricted, perpetual, non-exclusive, fully-paid up and royalty free worldwide license to make, use, sell, import, modify, reproduce, transmit, display, perform, create derivative works, combine with other works, and distribute such Materials for any purpose whatsoever to the extent permitted by law. This license to Best Buy includes the right for Best Buy to sublicense these rights to third parties.

Congratulations to Best Buy for setting up a real time listening post for its customers.  Let’s see how they manage the suggestions and if it makes them a stronger retailer.

  • Patrick Arnold

    There is a very similar website called http://www.ideajam.net that allows the IBM Lotus community to post ideas for software enhancements and have others promote or demote them. It is not an IBM website, but apparently it is being closely monitored by IBM. I personally see this is as the future for any sort of product development, whether it be software, consumer goods & services, or even coffee. Companies that embrace this strategy, I think, will find great reward in doing so. However, I can see potential legal problems with allowing input from the consumer base at large. Even with the fine print, a good lawyer can always argue that a particular idea is the intellectual property of his/her client and they should be compensated accordingly.