Walmart currently is sponsoring a ‘get on the shelf‘ competition to identify new products for sale through Walmart.com and its brick-and-mortar stores. The contest rules require that applicants submit an entry form and a link to a YouTube video of the product. After the entries are vetted by Walmart, links to the YouTube videos will be placed on the ‘get on the shelf’ website and visitors will vote for the best products. The three top vote getters will meet the Walmart product development team and receive an opportunity to sell their rights in the product to Walmart. If negotiations are not successful, the top vote getters will receive cash prizes.
If you are tempted to enter, remember that publication of the YouTube video likely will terminate your foreign patent rights unless you already have a pending patent application. The competition closes to new entries on February 22, 2012 and winners will be announced in late April.
— Robert Yarbrough, Esq.