This month, TheFamily released yet another website. If you’re like me, you weren’t fazed by the forced mass-publication that came on Facebook & Twitter, and after the 100th time that they tell you that their latest oeuvre will change the startup ecosystem, you can’t help but scoff. However, with Jurismatic, TheFamily’s latest concoction, you might want to give it a second look.
Unlike their attempt at opening a startup retreat in a castle, Jurismatic builds on top of their first legal project, AIR (a French adaptation of the US’s SAFE contract, which allows for straightforward and legally binding convertible note), providing a laundry list of legal documents, ranging from company creation to employee contracts, allowing startups to get started quickly without paying thousands to lawyers.
TheFamily has, in the past, called itself an ecosystem builder, describing itself as providing ‘unfair advantages’ – to the students of its unaccredited school of growth hacking, branding & entrepreneurship, who pay hundreds to thousands in order to receive their keys to success, or to their startups who give up equity in their company in exchange for access to a network that has provided a much appreciated help to a minority of its members; however, it seems that what TheFamily does best, whether it be its Growth Hacking Meetup (among the largest meetups on the Meetup.com platform), its hundreds of YouTube videos available online, or, in this case its open source legal documents – what TheFamily does best, tends to come for free.
That being said, Jurismatic’s documents come at a price – your email address in exchange for these open-source documents, unless you go on github of course, where the docs are also posted. So, is TheFamily betting on the profile of people who look at their legal documents are more likely to submit an email than a pull request – like any event’s company, email addresses are a currency for TheFamily – or are they looking to build a pay-it-forward ecosystem?
Only the ecosystem can answer that question. Lucky for me, I’m neither an ecosystem, nor its builder, so I don’t have to be burdened with such responsibility.
I will end by adding that I am often confused about the goal of such an initiative. I support the intent, yet I would’ve thought that the value of such an initiative would be in providing cut-and-dry documents in English that international investors could consult, and perhaps even compare to their UK/US equivalents. Instead, it seems that, where you would expect TheFamily to communicate in French, they communicate in English – and vice versa.