In a mutual non-disclosure agreement, it's two ways, it's bidirectional. I'll give an example. So not only am I gonna disclose to Victor my confidential information, Victor is also going to share with me his confidential proprietary information. So, it's mutual because we both make a mutual promise to keep confidences. I'm gonna share with Victor my secret process, and he's gonna share with me his secret know-how, and we agree to keep that confidential. We're not gonna disclose what we disclose to each other to third parties.
I want to talk about mutual non-disclosure agreement. What's the difference between one way and a mutual non-disclosure agreement? Keep in mind, it's all about you, it's not about me. it's not about your partner, it's not about your company, it's all about you and your needs. The reason I'm saying that is because when people create a contract, they are afraid that other people will not sign it. Trust me, if someone needs something, they will sign a contract. Now almost time, they ignored what they agreed, but as soon as they sign a decree they create promise.
The reason why you might, we might want to enter into such an agreement is so that we have an opportunity to explore possible business opportunities, right? So Victor might have some specialized skill. He might be perfect, for example; she's an expert at windshield wipers. And I on the other hand, my company might actually develop the rubber material, that goes on the windshield wiper. And so now, we might want to share our secret know-how to see, if there's a way for us to develop a joint product, because Victor has extensive experience on repairing and servicing windshield wipers.
That's why you need to look out, what do you need?, so it's all about you, not me, not them, you what do you need, is that simple. So, when we have on one way agreements, and think about it. I want to protect my information, I want to protect the things that are important for me, I want to protect my system, I want to protect my invention, that's simple, right?
So he might know of a special technique that we can possibly use to prolong the life of windshield wipers, and decrease their meantime between failure. So we're gonna combine our expertise. My company does rubber, process and material, and Victor is an expert in servicing, and so he knows about how they fail, and so we might collaborate. I'm gonna tell him about my secret processes, and he's gonna share with me his secret know-how. And we're gonna see, if there's possibly an opportunity for us to develop a joint product together.
In this hypothetical, the patent application isn't yet public, so everything that's in it is still confidential. So technically it's still a trade secret. One of the ways that invent that companies and inventors sometimes protect their know-how is by filing a patent application. But, they intentionally file what's called a non-publication request. So that a non-publication request prevents a patent application from publishing and becoming public record. So when you file a non-publication request and note: you have to file it the same day that you filed the patent application. But by filing a non-publication request, you essentially maintain the contents of that patent application confidential up until the patent application issues as a US patent. Which could take several years.