Search Results for: connectu

Judges Reminds ConnectU they Need Actual Evidence to Sue Facebook

There’s at least one sensible judge in Boston and he’s presiding over ConnectU’s claim that Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg built the popular social network on stolen intellectual property.

Massachusetts Federal Judge Douglas P. Woodlock repeatedly suggested that ConnectU hadn’t provided enough evidence to support their claim that Zuckerberg had built Facebook on code used by ConnectU.

“Claims must have a factual basis,” the judge said. The allegations, which ranged from breach of confidence to fraud to misappropriation of trade secrets, comprised a “most evanescent of explanations,” Woodlock said. He gave ConnectU’s founders–Divya Narendra and twin brothers Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss–until August 8 to provide a revised complaint. He also gave Facebook two weeks after that date to respond.

Facebook to Settle with ConnectU

As with most legal battles, the ConnectU suit against Facebook has begun to drag out: first filed in September 2004, the legal battle over who originally created the source code for Facebook is still ongoing. Last July, a Massachusetts Federal judge ruled that ConnectU needed concrete evidence to bring their suit. It looked like the suit would die after the ruling stated that “claims must have a factual basis.”

But that’s not how our wonderful legal system works in the United States. The suit was once again opened after a circuit court judge granted ConnectU the right to file an appeal last Thursday. CNET reports:

Case Closed: Facebook Wins

Social networking site ConnectU sued Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg for stealing their idea. They allege he used the source code they hired him to create for their site.

Now four years later Facebook is celebrating their four year anniversary, and that the lawsuit against them is finally settled – in Facebook’s favor. Facebook asked that the case be dismissed, for lack of evidence, and that happened. ConnectU then filed another lawsuit against Facebook in March, which is now closed.

Yesterday Judge James Ware of Federal District Court in San Jose, Calif., stood behind a February settlement between the companies. Also named were Zuckerberg’s Harvard classmates, twins Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss and Divya Narendra.

Facebook now has upwards of 39 million members and expanded to go beyond college students. ConnectU is said to have 15,000 members at 200 schools.

Facebook and Securities Fraud?

Seems like Mark Zuckerberg is experiencing a serious dose of ‘when it rains, it pours’ these days. The scrutiny that he and the Facebook bunch is facing for their privacy concerns has become a true thorn in the side of the biggest social networking player on the planet. Many have said that it is unfair to continually put Zuckerberg in the cross hairs but reports of movies being made and more of late has put him in a less than flattering light. I see it as the price of fame and fortune in a world gone silly over any kind of celebrity but that’s just my take.

Is Facebook Built on Stolen Code? Court to Decide

While Facebook continues to attract media attention – with talk of acquisition partners or an IPO – it’s haunted by a three year old law suit that claims it is built on code stolen by founder Mark Zuckerberg.

The lawsuit, filed by brothers Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss, and Divya Narendra, accuses Zuckerberg, Facebook?s 23-year-old C.E.O, of stealing the source code, design, and business plan for Facebook in 2003 when he briefly worked in the Harvard dorms as a programmer for their own fledgling social-networking site, now known as ConnectU.

The plaintiffs have demanded that Facebook be shut down and that full control of the site – and its profits – be turned over to them.

Facebook’s Latest Valuation: Less than $5B

If you’ve forgotten, just nine months ago, Microsoft purchased a 1.6% stake in Facebook for $240 million. Doing the math from that, the total value of Facebook last October was $15B.

But apparently this possibly-soon-to-be-recession-(though-technically-still-not,-people!) has really hurt the “social utility.” Rumors are circulating on Silicon Alley Insider and TechCrunch that Facebook’s current value is less than $5B—and as low as $3 or $4 billion.

SAI cites rumors appearing in their comments for weeks that Facebook’s value is plummeting—and, more importantly, a source who was offered a 0.25% stake for $12.5M just two months ago. Once again turning to our trusty, rusty algebra, that gives a more recent total value of $5B.

Facebook Glitch Reveals Source Code–Is it theirs Anyway?

Due to what appears to be a technical glitch, Facebook published its source code for the world to see and Facebook Secrets was quick to publish it.

Don’t worry if you’ve never heard of Facebook Secrets, the site was created on a free Blogspot blog and has just one post–the one showing Facebook’s source code.

This is extremely embarrassing for Facebook for a number of reasons:

  1. Questions are now being raised as to what else might accidentally get published–maybe you’ll see your private data some day.
  2. Competitors now have a chance to see what’s under Facebook’s hood and maybe learn something.
  3. Hackers might be able to find a weakness in the code and exploit it.
  4. Some developers are suggesting the structure of Facebook isn’t particularly sophisticated.