On Friday, the lawsuit over the origins of Facebook filed by ConnectU founders Divya Narendra and Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss found renewed purchase.
The trio is asking a Massachusetts district court to look into whether Facebook has deprived them of “critical evidence” in the form of instant messages (IM) and emails that could have helped the ConnectU founders make their case.
These communications came to light as a result of New Yorker and Business Insider articles published in 2010, court documents say. An amended complaint recently filed by Paul Ceglia claiming that he owns 50 percent of the social media company is also cited.
The messages, if authentic, make Zuckerberg look, as the New Yorker put it, “backstabbing, conniving, and insensitive.” The documents, for example, reference an IM thread with a classmate and business partner where Zuckerberg allegedly outlines a plan to work on Facebook while delaying work on ConnectU so the latter would not compete with his social media site:
“I feel like the right thing to do is finish the Facebook and wait until the last day before I’m supposed to have their thing ready and then be like, ‘look, yours isn’t as good as this so if you want to join mine, you can…otherwise I can help you with your later.”
Later, when a friend asks via IM how Zuckerberg plans to handle the Facebook vs. ConnectU situation, he allegedly writes: “I’m going to fuck them…probably in the [ear].”
An email cited in the Ceglia lawsuit, which purports to illustrate Zuckerberg’s duplicity, was also referenced: “I have recently met with a couple of upperclassmen there at Harvard that are planning to launch a site very similar to ours. If you we don’t move soon, I think we will lose the advantage we would have if we release before them.”
In response to the most recent legal maneuver, Facebook told Bloomberg that it considers the matter “concluded.”