Correction: The Winklevoss twins may not be done after all. LA Times said the pair plan to take their case to Boston federal court.
The Winklevoss twins are dropping their lawsuit against Facebook to overturn a 2008 settlement worth $65 million back then. Now, millions of dollars (in their settlement's growth in value) and several legal maneuvers later, they are finally going away.
The long battle between the Winklevoss twins and Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg started with a lawsuit back in 2004. The twins alleged that Zuckerberg stole the idea for Facebook from them when they hired Zuckerberg to do some programming work for a social networking website called ConnectU.
The lawsuit was settled in February 2008 for $65 million ($20 million in cash and $45 million in stocks). Now, because the stock component has risen in value, the total settlement is worth hundreds of millions of dollars.
Almost immediately after the February 2008 settlement, the Winklevoss twins came back to the courts for more payouts from Facebook. They sought to undo the agreement by alleging that Zuckerberg hid information from them during the settlement process.
They sued Facebook for more shares and sued the lawyers who negotiated their $65 million settlement for malpractice.
They lost their case against Facebook. They then took it up to the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit in San Francisco to appeal their loss.
In April 2011, the court of appeals threw out their appeal.
The ruling judge said: The Winklevosses are not the first parties bested by a competitor who then seek to gain through litigation what they were unable to achieve in the marketplace.
He added: They made a deal that appears quite favorable in light of recent market activity. At some point, litigation must come to an end. That point has now been reached.
The US legal system allows the twins to appeal the court of appeals' decision at the Supreme Court level. On Wednesday, the twins indicated in a court filing that they would not take the case to the Supreme Court.
In response, a Facebook spokesperson said: We've considered this case closed for a long time and we're pleased to see the other party now agrees.