Today a federal appeals court ruled that Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss need to stop trying to get more money out of their settlement with Facebook.
The Wall Street Journal reports that in 2008, the Winklevoss twins, along with Divya Narendra, accepted to $20 million in cash and $45 million in Facebook stock to stop suing over their claim that fellow Harvard classmate Mark Zuckerberg stole their idea for a Facebook-like site. The Winklevii feel that the settlement, which is now worth $160 million, and an unflattering portrayal in an Oscar-nominated film still isn't enough compensation.
The twins tried to back out of the agreement after learning that while Microsoft valued the company at $15 billion while making an investment in the company, Facebook's board put the value at $3.7 billion. They say they would have pushed for more shares if the lower figure had been used.
Today's ruling 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. And the courts might have obliged, had the Winklevosses not settled their dispute and signed a release of all claims against Facebook ... At some point, litigation must come to an end. That point has now been reached."
It isn't quite, "If you guys were the inventors of Facebook, you would have invented Facebook," but it's pretty punchy, considering that none of the judges have won an Oscar for screenwriting. Yet, the twins aren't heeding the court's advice. Their lawyer says they'll file a Petition for Rehearing En Banc, which would involve all of the judges on the Ninth Circuit hearing the case, and the next step would be to appeal the decision to the Supreme Court.