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Facebook rivals accept settlement

Founder offers fellow students undisclosed sum

Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg has settled a long running dispute over the origin of the idea for the social networking site.

Fellow Harvard students Cameron and Tyler Winklevos accused Zuckerberg of stealing the idea for Facebook after being employed by the pair to write code for a site called Harvard Connection.

The lawsuit was first filed against Facebook, Zuckerberg and his co-founders in September 2004 by the Winklevosses and ConnectU, the successor company to Harvard Connection they founded with partner Divya Narendra.

It's alleged that Zuckerberg agreed to work for the Winklevosses but kept putting off creating the code before launching Thefacebook.com, which eventually became Facebook, in February 2004.

According to court papers, the pair accepted an undisclosed sum from Zuckerberg after a US judge rejected their claims that Facebook had committed fraud by failing to disclose crucial documents related to Zuckerberg's actions.

The conditions of the settlement are thought to include the purchase of ConnectU for cash and common stock.

"The ConnectU founders understood the deal they made, and we are gratified that the Court rejected their false allegations of fraud," Facebook said.

See also: Facebook now bigger than MySpace


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