> On the other hand, I find the Winklevoss brothers revolting: "Oh hey, here's this nerd who can our build vision for us and make us rich! Let's hire and pay him pittance! Oh no, he executed on our unique idea himself?!".
>Zuckerberg did a much smarter: took their (simple and intrinsically worthless) idea and built a product and a business on it himself.
What's more revolting is that Zuckerberg agrees to do the work for them and then stalls them so he can steal their idea. You call it smart, I call it being a shady douche bag.
I was under the impression Zuckerberg was never paid. There was never an agreement of payment and no one signed anything. If I'm wrong, so be it, but if someone came to me with another "Make us rich" idea and all I had to do was implement the entire site for free and they would graciously give me a cut of the profits they can kindly suck an egg.
It happens all the time to me and I'm sure to you as well. Someone suggested I implement an iphone app that scrapes the exchange web interface and gives you calendaring, email and all the other goodies because he was stuck logging into a locked down server blah blah blah. All I had to do was code it all up in a weekend and he'd split the money with me.
So lets say I actually looked at the feasibility of it. Now if I go off and implement a revolutionary email program for android and make a billion dollars do I owe him anything?
> What's more revolting is that Zuckerberg agrees to do the work for them and then stalls them so he can steal their idea. You call it smart, I call it being a shady douche bag.
There are far more engineers burned by business guys stalling and not paying them then there are business guys burned by shady developers.
To put it another way, I am much more scared of a howitzer than of a derringer: there's very high profile and tragic cases of people being killed by derringers (Abraham Lincoln), but there are much more cases of people being killed by howitzers (that we don't even think twice of them).
> There are far more engineers burned by business guys stalling and not paying them then there are business guys burned by shady developers.
This is completely irrelevant. Even Zuckerberg knows that he blatantly ripped them off and stalled them so he could execute it himself. Why else would he settle for ~$65M (Err, I should say ~$35M)? Then to add insult to injury, he misrepresents the value of the stock in the settlement.
I might be singing a different tune if he hadn't agreed to do the work for them.
Every business settles lawsuits all the time, even in cases where they think they're totally innocent. Corporate litigation is expensive and uncertain enough that settling usually cuts the business's potential losses.