Lawsuit Claims Pinterest Early Investor Stole the Idea

December 30th, 2012 at 4:26 am

A lawsuit is filed just this weekend against Pinterest investor Brian S. Cohen. The plaintiff, Theodore F. Schroeder, claims that Chone stole the idea for the visual-board-based social networking service.

Schroeder elaborates that he “originated the ideas that led to the popular, ever-growing Pinterest website” and presents a detailed account of the development of a website called, as well as its spinoff, These sites were developed by Schroeder and two of his classmates at Columbia Law School. They eventually brought in Cohen as the company’s chairman and CEO.

The lawsuit claims that the company’s progress was stalled, which Schroeder blames on Cohen’s alleged maneuvers to claim more ownership while pushing one of the founders out. Cohen, according to the complaint, then struck a “Faustian deal” that would give Schroeder’s idea to the team that eventually launched Pinterest.

These ideas, according to Schroeder, include websites allowing users to “post their interests for their friends and the other users of the site to see”; connect to “things that mattered to a user with other users” while providing a “place for a product or even promoter to gain visibility for its product”; discovering a product through “socially network product launches”; and its intent to target female Internet users.

In reaction to the lawsuit, Pinterest told TechCrunch that the suit is “baseless” and “will fight it aggressively.”

Source: All Things D, via TechCrunch


Tags: ,