Rainn Wilson Sued Over Website – Actor Rainn Wilson of “The Office” was sued by a Portland website development company for $11 million and has now countersued over the SoulPancake.com website.
Rain Wilson is seeking at least $400,000 in damages from web developer Think Brilliant, accusing the company in a recent federal court filing of fraud and breach of trust.
Think Brilliant sued Wilson earlier this month, seeking $11.3 million and alleging the actor failed to properly compensate the company for website development work. Think Brilliant also contends Wilson hacked into its database and accessed confidential materials.
The actor and the company had an apparently amiable relationship over two years as Think Brilliant was developing Rainn Wilson’s whimsical website, SoulPancake.com.
But a split developed over sky high development costs and eventually, over how the two sides would end their relationship. Each side denies the other’s allegations.
According to Rainn Wilson’s countersuit: “From January 2010 through June 2010, SoulPancake funded all of Think Brilliant’s monthly expenses, including salaries and health insurance benefits for all five Think Brilliant employees, as well as office expenses and business taxes, in exchange for Think Brilliant’s agreement to work exclusively on SoulPancake.com.
Unbeknownst to SoulPancake, however, Think Brilliant flagrantly breached its obligations and fraudulently diverted its resources to the development of a secret project, called ‘Ziphook,’ Wilson alleges in his counterclaim, filed last week with U.S. District Court in Portland.
“In effect, Think Brilliant stole from SoulPancake by taking the money that it was being paid to work solely on SoulPancake.com and using it to fund the development of Ziphook, which Think Brilliant intended to market as its own,” the claim states.
In the claim, Wilson and his attorneys write that SoulPancake paid Think Brilliant $400,000 to develop the site, beginning in June 2008. The two sides discussed sharing ownership in SoulPancake, the claim acknowledges. But it maintains that the Portland company is not entitled to that stake “By virtue of Think Brilliant’s fraudulent and wrongful conduct.”
SoulPancake.com has no unique or innovative programming, being essentially a Facebook-style social networking site. Websites with Facebook-style functionality can be built for under $4,000 and Think Brilliant was already paid $400,000 by Rainn Wilson for the web site’s development.
Looks like “Think Brilliant” doesn’t have a leg to stand on…
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