Facebook contacted Winklevoss twins for cryptocurrency talks: Report

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Facebook’s reported bid to create its own cryptocurrency may have led CEO Mark Zuckerberg to direct employees to contact his former legal foes, the Winklevoss twins, according to a report on Friday.

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The social network is said to be developing a digital currency that would allow users to transfer money to each other through its stable of platforms, including Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp. Facebook executives have been in contact with Gemini, the regulated New York-based cryptocurrency exchange founded by Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss, the Financial Times reported.

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It’s unclear if Zuckerberg and the Winklevoss twins have had any direct contact. The Winklevoss twins famously sued Zuckerberg for allegedly stealing the idea for Facebook while the trio were classmates at Harvard University, ultimately receiving a $65 million settlement. Their battle, as well as the creation of Facebook, was later dramatized in the 2010 film “The Social Network.”

Facebook declined to comment on the report, which a spokesperson called “speculative.” Gemini also declined comment.

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Facebook has yet to publicly address whether it is developing its own cryptocurrency. The Financial Times reported that a “secretive unit” at the social media giant is creating a digital currency that would allow users to make direct purchases on its platforms or send money to each other.

Aside from Gemini, Facebook reportedly has had talks with another cryptocurrency exchange, CoinBase, as well as high-frequency trading firms Jump and DRW.

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The Winkevoss twins discussed the future of cryptocurrency during an appearance at the SXSW tech conference in Austin, Texas, earlier this year, likening the technology to “digital gold.” At the time, the brothers said they had not been in touch with Zuckerberg about Facebook’s recent data privacy scandals.

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