Pinterest is now facing a lawsuit from a former girlfriend of one of its founders, who claims she helped set up the platform. Bloomberg reported Alameda County Superior Court Judge Richard Seabolt on Thursday denied the company’s motion to dismiss the lawsuit. Christine Martinez, the plaintiff, claims she was asked by co-founder Ben Silbermann to help revitalize the app. The digital market strategist claims to have developed features tied to those of Pinterest and created a marketing plan to attract bloggers, among others, to promote the platform.
Martinez filed a lawsuit against the company in September, and Pinterest filed a motion to dismiss in December. The company argued that Martinez’s claims were too old to fall under the statute of limitations. Seabolt disagreed, saying Martinez “reasonably alleges” that she and the Pinterest founders agreed to deferred compensation. Pinterest went public in 2019, an event Seabolt deemed “transformative” and sealed the company’s commitment to paying Martinez.
In a statement to Engadget, LeMia Jenkins Thompson, Pinterest’s chief communications officer, noted that the court dismissed several of Martinez’s lawsuits. Thompson also stated that “once the facts become known, we are confident that the evidence will confirm that plaintiff’s allegations are unfounded and that the remainder of this unfounded lawsuit should be dismissed.”
According to that New York Times, Martinez was not officially employed, nor did she ever sign a written contract with the San Francisco-based company. Instead, Martinez argues that the agreement was implicit based on her discussions with Sciarra and Silbermann.
Martinez, who is a former lifestyle blogger and founder of an eccomerce startup, told dem Times She was eager to help friends. “[…The Pinterest co-founders] had no marketing background or experience developing a product for women.”
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