ResearchHub, a scientific research site founded and self-funded by Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong, is allegedly based on work stolen from its not-launched competitor, a new court filing suggests.
Blockchain accelerator MouseBelt Labs filed on Friday a complaint with the Superior Court of the State of California, alleging that Armstrong’s ResearchHub has something to do with Knowledgr, a research platform in which MouseBelt had invested.
The filing alleges that Armstrong was offering investment in Knowledgr while secretly working on his own competing project, ResearchHub, in order to steal some of the resources that MouseBelt put into Knowledgr.
According to the filing, Knowledgr’s founder, Patrick Joyce, reached out to Armstrong in early 2019 after the Coinbase CEO laid out principles of “a possible open-source, scientific publishing platform” in an article in February. Armstrong reportedly became interested in Knowledgr and told Joyce that he might fund his own research site to be a competitor but might also invest in Knowledgr after learning more about it.
But according to the plaintiff, “this was all a ruse,” as Armstrong had already been developing ResearchHub “for over six months” and “saw Joyce and Knowledgr as a dramatic time- and cost-saving hack.”
After leaving Knowledgr in April 2020, Joyce joined ResearchHub as the chief scientific officer in May 2020, according to his LinkedIn profile.
The filing argues that Armstrong’s ResearchHub is designed to use tradeable tokens in a similar way to Knowledgr. According to the plaintiffs, Armstrong also…