Facebook is suing a German social networking site by the name of StudiVZ for allegedly copying the look, feel, features and services of Facebook in order to piggyback off their success. The lawsuit comes several months after Facebook finally launched a German language version of its website but is apparently struggling to gain traction among users in that region.
Indeed StudiVZ does look like just a red version of Facebook and early versions of the site even featured filenames such as fbook.css and poke.php, according to reports. Facebook said it was seeking to end StudiVZ’s illegal activity to ensure that their reputation remains unharmed as well as monetary compensation in an amount to be determined at trial.
StudiVZ of course says the lawsuit is not about intellectual property but about stifling competition. Interestingly, Facebook began rolling out its revamped interface today so any alleged negative impact felt from StudiVZ’s copycat design should be significantly decreased.