Ripple: If You Can Sue It, It’s Not Decentralized

Adam James · March 14, 2018 · 6:30 am

Ripple Labs Inc. will not be able to settle its high-profile dispute with rival R3 Holdco in California. Instead, the obviously-not-decentralized cryptocurrency company will have to duke it out in the away territory of New York City.

Clash of the Titans

A San Francisco state appeals court has recently denied Ripple’s attempt to expedite an appeal which would resolve a lawsuit against R3 Holdco. Instead, the lawsuit will likely play out in a New York court — something Ripple is definitely not keen on, claiming the company would likely face “irreparable injury.”

The battle between the two massive blockchain developers is not particularly new, and the San Francisco state appeals court’s decision isn’t going to make it die any younger. As reported by Bloomberg, Ripple and R3 have been duking it out over more than $1 billion in virtual currency options since September 2017.

The battle primarily began when R3, a powerful blockchain startup which leads more than 100 firms, filed a lawsuit against Ripple Labs Inc. The lawsuit accuses Ripple of failing to honor an agreement which would’ve rightfully provided R3 with an estimated $1 billion in XRP. Likewise, Ripple fired back with a lawsuit of its own, which claims R3 failed to honor other agreements.

The denial of Ripple’s appeal in San Francisco means that the cryptocurrency giant will now need to do battle on R3’s home turf of New York City — which doesn’t bode particularly well for the former company. The current litigation is a far cry from when the two companies used to work together. They have become increasingly bitter rivals as they compete for the same customers.

New York City

Which Cryptocurrency Is like Napster?

This news also comes along with Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse’s recent claim that Bitcoin “is the Napster of digital assets.” Said Garlinghouse:

Some may look back at Bitcoin and say that it is the Napster of digital assets. What I mean by that is that Napster was the first to digitize music and demonstrate that you can do a lot of cool things with that. But ultimately they were circumventing trademark laws, they were circumventing royalty payments and then government stepped in and Napster wasn’t successful. But Spotify, iTunes, and Pandora were successful.

Garlinghouse neglects to mention, however, that Napster was — like Ripple — forced to defend itself in a court of law. Meanwhile, it is virtually impossible to sue Bitcoin, which is more akin to Bittorent, given that the project is actually a cryptocurrency, and thus properly decentralized.

What do you think about Ripple’s battle with R3? Do you think the former company faces “irreparable injury?” Do you have an opinion on centralized cryptocurrencies? Let us know in the comments below!

Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Pixabay, and Bitcoinist archives.

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