Oculus, ZeniMax, NDA's, & a bunch of money.
Oculus left 2016 with troubles and has entered 2017 with even more. A Texas jury awarded half a billion dollars to ZeniMax. ZeniMax accused Oculus co-founder Palmer Luckey to failing to comply with a non-disclosure agreement he signed.
Of the $500 million, Palmer Luckey and Brendan Iribe have to pay $50 million for false designation and Iribe has to pay an additional $150 million. Oculus as a company is responsible for the additional $200 million.
While we wait to see how this all plays out for Iribe who recently stepped down as Oculus CEO and Luckey who has been silent and missing from the VR community ever since his support of Donald Trump vilified him to many who were early Oculus supporters.
To the end of CatsAndVR.com, I have been a fan of Oculus for years and was an early user of their dev kits.
I don't disagree with the Zenimax Verdict but I do think this verdict will hurt a company I felt pushed for the refinement of VR. Everything from the headstrap to the design of the touch controllers are amazing. But alas this blow will hurt
I feel bad for Palmer Luckey and hope this fires him up to go out and create something better on his own and prove the world wrong. I also wonder how Brendan Iribe got so much of this verdict against him.
ZeniMax in the meanwhile has made some move to acquire Escalation Studios. Escalation is responsible for the VR port of Please, Don’t Touch Anything! and the Oculus-published Herobound: Gladiators.
If ZeniMax goes forward with what they told Polygon this story may not be over.
Polygon was told that ZeniMax may seek an injunction to stop the sale of Oculus Rift headsets.
ZeniMax’s Chairman and CEO, stated that “technology is the foundation of our business and we consider the theft of our intellectual property to be a serious matter. We appreciate the jury’s finding against the defendants, and the award of half a billion dollars in damages for those serious violations.”
John Carmack went on Facebook obviously and stated "I disagreed with their characterization, misdirection, and selective omissions."I never tried to hide or wipe any evidence, and all of my data is accounted for, contrary to some stories being spread," he continued.
Carmak takes issue with the accusations made by ZeniMax's legal counsel that he erased data after learning of ZeniMax's lawsuit.
“This is a really important step toward VR legitimacy: a legal case of this size substantiates the potential of VR technology,” said Stephanie Llamas, an analyst at SuperData Research