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ZeniMax awarded $500M in NDA case against Oculus and Zuck

(BUSINESS NEWS) With claims that Oculus co-founder Palmer Luckey violated a non-disclosure agreement (among other things), ZeniMax walks away with a win. What does this mean for Oculus technology and Facebook’s virtual reality plans?

oculus rift facebook zenimax

Lifestyles of the frequently sued

I don’t know what it’s like to be famous, and to be honest, I believe those who are sometimes wonder if it’s worth the trouble. I like to assume it comes with lots of cool perks, like being able to turn down jury duty or witness testimony on account of the fact that well, you’re famous. Turns out, not so for Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg – at least not in the $500 million NDA case of ZeniMax vs Oculus.


Damages and cost

So, the charges and dollar amounts get a little convoluted, but the gist of it is that ZeniMax, a video game company responsible for the ultra-successful Fallout video game series and the best-selling video game of all time, Skyrim, claims that Oculus co-founder Palmer Luckey, violated a non-disclosure agreement (among other things) resulting in damages totaling $6 billion. Yikes.

[clickToTweet tweet=”The charges against Oculus condensed to a verdict, awarding ZeniMax half a billion in damages.” quote=”The slew of charges levied against the virtual reality headset maker Oculus condensed to a verdict yesterday, awarding ZeniMax half a billion dollars in damages.”]

$200 million of which will becoming straight out of the pockets of Luckey and former Oculus CEO Brenden Iribe which, after the sale of Oculus to Facebook back in 2014 for $2 billion, makes for a pretty substantial business cost.

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Oculus could be stalled

A spokesperson for ZeniMax was quoted as saying the company was “pleased” with the verdict. Still, attorney’s for ZeniMax feel that a lot was left on the table, namely the $5.5 billion balance of the amount originally sought. Lawyers.

A ZeniMax spokesperson also suggested that there may be plans to seek an injunction halting the sale of Oculus Rift headsets.

They say, “We will consider what further steps we need to take to ensure there will be no ongoing use of our misappropriated technology, including by seeking an injunction to restrain Oculus and Facebook from their ongoing use of computer code that the jury found infringed ZeniMax’s copyrights.”

Stay tuned

The entire story gets pretty murky, including accusations of premeditation and the copying of the VR source code by Oculus’ chief technology officer John Carmack. He denies these claims, saying this is “just not true”.

Anyway, the fact that a definition of “copy” versus “literally copy” may actually have bearing on the outcome of later appeals should tell you something.

Ah, to be famous.

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Written By

Staff Writer, AJ Jimenez is a science fiction writer, first responder, entrepreneur, and home schooling dad living in the Monterey Bay area. He enjoys old timey artifacts, tide pools, and adventure travel.



  1. Philip

    February 6, 2017 at 8:01 pm

    Wow ? nice win

  2. Pingback: Zenimax is back in court, this time with a new opponent - The American Genius

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