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Oculus VR sued by Doom daddy Zenimax

id Software’s parent pursues punishment
Thu May 22 2014, 09:37

RECENT Facebook acquisition Oculus VR is being sued by Zenimax, the parent firm of id Software, which gave the world Doom.

Intellectual property and its inappropriate use is behind this, and Zenimax said that its ideas are being used in the virtual reality headset. This will not wash with it.

"Intellectual property forms the foundation of our business," said Robert Altman, chairman and CEO of Zenimax. "We cannot ignore the unlawful exploitation of intellectual property that we develop and own, nor will we allow misappropriation and infringement to go unaddressed."

Zenimax said it had approached Oculus VR regarding infringement, and that its attempts to gain satisfaction were batted away by the firm.

It said that it shared intellectual property with Oculus VR and its founder, Palmer Luckey, under a non-disclosure agreement that prohibited its use by anyone other than it. It further said that this is now the 'foundation' of the Oculus Rift technology, but it has recieved no benefit or acknowledgement of this. There is now no alternative but to head to the courts, it added.

"ZeniMax and id Software take their intellectual property rights seriously," said P. Anthony Sammi, a partner at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher and Flom LLP, which is representing the firms. "We now look to the federal courts and will pursue all appropriate measures available under the law to rectify defendants' egregious conduct."

We have asked Oculus VR to respond. Facebook bought the firm for $2bn in March. Last year Oculus VR appointed id Software founder John Carmack as CTO.

"The dream of [virtual reality] has been simmering in the background for decades, but now, the people and technologies are finally aligning to allow it to reach the potential we imagined," he said. "I'm extremely excited to make a mark in what I truly believe will be a transformative technology."

Carmack kept a foot in both camps, but eventually left id Software to focus on his work at Oculus VR. µ


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