One of the most discussed topics in the realm of VR was the lawsuit surrounding Oculus and ZeniMax. Some saw the lawsuit that really hampered the potential growth of VR, while others saw it as Facebook getting its comeuppance. No matter which side you fall on, the lawsuit over the Oculus VR headset is officially over.
In a press release issued by ZeniMax Media, the mega-corporation announced that it had agreed to settle the litigation that was brought against Facebook over the Oculus Rift headset, which is owned by Facebook when the company bought out the Oculus brand back in 2014.
So there's some interesting information in the press release by ZeniMax. First of all, the company does not reveal how much the settlement was that was reached between ZeniMax and Facebook. It is mentioned that in the original ruling, the jury came out in favor of ZeniMax, with Facebook being hit with a $500 million verdict. Facebook, however, appealed the decision after the District Court reduced the overall damages to $250 million. Before the appeal could be completed, ZeniMax and Facebook managed to meet the settlement, which is likely less than the $250 million number.
It definitely makes you wonder if it's enough to compensate for the issues surrounding Fallout 76? Or worse yet, what if everything earned from the lawsuit goes back into settling any potential lawsuits that spawn out of the situation involving the people who were accidentally doxed by Bethesda while they were filing support tickets for Fallout 76? That would be a real doozy.
There are currently reports going around that Bethesda, the subsidiary under ZeniMax Media, could be facing a class action lawsuit over a number of issues surrounding Fallout 76, including the refund policy that some people have claimed is anti-consumer, along with what some are calling a bait-and-switch false advertisement of the canvas bag in the Fallout 76: Power Armor Edition, which was swapped with a nylon bag. So while this war with Facebook may have ended, there could be more lawsuits for the company in the near future.
However, the issue surrounding the claims of VR copyright infringement, which involved former id Software savant, John Carmack, bringing some of the technology over to Facebook while he was still under contract with ZeniMax, has finally been resolved.
Initially there were worries that ZeniMax would force all the Oculus Rift units out of circulation that contained the copyrighted code that Carmack allegedly used in the development of the Rift, as reported by Ars Technica. However, that didn't happen. If it did then it would have put a huge dent in the overall market presence of virtual reality headsets. That's not to mention that there are only three major VR headsets that most people recognize on the market, including the PlayStation VR, the HTC Vive, and the Oculus Rift, so taking one of those out of circulation would have hurt VR more than helped it.
However, Zenimax managed to avoid that fate by entering into a settlement with Facebook. ZeniMax chairman and CEO, Robert Altman, mentioned in the press release that the company dislikes litigation but is intent on defending its property against "infringement" and "misappropriation" by third parties.