John Carmack Says Legal Dispute With ZeniMax Is Over
One piece of the ongoing Oculus legal drama has been resolved.
The long legal drama between Oculus and ZeniMax appears to be continuing, but id designer John Carmack--who was a central figure in the dispute--says his personal legal battles are over. In a tweet, Carmack said that he and ZeniMax have released all claims against each other.
It's notable that Carmack draws a very careful distinction in his statement, though. He pointed out that his personal legal disputes have been satisfied, but said that an appeal for Oculus is still moving forward. That indicates that Oculus is still fighting against the award given to ZeniMax for copyright infringement--even after it had been slashed from $500 million to $250 million.
My personal legal disputes are over -- Zenimax has fully satisfied their obligations to me from the purchase of Id Software, and we have released all claims against each other. (The appeal for Oculus still goes forward)— John Carmack (@ID_AA_Carmack) October 11, 2018
ZeniMax alleged that Carmack had taken work developed while he was at id Software--owned by ZeniMax--and taken it to Oculus for the creation of the Oculus Rift. A $500 million settlement was awarded, which was later halved when a judge found that the infringement was too small to justify such a large reward. Oculus is now continuing its appeal, presumably to reduce the damages further or eliminate them altogether.
Meanwhile, ZeniMax also filed suit last year against Samsung VR. In that suit, the company that Carmack had worked with another former ZeniMax employee, Matt Hooper, to develop a plan for mobile VR. According to the suit, Oculus then took that pitch to Samsung, which makes that company liable too. ZeniMax argues that Samsung must have been aware of the litigation with Oculus, but continued to develop Gear VR regardless of the legal risk.