Update February 24, 2017: ZeniMax still aren’t content after recently winning $500 million in a court battle with Oculus over a broken NDA and allegedly stolen trade secrets. Now they are asking a judge to block Oculus from using code found to be taken from ZeniMax.
Earlier this month a US court ruled that Oculus had used ZeniMax’s code without permission and broken an NDA, but they were cleared of stealing trade secrets.
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If the judge agrees, it could affect some Oculus games and force the Facebook-owned company to write new code. Oculus are planning to appeal.
The main problem if this did go through is that Oculus have distributed this code, both to game developers and for use in the creation of Samsung Gear VR. If enforced, the ban could affect companies outside of Oculus, basically. Of course, Oculus could try and agree to a settlement, adding another loss to the top of the $500 million already paid out.
That first payout is already a quarter of what Facebook paid for the VR company, so the investment isn’t looking quite as strong at this point.
“It could be a very big deal,” intellectual property lawyer Matt Jones told the BBC. “If they are granted the injunction, it will stop Oculus from using the code. It could get around that by writing new code but that would be time-consuming and expensive.
“Will this push Facebook towards a settlement? Quite possibly, as often injunctions hurt businesses more than damage settlements.”
Original Story February 3, 2017: ZeniMax may have just won half a billion dollars in theirlawsuit against Oculus, but they’re not done with the Facebook-owned company just yet.
ZeniMax have been in a public spat over the details with id Software founder John Carmack since the case ended, but they’re seeking to pursue things even further in the courts.
In a statement provided to Polygon, ZeniMax said they may seek an injunction to temporarily stop the sale of Oculus Rift headsets.
“We will consider what further steps we need to take to ensure there will be no ongoing use of our misappropriated technology,” a ZeniMax spokesperson said, “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.”
The $500 million awarded to ZeniMax was over a breach of NDA, and ZeniMax are looking for more recognition about the allegedly stolen code, which formed the basis of the Oculus Rift.
“While we regret we had to litigate in order to vindicate our rights, it was necessary to take a stand against companies that engage in illegal activity in their desire to get control of new, valuable technology,” said ZeniMax.
Oculus are planning to appeal the case.