This is How Fake News Happens: The Reporting of Palmer Luckey and Nimble America

by Blake Harris • April 29th, 2017

As journalists — especially those, who publish multiple articles weekly — we’re often so focused on the now-now-now, that we rarely take a step back and reflect on stories from a few news cycles ago. Especially when those stories were inaccurate, misleading or outright false. It’s easier to just make a small correction or two (or perhaps even none at all) and move on to the next piece.

It’s somewhat understandable why this happens—we’re busy, readers have already lost interest, etc. etc.—but ignoring these things leads to a sort of systematic problem: a lack of accountability, which should be incredibly concerning to us all. Because, in retrospect, it’s easy to see how this dynamic becomes fertile ground for “fake news.”

Like many of us these days, “fake news” has been on my mind. But the problem—or one of them at least!—is that we think of fake news as a binary thing; a story is either fake or it’s not; a story is either fabricated (Elvis Lives!) or true (Cubs Win the World Series!) but in many cases that’s not really how fake news actually works. Instead, it starts with a misleading or inaccurate story—often one with a sexy headline—and then spews through social media, energized by outrage, support or concern, and then ripples into a dogpile of stories that either echo the original piece (but with a twist) or amplify the outrage/support/concern by talking about what other people are talking about.

Like I said: this is something that had been on my mind, but it was something I tried to push aside while I finished up my new book (the one about VR). Until, unfortunately, such an incident became part of the story that I was writing about; when, in September, The Daily Beast published an article titled Palmer Luckey: The Facebook Billionaire Secretly Funding Trump’s Meme Machine.

I’m sure you remember that article (how could you not with a headline like that!) and I’m sure you recall some of the pieces that followed—like Ars Technica’s How your Oculus Rift is secretly funding Donald Trump’s racist meme wars or Boing Boing‘s Facebook ‘near-billionaire’ Palmer Luckey secretly funding racist pro-Trump hate meme machine—as well as the social media assassination of Palmer Luckey (and his girlfriend).

An assassination that, by the way, I’d argue would have been warranted…if what was described in those headlines had actually been true. But that’s just not the case. Not even close. I can go into more detail if you’d like, but here’s a generic overview of what happened and why—initially for my own records—I put together this timeline.

In mid-September 2016, Palmer Luckey donated just shy of $10,000 to a recently formed pro-Trump non-profit organization called Nimble America. At the time of his donation, the entire body of Nimble America’s work consisted of putting up a single billboard in the Pittsburgh area [pictured below]. Going forward, Nimble America planned to put up more billboards in battleground states (hence the organization seeking donations).

nimble-poster

Now, whether or not you like Donald Trump, and whether or not you find the above billboard tasteful, it is important to note the following:

  • Nimble America was not responsible for creating or spreading any memes online.
  • Nimble America’s goal was to take meme-like images [like the billboard above] and put them into the real world (via billboards, t-shirts and stickers).
  • There is no evidence—nor, based on my research, do I see any reason to believe—that this organization promoted any sort of racist, sexist, misogynistic, anti-Semitic or white supremacist agenda. Neither is there any evidence of Nimble America engaging in any sort of trolling, harassing or “astroturfing.”
  • Milo Yiannopoulos had no affiliation with Nimble America other than to endorse the cause and, in his capacity as a moderator of the The_Donald subreddit, verify that there was indeed a wealthy backer [Luckey] who had donated to the organization [a little less than $10,000].

These points are important to note because they are rarely reflected in how this story was reported. Below is a timeline of how the story was reported and the ripples that ensued…

SEPTEMBER 22, 2016

[note: all times PST]

6:00 PM The Daily Beast (Gideon Resnick, Ben Collins)

Palmer Luckey: The Facebook Billionaire Secretly Funding Trump’s Meme Machine

Excerpt: “Palmer Luckey—founder of Oculus—is funding a Trump group that circulates dirty memes about Hillary Clinton.”

6:10 PM @websterandrews2:

guess I won’t be buying an oculus rift

6:13 PM @rillawafers:

eat my entire ass

6:15 PM @anildash ✔:

One reason every political hashtag on Twitter is filled with racist trolls? The founder of Oculus is funding them

6:16 PM @blackholetalos:

Rich kids who think fking America is funny. The age of overnight millionaires, reality TV sensations and Twitter bullies.

6:18 PM @jezzerat:

It’s so weird that someone named @PalmerLuckey could turn out to be a douchebag

6:18 PM @anildash  ✔:

This guy, @PalmerLuckey, put some of his billion FB dollars toward explicitly funding white supremacy. Peter Thiel approved the acquisition.

6:19 PM @DukeOfVinings:

what a sad man you must be.

6:23 PM @ablington:

I curse his immortal soul for funding the meme industry. Fuck this guy.

6:25 PM @BrowningStephen:

Sad that such a talented guy has gone to the dark side. There’s got to be a more constructive way to create, pal.

6:28 PM @CodyBrown ✔:

Holy fuck @PalmerLuckey. You’re using your @Oculus fortune to back a pro-Trump org w/ [Milo Yiannopoulos]? Plz tell me this is VR

6:34 PM @anildash  ✔:

Next $FB earnings call is November 2. I want this to be the first question that comes up.

6:43 PM Kotaku (Luke Plunkett)

Oculus Rift Founder Palmer Luckey Funding Trump Shitposters

Palmer Luckey, the founder of Oculus Rift, has been keeping busy since he sold the company to Facebook in 2014. One thing he’s done to pass the time, as reported by The Daily Beast, is to financially back (and be named Vice President of) a company dedicated to alt-right meme shitposts.”

6:45 PM @rbottoms:

@anildash You just broke the biggest story of the year concerning people of color in tech. Thank you.

6:46 PM @JohnLeguizamo  ✔:

why are you trying to undo our democracy by funding anti-Hillary memes? Do you want #trump 2 b our president? What’s wrong w u

6:46 PM @ScrutaGames:

Until @PalmerLuckey steps down from his position at @oculus, we will be cancelling Oculus support for our games.

Note: With this message, Scruta Games became the first developer to publicly announce they would no longer be working with Oculus. A handful of other developers would follow in the days ahead.

6:52 PM @maladamus:

His anger toward women is obviously obvious.

6:52 PM @HumanityPlague:

You obviously won’t care but you’re a wretch of a human being.

6:56 PM @anildash  ✔:

Story is all @GideonResnick & @oneunderscore__ , I’m just happy to amplify.

6:58 PM @joanmbird:

so you’re a White Nationalist? Wow, must be difficult to work with others. Poor thing. Hope sales don’t tank even more.

6:59 PM @Toadsanime  ✔:

You blew it, man.

7:04 PM Boing Boing (Xeni Jardin)

Facebook ‘near-billionaire’ Palmer Luckey secretly funding racist pro-Trump hate meme machine

“Luckey is funding a pro-Donald Trump “shitposting” tactical team that churns out racist, sexist, hatey anti-Hillary Clinton memes and works to make them go viral.”

7:05 PM @brant ✔:

Bigot

7:09 PM @josefkstories:

Hey @PalmerLuckey did you ever consider curing malaria or polio with that money or was funding racist trolls the first thing you thought of.

7:10 PM @ironicaccount:

that Oculus Rift kickstarter sure had weird stretch goals

7:21 PM @CodyBrown ✔:

The amazing part of this is @PalmerLuckey didn’t invent core VR tech. FB deal enabled by ‘borrowed’ Valve prototypes

7:29 PM @carmencolborne

got a compassionate bone in your pudgy body? Didn’t think so

7:35 PM @jasonschreier  ✔:

Hooooooolllllyyyyyy shit

7:39 PM @rbottoms:

@PalmerLuckey Make me sick to my stomach. Bad enough to think racist AltRight Neo-Nazi scum run…

7:40 PM @rbottoms:

…Silicon Valley and the failure to make any progress in diversity is accidental.

7:41 PM @rbottoms:

This basically shows that a lily-white tech nirvana is a feature, not a bug.

7:49 PM @pixelatedboat:

*puts on VR helmet*

*Palmer Luckey appears*

“Welcome to libertarian paradise. No taxes. All money is bitcoins. Murder is legal. GOD IS DEAD”

7:53 PM @HonestWilliam  ✔:

Hey. My name is @PalmerLuckey and this… Is Jackass.

7:56 PM @DanaHoule:

Revenge Of The Racist Asshole White Supremacist Racist Asshole Racist Sexist Asshole Nerds

8:08 PM Business Insider (Ben Gilbert)

Oculus Rift creator Palmer Luckey is financing a pro-Trump meme group

“He may be most closely associated with the kinds of anti-Clinton Facebook memes that even strident Donald Trump supporters roll their eyes at…with a focus on viral, anti-Clinton memes.”

8:09 PM @TTLabsVR:

Hey @oculus, @PalmerLuckey’s actions are unacceptable. NewtonVR will not be supporting the Oculus Touch as long as he is employed there.

8:11 AM @samfbiddle ✔:

this guy turned out to be an immense shithead? no way

8:11 PM @kimmaicutler:

@PalmerLuckey’s girlfriend.

@nikkimoxxi:

I’m at the Trump rally in Anaheim! Love the diversity of people here!

Note: When later asked about that tweet, Nicole Edelmann (aka @nikkimoxxi) replied, “I definitely meant it sincerely! I met so many great people from all different races, ages, and backgrounds.” Regardless, her Twitter feed would soon become so inundated with threats of rape and violence that, by the following morning, she disabled her account.

8:14 PM @Cheryllynn512:

#Shameonyou

8:23 PM @Papapishu ✔:

My HTC Vive review:

  1. Good immersion
  2. Comfortable headset
  3. Not invented by an obscenely rich pissbaby edgelord

8:19 PM @LeftWingMilitia:

The French Revolution 2.0 is coming & we’ll see your head fall into basket of deplorables.

8:22 PM @NickH725:

whomp whomp, I wish you good fortune in the flame wars to come

8:26 PM @Papapishu ✔:

Excited for the new PlayStation VR slogan “VR….Without The Holocaust Memes”

8:46 PM @LukePlunkett ✔:

Musk: let’s go to Mars!

Luckey: whitesupremacistmeme.jpg

9:03 PM @GhostofGhostDad:

Will I catch racism if I try on an Oculus headset?

9:35 PM @markhaverty:

@PalmerLuckey once called a plumber about a big shit clogging his toilet. The plumber tried to drag him out of the house.

9:36 PM @MimasAgency:

guess your career is over…RT

9:45 PM @AndyWarrenStein:

@PalmerLuckey is a singularly bad person.

9:27 PM @minliangtan:

Oh wow, I thought the pro-Trump Palmer Luckey story was satire the first time I read it. Just realized it’s true.

10:11 PM @MelWebster:

L-O-S-E-R

10:13 PM @sherylmaloney:

Zuckerberg gives billions to fight disease @PalmerLuckey gives millions to spread racism. The latter is everything wrong with the valley.

10:17 PM @Vahn16 ✔:

sure was considerate of palmer luckey to bring vr to the masses so they can escape the nightmare terror world he hopes to usher in

10:33 PM @CalebTRB:

I am so appalled to have ever given you a dime.

11:34 PM @Rockmstr99:

I will never, NEVER buy an oculus.

11:35 PM @yldcatz:

@PalmerLuckey watch your back

11:45 PM @BenKuchera ✔:

It’s going to be tricky to get devs and press excited about Oculus Connect 3 until this whole “funding white supremacy” thing is addressed.

SEPTEMBER 23, 2016

12:11 AM @Alshie:

So has Palmer Luckey always been a douche? We’re we too distracted by crap magazine covers and flip flops?

12:12 AM @danhett:

I’d like to announce my new VR experience about punching Palmer Luckey in the throat until the heat death of the universe

12:19 AM @curtkrone:

@PalmerLuckey is a sad little manbaby.

12:19 AM @andichance:

I will never purchase anything made by this man because I will never fund fascism, demagoguery and racism

12:20 AM @ScholarlySentnl:

ashamed of you man, really looked up to not anymore, no more @oculus, who supports hatred and bigotry

12:48 AM @gamesbymanuel:

Palmer Luckey, I really thought you were one of the good guys. This is unforgivable.

1:01 AM @rowast:

not only doez Zuck need to fire Palmer but he needs to drop the name oculus

1:04 AM @kathy279:

Hey racist, xenophobic, NEO-NAZI, bigot, misogynist aka Palmer Lackey; you on your way to becoming a PARIAH to the whole world

1:31 AM @TheosUnluckyDip:

Unluckey

1:35 AM The Guardian (Alex Hern)

Oculus Rift founder Palmer Luckey spends fortune backing pro-Trump ‘shitposts’

“The pair [Luckey and Facebook board member Peter Theil] stand in marked contrast to Facebook’s founder and chief executive, Mark Zuckerberg, who has been vocal in his support of progressive policies – and his opposition to Donald Trump.”

1:48 AM @SteveZiss0u:

I’d bring some boxes to work tomorrow because Facebook probably isn’t going to give you much time to clean out your office.

2:10 AM DailyKos (Annette K. Larson)

Meet Luckey Palmer – Oculus Rich Kid who Filled the Internet with Anti Hillary – Racist Sleaze

“It’s a convoluted story and I’d recommend going to both articles [from The Daily Beast and The Guardian] to get clear in your heads exactly what the little a’hole has been up to.”

2:35 AM @Tafdolphin:

@PalmerLuckey How’s today working out for you champ?

2:43 AM @Csimmons21:

@PalmerLuckey @oculus I want a refund on political grounds.

3:16 AM @sfcalling85:

@PalmerLuckey You support #Trump? Just tossed your machine. Boo!

3:55 AM @Jschmuck2:

@PalmerLuckey what a disappointment.

4:05 AM @florisvaneck:

The VR scene is one of the most inclusive and diverse within tech. @PalmerLuckey just dropped a bomb on it. He has to step down.

4:30 AM @kapilan98:

@PalmerLuckey just got a whole lot of unlucky. Despicable.

5:04 AM @TheKevinDent ✔:

Personally, I hope @PalmerLuckey has a huge penis, so he can go fuck himself!

5:11 AM @TheKevinDent ✔:

“Daddy where were you when you found out @PalmerLuckey was a bigot?”…..

5:12 AM @ThatSabineGirl:

Fuck Oculus. Or Nazi Goggles, as they will henceforth be known.

5:30 AM @chadelind

you forgot “petulant child” in your Twitter description.

5:47 AM @nkolakowski ✔:

I’d pay to be a fly on the wall when Zuck talks to @PalmerLuckey about white nationalist and anti-Semitic memes.

5:52 AM @JKxZ:

he fucked over crowd sourcing to make billions, now he wants to fuck over America by being a shitposting troll?

5:53 AM @thereisonlyr:

With @PalmerLuckey unmasked as sponsor of a racist troll network, @CodyBrown says @Facebook & @oculus need to step up

5:56 AM @beaknit:

We won’t forgive or forget.

6:00 AM The Independent (Andrew Griffin)

Shitposting: What is the bizarre online behaviour that could win Donald Trump the election?

“Numerous elections have been called the first social media election, but this might truly be the first powered by trolling.”

6:28 AM @ericmgoss:

Trump supporting pieces of shit will have to answer for their actions when the dust clears.

6:31 AM @MediaGuyNYC:

better take those goggles off and pay attention to ACTUAL reality…

6:32 AM Ars Technica (Tom Mendelsohn)

How your Oculus Rift is secretly funding Donald Trump’s racist meme wars

“The stream of racist, sexist, and economically illiterate memes appearing in support of Donald Trump…is being bankrolled in part by the 24-year-old inventor of Oculus Rift.”

6:38 AM @thenateralph:

How your Oculus Rift is secretly funding Donald Trump’s racist meme wars. Step down, [email protected]

6:41 AM @gabriele4591:

can’t wait till #Trump takes away your freedom of speech , you disturbed little man

6:47 AM Motherboard (Emanuel Maiberg, Oliver Lee Bateman)

What Does Alt-Right Patron Palmer Luckey Believe?

“Liking an islamophobic tweet is not the same as being islamophobic. A retweet is not an endorsement. People do and say a lot of dumb things on Twitter and that does not necessarily reflect their character. But from the Twitter presence of Luckey, a well-moneyed public figure and key player in the VR industry who holds a certain power and influence, a pattern emerges.”

6:59 AM Mashable (Keith Wagstaff)

Oculus co-founder Palmer Luckey is apparently funding anti-Hillary memes

“And who helped Luckey create Nimble America? None other than conservative pundit Milo Yiannopoulos, recently famous for being banned from Twitter after harassing Ghostbusters star Leslie Jones online.”

7:00 AM @shanekaiglenn:

Their goal is to create a racist, misogynist virtual utopia where these low self-esteem dorks can live out their fantasies

7:05 AM @snarkcycle:

Shove your alt-right memes up your ass. #thanks

7:05 AM @Wharrgarbl42:

@PalmerLuckey Stole oculus technology from ZeniMax, claims it as his own. Liar, cheat, thief, fraud. Just like Trump.

7:45 AM @rolling_2:

even millionaires can be racist!

@PalmerLuckey is that poster boy.

7:50 AM @sean1279:

Looks like I will be selling my Oculus. I can’t bear to fund hate, even if it’s in a roundabout way.

8:00 AM @hugmpussy:

You aligned urself w/ Donald Trump and memetic engineering of a pro racist and pro nationalist marketing firm. Brace ur self.

8:01 AM @nicklohr:

phew! so glad your political bs made my buying decision much easier. Never give money to Oculus– got it.

8:03 AM Thai Phan, who worked with Luckey at USC, publishes the following post on his Facebook account:

Here is some truth: when Palmer worked at MxR, and was still attending CSULB, he would impersonate his calculus professor, mocking his broken English. He told me his prof was Vietnamese and wondered why all of his profs couldn’t speak perfect English. This bothered me a little… but I figured he was just acting his age, and was merely frustrated with math. I’m glad that this is out in the public now… it shows he hasn’t changed.

8:08 AM The Atlantic (Ian Bogost)

Why a Silicon Valley Founder Is Funding a Factory for Trump Memes

“For wealthy geeks like Palmer Luckey who seek vengeance against the institutions they perceive to exclude them, “The Donald” is an obvious ally.”

8:08 AM @NeonNazgul:

But hey @PalmerLuckey thanks for reinforcing the stereotype that gamers are white male racist douchebros. Good job, champ.

8:33 AM @Ronorra:

oKKKulus scumbag.

8:40 AM @Normchacho:

So, White-supremacy, how’s that going for you?

8:49 AM @bearplane3D:

you could have promoted women in tech, diversity in games, built tech to make the world a better place for the less fortunate

8:54 AM Gizmodo (Bryan Menegus)

Palmer Luckey, Millionaire Founder of Oculus Rift, Loves Donald Trump and Dates a Gamergater

“It’s been an open secret for some time that Palmer Luckey, the 24-year-old founder of VR company Oculus Rift and heir apparent to the future of gaming, is a strange guy—the type who argues with his customers on Reddit and casually cosplays as My Little Pony characters. Turns out, he also appears to be an active supporter of Donald Trump and the alt-right, and in a long-term relationship with an avid Gamergater.”

9:01 AM Polygon (Colin Campbell)

Oculus founder Palmer Luckey is spending big on anti-Hillary memes

“Nimble America’s front page features a story about rapists operating in “criminal gangs” along the Mexico border, echoing some of Trump’s most controversial claims.”

9:03 AM @wayofthedodo:

Don’t care how much $ @Palmer Luckey contributes to Trump’s marketing. DJT will lose in Nov & Luckey will be out a few mil. Fuck them both.

9:26 AM @timtimtimtim:

This revelation made me want to vomit harder than Rift DK1 did :-/

9:27 AM @peo:

Oh boy, you fucked it up again…

9:29 AM @adlangx:

I’ll definitely be avoiding the Trump VR set.

9:48 AM @JanPKarlsson:

You don’t need Putin’s money I presume, so I can only conclude you wish to destroy America for free? Trump is a charlatan.

9:51 AM @kadybat:

There are people like Palmer Luckey throughout Orange County. Deeply conservative, tacitly racist, masking their racism with false populism.

9:56 AM @smktty:

Palmer Luckey’s girlfriend is pretty much a Nazi.

9:58 AM @MaxTemkin:

@Polytron Cards Against Humanity will not support Oculus as well

Note: Prior to this tweet, the “Nuisance Committee”—a Super-PAC founded by Cards Against Humanity creator Max Temkin—had just spent $20,000 to put up a 90-foot anti-Trump billboard in Chicago near O’Hare International Airport. .

10:22 AM @Cripplor:

The 14 y.o.’s shitposting on 4chan in 2006 are today’s silicon valley billionaires buying elections for lulz

10:22 AM @Ianshook:

Man, you’re really getting the hang of disappointing people.

10:23 AM @jvizer:

@PalmerLuckey is so stupid, he thinks that the country that turned an unknown VR enthusiast into a near billionaire is not already great.

10:25 AM UploadVR (Ian Hamilton)

VR Community Divided After Report Ties Palmer Luckey To Pro-Trump Meme Group

“E McNeill, the developer of early VR titles Darknet and Tactera, both available through the Oculus store, tweeted a screenshot of a $1,000 donation to Hillary Clinton’s campaign after the report published on Thursday afternoon. Another Twitter user wrote “I’m cancelling Touch support in my game as long as Palmer works for Oculus” along with a photo directing the middle finger at the as-yet unreleased controllers.”

10:29 AM @ETPC1:

lol palmer luckey’s shitlord racist girlfriend deleted her twitter account after last night

10:30 AM @RandPaulHQ:

White Power, White Power, White Power, White Power, White Power,White Power, White Power, You are a good Nazi sir!!!

10:37 AM @ScottWalkerUSA:

So you are Trump’s Joseph Goebbels? Awesome dude.

10:38 AM VentureBeat (Jeff Grubb)

I’m not surprised Palmer Luckey is funding pro-Trump ‘shitposts’

“I’ve spoken with Luckey only a couple of times over the years, but we’re also friends on Facebook. That never really meant anything until July, when…in an effort to mock one of my other friends, the Oculus founder used 4chan’s “greentexting” syntax to imply she was being ridiculous. Greentexting is when 4chan users put the “>” symbol in front of their text to turn it green. This signifies the user is telling a story or the user is quoting someone else to highlight how silly they are.”

10:48 AM @thatadamguy ✔:

@anildash Disheartening and disgusting. But I’m worried collateral damage of punishing Luckey via Occulus. Any more targeted suggestions?

10:49 AM @anildash ✔:

@thatadamguy I’m open to suggestions for accountability, but an organization that he leads seems the appropriate target.

11:17 AM @VoteMarcoRubio:

I am releasing KKKickstarter. Will you help us fund it?

11:19 AM @FortKickassYT:

Palmer Luckey sounds like the name of the douchey preppy the hero would have to beat in a ski race to save the rec centre in an 80s movie.

11:42 AM @DaiyuHurst:

Palmer Luckey must die.

11:49 AM @CaseyNewton ✔:

Somebody make a 30-day VR experience about life as a non-white American male and strap it to Palmer Luckey’s stupid face

12:26 PM @the_rami ✔:

The whole situation with Oculus and Luckey just makes me so sad that I want to escape into some sort of HTC Vive-powered virtual reality.

12:50 PM Polytron, the developers of a game called SUPERHYPERCUBE, publishes the following statement on pastebin:

You may have seen the news yesterday that ties Oculus Founder Palmer Luckey to Nimble America, a Trump-endorsing organization Luckey started to defame Clinton via “the power of Internet memes”.

In a political climate as fragile and horrifying as this one, we cannot tacitly endorse these actions by supporting Luckey or his platform.

In light of this, we will not be pursuing Oculus support for our upcoming VR release, SUPERHYPERCUBE.

If you are a voting citizen of the United States, please remember to register and make your voice heard this November 8th. Do not let bigotry, white supremacy, hate and fear win.

1:30 PM The Ringer (Alyssa Bereznak)

Palmer Luckey Has Money to Burn: Predicting the next move for tech’s newest über-villain

“OK, we get it, Luckey. You’re very young. You have a very silly, very white name…You have a sister named Ginger. If things were different, and you didn’t have the money to fund a community of trolls who want to elect Trump, maybe you’d be like any other Long Beach college dropout, spending your student loans on novelty shot glasses at Urban Outfitters.”

1:12 PM @de_cNile:

Rip dude, it was good while it lasted 🙁

1:56 PM @SBenzell:

I thought I knew who you were. But funding white supremacist trolls? The con-man Trump? You and Thiel are on something strong

2:19 PM @enMTW:

When do you plan on resigning?

2:27 PM @GamerRed:

A lifelong game developer, I’m ashamed FOR you. Flaunting your Male White Privilege to embolden White Supremacy. #NeverTrump

2:30 PM @doombot999:

I liked Palmer and was happy for his wealth when he was just a kooky inventor. Now though? Fuck that guy.

2:30 PM @n_Googs:

go fuck yourself and fuck trump too

2:35 PM New York Magazine (Brian Feldman)

Who Is Palmer Luckey, the Facebook VR Millionaire Funding a Pro-Trump Meme Campaign?

“To be clear: There is no hard evidence so far that Nimble America has made any memes or funded any trolls, though it exists, has money, and bought a billboard in Pittsburgh.”

3:00 PM CNBC (via The Daily Beast)

Oculus founder Palmer Luckey funds anti-Clinton ‘dirty meme’ group

3:34 PM @poylehomer:

@PalmerLuckey Is a shitbag who bought into the rags2riches myth that rich guys tell themselves. I won’t be supporting anything he touches.

3:50 PM @LevNovak:

you’re a gross, bad person, and no amount of money will ever buy you peace if you continue to pursue the false joys of evil.

4:00 PM Vice (Patrick Klepek)

Why Oculus’s Palmer Luckey Is Getting So Much Shit For Supporting Trump

“This is about the intersection of money and power, and it cuts deep in a world where billionaire Peter Thiel secretly bankrolled lawsuits to bankrupt Gawker Media.”

4:10 PM WIRED (Joanna Pearlstein)

Palmer Luckey Is the Worst, but He Doesn’t Reflect Silicon Valley

“In the best Silicon Valley man-child tradition, Oculus inventor Palmer Luckey is seeking to sway the presidential election by putting his money behind anti-Hillary Clinton trolls.”

4:10 PM @kristenvbrown ✔:

For those following along in the Palmer Luckey saga, his girlfriend, Nikki Moxxi, seems to have deleted her Twitter

4:42 PM The Verge (Adi Robertson)

Palmer Luckey’s Trump fund has been a kick in the teeth for VR

[Quoting an anonymous developer] “How much of the 30 percent cut of our revenue that goes to Oculus is going to fund neo-Nazi hate memes?”

4:44 PM @mikecsiy:

Congrats, I’m throwing away my development kits. Maybe I should burn them for a YouTube video. #effoculus

4:47 PM @GeoffreyArend ✔:

Holy fuck @PalmerLuckey. Had no idea your side gig was promoting racist idiots. Shame on you. Can I get my money back? #viveisbetteranyway

5:11 PM @bad_technician

remember when you were an up-and-coming VR mogul and not a Trump-loving-PR-mess for Oculus? #PepperidgeFarmRemembers

5:17 PM @JebBushforPres:

@Oculus please cut ties with this racist douchebro

5:22 PM @enamoredgirl:

Why not spend your $$ on good things instead, like Zuck?

5:33  PM @bad_technician:

your patriot grandpa would be ashamed of the way you’re using your money to subvert the political process. #shame

5:36 PM @SamKeaton4:

Seriously, are just a very rich young nerd with no social conscience or morality?

5:44 PM @GangsterSwedish:

So basically @facebook is financing @PalmerLuckey ‘s chickenshit anonymous pro-racist-for-President antics. Got it.

5:53 PM @hellroy:

@PalmerLuckey & @oculus are officially off my nice list and on to the naughty one.

6:03 PM @bobservo:

after learning that Palmer Luckey’s girlfriend cosplays as GamerGate mascot Vivian James, i honestly don’t think this story could get better

6:12 PM The Hollywood Reporter (Natalie Jarvey)

Backlash brews after Oculus founder funds anti-Hillary Clinton memes

6:23 PM @dennislarkin:

[email protected] is a total racist #AltRight @realDonaldTrump supporting #SCUMBAG! You can throw him in the #BasketofDeplorabes with the rest!

6:44 PM Palmer Luckey publishes the following post on his Facebook account:

I am deeply sorry that my actions are negatively impacting the perception of Oculus and its partners. The recent news stories about me do not accurately represent my views.

Here’s more background: I contributed $10,000 to Nimble America because I thought the organization had fresh ideas on how to communicate with young voters through the use of several billboards. I am a libertarian who has publicly supported Ron Paul and Gary Johnson in the past, and I plan on voting for Gary in this election as well.

I am committed to the principles of fair play and equal treatment. I did not write the “NimbleRichMan” posts, nor did I delete the account. Reports that I am a founder or employee of Nimble America are false. I don’t have any plans to donate beyond what I have already given to Nimble America.

Still, my actions were my own and do not represent Oculus. I’m sorry for the impact my actions are having on the community.

7:10 PM Fast Company (Daniel Terdiman)

Palmer Luckey “sorry” for harming Oculus’s reputation, says he’s just funder of anti-Hillary meme org

7:23 PM @oneunderscore_ ✔:

[email protected] Palmer, what you just wrote about NimbleRichMan isn’t true. Or you didn’t tell the truth in an email earlier this week.

7:38 PM @nickwcoleman:

You let everyone down man.

7:43 PM ‏@ShardShinjuku:

@PalmerLuckey has yet to understand that his current situation ends with him falling on his sword one way or another.

7:44 PM ‏@jessesingal ✔:

Palmer Luckey sounds like the name of a highly inbred descendant of the South’s laziest and stupidest slaveowner.

7:44 PM @Cernovich ✔:

[email protected] DO NOT apologize, do not resign from any job, do not do anything. Tim Hunt’s case is informative.

Note: Cernovich links to an article about Tim Hunt, a Nobel Prize-winning British biochemist, who was “mocked and vilified on Twitter and in the media after he reportedly told a gathering of women scientists that “girls” in the lab are a nuisance because they are lovesick crybabies.”  

The article goes on to explain “It turns out that, just as Hunt has claimed, the 72-year-old scientist’s comments during a luncheon at a science journalism conference in Korea in June were an awkward self-deprecating joke—greeted with laughter (not the reported “stony silence”) by a mostly female audience. The “Tim Hunt, misogynist scientist” narrative has been falling apart piece by piece over the past month; last week, it was finished off by a snippet of audio recorded by a female attendee and made public by The Times. Now, attention should turn to the real scandal: irresponsible journalism magnified by social media frenzy.”

7:49 PM @bill_e_wheeler:

Hey shit-stain – hear that? It’s the sound of every living human being in 31 blue states never, ever using Oculus. Ever.

7:57 PM Jason Rubin publishes the following post on his Facebook account:

I wanted to give Palmer Freeman Luckey a chance to respond before I said anything, and having read his post. I take him at his word. Those of you who have known me before I joined Oculus know that I would not work in a place that I thought condoned, or spread hate. Nor would I remain silent if I saw it raise its head. I have always believed that games, and now especially VR, have the potential to bring people together. My view is unwavering. I continue to believe that Oculus can make the world a better place.

8:30 PM @k3nchi:

Ppl do not believe your apology @palmerluckey. You got caught for being racist. Your customer base, the geeks & nerds, aren’t idiots.

8:42 PM @cheesemeister3K:

[email protected] So, you’re not sorry you funded shitposting, but sorry it negatively affected the business, i.e. sorry you got caught?

8:50 PM Brendan Iribe publishes the following post on his Facebook account:

I want to respond to the recent press stories involving Palmer. I know that Palmer is deeply sorry for the impact this situation is having on the company, our partners and the industry.

Everyone at Oculus is free to support the issues or causes that matter to them, whether or not we agree with those views. It is important to remember that Palmer acted independently in a personal capacity, and was in no way representing the company.

10:36 PM @scottperry:

resign

11:37 PM @nuthinking:

@PalmerLuckey too late and too calculated? Sorry but I don’t buy it.

SEPTEMBER 24, 2016

7:36 AM CNET (Sean Hollister)

Oculus founder Palmer Luckey’s role in Clinton smear group remains murky

8:59 PM Robert Scoble publishes the following post on his Facebook account:

Why Mark Zuckerberg should fire Palmer Freeman Luckey.

Because he was playing on Reddit pissing off many in the community instead of doing his job.

The HTC Vive has room scale VR. Oculus doesn’t. The Vive has controllers out today. Oculus doesn’t.

The Vive is way more fun.

The Vive has developers around the world building for it and not Oculus.

This morning a friend I trust a lot told me Google Daydream is way nicer than anyone expects (that is coming October 4th). For me the real war is over mobile.

Note: I am speaking for myself only here and have no idea what Upload VR thinks on this topic.

Facebook is being beaten in VR and out positioned by others in AR. Which is nuts because you spent billions to get Oculus.

Zuck this should concern you because so much of Facebook’s future lies on VR and AR.

Luckey hasn’t done a good job for you. Get rid of him and get some management that understands how important this market is.

7:53 AM @nunomaia:

Spineless @PalmerLuckey apology to the faux-outrage niche for having a free will attack grants him everyone’s hate.

8:31 AM Motherboard (Emanuel Maiberg)

Palmer Luckey is Lying to Somebody

9:23 AM @johnsob20:

@PalmerLuckey Turns out Oculus co-founder is a racist Trump supporter. Glad I haven’t given him my money, and now I never will.

11:47 AM Tech Crunch (Anthony Ha)

The ugly reality of an Oculus founder’s politics

“…complicates the picture that Luckey has built up in the media as a geeky genius who’s just so damn passionate about virtual reality. All those things could be as true today as they were a year or two ago, but now you also have to think about the Luckey who’s supported trolls who hijack conversations with white supremacist memes…”

12:27 PM @_MinightCoffee:

As a mexican who was saving to get an oculus kit, the Luckey debacle is very disappointing. I’m sure there are better ways to be political

4:11 PM @Shuddertrix:

I want to beat the absolute shit out of anyone that owns an Oculus Rift

9:48 PM Nonny De La Pena publishes the following post on her Facebook account:

I am being asked by many people and members of the press to comment about Palmer and his funding of Nimble America’s s**tposting on Hillary Clinton. While he has the right to offer political support to anyone he wishes, as a woman working in technology who has faced many disparaging remarks, who also had amazing but undocumented grandparents from Mexico, and who has witnessed her mother subject to racist comments firsthand, the things Trump says sicken me. Feeling dismayed barely describes my sentiments.

11:12 PM @ReddestOfRobins:

@PalmerLuckey I honestly didn’t know who you were until all of this, but it’s clear to see you’re getting a raw deal here. Best wishes, dude

SEPTEMBER 25, 2016

2:53 PM @Qualzog:

@PalmerLuckey while I disagree with your political views, you should be able to spend your money however you want. #Democracy

2:54 PM @Qualzog:

@PalmerLuckey speaking of spending your money on what you want, can you buy me a Rift? Come onnnnnnnn! 🙂 I finally have a PC that will work

2:56 PM Tech Times (Alexandra Burlacu)

Amid Heavy Criticism Over His Pro-Trump Investments, Oculus Founder Gets Two Top Executives On His Side

“The truth is that Luckey’s contribution to Nimble America did affect Oculus and many people’s view of the company, casting a dark cloud above it. It remains to be seen how things will unfold, especially since several developers said they will no longer support Oculus as long as Luckey is still a part of it.”

SEPTEMBER 26, 2016

6:04 AM @DarthClide:

Hang in there man! Just voicing my support for you to have your own voice. 🙂

5:45 PM USA Today (Marco della Cava and Brett Molina)

Facebook millionaire Luckey aligns himself with alt-right, but only if you squint

“While Scruta Games and a few other VR companies expressed similar sentiments, such stances often are met with blistering criticism. In responding to Tomorrow Today Labs’ stance, WolfLoot tweeted “Ur anti-freedom,” while Scott Malcomson wrote, “What ‘actions’? Voting for someone you don’t like? Grow up.”

SEPTEMBER 29, 2016

1:20 PM @ScrutaGames:

We’ve failed to find any evidence backing up the Daily Beast’s claim that Luckey paid for hate speech. Only a lame billboard.

1:23 PM @ScrutaGames:

So we were misinformed about him financially backing hate speech, which was the issue we had.

1:23 PM @ScrutaGames:

Since there is no evidence of that so far, we will tentatively resume work on Touch support.

—-

Blake J. Harris is a writer and filmmaker based out of New York. He is the bestselling author of Console Wars and is currently co-directing the documentary based on his book, which is being produced by Scott Rudin, Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg. He will also serve as an executive producer on Sony’s feature film adaptation of Console Wars. Currently, he is writing companion pieces for Paul Scheer’s How Did This Get Made? podcast and working on a new book to be published by HarperCollins about the unlikely resurgence of Virtual Reality.

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  • Mane Vr

    isn’t this too little too late. you guys wait till the guy’s rep is in the shitter then u come out with this.. which is why I don’t trust the media full of f’ing lairs. but I give you credit for at lease trying to clean things up even with as late as it is

  • Lee Swain

    I think you are arguing semantics to defend a reprehensible person who supports beliefs (you didn’t mention his posts on the subject that so many were offended by) that many gamers find disgusting and do not want to support. Getting not picky about Nimble America not advocating in one specific way or another is a stretch and saying the fact that they did not put out racist or sexists statements (just supported a sexist racist) is not a strong argument. This article is also offensive I. It’s failure to understand what actual “fake news” is, which is crafted propaganda filled with outright lies. As apposed to slightly misleading stories (on uniportant technical aspects I may add) that are due to lazy journalism. BIG and VERY important difference!

    • blake j. harris

      Nimble America’s entire contribution to the world: 1 billboard. What are you talking about?

      • iThinkMyCatIsAFlea

        Because people found out who the scumbags were behind it Blake.

    • polysix

      oh fucking shut up

    • 1droidfan

      So basically anyone who does not view the world the way the mainstream media machine feeds it to you, and dares to think for themselves, is a reprehensible person. All hail the liberal social media posters like Lee Swain and their politically correct views we must conform to!

      • It’s scary how people are upvoting that guy. His comment reads like an agitprop manifesto to shame people into the “right side of history”.

      • Lee Swain

        Being a sexist/racist is not thinking for yourself. It’s being a POS. His Reddit post was fucking reprehensible, nothing to do with “mainstream media”.

  • Ed Smith Jr.

    Modern American politics doesn’t care about facts. Anyone that doesn’t agree with me is bad. Works both ways.

    • Get Schwifty!

      Yup…. that’s exactly it. Forty years on of identity-based politics results in the kind of polar politics we have now and making automatic assumptions based on pre-judgement and an unwillingness to tolerate differences of opinion. It’s easy to simply dismiss someone you don’t agree with by instantly going to the farthest extreme to label someone as either an instant racist, sexist, homophobic, communist, gun-nut, and so on or simply a “hater” if they don’t agree with every plank of your chosen party. No one has a lock on wisdom, but the problem is the Left in particular (but not limited too) has taught people to knee-jerk react to anything that doesn’t fit a single mold of thought to the point that clear dangers to their principles like fundamentalist Islam (which is inherently not democratic in the least) are essentially ignored or white-washed while someone who doesn’t use even a tone they like is summarily executed in the press.

  • iThinkMyCatIsAFlea

    Hey Blake, you forgot to mention alt-right Luckey and Milo asking for donations on Reddit.

  • Martin L

    A few things this ‘article’ is conveniently ignoring:

    1. Explaining what was researched. Right now you’d have to take this author’s article as granted, similarly how people simply believe ‘fake news’.
    2. Ignoring the reddit posts nimbleamerica did and what they implied (some quotes: “shitposting is powerful and meme magic is real”, We conquered Reddit and drive narrative on social media, conquered the [mainstream media], now it’s time to get our most delicious memes in front of Americans whether they like it or not”
    3. Ignoring the backgrounds of the co-founders of NimbleAmerica and what they believed in

    This is lacking so much information and just fills in the rest with tweets which makes it difficult to read and unnecessary long.

    • daveinpublic

      He was just saying at the time Luckey supported them, all they had done is one billboard.

  • Ombra Alberto

    The article is clear. But people inside are dirty. No one will change his mind. They have already given the verdict.

    As far as the attack against Luckey is concerned, it’s exaggerated.

  • Weldon Luttig

    Bullshit. You cant start investing into Pro Trump propaganda while also divorcing yourself of the racism and misogyny Trump stands for. Another point you missed is that a large part of the criticism towards Palmer is that he was promoting shit posting, to the point of putting it on billboards. Its a completely destructive way of putting your political agenda out there and does nothing to promote intelligent conversation between parties.

    • 1droidfan

      So you call Trump financial supporters racist and misogynist and then complain about lack of intelligent conversation between parties.

      • Weldon Luttig

        Not sure what one has to do with the other but you can financially support Trump and his campaign without promoting shit posting.

        • Cl

          Hes saying that because trump doesnt stand for racism and misogyny. The only ones who think that are liberal sheep.

          • koenshaku

            I wonder why…

    • No.

    • daveinpublic

      Same could be said for Hillary and corruption/lies/bullying of her husband’s sexual victims.

  • Herb Derb

    He donated money to Trumps cause as far as im concerned he may as well have donated it to the KKK, forget everything else if just thats true the guys a Douche.
    Dont know why you would take the time to defend him, you may be douces too, i’ll be keeping my eye on you, just in case you’re also one of the angry pale people.

    • iThinkMyCatIsAFlea

      Palmer also donated $100,000 to Trump’s inaugural celebrations. Google Palmer $100,000 Trump.

    • Get Schwifty!

      “angry pale people”… wow, now that’s just racist…. it may surprise you that people from all walks of life and races voted for Trump… but that doesn’t fit the simple-minded short-hand view does it?

      • Herb Derb

        Bleuugh wubadubadub

    • Observe

      You’re not a very good comedian. You should keep your day job (if you have one).

  • Gerald Terveen

    a) what billboard? I don’t see the referenced billboard and no link to one either.

    b) people jumped to conclusions – being Anti-Hillary does not equal being Pro-Trump, being Pro-Trump does not equal being a racist, sexist … the black and white thinking is strong with the current population of the internet.

    c) political opinions: His girlfriend is an open Trump supporter – I think it is a bad idea to support Trump, but I still consider it important that we do not attack Trump supporters but engage in conversation. Palmer says he is a Johnson supporter … which I consider to be a bad choice too. But something tells me that everyone considers the choices that are not our own the “bad choices”. I would have enjoyed reading their reasoning of their picks – instead all we got was outraged folks with pitchforks driving them out of the public eye.

    d) fake news … I am not entirely sure that this is a great example of fake news, it is more of a prime example of the decline in quality journalism

    e) vote with your wallet! I think that is a very reasonable way to act. I don’t like Elon Musk – then I won’t buy a Tesla. I don’t like the Walton family then I don’t buy at Walmart. And so on. It is a way to reduce political capital in the wrong hands.

    The problem is that people attack the Walton family for taking advantage of the social security system on Facebook with language that makes you wonder if they are in anger-therapy, but then they go shopping to Walmart.

    PS: I like Elon Musk.

  • Cl

    “An assassination that, by the way, I’d argue would have been warranted…if what was described in those headlines had actually been true.” So… supporting trump and making hillary memes deserves death? wow

    • Jamie Krock

      If you’ll notice, Blake is clearly referring to “character assassination.”

      • Cl

        Haha that went right over my head. Thanks for pointing that out.

    • Get Schwifty!

      Yeah – I noticed that line as well… not surprised in today’s simple-minded politically correct ethos… I’m no fan of Trump but this belief that if someone says or does something at some point that offends your pet sensibilities it is then open season on them… that’s going to be a real problem in society over time to have meaningful dialog about different points.

  • fuyou2

    What a stupid fucking article!!, Completely useless.. Is This VR News??

  • jimrp

    Simple. A man who had
    a dream gave us it and the snowflakes shit on him. Way to go Fkrds. History repeating. Look up FB CEO.

  • Chris

    This article is garbage. None of the initial headlines talk about online memes, just spreading memes, which is true, not false like you claim.

    Given that we continue to see evidence of Trump being racist, sexist, bigoted, and constantly lying… Well, I guess I can count on uploadvr as a trashy alt-right fake news source.

    Also blindly redefining fake news from literally made up shit to articles that are true but misleading. Jesus this article is bad.

    How’s Trump’s dick taste? Definitely not coming here for ‘news’ anymore.

    • Cl

      You are the product of the type of fake news he’s talking about and you don’t even realize it.

      • Chris

        Why didn’t you just reply ‘nuh uh’? That’s the equivalent value of what you said.

        This is some fucking irony. Try repudiating my argument rather than just naysaying/ad hominem attacking?

        Try like this, I’ll make my argument more clear so you understand how being an intelligible human being works, rather than spewing garbage nonsense:

        Article: “we think of fake news as a binary thing; a story is either fake or it’s not; a story is either fabricated (Elvis Lives!) or true (Cubs Win the World Series!) but in many cases that’s not really how fake news actually works.”

        Me: that is exactly what fake news is. Literally, news that is completely fake, false, #alternativefacts. Article writer is objectively wrong. He’s blindly redefining words, even though words have meanings.

        Article: “Instead, it starts with a misleading or inaccurate story—often one with a sexy headline—and then spews through social media, energized by outrage, support or concern, and then ripples into a dogpile of stories that either echo the original piece (but with a twist) or amplify the outrage/support/concern by talking about what other people are talking about.”

        Me: No, misleading and inaccurate are not fake. They are misleading and inaccurate. That’s implies some level of truth, with heavy or light spin for misleading, and for inaccuracies it’s a lack of due diligence and unprofessional/irresponsible conduct. Neither of these are fake. Bad journalism, yes, but not fake.

        The Onion is fake. CNN is not(though it has been irresponsible/unprofessional). NYT is not (sometimes gets it wrong, sure, still isn’t fake.). Fox is not (though massively irresponsible/unprofessional). Infowars is fake.

        Article: “As journalists — especially those, who publish multiple articles weekly — we’re often so focused on the now-now-now, that we rarely take a step back and reflect on stories from a few news cycles ago. Especially when those stories were inaccurate, misleading or outright false. It’s easier to just make a small correction or two (or perhaps even none at all) and move on to the next piece.”

        Me: so yes, uploadvr, if they ever make a slight mistake, is forevermore fake news. Per their own definition.

        Funny enough, my definition uses words with agreed upon definitions and not made up bullshit to generate clicks. Coincidentally, this page is fake news by both mine and the article writers definition.

        Article: “Nimble America was not responsible for creating or spreading any memes online.”

        Me: I don’t know if he stealth edited or what, I swear there was a bit differentiating online versus offline. That it isn’t there now, makes me question why this even exists in the article. Does it matter if the meme is offline? It was originally there supporting content that seems to have been deleted, so now it’s just out of place.

        Article: “Nimble America’s goal was to take meme-like images [like the billboard above] and put them into the real world (via billboards, t-shirts and stickers).”

        Me: So, Palmer Luckey was definitively putting funds into a group which produces memes for Trump. Even if just one billboard. Still true, no? Online or offline doesn’t really change this.

        Article: “There is no evidence—nor, based on my research, do I see any reason to believe—that this organization promoted any sort of racist, sexist, misogynistic, anti-Semitic or white supremacist agenda. Neither is there any evidence of Nimble America engaging in any sort of trolling, harassing or “astroturfing.””

        Me: But those pesky facts are getting in the way again. Trump has demonstrated clear sexism, racism, bigotry, and pathological lying. Maybe “the organization” itself isn’t racist, sexist, whatever, but what they support and promote is. Same with Palmer.

        But hey cl, keep up that ignorant projection. All that brainwashing really has worked. Just not how you think.

      • blake j. harris

        At the very least, Chris–even if you want to pretend like those headlines (and the reporting) were not referring to online activity/trolling–then they’re still fucking wrong for talking about memes in the plural.

        One billboard.

    • Observe

      You are garbage.

  • If you’re going to complain about inaccurate reporting and fake news maybe you should actually post the real news you claim to have?????

    • iThinkMyCatIsAFlea

      The only news that Blake has is that Blake is writing a book of fake facts.

  • It’s ironic to me that nearly every person who bought into that news and got so vocal about this, showed more hate and prejudice than anything Palmer has even hinted at, let alone proved to be guilty of. Sadly, my experience of most (definitely not all) Trump supporters that I’ve entered discussions with, is that they either don’t care about politics and voted for political change/upset knowing Trump was a wild card, OR they voted for him because they believed what Trump was saying, because they weren’t educated enough to know better, didn’t bother to learn about Trump (who he’s proven himself to be through his life), wouldn’t acknowledge his lies/contradictions that demonstrated his character further and this I can only conclude that they wanted to believe him.

    In all these cases, facts and truth weren’t as interesting as the drama and lies Trump and his campaign brought us. I’m all for (as a US Marine that believes in our living experiment, the US) people voting how they want, but this election has proven workout a doubt in my mind, why we’re a democratic republic (republic with democratic tendencies) and not a real democracy (all Americans would do well to really understand this fact). It’s only natural that those who are pretty poor, repressed, under represented, etc, would want someone in charge that demonstrates the same goals they have, even when they’re short-sighted, counter-productive or outright dangerous.

    A republic (in theory) is setup with and by educated, professionals who can not only hear out and represent their constituents, but ALSO take into account law, history, protocol and other cultures so they can make progress on issues, rather than enemies.

    Said another way, “A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the majority discovers it can vote itself largess out of the public treasury. After that, the majority always votes for the candidate promising the most benefits with the result the democracy collapses because of the loose fiscal policy ensuing, always to be followed by a dictatorship, then a monarchy.” — Various forms and authors over the years

    Is argue that is all objective, but my gut says that despite her flaws, Hillary was FAR more appropriate (though I’m more libertarian and would have voted Bernie in a heartbeat) and Trump proved why our democracy can’t work.

    The BIG issue that I don’t hear people discussing clearly though, is how we ended up in a position where there was ANY presidential candidate at all, who clearly wasn’t qualifed or up to the job.

    He’s finally admitted how arrogant he was being with, “I thought it would be easier”. A 70 year old who still doesn’t acknowledge what they don’t know, is a 70 year old lacking the most fundamental bit of wisdom; “recognizing and acknowledging ones limitations.”

    I expect my 2, 4 or 6 year old to say things like, “I can do it better” in regards to things they know NOTHING about then, “I thought it would be easier”, not a 70 year old who choosen to directly mold the lives of millions of people.

    I totally respect and appreciate that we get to voice our preference for president (as did Lucky), but that doesn’t mean I have to ignore the ignorance and danger created by the results and neither do those around me.

    Then again, it’s all fleeting and one of the freedoms I enjoy as an American, is my ability to relocate to another country….

    • daveinpublic

      If someone uses “I thought it would be easier” as a reason to associate somebody with a 2, 4 or 6 year old, then you’re not being reasonable. He’s just saying that he’s a human being, that’s all.

  • le fromage

    *takes Vive off*

    What? Oh. This.

    *puts Vive back on*

  • d0x360

    Even if he did pay some people to troll Clinton who cares? First off both sides of the political aisle have people who do exactly that so it’s not news or shocking. Second why does someone’s political views, in this case being pro Trump somehow make the product they are behind no longer viable?

    If some guy or girl makes a game and their political ideals are opposite to mine I’ll still buy it as long as it’s fun and as long as said developer isn’t straight up racist like one of the leads at Bioware and Andromeda.

    I’m sick of politics having to be part of every discussion I see. I’m sick of people censoring others because of politics. Right now the number of actual racists in America is low but the left or the extreme left would have you believe everyone is racist especially white guys.

    I used to consider myself liberal but these people have taken that and many other words and twisted them. Now we have so called liberals calling themselves antifa except they are acting exactly like a facist would.

    One of my best friends disagrees with me on just about every political topic there is but we are still friends because neither of us are morons. We realize the obvious which is that we are all human and we will never fully agree on some things.

    There is so much political hate right now that it’s ripping all of us apart and it makes me sick. Censorship makes me sick.

    Dialog is how we solve problems. Fighting, yelling and hurling ridiculous accusations is how we create them.

  • ThrowawayAccount

    The VR community is filled with extremist leftist people who came storming out the gate to judge and shame when this shit started coming out the woodworks. I consider myself politically left (but not extremist and certainly someone who welcomes other opinions and views) and I felt so ashamed of the people commenting on the Oculus subreddit when it all went down. Bunch of fascists deluding themselves into thinking they’re not fascists. Horseshoe theory in effect.

  • He is kind of a public figure and there are consequences to every action. He did give the money, didn’t he? I bought an Oculus because it was on sale. Talking about buyer’s remorse. I am glad he isn’t tangled with Oculus anymore.

    • blake j. harris

      Sure. But I’d hope that those consequences were a result of actual actions and not misleading, inaccurate and/or outright false reports.

  • wowgivemeabreak

    I saw an article last week mentioning how Palmer donated to Trump (was different from that Nimble America drama from earlier) and it made it out to seem bad or that he is crazy.

    So let me get this straight: a person should be vilified because they supported the person who won the presidency? Something over 60 million people did? Seems to me he should be commended for picking the winner.

    The problem is the very large majority of the media is liberal and they are free speech hating morons. It has nothing to do with their so called outrage at all the “isms” they love to go on about which they don’t actually care about. Most liberals in the media and those vocal on twitter just can’t stand if anyone doesn’t think the way they do and they look to vilify and ruin those who dare go against their ideology. They act as a minor, non killing terrorist organization. Or a cult. I don’t know how sane liberals can deal with being associated with those people.

    I’m also sick of the moronic jump people do of those who voted for Trump by saying they are sexist, racist, homophobic, etc. He won the vote among white women. How are women sexist against women? He also has supporters who are black and homosexual. How are black people racist against blacks and homosexuals homophobic? It’s insulting to generalize them like that and declare tens of millions of people must be women hating racists. Oh and he also won the vote of all age groups outside of millennials, aka the snowflakes.

    And when did killary become the face of the “moral” pick? She’s a war monger, she shamed WOMEN who accused her husband of sexual assault (apparently victim shaming means you are a supporter of women though…), she stands idly by with Bill despite his sex scandals, she willingly broke federal law with her email server thing and then lying about knowing of it getting wiped after (the leaked emails prove this), she admits she has a public persona she puts on that doesn’t match her true beliefs via some of her leaked wall street six figure compensation speeches (soooo against wall street when they pay you millions of dollars and are your biggest donors), she’s been criticized by numerous people she has worked with or who have worked for her as being a horrible person…

    I don’t care much for the great pumpkin trump as I think the guy is a clown but killary is just as bad and perhaps even worse. Bernie Sanders is also a clown given he is a socialist so the top 3 choices for the presidency were all junk. Well, most politicians are, which is why it is so silly when people support a politician. They don’t care about common folk. Obozo proved it (a horrible president that was the opposite of “hope and change”) and now Trump is proving this by all the flipflopping.

  • Stranger On The Road

    what I find strange is the accusations of misogyny thrown at Palmer by the people who are happy with the bulling of his girlfriend off twitter for having a political opinion they didn’t approve off.

    “Greentexting is when 4chan users put the “>” symbol in front of their text to turn it green. This signifies the user is telling a story or the user is quoting someone else to highlight how silly they are.” (VentureBeat (Jeff Grubb))

    Now I feel old, as I remember that that’s the method of quoting people when HTML support wasn’t everywhere…. now it’s considered “greentexting” and something that 4chan …. invented(?) 🙁

  • xebat

    FUCK OFF YOU FUCKING “LIBERAL” ASSHOLES ! FUCK YOUR JUDGMENT ! DON’T FUCK WITH PEOPLES PERSONAL VIEWS ! STOP FUCKING RUINING HIS LIVE ! ASSHOLES ! I SPIT ON YOUR FACES !

  • Beautiful article. Thanks for standing up for the truth, no matter how inconvenient it might be for millions of people.

    • blake j. harris

      Always.

  • daveinpublic

    Amazing article.

    Must have taken a lot of work to put this together. And your point is well taken.

    What I take away from this? If you want to be respected in the tech community, never, ever support a Republican. And that’s kind of sad. I’ve never seen an Obama supporter shamed and ran out of a community. But, in this case, The Daily Beast and the a horde of other reporters, developers, and readers in the VR community ran a man out of his own company because he was a Republican. Some people will say it was partially because of the Zenimax copyright trials. That wouldn’t have kicked him out. He didn’t get convicted for stealing any trade secrets, period. He was only convicted of violating a non-disclosure agreement. The point still remains, this storm of angry democrats were basically successful in taking him away from the company he created.

    I’m sure Palmer Luckey has amazing opportunities and successes in his future. Let’s face it, in the end, what’s right will always prevail. If these ‘news’ organizations and ‘forward thinking’ developers think they can flush Republicans out of the tech sector, they have an interesting road ahead.

    • blake j. harris

      Thanks so much for the thoughtful reply, Dave.

      It DID take a long time to compile but what I ended up with–this perverted game of telephone that starts with a lie and ends with I-don’t-know-the-fuck-what; combined with the fact that about 1/3 of people who I’ve shared this with essentially shrug and say “Who cares? He’s a Trump supporter!”–well, what I ended up with was so clearly not about Palmer, politics or virtual reality…

  • Ouch My Head Said Dionysus

    hey Blank you suck

  • Surykaty

    Sexist? I don’t care I saw, heard and felt way too many sexist women.. worked in a PR company that was all women and just in the first 3 weeks in the job I was target of nasty rumors that were hindering my professional life. I even got grabbed by the c*ck one time… did it break my spirit? Not at all althought it was pretty nasty…

    Republican and pro-Trump? I don’t care.. I hated republicans in their good old days of christian censorship and foreign war bullshit.. I hate democrats for being always the ones for pandering to sensitive groups of people and supporting bullshit socialist ideals. I was born in a communist country and if I had to chose I’d chose to live in a “capitalist tyranny” all day in comparison to “communist tyranny”…

    Socialists and liberals are setting up themselves for another lost battle.. they can never win… they will never win