ZeniMax Sanctioned In Ongoing Oculus Dispute

by Jamie Feltham • August 23rd, 2018

More bad news for ZeniMax Media in the ongoing legal dispute with Facebook’s Oculus.

The company, which owns Fallout and Elder Scrolls developer Bethesda, had its request for Oculus to pay $40 million in attorney fees thrown out on Monday, Law360 reports. Texas federal judge Ed Kinkeade issued the sanction, noting it was in response to ZeniMax’s failure to provide relevant documents that company CEO and Chairman Robert Altman indicated he knew of during two court orders.

According to the report, the documents pertained to ZeniMax’s value and Altman’s stake in the company. Upon a third court order, ZeniMax produced 72 documents that it had not provided before without, according to Kinkeade, any explanation for their absence in previous orders. Oculus still contends that there may be yet more documents unprovided, though the judge also denied the company’s request for a partial retrial.

“What is unmistakably clear to the court is that the plaintiffs, not their attorneys, engaged in continued and repeated efforts to resist production of responsive documents in willful violation of at least the court’s first and second orders,” the judge wrote.

Oculus was ordered to pay ZeniMax $500 million in damages last year after the latter claimed Oculus COO John Carmack had stolen technology when moving from the Bethesda-owned id Software over to the VR specialist. Back in June 2018, however, Oculus was able to halve that payout to $250 million, while ZeniMax’s efforts to have sales of the Oculus Rift were rejected. A judge called for the end of the dispute over a year ago now but it shows no signs of slowing down; Facebook still intends to appeal the remaining $250 million payout, so you can be sure there are still more developments to come on the case.

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