Zuckerberg testifies in $2 billion lawsuit that Oculus did not steal core VR tech

Zuckerberg was forced to leave his signature gray t-shirt at home today and suit up for court.

The Facebook CEO was called to the stand in a Dallas courtroom today to testify in an explosive $2 billion lawsuit which claims that Oculus Inc. (which FB acquired in March of 2014) was built upon technology stolen from Zenimax Media.

The lawsuit is structured around dissecting the help that Oculus founder Palmer Luckey sought out from the employee of ZeniMax-owned games company id Software, John Carmack, when he was building his initial VR headset product. Luckey was under NDA at the time of his meeting with Carmack and others who allegedly assisted the teenage founder in remedying some technical issues that he had been facing in building his Rift VR headset. ZeniMax also claims that Carmack—who would later go on to join Oculus as its CTO when his contract expired—contributed stolen intellectual property to the Oculus team’s core tech upon joining.

In court today, the Facebook CEO remained defiant in the face of the claims.

“Oculus products are based on Oculus technology,” Zuckerberg told the court.

Another quote from Zuckerberg, transcribed (typos corrected) by NYTimes reporter Mike Isaac, has the executive doubting the credibility of the claims made by ZeniMax.

“It is pretty common when you announce a big deal or do something that all kinds of people just kind of come out of the woodwork and claim that they just own some portion of the deal. Like most people in the court I’ve never even heard of ZeniMax before — I know that our legal team would look into this and examine this but they aren’t going to take a lot of my time on something they don’t think is credible.”

In addition to testimony directed towards the case, the courtroom questioning also gave Zuckerberg the opportunity to discuss more intimate details on why the company pursued the Oculus deal in the first place.

We’ll be watching closely (as will Aaron Sorkin, I’m sure) and will have more to update as the courtroom drama continues.