Oculus Co-Founder Palmer Luckey Is Leaving Facebook

Controversial Oculus co-founder Palmer Luckey is leaving Facebook by the end of the week, the company acknowledged in a statement sent out to press Thursday.

“Palmer will be dearly missed,” the statement read. “We’re thankful for everything he did for Oculus and VR, and we wish him all the best.”

Luckey’s departure, which was first reported by UploadVR Thursday, doesn’t come unexpected. The Oculus co-founder had been absent from the public spotlight for months, even skipping the company’s last Oculus Connect developer conference, after a fall-out over his affiliation with a group of right-wing trolls.

Last September, news broke that Luckey had financed a group called Nimble America that had bought billboards with anti-Clinton slogans like “too big to jail” during the presidential election.

Luckey went on to apologize for his affiliation with the group, owning up to the fact that he had donated $10,000 for its billboards but denying some other charges. After that revelation, Luckey went radio silent on Twitter, Facebook and Reddit, where he previously was a vocal participant in discussions about virtual reality.

Luckey only recently resurfaced in the public eye when he had to take the stand in a lawsuit waged by game software developer Zenimax against Oculus and its co-founders. Zenimax had alleged that Oculus and others had stolen trade secrets to build the Oculus Rift VR headset. A jury agreed, and awarded the company $500 million in February. Facebook at the time vowed to appeal the judgement.

Popular on Variety

More Digital

  • Ann Sarnoff Warner Bros

    Ann Sarnoff Formally Takes Reins of Warner Bros. as CEO

    The Ann Sarnoff era at Warner Bros. has begun. Sarnoff formally took the reins as Warner Bros. chair-CEO on Thursday, two months after she was appointed to the post. Sarnoff told employees in a memo that she has been impressed by the company’s track record during the past year amid a period of upheaval for [...]

  • YouTube TV Adds Subscription Options for

    YouTube TV Adds Subscription Options for AMC Networks' Acorn TV, UMC

    Google’s YouTube TV now offers two more add-on channels to subscribers, under an expanded pact with AMC Networks: British TV service Acorn TV and UMC (Urban Movie Channel), which features a selection of black TV and film titles. Acorn TV’s add-on channel is now available via YouTube TV for $6 per month and UMC is [...]

  • homepod-white-shelf

    Apple Said to Prep Cheaper HomePod for 2020

    Apple is getting ready to introduce a cheaper version of its HomePod smart speaker in 2020, Bloomberg reported Thursday. The company is also working on a new version of its AirPod headphones for next year, according to Bloomberg. Apple didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment. The new version of the HomePod is said [...]

  • Eminem’s Publisher Sues Spotify, Claiming Copyright

    Eminem’s Publisher Sues Spotify, Claiming Massive Copyright Infringement

    Eminem’s publishing company Eight Mile Style filed a major copyright infringement lawsuit against Spotify late Thursday, claiming that the streaming giant has no license to host about 250 of Eminem’s songs, while also taking aim at the Music Modernization Act, the federal law enacted last year to improve royalty payments for songwriters. The news was [...]

  • iQIYI headquarters building in Beijing

    China’s iQIYI in Talks for Indonesia Expansion

    Chinese streaming firm iQIYI is in negotiations to expand further into Southeast Asia through a venture with Indonesia’s Media Nusantara Citra. iQIYI announced its first step outside Chinese-majority territories in June, when it revealed a linkup in Malaysia with pay-TV leader Astro. It also operates in Taiwan. In April, the company said that it planned [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content