Update 09/24/16: As UploadVR reports, fellow Oculus co-founder Brendan Iribe has issued his own Facebook statement, defending Luckey’s actions while emphasizing they do not represent the company as a whole.
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.
Original story: After 24 hours of a brewing storm over his funding of an unofficial Donald Trump “shitposting” organization, which has resulted in studios pulling their support for the Rift virtual reality platform, Oculus founder Palmer Luckey has addressed the issue.
Luckey delivered the following message on Facebook.
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.
In their original post, the authors wrote that, “the 24-year-old told The Daily Beast that he had used the pseudonym ‘NimbleRichMan’ on Reddit with a password given to him by the organization’s founders.” One of the authors, Gideon Resnick, has already taken to Twitter to refute Luckey’s denial with screenshots of his email correspondence.
Other Oculus executives are defending Luckey, with head of content Jason Rubin posting the following message on Facebook:
Luckey’s statement raises a few questions. First, if Gary Johnson is Luckey’s preferred presidential candidate, why would he fund an organization with much closer ties to Donald Trump? Second, why would he conduct the interview with The Daily Beast, where the topics of conversations were directly about his involvement with the pro-Trump organization, and admit to posting under the NimbleRichMan moniker? Third, does the founder of a virtual reality company really consider communicating political messages via roadside billboards as a “fresh idea?”
These are questions that probably won’t go away in the coming days. We’ll continue to follow the developments throughout the weekend.