Facebook to Pay $500 Million Fine

New York, A Dallas court has ordered Facebook, an online social media and social networking service, and other defendants to pay $500 million after finding they unlawfully used a firm's virtual reality (VR) technology.

The jury found Oculus, which Facebook bought in 2014, used computer code belonging to video game developer Zenimax to launch its own VR headset.

The case threatened to overshadow Facebook's latest results, which showed it enjoyed a strong end to the year which grew its net profit by 177%.

The social network was helped by 53% growth in advertising revenues, and said it was on course to hit two billion users in the first half of 2017.

Shortly before the results came out, the court awarded Zenimax damages from Facebook, Oculus and Oculus executives following a three-week trial, according to the BBC.

Zenimax argued that its early innovations in virtual reality were unlawfully copied when Oculus built its own headset, the Rift.

"We are pleased that the jury in our case in the US District Court in Dallas has awarded Zenimax $500 million for defendants' unlawful infringement of our copyrights and trademarks," said Zenimax chief executive Robert Altman.

Oculus said it was "disappointed" and would appeal against the ruling.

Source: Qatar News Agency