Michael Antonov Oculus: A Vr Headset-wearing Lady Was S*xually Assaulted by an Oculus Cofounder


Michael Antonov, the co-founder of Oculus, has been accused of inappropriately touching a lady during a private VR demo during a 2016 GDC event.

A woman who works in the virtual reality business has leveled an allegation of sexual assault on one of the co-founders of Oculus.

Autumn Rose Taylor, the Marketing Director for Owlchemy Labs, stated that Michael Antonov inappropriately touched her while she was wearing a virtual reality headset during a private demo several years ago. Autumn claimed that Michael Antonov reached beneath her skirt and touched her in an inappropriate manner.

Michael Antonov Oculus

Taylor stated in a series of tweets about “an important person that I admired” that the founder of a well-known VR hardware business invited her to a private demo at his residence when she was a college student during the annual Game Developers Conference in San Francisco.

She said that the man improperly touched her while she was attempting the demo by putting his hand under her skirt and touching her elsewhere on her body.

Despite the fact that Taylor omitted Michael Antonov’s name from her initial Twitter thread, she identified him as the topic of her tweets in a follow-up message that she sent several hours later.

Taylor acknowledged in a second statement to Business Insider that she had met Antonov during an industry afterparty that took place at the 2016 Game Developers conference.

She stated that it was her first time attending a major industry event and that she was delighted to meet one of the co-founders of Oculus because she had gotten her to start in the virtual reality (VR) development sector by utilizing the Oculus Rift DK2.

Taylor stated that Antonov made the offer to give her a private demonstration of the Rift gadget before it became on sale to the general public approximately one week after the GDC.

Michael Antonov Oculus

Taylor reported that “he offered to show me unannounced demos as well as titles that were scheduled to premiere with the Rift later that month.” “It didn’t seem strange to me because only the day before, I had tested out a demonstration in the hotel room of someone I had met at a different virtual reality event.

There was nothing unusual about the demo at all. Since I was just starting out in the business, I assumed that anything like this was the usual.”

Taylor stated that after being touched by Antonov, she made an effort to maintain her physical distance from him while also attempting to avoid eye contact and responding seldom during the conversation.

Despite the fact that Taylor stated that she originally felt too terrified to leave, she ultimately did so at the first available moment and went back to her hotel room.

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“I felt uncomfortable and worried, but was afraid to resist his approaches because, after all, he was a co-founder and CEO for one of the top VR companies in the world,” Taylor wrote in her statement. “I was reluctant to refuse his advances because I was afraid of upsetting him.”

“I was concerned that I would be excluded from the sector that I had recently entered and that I was looking forward to playing a role in. My employer, a virtual reality (VR) startup, has a working relationship with Oculus, and I was concerned that it might be severed. I was simply… shaking with fear.”

After seeing a number of women in the game business talk about their experiences with males who had sexually harassed or assaulted them, Taylor told Business Insider that she felt compelled to talk about her own interaction after hearing those stories.

On Wednesday, allegations of sexual misconduct were leveled against at least three additional individuals working in the gaming industry.

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Business Insider attempted to contact Antonov for comment through both LinkedIn and Facebook Messenger but has not received a response as of yet.

According to information provided to Business Insider by Facebook, Antonov quit both Oculus and Facebook earlier this year. Along with Palmer Luckey, Nate Mitchell, Brendan Iribe, and Andrew Scott Reisse, he is an original cofounder of the company that would later become known as Oculus.

Oculus was initially funded through a Kickstarter campaign in 2012 and was eventually purchased by Facebook for $2.3 billion the following year. At the beginning of this month, Mitchell made the announcement that he would be leaving Facebook. He is the last of the five cofounders to leave the company.

On Twitter, Facebook’s Vice President of AR and VR, Andrew Bosworth, responded to Taylor’s charges by stating that he had inquired internally about how the previous allegations against Antonov had been dealt with. Bosworth was responding to Taylor’s allegations.

Bosworth was given the position of vice president of the Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality (AR/VR) and Oculus division by Facebook in the previous year. He has stated that he will assume personal responsibility for the culture of the firm moving forward.

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“These accounts make my stomach turn. I’m sorry both that it happened back then and that you have to go through the traumatic experience all over again today “Bosworth was the author.

“In 2018, I was given leadership of our AR/VR and Oculus teams. This kind of behavior is not acceptable to me. I have inquired about the processes that were utilized to address the issues that have been raised here.”

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