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Palmer Luckey is funding a pro-Trump "shitposting" group

Nimble America's anti-Clinton campaign is being secretly bankrolled by Oculus VR's founder

Oculus VR founder Palmer Luckey is providing financial support to a pro-Trump online group focused on "shitposting" and spreading memes attacking Hillary Clinton.

Luckey confirmed his involvement with the "Nimble America" group to The Daily Beast. Nimble America describes itself as a "social welfare 501(c)4 non-profit dedicated to shitposting in real life." The group emerged from Reddit to state the clear ambition of influencing the outcome of the next US presidential election.

"What we've been able to accomplish here has been amazing and much bigger than any of us and certainly much bigger than Reddit," the group said in a statement. "We've proven that shitposting is powerful and meme magic is real."

"I've got plenty of money. Money is not my issue. I thought it sounded like a real jolly good time"

Contributions from Luckey's estimated $700 million fortune have played an important role in Nimble America's rise. Luckey told The Daily Beast that he is "the money man" - albeit a money man who the group claims as its vice president.

Nimble America has taken credit for a billboard in Pittsburgh that displayed a "cartoonishly large" image of Hillary Clinton's face alongside the slogan, "Too Big to Jail." This caustic tone appears to be what attracted Luckey to the group's cause. "It's something that no campaign is going to run," he said, adding, "I've got plenty of money. Money is not my issue. I thought it sounded like a real jolly good time."

Luckey first met the group's co-founders - two moderators of r/The_Donald on Reddit - over Facebook. "It went along the lines of 'hey, I have a bunch of money. I would love to see more of this stuff,'" he said, a reference to the memes they had already generated prior to Nimble America's official launch. "They wanted to build buzz and do fundraising."

Luckey has confirmed that he posts on Reddit under the (now deleted) "NimbleRichMan" account. According to a statement published under that pseudonym - sourced by VR developer Cody Brown - Luckey has donated "significant funds" to Nimble America, and pledged to continue to do so.

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Latest comments (22)

Chris Payne Managing Director & Founder, Quantum Soup Studios2 years ago
Interested to see how Luckey/Oculus/Facebook respond to these allegations. Obviously Oculus is a lot bigger than just Luckey, and in theory his political leaning should be entirely his own business...but if it genuinely leans into tinfoil hat bigotry, that would betray a more tenuous grasp on reality than, say, a parent company might like to see in one of their CEOs.

I'm attempting to remain open-minded until we hear how Luckey reacts though.
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Adam Campbell Game Manager, Azoomee2 years ago
Whatever the case, if image is 'important' this looks really bad.
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Sandy Lobban Founder, Noise Me Up2 years ago
Politics is naturally divisive. You're always going to upset someone by having an opinion. Better to keep your company well clear any public leanings. He'll probably regret it.
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Show all comments (22)
William Leu Software Developer, Tietronix Software Inc2 years ago
"Oculus VR founder Palmer Luckey is providing financial support to a pro-Trump online group focused on "shitposting" and spreading memes attacking Hillary Clinton."

Shitposting? Is the word they're using to describe there work? Just uncanny - this article doesn't even seem real, it reads like an Onion article trying to make Palmer look like some kind of immature-political-frat-bro.
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Nicholas Lovell Founder, Gamesbrief2 years ago
@William Leu: The Daily Beast is a reasonably reputable source (although its critics would call it Left wing). The article is well sourced. I agree with your comments that it doesn't seem real, but "shitposting" is in quotes because they do seem to describe themselves that way.

It's great to question sources, and I'd love to see a statement from Luckey. But my first impression is yep, Luckey is a Trump supporter, and if (!) that post is real, an arrogant and unpleasant arsehole too.
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James Brightman Editor, North America, GamesIndustry.biz2 years ago
I've reached out to Oculus for comment. Nothing yet, but we'll let you know if they give us anything!
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Martin Darby Design Director, Strike Gamelabs2 years ago
Sometimes the truth is stranger than fiction.
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Greg Wilcox Creator, Destroy All Fanboys! 2 years ago
@William Leu: Um... did you read all the way to the end, man? By his quoted post alone, Luckey IS "some kind of immature-political-frat-bro."

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Greg Wilcox on 23rd September 2016 5:03pm

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As one of the first that interviewed the core team for our book back in 2012 - at the beginning of the story - we had our own views on the skills and weaknesses of the founders, and some questions that needed answers. Sadly the echo-chamber of the VR community forums took more to attacking than questioning, and now we see that some of this 'heat' may have been manipulated by BlackPR (now being covered under the euphemism of "shitposting").

Three legal actions, numerous claims regarding ownership and patent control - and questions on the honesty of the operation, and the way they have carried out business. The pedestal seems about to be kicked from the 'rags to riches' story of Oculus VR. All now rests on how Facebook will defend these allegations before they impact share dealing in the whole operation.

This is not a time for silence!

Edited 1 times. Last edit by kevin williams on 23rd September 2016 5:32pm

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Diana Hsu Product Manager, Free-to-Play, Big Fish Games2 years ago
Is this real life
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Jeff Kesselman CTO/Architect/Lead Engineer 2 years ago
My favorite college professor, a Brit, said to me once: "The problem with self made men, is that most do such a bad job."

A particular form of hubris this type is prone to, is imagining that they somehow "did it all themselves" and that all their success is due to their "unique and special gifts."

I am sad to see this hubris so clearly manifesting in Mr. Luckey. He is not a "great individual success", his success was made by a *community* of people willing to get behind him and back his vision. He seems to have forgotten that and, as one of those faithful community members, I am severely disappointed in him.

If I could tell him one thing, it would be a classic film industry adage: "Be generous to people on your way up, because you will be meeting the same people on your way back down."
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Well spoken @Jeff - an adage I try and live by.
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Andrew Watson Tools Programmer 2 years ago
This entire election season has been totally nuts. I'm almost excited to see how it'll climax in november.
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Paul Jace Merchandiser 2 years ago
This entire election season has been totally nuts. I'm almost excited to see how it'll climax in november.
Allow me to give you a spoiler: the least qualified candidate will lose. But it won't all be bad news for him, he'll at least get a free Oculus Rift out of it. And I bet it will even be signed by Luckey himself.
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Aleksi Ranta Category Management Project Manager 2 years ago
Mr Luckey is of course totally within his rights to support whatever he chooses, but 99% of the time people in power / CEO's should tread very carefully when dealing with divisive issues. News like this is surely not going to boost Oculus sales and/or brand image, and appealing to a broad audience is critical.

With that 700 million and change that Palmer received from the Oculus sale, one would think he had more philantropical hobbies....
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Greg Wilcox Creator, Destroy All Fanboys! 2 years ago
A friend of mine noted that Luckey's fortune building ways gives him a big Martin Shkreli vibe, which cracked me up to no end. Yeah, young, rich, full of hubris, smug to the bitter end AND on the wrong side of history. Not a good mix.
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Roland Austinat roland austinat media productions|consulting, IDG, Computec, Spiegel Online2 years ago
He is of course within his rights to support whom he choses. But I would say that a party vs. a "shitposting" group are two kind of things, one more, one less reputable.

Other than that, not sure if anything will come out of it. Remember Peter Thiel who sits on the board of Facebook and spoke at the RNC earlier this year?
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Marty Howe Director, Figurehead Studios2 years ago
Allow me to give you a spoiler: the least qualified candidate will lose.
Paul, the winner is based on popularity.

Not qualifications.
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Alfonso Sexto Lead Tester, Ubisoft Germany2 years ago
Like we didn't have enough "shitposting" in the internet alreday.
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Gary LaRochelle Digital Artist / UI/UX Designer / Game Designer, Flea Ranch Games2 years ago
He's paying people to make memes??? How can I get in on this?
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Gary LaRochelle Digital Artist / UI/UX Designer / Game Designer, Flea Ranch Games2 years ago
@Marty Howe:
The winner is based on Electoral College votes. Not popular votes.
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Thomas Peter Technical Designer R&D 2 years ago
This should never come to the public! As a European I know that many here dislike Mister Trump. And that could harm their business
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