- Bored Ape creator Yuga Labs is facing legal action from an ApeFest attendee in Hong Kong who suffered eye infections and burns due to UV light exposure
- Asif Kamal, CEO of Artfi, has sent Yuga Labs a legal notice, indicating the first step toward a lawsuit
- Yuga Labs acknowledged the use of UVA lights caused the problems.
Bored Ape creator Yuga Labs is facing legal action from an attendee of its recent ApeFest event in Hong Kong which saw a small number of people experience eye issues due to exposure to UV light. Asif Kamal, the founder and CEO of art technology company Artfi, has taken legal action against Yuga Labs after suffering from an eye infection and facial burns which required hospital treatment. Kamal told Decrypt that he has sent a legal notice to Yuga Labs, marking it as the “first step toward suing them.” Yuga Labs has since admitted that its use of UVA lights was to blame for the issues.
“One Big Night Full of Surprises”
Last week’s ApeFest, held at various locations throughout Hong Kong, was billed as “Three days of meetups and mayhem,” but it turned into something worse for multiple attendees of one event when they awoke the following day with symptoms such as blurred vision and pain in their eyes. The finger was instantly pointed at the use of UV lights at the event which some suspected weren’t properly filtered, meaning that dangerous UV light was shone directly at attendees.
Upon his return, Kamal sent a legal notice to Yuga Labs, calling it the “first step toward suing them.” Kamal emphasized the importance of prioritizing safety at such events, especially when the community has contributed significantly to the success of Yuga Labs. He stressed that “ApeFest” may be the name, but it’s humans who attend, and their safety should not be neglected.
Yuga Labs had promised “one big night full of surprises,” and it’s clear that this was what some attendees experienced in the worst way possible.
Yuga Labs Blames UVA Lights
Yuga Labs issued a statement on Monday, estimating that less than 1% of ApeFest’s 2,250 attendees displayed symptoms related to eye issues, releasing another this morning in which it accepted blame for the suffering caused:
On Sunday, November 5, Yuga Labs began to receive reports that some ApeFest attendees and staff experienced eye pain, vision issues, or skin irritation following the Saturday night community event. These reports were – and continue to be – deeply concerning to us. We immediately…
— Bored Ape Yacht Club (@BoredApeYC) November 9, 2023
Thankfully not many people were affected, but Yuga Labs will likely have to pay compensation for those who were, such as Kamal.