A founder who attended Yuga Labs’ recent Ape Fest in Hong Kong has sent a legal notice to the company after suffering eye damage related to the event.
Asif Kamal, founder of art technology and NFT company Artfi, said he fell ill due to a “widespread eye infection outbreak” at the Bored Apes Yacht Club-themed event, which was held in Hong Kong between November 3 and 3. 5. In the hours following the event, several participants reported eye pain, skin irritation, and other illnesses associated with overexposure to UV rays.
He also said that he was hospitalized after returning to Dubai after two days and added that the infection gradually spread to the skin on his face.
Kamal and ArtFi said in a press release:
“To ensure that such an incident never happens again, Asif Kamal and his legal team took swift action by sending a legal notice to Yuga Labs, the organizers of the event. Mr. Kamal is dedicated to seeking justice for those who suffered and safeguarding the rights of those affected.
Kamal further expressed his concern and condemnation over the apparent failure of Yuga Labs’ security measures, as well as his sympathy for the other victims.
The condition is not contagious
Most other reports attribute this widespread eye condition to UV exposure from improper lighting. Several other participants reported eye pain, vision problems and burned skin after the event.
In a petition on Change.org, Kamal also suggested his condition was due to exposure to UV rays, but maintained it led to infection.
Yuga Labs has acknowledged these reports. In a statement to Variety, the company said it was aware of “some participants” reporting the above conditions (aside from infection). The company added that it was “distressed” by the reports and said it was working with festival vendors and contractors to determine the cause of the incident.
In another statement to Verge, Yuga Labs said that 15 people, or less than 1% of the 2,250 people in attendance, had contacted it about the matter.