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Zynga’s decline

2013-06-09T17:05:22+00:00

I was pleased to learn that Zynga, the maker of “Farmville” on Facebook, is experiencing a slump that’s bad enough to make them lay off 520 workers, nearly a fifth of their workforce. I think it serves them right. “Social media” games like Farmville are incredibly annoying. Not only are they always sending out automated messages to all of the user’s “friends” inviting them to play, they’re also trying to get the user to buy something, all the time. Farmville was one of the reasons I left Facebook. Even though I could block Farmville messages, it wasn’t enough. People would actually post things about their Farmville accomplishments. I thought it was ridiculous. I thought they were ridiculous. It made the decision to leave that much easier.

Even today, I don’t play “social media” games. They’re a waste of time, and they’re just one more electronic barrier that people put up between each other. They think they’re interacting with each other through the game, but they’re not. The game isn’t a bridge that brings people together… it’s a wall that keeps them apart.

Zynga was among the first such gaming companies to be born, and so they deserve to be among the first to die. May their demise be swift and sure.

2 Comments
  1. 2013-06-11T15:54:23+00:00 15:54

    My first introduction to Farmville was by a family member who had recently given birth. She had two photo albums on Facebook, a Farmville one with about 100 screenshots, and one for her new baby, that had two photos. I thought her priorities were confused.

    My biggest complaint about Scramble with Friends/Words with Friends is that there isn’t a “Scramble” and “Words” version, not requiring friends.

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    • 2013-06-12T07:29:21+00:00 07:29

      That whole “with Friends” moniker implies an exclusion of people who don’t want to be friends, especially with strangers. That’s the problem with “social” media. It brings strangers closer together than they should be, and it keeps real friends farther away than they should be.

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