Zynga Settles Lawsuit Against Playdom

One of the longer-running fights in social gaming has come to and end, with Zynga and new Playdom owner Disney settling a lawsuit in which Zynga alleged trade secret theft and other offenses partially stemming from a former Zynga employee who defected to Playdom.

The lawsuit has taken various turns through 2010, including an injunction against a Playdom game, which was never released, and the handing down of a fine and deferred sentence for the former Zynga employee, Raymond Holmes.

Settling with Disney likely made sense for Zynga. The lawsuit itself was a holdover of the chaotic industry growth and rampant copycatting of 2009; Zynga itself paid almost $10 million to the creator of Mob Wars for copyright infringement. Playdom’s own mob game, Mobsters, was involved in the Zynga-Playdom litigation.

Facebook has, for the most part, moved on from crime games. But court fights over the genre aren’t quite done yet. In August, Digital Chocolate brought suit against Zynga over the Mafia Wars name, which the former had trademarked for its own iPhone game before Zynga started using the name on Facebook.

Mafia Wars is the last crime game standing with over 20 million monthly active users, so the spat over the name could get ugly. As we noted earlier today, Digital Chocolate has gotten serious about Facebook, but it’s unclear whether the company is simply being aggressive or intends to launch its own Mafia Wars title on Facebook.

Trademark issues differ somewhat from the copyright problems at issue in the Zynga / Playdom lawsuit. For more on how to choose and protect trademarks in social gaming, head over to our recent guest post by Sheppard Mullin associate Thayer Preece.

Strategic Mobile Marketing

Mediabistro Course

Strategic Mobile Marketing

On October 21. work with the digital strategy director for Saatchi & Saatchi to develop a marketing strategy for smartphones, tablets, and mobile devices! You’ll learn how to optimize content for mobile, create responsive landing pages, and track all mobile efforts. Register now!

 

Leave a Reply

2 Responses to “Zynga Settles Lawsuit Against Playdom”

  1. This Week’s Headlines on Inside Social Games says:

    [...] Zynga Settles Lawsuit Against Playdom [...]

  2. IPblog | Intellectual Property Law in Canada » App Trade-Secrets Case Settles says:

    [...] long-running battle between two of the app industry’s biggest players has settled: Zynga v Playdom (acquired in the summer by Disney). This lawsuit, in many ways, illustrates the battle for [...]

Get the latest news in your inbox
interested in advertising with inside social games?

Social Media Jobs
of the Day

Communications Coordinator

National Science Teachers Association
Arlington, VA

Social Media Coordinator (Part Time)

Stanton Carpet
Syosset, NY

Social Media Manager

Aeon Media
San Francisco, CA

Director of Communications

Coin Center
Washington, DC

Digital Strategies Coordinator

IslandWood
Bainbridge Island, WA

Featured Company

Join leading companies like this one and recruit from the nation's top media job seekers on the Mediabistro Job Board. Every job post comes with our satisfaction guarantee. Learn More
 

Our Sponsors

Mediabistro A division of Prometheus Global Media home | site map | advertising/sponsorships | careers | contact us | help courses | browse jobs | freelancers | content | member benefits | reprints & permissions terms of use | privacy policy Copyright © 2014 Mediabistro Inc. call (212) 389-2000 or email us