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No more Facebook adverts for Zynga games

About time, we hear you say

Summary News Review Screens Videos Articles Tips  
Product: Social games
For: Mobile
Social games Mobile, thumbnail 1
Remember the story we covered recently with Zynga's CEO, Mark Pincus talking about his less than ethical business model, and the resulting dubious commercial offers that plagued Zynga games?

Well, according to a recent Gamasutra article, it would seem that Pincus has put an end to all advertising on Zynga's Facebook games for now, likely because of the recent removal of FishVille.

If you didn't know, FishVille is the latest social game offering from Zynga, and it was removed by Facebook for its inclusion of potentially confusing subscription adverts. On a side note, in the two days before its suspension FishVille amassed 875,000 users.

TechCrunch said of the mobile ads, "These ads clearly violate Facebook’s terms and conditions. They don’t state on the offer page that the user is required to enter into a $10 - $20/month mobile subscription, and there is no opt in by the user before entering in personal information."

Pincus insisted, "I want to be clear that zynga had no control over the pages being shown.

"We have worked hard to police and remove bad offers... Nevertheless, we need to be more aggressive and have revised our service level agreements with these providers requiring them to filter and police offers prior to posting on their networks. We have also removed all mobile ads until we see any that offer clear user value."

So it looks like Zynga will keep the adverts removed until they can be vetted to a greater extent, which is great news for those of us who frowned upon their inclusion into popular titles like FarmVille and Mafia Wars, but not such great news for certain advertisers and the Zynga wallet.

The Zynga boss admitted in a post on his blog, "Zynga has not been able to control the ad content as it is managed by the offer companies that we work with. We recognize it is our responsibility to ensure that offers which generate a bad user experience are not shown with any of our games."

Looks like there's hope for the more ethically-minded social games publishers after all, because without the big guys like Zynga using dubious commercial adverts its a more even playing field.

Reviewer photo
Ben Griffin 10 November 2009
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Anonymous | 16:19 - 17 December 2009
Are you sick of having so little energy points to complete jobs? Is this causing you to lose valuable time and you find leveling up a nightmare? Are you constantly getting beaten and bullied by other Mafia Wars players? Tired of losing battles and needing to beg people to join your Mafia?