D macmillan zynga enlarges its war chest businessweek

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Unformatted text preview: o k was co nsidered a platf o rm. So me co mpared it to the next Windo ws, Zuckerberg the next Gates (hey, they bo th dro pped o ut o f Harvard, right?). And each applicatio n po tentially added mo re value and f eatures to the site witho ut Facebo o k lif ting a f inger. The initial event launched with sixty-f ive develo per partners and eighty-f ive applicatio ns. There were so me missteps alo ng the way. So me applicatio ns were accused o f spamming f riends with invites to install them (Facebo o k eventually put limits o n viral co mmunicatio n f ro m apps). There were also security co ncerns, privacy leaks, and apps that vio lated the intellectual pro perty o f o ther f irms (see the “Errant Apps” sidebar belo w), but Facebo o k wo rked to quickly remo ve misbehaving apps, co rrect erro rs, impro ve the system, and enco urage develo pers. Just o ne year in, Facebo o k had marshaled the ef f o rts o f so me f o ur hundred tho usand develo pers and entrepreneurs, twenty-f o ur tho usand applicatio ns had been built f o r the platf o rm, 140 new apps were being added each day, and 95 percent o f Facebo o k members had installed at least o ne Facebo o k applicatio n. As Sarah Lacy, autho r o f Once Yo u’re Lucky, Tw ice Yo u’re Go o d, put it, “with o ne masterstro ke, Zuck had mo bilized all o f Silico n Valley to inno vate f o r him.” Figure 8. 2 Gaming on Facebook’ s Plat form Is a Colos s al Bus ines s Zynga, maker of MafiaWars , FarmVille, and Cit yVille, is es t imat ed t o be t he s econd mos t valuable firm in t he video game indus t ry, generat ing nort h of $600 million in annual p rofit s t hrough t he s ale of virt ual goods and by running advert is ing and p romot ions . Source: Zynga. With f eeds to spread the wo rd, Facebo o k was starting to lo o k like the f irst place to go to launch an o nline inno vatio n. Skip the Web; if yo u want to get so cial, bring it to Zuckerberg’s site f irst (yo u can almo st f eel Tim Berners-Lee shuddering). A pro grammer named Mark P incus wro te a Texas ho ld ’em game at his kitchen table.J. Guynn, “A So f tware I...
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This document was uploaded on 01/31/2014.

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