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Category Archives: Zynga

USA to Brazil: You can’t tell Brazilian companies what they can and cannot do!

A few weeks back we mentioned the whole Zynga Vostu fight that was going down and how Zynga had brought Google owned company Orkut into the whole thing by suing them as well. Today, the US court basically said “You can’t tell your countries companies what they can and cannot do!” as our title says.

The US court said that despite the fact “Brazil has an important interest in enforcing its copyright laws” they don’ get to do so “Zynga—which chose the U.S. forum first—now seeks to enforce an injunction it obtained abroad that would paralyze this Court’s ability to decide this case.”

Shocker that the US courts pick this case to move quickly, when someone in trying to undermine their jurisdication.

The funny party is near the end of the 8 page legal notice when the US judge, Edward Davila, that basically, even though he just trashed the Brazil court, he has no intent to trash the Brazil court.

It deserves strong emphasis that a TRO would not enjoin the Brazilian court at all. Nor does a TRO from this Court cast doubt on or express any opinion about the wisdom of the Brazilian proceedings. Rather, a TRO would enjoin Zynga…from flouting this Court’s jurisdiction. The fact that the flouting mechanism involves foreign courts is incidental.

It is going to be interesting to see these two courts fight over this though, we may have more coverage in future posts.

Oh yeah and the only company Zynga took legal action against was a company headquarted in Brazil, Orkut.

This is the full court order:
20110811 Davila Orderhttp://www.scribd.com/embeds/62140643/content?start_page=1&view_mode=list

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Google+ adds games, away goes our Google+ coverage

Google+ has just added a games feature that includes Angry Birds, Bejeweled, and Zynga Poker. Cityville and Farmville to come at a later date. The fact that Zynga is on board is interesting since Zynga sued, and won a lawsuit against a Google owned social network Orkut earlier this month.

You may recall the Google made some gaming investments and some people knew Google+ games was coming. Well we aren’t going to be covering Google+ as much anymore because of it. In till now Google+ was considered by us as an advanced microblog, besides the circle feature which as you may notice we never covered. Since they have added games they head towards the subject of social network like Facebook and Myspace so we will only be covering stuff like upgrades to +1 and stats on how many posts there are. Stuff like that, not everything on Google+.

Here is what Google has to say about Google+ games:

Today we’re adding games to Google+. With the Google+ project, we want to bring the nuance and richness of real-life sharing to the web. But sharing is about more than just conversations. The experiences we have together are just as important to our relationships. We want to make playing games online just as fun, and just as meaningful, as playing in real life.

And here is how it works with Google+:

When you’re ready to play, the Games page is waiting—click the games button at the top of your stream. You can see the latest game updates from your circles, browse the invites you’ve received and check out games that people you know have played recently. The Games page is also where your game accomplishments will appear. So you can comfortably share your latest high score—your circles will only see the updates when they’re interested in playing games too.

Most importantly Google says this:

If you’re not interested in games, it’s easy to ignore them. Your stream will remain focused on conversations with the people you care about.

Google says to check out their new Google+ “Platform blog” here.

Google also says the games roll out will be gradual and it starts today for some users.

Preview of Google+ games:

Zynga drags Google into Vostu lawsuit

First off if you haven’t been keeping track of the Zynga Vostru legal battle over the last month you can read about it here and here, both articles from Techcrunch.

We haven’t been covering this lawsuit because its not under our topic but today, Zynga brought it under our topic. Zynga has filed a lawsuit against Google’s Orkut in Brazil, which is both Orkut and Vostu’s prime ground. The reason? Zynga says that Orkut is hosting games that they consider ripoffs which is what this whole suit is about. Google, who has secretly invested 100 million into Zynga (techcrunch again) obviously isn’t to happy about this.

A Brazil judge has sided with Zynga saying that both companies must remove the games MegaCity, Café Mania, Pet Mania and Vostu Poker within 48 hours or face a fine of R20,000 (around 13,000USD) a day, according to the granted injunction.

Zynga’s press statement:

Zynga Inc has filed a lawsuit in Brazil against Vostu for copyright infringement and unfair competition based on Vostu’s copying of four of Zynga’s games. Zynga is pleased that the Court has reviewed the evidence and found good cause to issue an injunction order requiring Vostu and Google Orkut to cease distribution of four Vostu games – MegaCity, Café Mania, Pet Mania and Vostu Poker – or be subject to fine by the Court. The Court’s action reflects the seriousness of this matter and the irreparable harm Zynga is suffering due to Vostu’s copying. It also takes into account the need to protect Brazilian consumers from acts of infringement and unfair competition.

Professor Bruno Feijó, from Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio de Janeiro and Chief of Vision Lab, analyzed the games and concluded that: “the four games from Vostu characterize a clear case of copying Zynga’s games in both visual interface and gameplay.”

Additionally, Professor João Bernardes Junior, from the University of São Paulo (USP), affirmed: “Vostu’s games are copies of Zynga’s games when compared on gameplay and player interface.”

Zynga welcomes Vostu into the arena of social games, but will not tolerate blatant infringement of its creative works as its business strategy. “It is one thing to be inspired by Zynga games, but it is another to copy our key product features and intellectual property in violation of the law.” — Reggie Davis, General Counsel for Zynga Inc.

Also a Zynga supplied translation of the decision:

I received the retro brief as an amendment of the brief. Before the elements attached to the case records, there is likelihood in the plaintiff’s claims, which can be inferred by the case’s record documents, by the similarity of the games as well as being present the periculum in mora, I grant the preliminary injunction, determining that the defendants stop the use, exhibition, edition, reproduction, distribution, sale, offer for sale, broadcast or distribution, assignment or transference of the videogames Vostu Mega City, Vostu Café Mania, Vostu Pet Mania and Vostu Poke, within 48 hours, under penalty of daily fine of R$20,000.00. Under the terms of article 835, of the CPC, I determine to the plaintiff the provision of bond on the value of 20% the value assigned to the matter, within 48 hours, under the penalty of repeal of the preliminary injunction.” — Tribunal de Justiça do Estado de São Paulo, 10ª Vara Cível (10th Civil Court)

The one question is, what about Facebook? Those games are used by more than the users on Orkut use them and Facebook has those exact same games? Is it take them one-by-one or what?

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