One of the big news stories this morning is that the Argarwalla brothers who founded Scrabulous have launched a similar application called “Wordscraper”. The application, which is similar in style to Scrabulous, has attracted over 8,000 people so far. It also appears that the brother no longer have an announcement message on Scrabulous and have instead completely pulled down the application. When you try to view Scrabulous a message appears which says “Application ‘Scrabulous’ has been restricted. We’re sorry but you’re unable to access this application due to restrictions put in place by either the developer of the application or by Facebook.”
How the brothers are driving traffic to the application is unknown at this point but my guess is that they are investing in application installs rather than cross promoting. Otherwise Hasbro could theoretically argue that the brothers leveraged Scrabulous, an illegitimate application, to cross promote their new application. While this is not a blatant violation of the terms, it could theoretically be argued that the brothers leveraged Hasbro’s brand to promote their new application.
As such it appears that the brothers will stick to traditional tactics and try to spend money on promotions. With all the buzz generated today, perhaps the brothers will get a nice free boost. While this new incarnation will most likely protect the brothers from future legal matters, obtaining over half a million daily active users again will definitely prove challenging. It’s unfortunate that the brothers had to completely remove the application rather than change the existing one.
It will be interesting to see if the team can generate as much buzz as before. This time around their going to try to do it legally!