Zynga Breaks Away From Facebook

By Justin Lafferty 

The strained tie between Facebook and game developer Zynga has been largely broken. According to documents filed Thursday with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Zynga is no longer an extension of the Facebook platform, but the two  companies do maintain some semblance of a relationship.

In Facebook’s early days, Zynga was the site’s biggest game developer, by a wide margin. Zynga was heavily tied into Facebook, supporting Facebook ads and Facebook payments. Zynga was also able to cross-promote non-Facebook-based games through the social network. In return, Facebook had exclusive rights to Zynga game launches.

But as the gaming ecosystem widened, Facebook’s support of Zynga lessened, and the developer wanted to reduce its reliance on the social network.

The SEC filing states that as of March 31, 2013, Zynga will be treated just like any other developer on the Facebook platform:

Zynga’s use of the Facebook platform and any Facebook data on any Zynga service offered through a Zynga game page (e.g., Zynga.com) will be governed by Facebook’s standard terms of service, effective March 31, 2013. Zynga will no longer be separately obligated to display Facebook ad units or implement Facebook credits on any such Zynga game pages. In addition, the addendum No. 1 amendment provides that Zynga’s right to cross-promote any games that are off of the Facebook website from Zynga services that use Facebook data, and to use email addresses obtained from Facebook, will be limited by Facebook’s standard terms of service, subject to certain exceptions.

A Facebook spokesperson discussed the filing in a statement to sister site Inside Facebook:

We’re not in the business of building games, and we have no plans to do so. We’re focused on being the platform where games and applications are built.

Readers: What do you think this means for the long-term future of Zynga?

Image courtesy of AllThingsD.