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Scrabulous Founder Speaks

Kim Hart

Yesterday I wrote about an official Scrabble application being launched on Facebook by Hasbro and Electronic Arts. I had e-mailed the founders of Scrabulous to ask them if this new game was a threat to their business. I heard back from them this morning.

Jayant Agarwalla, who founded the India-based company with this brother, said in his e-mail to me that, while he couldn't comment on the legality of Scrabulous (Hasbro and Mattel asked Facebook to take down the application in January by claiming copyright infringement), he was confident his loyal fan base would stick with Scrabulous.

Here's what he had to say:

"When it comes to applications, Facebook is a highly competitive environment and it is a challenge for anyone to engage the attention and patronage of a large and dedicated user base....

Our aim has and will always be, the satisfaction of our users. We strongly believe that people should have the option of playing what they like, rather than be forced by developers into using something they offer only for monetary gains.

We have been passionately serving the Scrabulous community for over three years and it has now grown into a network of more than 5 million users. This has been possible as we have never treated Scrabulous as a business. We have only tried to provide a platform that allows users to connect with their friends, and at the same time derive meaningful leisure and entertainment
for free.

Some of our users are homebound or even physically challenged, and for them Scrabulous has become an important window to the outside world. It keeps them occupied for a large part of their day. We will do everything in our capacity to ensure that our beloved users don't suffer."

By Kim Hart  |  July 8, 2008; 10:23 AM ET  | Category:  Kim Hart
Previous: Scrabble vs. Scrabulous, Take Two | Next: A Conversation with Yelp's Jeremy Stoppelman


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Look I dig Scrabulous but, let's be serious: it's copyright infringement plain and simple. If it's a for-profit venture, it should pay some royalties to Scrabble's owners.

And, by the way, mentioning the "homebound or even physically challenged" -- as if Scrabulous was some theraputic charity -- is a nauseating defense.

Posted by: Keith | July 8, 2008 8:23 PM

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