Sunday, November 13, 2011


Anyone who's played FV or any of the Zynga family of games has been exposed to the constant barrage of attempt to part their users with their money. So, it should come to no surprize to find out just how low Zynga will go to capitalize, even on it's own resources..

here's a recent article from  yahoo 

Zynga Real Life Game: GreedVille

Zynga Demands Employees Return Stock Options Before IPO

By Andrew Riggio  | Yahoo! Contributor Network – Fri, Nov 11, 2011

COMMENTARY | On Nov. 10, the Wall Street Journal ran afront-page story  about online gaming super-company Zynga, creator of such runaway hits as the social networking games Farmville and Mafia Wars. The company anticipates going public with an IPO just after Thanksgiving. Some Zynga employees have less to be thankful about this year, however, since CEO Mark Pincus told them to give back stock options or hit the unemployment line .
Startups like Zynga often pay low salaries to employees because their futures are uncertain. They frequently make up the gap by offering stock options to prospective employees. In that fashion employee success is linked tocompany success and they are well motivated to give their best efforts. It works great except when the employees accept the low-paying jobs, give their all to the company, and then the company beats them over the head with the Greed Stick.
Zynga attempts to justify this by saying the company is restructuring and taking back just the "unvested options." The company claims that it might have overestimated the worth of some hires, giving them more options than should have been offered. While that may be a legal practice it does not make it moral or ethical.
Another troubling aspect of this is that some financial writers sympathize with Zynga, or at least feel the company's actions were not really bad. An example cited by one author is that Zynga could have simply fired the employees , thereby forcing the return of the unvested options, but instead gave them the choice.
That's a flawed reason for believing that Zynga's actions are just peachy. It's like saying a cannibal was ethical because he gave you the choice of being partly eaten or thrown out into a blizzard to die instead of just eating you without giving you a choice. Zynga's actions are just that -- corporate cannibalism. It's eating part of its own body.
It speaks volumes about the state of employer-employee relations that a company can go back on its compensation promises like that and not suffer immediate legal penalty. Welcome to GreedVille, people. Don't like it or share it with your friends.

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