Hi5 Boss: Facebook Social Games Dominance Is Bullsh-t

WildTangent founder, DirectX co-creator and Hi5 boss, Alex St John told Social Games Summit audience that it is ridiculous to say that Facebook has dominated online social networking.

"I've never heard so much bullsh*t in my life," was Alex's own words. "You come to the UK and you have Runescape saying 'what the f--- is Facebook? We have 300 million users."

"What kills me is games go viral - Club Penguin, Runescape - completely on their own, often with not very sophisticated business models."

"The amount of money that's being made on social games is actually pretty tiny compared to the general online basis. The internet is unequivocally the open dominant place where money is flowing on an enormous scale."

"Tell me what the difference is between Club Penguin that has 50m subs on its own and no VC funding and a game that needs Facebook and VC funding to get going."

"There's some real value to some of the new things discovered with social networking that could really help the games industry, but nobody needs that sh*t."

Still, there is no arguing that some games have grown dependent on Facebook. "The interesting phenomenon is the games that can't make on it their own without social network infrastructure... Zynga can't steal its audience from Facebook to save its live."

"Little game companies don't have 20 million email address lists and a marketing platform. Facebook gave you a free email list and marketing platform. Of course it worked."

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