Et Tu, Agarwalla Brothers?

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In anticipation of getting bent over the witness stand by Hasbro and Mattel, the Agarwalla brothers shut down their most beloved product today:

In a statement, creators Rajat and Jayant Agarwalla said they agreed to block Scrabulous in the United States and Canada in deference to Facebook's concerns, while continuing to pursue their legal defense. Rajat Agarwalla, describing the measures as "unfortunate," declined further comment.

Facebook said the Agarwalla brothers, not the company, made the decision.

Perhaps the Agarwallas are pretending to acquiesce, allowing their fans to rip Hasbro a new one? The Facebook group "Save Scrabbulous" has 46,198 members as of this writing, several hundred of whom have already publicly complained on the group's "wall." 

I wrote about Hasbro's idiocy last week, here.

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  1. Not Hasbro’s first Scrabble blunder – they’ve done worse than this in the past and we keep coming back.

    Stefan Fatsis’ book “Word Freaks” mixes a decent amount of Scrabble history with stories of people whose existence revolves around the game. Pretty good read.

  2. The Facebook group “Save Scrabbulous” has 46,198 members as of this writing, several hundred of whom have already publicly complained on the group’s “wall.”

    That’s not a lot of people for a Facebook group. “Starving Dogs is not art” group has 260,435 members, for instance.

    Add that to the fact that joining a group is free and takes roughly five seconds, and writing on the wall not much more.

  3. Occam-

    Don’t dismiss it out of hand. Facebook users are a savvy bunch. They don’t spend all day sitting around joining hollow groups with no goals or values, capriciously befriending people they’ve never met, or playing games that waste both time and brainpower.

  4. Or sending each other virtual gifts.

  5. I’ll be more careful, Hugh.

    As for ed, I’ll note that the gifts actually do have some meaning, as you have to pay for those.

  6. The rumor is the brother turned down a $10 million offer from Hasbro. They wanted several times that much.

    They get no sympathy from me. They got greedy.

  7. The game can still be played at Scrabulous.com. Thanks for giving me a new internet addiction, Reason…Unfortunately I consistently crush the computer robot on the top level so it’s no fun anymore…


  8. They get no sympathy from me. They got greedy.

    I would think that 500,000 daily users with their eyeballs glued to their web browsers for minutes on end is worth a lot more than 10 mil.

  9. creators Rajat and Jayant Agarwalla said they agreed to block Scrabulous in the United States and Canada

    Because nobody ever links to a website originating in a foreign country, right?

    Wow, the technical workaround to this restriction might take over 5 minutes to write. Teh Hard.

  10. Pottsy,

    They’re not exactly in a position to bargain hard. They’re going to lose the lawsuit, guaranteed.

  11. I would think that 500,000 daily users with their eyeballs glued to their web browsers for minutes on end is worth a lot more than 10 mil.

    They were on a run rate of $300K/year gross revenue.

    They might be worth 5X revenue. They turned down 33X revenue because it wasn’t enough.

    Screw them.

  12. “I wrote about Hasbro’s idiocy last week, here.”

    When is someone going to write about your idiocy? For christ sake, somebody fire this douche already.

  13. The rumor is the brother turned down a $10 million offer from Hasbro.

    I assign a credibility discount to this rumor of approximately 98%.

  14. I assign a credibility discount to this rumor of approximately 98%.

    That’s nice. Who are you? What is your opinion based on?

    I built Yahoo!’s gaming site back in the 1990s, my contacts in the casual gaming business are quite solid.

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