EA Sues Zynga Over “Unmistakable Copy” – The Ville

Zynga has drawn the attention of one of the video game publishing juggernauts, Electronic Arts, with their game, The Ville.  EA is suing the publisher for copying and misappropriating “distinctive expressive elements of The Sims Social in a violation of U.S. copyright laws.”

The Sims Social, which launched in August 2011 on Facebook quickly gained tens of millions of users in just under a year’s time.  While this isn’t the first time that Zynga has been sued by a publisher for copyright infringement, it is most certainly the most high profile case.

Lucy Bradshaw, General Manager of EA’s Maxis label had the following to say in a blog post:

“As outlined in our complaint, when The Ville was introduced in June 2012, the infringement of The Sims Social was unmistakable to those of us at Maxis as well as to players and the industry at large. The similarities go well beyond any superficial resemblance. Zynga’s design choices, animations, visual arrangements and character motions and actions have been directly lifted from The Sims Social. The copying was so comprehensive that the two games are, to an uninitiated observer, largely indistinguishable. Scores of media and bloggers commented on the blatant mimicry.

“This is a case of principle. Maxis isn’t the first studio to claim that Zynga copied its creative product. But we are the studio that has the financial and corporate resources to stand up and do something about it. Infringing a developer’s copyright is not an acceptable practice in game development. By calling Zynga out on this illegal practice, we hope to have a secondary effect of protecting the rights of other creative studios who don’t have the resources to protect themselves.

“Today, we hope to be taking a stand that helps the industry protect the value of original creative works and those that work tirelessly to create them.”

Zynga’s stock has risen 2.59% as of the time of this writing.



About This Post

August 3, 2012 - 1:48 pm

Gaming, News