Zynga filed suit against the maker of Bang with Friends today in a San Francisco federal court. Zynga has many titles that end in “with friends” such as Words with Friends, Chess with Friends, and Hanging with Friends. The suit alleges the defendant “selected the name ‘Bang With Friends’ for its casual sex matchmaking app with Zynga’s game trademarks fully in mind.”
Zynga seeks a court order barring the company from using the name “Bang With Friends” for any social networking apps. Zynga is also seeking damages, but the amount wasn’t released. Zynga lawyer, Renee Lawson, said in an email that “Zynga filed a lawsuit to stop blatant infringement of its valuable ‘With Friends’ brand. Zynga is compelled to file suit to prevent further consumer confusion and protect its intellectual property rights against infringement.”
The Bang with Friends camp has little comment thus far, saying only “As a technology company, we take intellectual property seriously, and will evaluate the case in detail once we receive a copy,” in an emailed statement.
Social gaming company, Zynga has been struggling since its 2011 IPO offering. It recently laid off more than 500 employees and its had huge shakeups in its management structure, with 12 high level executives fleeing the company since its IPO. Shares in Zynga stock are down 70 percent.
It’s probably no shocker that Zynga’s trying to recoup its losses however it can, and this current suit could have something to do with that. Bang with Friends has been around for the better part of a year, and it’s had a fair share of notoriety and press coverage since its release. So it’s a little strange that Zynga waited until now to file suit.
We’ll keep you posted on this developing story. Let us know what you think in the comments, does Zynga have a case?