A message on the Scrabulous Application page didn’t give much away and at first it was unclear whether or not it was Facebook or the developers that pulled the application. However a statement
released by brothers Jayant and Rajat Agarwalla, who take credit for developing Scrabulous, shed some light on the issue.
“Facebook has informed us that they have received a legal notice from Hasbro in reference to the Scrabulous application. In deference to Facebook’s concerns and without prejudice to our legal rights, we have had to restrict our fans in USA and Canada from accessing the Scrabulous application on Facebook until further notice. This is an unfortunate event and not something that we are very pleased about, especially as Mattel has been pursuing the matter in Indian courts for the past few months. We will sincerely hope to bring to our fans brighter news in the days to come.”
Hasbro and Electronic Arts launched an own open beta of their own official online Scrabble but unfortunately players in the US and Canada seem to be refusing to be bought over. The majority of posts on the Scrabble message boards are from people complaining that it’s buggier than Scrabulous, that they wouldn’t be playing the game on principal or that Hasbro should back off and leave Scrabulous alone.
Yesterday afternoon, the Scrabble application on Facebook experienced what was first thought to be a server crash from unusually high traffic. Now it seems as though it was more a case of hackers (bitter Scrabulous fans, perhaps?) committing to being a thorn in Hasbro’s side.
According to the LATimes, Hasbro was yesterday pinning the blame on a malicious attack rather than technical issues.
“EA’s Scrabble Facebook game experienced a malicious attack this morning, resulting in the disabling of Scrabble on Facebook. We’re working with our partners to resolve this issue and have Scrabble back online and ready to play as soon as possible.”
Scrabble appears to be back up and running on Facebook and those outside the US and Canada are still able to play Scrabulous for now. As for addicts residing inside Hasbro’s jurisdiction? Scrabulous.com seems to still be going strong although it’s anyone’s guess how long it will remain active.