|Headquarters||San Francisco, California|
|Key people||Lisa Marino: CEO; Lance Tokuda and Jia Shen: co-founders|
|Services||Interactive media company|
|Alexa rank||147,182 (April 2014[update])|
|Type of site||Online social entertainment|
RockYou is a company that purchases the rights to classic video games, then incorporates in-game ads and re-distributes them.
Based in San Francisco, California, RockYou was founded in 2005 by Lance Tokuda and Jia Shen. The company's first product, a slide show service, was designed to work as an application widget. Later applications included various forms of voice mail, text and photo stylization, and games. As of December, 2007 it is the most successful widget maker for the Facebook platform in terms of total installations.
In May, 2007, RockYou was one of the companies invited to participate in F8, the event at which Facebook announced an open platform allowing third parties to develop and operate their own software applications on the Facebook website. Applications made for Facebook include Super Wall, "Hug Me", Likeness, Vampires, Slideshows, Birthdays, MyGifts, and Emote, among others.
In December 2009, the company experienced a data breach resulting in the exposure of over 32 million user accounts. This resulted from storying user data in an unencrypted database and not patching a ten-year-old SQL vulnerability. RockYou failed to provide a notification of the breach to users and miscommunicated the extent of the breach.
In October 2010, the company completed major layoffs. In November, 2010, the company's founder and CEO, Lance Tokuda, stepped down from his position as CEO. and was later replaced by Lisa Marino in April, 2011.
In 2010, RockYou announced the acquisitions of two game development studios, TirNua and Playdemic, as well as development agreements for two new games from John Romero's social game studio Loot Drop. Playdemic's first game, Gourmet Ranch, was nominated in February 2011 for a Mochi Award for Best Social Game. RockYou's investors include SoftBank, Sequoia Capital, Lightspeed Venture Partners, Partech International, and DCM.
On June 13, 2012, RockYou acquired Bingo developer Ryzing and relocated its headquarters to San Francisco, CA. In August 2012, RockYou launched The Walking Dead Social Game based on AMC's hit series of the same name. In April 2014, RockYou purchased three Playdom social games from Disney: Gardens of Time, Words of Wonder, and City Girl, and announced it's licensing Army Attack, Crazy Penguin Wars, Millionaire City, and Zombie Lane from Digital Chocolate.
RockYou's most played game, Zoo World is a free social media application where users try to build the best zoo they can. Participants can build on various islands, decorate their zoo with kiosks, trees, and a large variety of animals. In addition, it has features such as breeding animals, collecting objects, and visiting friend's zoo islands. The act of leveling up is based on achievements of tasks. Also, users can earn wildlife points, a bonus reward that can be used to buy special items, like ultra rare animals, and rare decorative items. Wildlife points can be earned by breeding animals, completing levels and trophies, or bought via PayPal or credit card. Lastly, around each holiday there are events, new animals, and new items to add to the zoo.
In May 2011, RockYou announced that Zoo World 2, the sequel to the original Zoo World, would be available on Facebook on June 8, 2011.
Current Social Games
- Bingo By Ryzing
- Bingo Blingo
- RockYou Poker
- Mall World
- Fashion Designer
- Zoo World
- Zoo World 2
- City Girl Life
- Words of Wonder
- Gardens of Time
- Zombie Lane
- Millionaire City
- Crazy Penguin Wars
- Kitchen Scramble
- Army Attack
Past Social Applications and Games
- Pieces of Flair
- RockYou Live
- Speed Racing
- Birthday Cards
- Hug Me
- Hero World
- My Casino
- Toy Land
- Super Pets
- Movie Blitz
- The Walking Dead Social Game
- Jackpot Bingo
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- Ellen Lee (September 3, 2007). "Widgets add flair to dress up Web sites". San Francisco Chronicle.
- Nik Cubrilovic. "RockYou Hack: From Bad To Worse". TechCrunch. AOL.
- Jason Kincaid. "RockYou Rocked By Layoffs As It Switches Focus To Social Games". TechCrunch. AOL.
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- "Interview: New RockYou CEO Lisa Marino Talks Social Gaming, Advertising and Mobile". insidesocialgames.com.
- "TirNua acquisition". GamesIndustry.biz.
- Robin Wauters. "RockYou Buys UK-Based Social Gaming Startup Playdemic". TechCrunch. AOL.
- "RockYou signs deal with Doom creator John Romero's social game studio Loot Drop - GamesBeat - Games - by Dean Takahashi". VentureBeat.
- Mike Rose. "Gamasutra - RockYou acquires Bingo developer Ryzing". gamasutra.com.
- Anthony Ha. "RockYou Acquires Social Games Developer Ryzing, Moves to San Francisco". TechCrunch. AOL.
- "The Walking Dead Social Game’s open beta lurches onto Facebook". insidesocialgames.com.
- VentureBeat, Dean Takahashi, 4/18/14, RockYou Buys Three Playdom Games from Disney to Keep Them Running http://venturebeat.com/2014/04/18/rockyou-buys-three-playdom-games-from-disney-to-keep-them-running-for-players/
- Gamasutra, Christian Nutt 4/18/14, RockYou's New Strategy: Rescue Games That Other Publishers Don't Want http://www.gamasutra.com/view/news/215827/RockYous_new_strategy_Rescue_games_that_other_publishers_dont_want.php