News Video Games

Will Zynga release “Farmville Express”? Company registers, domain names

Farmville Express

Social gaming giant Zynga has registered the domain names and through MarkMonitor, its registrar of choice.  Both domains were registered earlier this week on April 20 following a story that appeared on Farmville Freak that discussed a survey sent out by Zynga from Facebook asking users about mobile farming. followed up the story also hinting that the gaming giant had a new, lighter version of FarmVille mobile in the works.

What are the possibilities for the domain names?

Last May, Zynga announced a partnership with American Express  that now allows American Express customers to use their Membership Rewards points to redeem Zynga’s virtual goods and game cards.  Though the website is not that easy to find, the Membership Rewards Program from American Express extends beyond Farmville and includes virtual goods from other Zynga games like YoVille, Frontierville, Cityville, and others.  

So it’s definitely looking promising that a new, lighter version of Farmville called “Farmville Express” will be released.    

At the time of this story, is parked at GoDaddy (where the name now resides under a e-mail address), while the web address currently doesn’t resolve. 

Domain Name:

        Registrar Name:
        Registrar Whois:
        Registrar Homepage:

    Administrative Contact:
        Domain Administrator
        DNStination Inc.
        303 Second Street Suite 800N
         San Francisco CA 94107
         +1.4155319335 Fax: +1.4155319335

    Technical Contact, Zone Contact:
        Domain Administrator
        DNStination Inc.
        303 Second Street Suite 800N
         San Francisco CA 94107
         +1.4155319335 Fax: +1.4155319335

    Created on…………..: 2011-04-20.
    Expires on…………..: 2012-04-20.
    Record last updated on..: 2011-04-20.

News Trademarks Video Games

Zynga files for trademark on Farmville English Countryside: Guess who owns the domain? … and it’s not Zynga

Farmville English Countryside

Last month, I wrote about how Zynga filed for the European trademark on the word “ville”, which sparked a series of news stories and blog posts over the controversial nature of the application by the gaming company.  Writers from around the web ranging from CNET to Business Insider weighed in on the topic.

Well, now Zynga has filed another trademark this week over its latest launch: English Countryside, an expansion to one of its top games, Farmville.

farmville english countryside trademark application

What about the domain names?

While it looks as if someone is cybersquatting on the URL (registered in late February according to Whois), the generic (and non-controversial) version of the name,, also isn’t owned by Zynga.  It’s owned by none other than Mike Berkens, the Editor of the blog The Domains who happens to own some of the top generic domains in the world.

Over the last year, Zynga has acquired a number of domain names on the aftermarket prior to launching its properties publicly, like for $38,225 and for $4,500.  But in the case of “English Countryside”, a term that refers to the hundreds of cottages and rolling hills around England, looks like Zygna opted to stick with — a name it acquired from another famous domain investor: Frank Schilling of

News Trademarks Video Games

Predictions on the next Facebook game title by Zynga

facebook games

With Zynga’s latest Facebook game Cityville topping the charts as the most popular Facebook game in 2010, I thought I’d offer up a few predictions on Zynga’s next blockbuster game title in 2011.  With Cityville, Farmville, and Frontierville numbering daily users in the millions, one can only guess what’s next for Zynga, like another game with “ville” in the title.

Back in late 2009, the game publisher went on a trademarking spree as pointed out by  

Libe Goad, wrote: “Zynga, the social game publisher responsible for FarmVille, PetVille, Mafia Wars and more, went on a trademarking spree during the month of December, securing 21 names for potential new games. Of course, many of the names follow the end with ‘ville,’ including TreasureVille, FrontierVille, CrimeVille and AnimalVille.”

The complete list of trademarks (which can viewed easily over at Trademarkia) included: Pet Hospital, Poker Blitz, Safari World, Treasureville, Zoo city, zoo island, mafia world, hotelville, hotel world, hospital world, hospitalville, frontierville, frontier world, frontier, crimeville, crime world, casino world, casino blitz, bountyville, animal world and animalville.

While FrontierVille ended up as one of the top Facebook games, it wasn’t until June 23, 2010, that the company purchased the domain name for $38,225 at Moniker – in what would turn out to be the single biggest game ever on Facebook.

The game title Cityville, has spawned hundreds of domain registrations and websites with “cityville” in the name, ranging from to

Zynga is known for using a myriad of companies and individuals for registering domain names, so predicting the next big game title might prove to be much harder.  For example, the company used IP Cybercrime LLC to register its domain


What are your predictions for Zygna game titles in 2011? 

Will the game developer go with a “ville” name? A “world” name?

Is the company somehow behind the recent buys of,, or on Sedo? Or maybe (which was purchased for nearly $8,000 in September)?

The company has plenty of names to choose from, but who owns those names is the question.  As I wrote about before, though Zynga might use a certain title for a game, it doesn’t always own the domain (even after launching the game). was launched in 2009 by Zynga, and the company acquired the domain name from its previous owners for an undisclosed amount.  Visit, and a message at the top of the site reads: ‘the content that was previously found at can now be found at’. 

Though Zynga owns, and other ville domain names, it doesn’t own – which saw a spike in traffic according to Compete when the site launched in November 2009.   It appears Zynga and the owners of couldn’t come to an agreement, but Zynga is doing just fine – its Fishville game owns nearly all the top spots on Google, and the company does own the .net which it uses for the game’s home page.

Why Cityville is so hot

If you’re wondering what Zynga is doing to make its’ games so popular, Gamasutra the online gaming magazine, has an interesting write up titled: How Zynga’s CityVille Has Compelled 70 Million Players.

If you still haven’t checked out Cityville yet, here’s some gameplay footage provided by IGN.


$38,000 domain sold in June at Moniker, now the most popular Facebook application


After selling for $38,225 in June at Moniker, CityVille is now bigger than FarmVille, Mashable is reporting.  

Referring to the latest statistics provided by Appdata, a site that tracks Facebook application metrics, Cityville surpassed Farmville and the Facebook game now has nearly 17 million daily users.  On Dec. 11, Cityville which had been online less than 2 weeks, had 6 million users and it has continued to grow at a phenomenal pace.

The top 10 Facebook apps on the leaderboard according to Appdata are:

1.  CityVille 
2.  FarmVille   
3.  Phrases   
4.  Texas HoldEm Poker  
5.  FrontierVille   
6.  Causes   
7.  Mafia Wars Game   
8.  Café World   
9.  Phrases (new)  
10.  My Year In Status