I signed up for a Facebook account a few months ago, and became addicted to finding cool applications to load. I wasn’t interested in silly invites from my friends to add fake plants I had to water, or to become an online Vampire and get my fangs in people. I wanted something to feed my game addiction.
People that know me well know how much I enjoy games. They are not B-O-R-E-D games to me, but a great way to unwind and have fun. I’ve always been partial to word games, and to Boggle in particular.
I have a lot of good memories playing Boggle with my family. As a little kid, I was allowed to make 2 letter words and had a handicap added to my score so that I could play competitively with my parents.
Over time, I could play by the normal rules and my handicap disappeared. I actually got so good that my parents joked that they should now have a handicap when playing against me. Another standing joke was that any serious boyfriend of mine would have to pass the “Boggle test” before they were officially accepted.
So, I was extremely excited to find Bogglific which is an online version of Boggle. Even better, I could play it any time of the day or night, with people from all across the world.
The other week when I logged on to play I was very unhappy to find a note from developer Roger Nesbitt that Bogglific was going to have to shut down. I’ve included some excerpts from his notice posted on Facebook:
Hasbro, Inc. sent a DMCA notification to Facebook regarding Bogglific. They claim it violates their trademark, and violates copyright over the Boggle rules. Scrabulous is in the same boat, but they have the resources to fight their battle.
Since Bogglific will be deleted by Facebook, you may wish to post further discussions to the Bogglific Addicts group (which is not run by me). A petition group has been sent to Hasbro.
This whole situation reminds me of a philosophy class I took in college called “Contemporary Moral Issues.” It dealt with the fact that the world is constantly changing around all of us, and that figuring out how to navigate and manage these changes can be difficult (for individuals, businesses, and the government). Technological changes in particular can take us into previously un-chartered territory and new battles.
The class also covered the overlap (or disconnect) between societal mores and values to legal regulatory changes. I remember discussing surrogate motherhood, genetic technology and cloning, privacy rights of AIDS patients, and physician assisted suicide. The internet didn’t exist then, but if it had, this type of situation would have been debated.
I wish that Hasbro could see this as a technological boost to their game playing population, and work out a deal with the developer. From comments posted at online forums, many of the players were unaware of Boggle until finding and enjoying this application. Furthermore, many then actually bought the physical games. From that very non-scientific sample, it seems like their sales would have only increased from Bogglific.
I just know I was addicted, and still want to be able to play it online. I also don’t understand how the Scrabble knock-off Scrabulous application can still exist, but Bogglific is gone. I figured I’d post my final standings in Bogglific for posterity:
Your Bogglific rating as of 16 Jan is 1461.
You are currently ranked 1,307th of 41,851. (Top 3.1% of players)
Played 839 games. (3 minutes each, so 42 HOURS of my life)
I am already going through withdrawal. Plus, what am I now going to do with all the hours I had spent playing Bogglific? Walk outside? Visit friends? Those just make no sense as middle of the night substitutes. Wah!