Rovio has announced that from 6-9 pm on February 14th, Angry Birds and Facebook will be going on their very first date. The news was released through a trailer (below) and suggests that the most downloaded game in history will debut on Facebook in a similar form to the mobile game which millions have grown to love.
Angry Birds has been wildly successful, with different versions flourishing in the mobile world. Part of that success seems to be coming, oddly enough, from piracy. While at the Midem conference in Cannes, Rovio’s CEO Mikael Hed said that the company has been leveraging piracy to fuel its success. “We have some issues with piracy, not only in apps, but especially in consumer products. There is tons and tons of merchandise out there, especially in Asia, which is not officially licensed products. We could learn a lot form the music industry, and the rather terrible ways the music industry has tried to combat piracy.”
Mikael Hed has a very different view of piracy then many in the entertainment industry. In fact, Rovio only takers legal action against pirates when it feels they are selling unlicensed products that are harmful to the Rovio brand. The rest of the time, the company’s stance is that “piracy may not be a bad thing: it can get us more business at the end of the day.” Mikael went on, “We took something from the music industry, which was to stop treating the customers as users, and start treating them as fans. We do that today: talk about how many fans we have. If we lose that fanbase, our business is done, but if we can grow that fanbase, our business will grow.”
While Rovio’s Facebook event on Valentines day is only a first date, the relationship might turn into something more if enough people participate and play the game. With so many fans already and a policy to promote its brand image through regular and irregular channels (pirates) I am sure Rovio’s success has not peaked just yet. BUt concerning their Facebook event, Rovio is encouraging all Facebook users to help make the Valentine’s Day event the largest Facebook event ever. If they succeed, which I think they will, I would be willing to bet that Angry Birds becomes a staple on Facebook much the same way as Words with Friends or Farmville already have.
Will you be there? Would you like to see Angry Birds available on Facebook? Let us know in the comments section below.