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Those Farmville Ads Aren’t Going Away: Facebook and Zynga Sign Five-Year Partnership

Just a week ago, a Facebook-Zynga split seemed inevitable, with squabbles between the two, primarily over ad revenue, threatening to send the gaming giant behind the likes of FarmVille and Mafia Wars off in a huff. In some respects, it would’ve been a lose-lose for them both: Zynga is known for sending lots of advertising dollars to Facebook, and Facebook, for its part, provides a much bigger platform for Zynga than it could reasonably hope to achieve with a site of its own, at least anytime in the near future.

Then again, the healthy chunk of Facebook denizens who don’t enjoy being spammed by countless status updates and ads touting Zynga’s wares could well have benefited.

Whatever might have happened, it looks like the Facebook-Zynga rift isn’t coming anytime soon: The two have signed a deal committing to a “five-year strategic relationship.”

Here’s their press release, which neglects to disclose much in the way of facts and figures about the terms of the arrangement:

PALO ALTO, Calif. and SAN FRANCISCO, May 18 /PRNewswire/ — Facebook and Zynga announced today that they have entered into a five-year strategic relationship that increases their shared commitment to social gaming on Facebook and expands use of Facebook Credits in Zynga’s games. The agreement provides a solid foundation for both companies to continue to work together to provide millions of people with a compelling user experience for social games.

“Facebook was a pioneer in opening their platform in 2007 and in just three years tens of millions of Facebook users play our games everyday, from FarmVille and Cafe World to Treasure Isle and Mafia Wars,” said Mark Pincus, founder and chief executive officer at Zynga. “We are excited about Facebook’s long-term commitment to social gaming and Zynga, and look forward to working with them and other platform providers to bring the best social gaming experience to users worldwide.”

“We are pleased to enter into a new agreement with Zynga to enhance the experience for Facebook users who play Zynga games,” said Sheryl Sandberg, chief operating officer at Facebook. “We look forward to continuing our work with Zynga and all of our developers to increase the opportunities on our platform.”

Zynga is currently testing Facebook Credits in select games and will expand to more titles over the coming months.  Terms of the agreement between Facebook and Zynga were not disclosed.

About Facebook

Founded in February 2004, Facebook’s mission is to give people the power to share and make the world more open and connected. Anyone can sign up for Facebook and interact with the people they know in a trusted environment. Facebook is a privately held company and is headquartered in Palo Alto, Calif.

About Zynga

Zynga has over 230 million monthly active users playing its games. These games include FarmVille, Treasure Isle, Zynga Poker, Mafia Wars, YoVille, Cafe World, FishVille and PetVille, which are available on Facebook, MySpace, Yahoo! and the iPhone.  Through Zynga.org, Zynga players have raised over $3 million for world social causes. Zynga is headquartered in Potrero Hill in San Francisco.

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