Zynga currently has a number of jobs in their San Francisco, CA office that might be well suited to new college graduates who love online gaming.

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We haven’t been able to find any hard statistics to back it up, but we’re pretty sure that a lot of people use their dog’s name for their passwords. Just look at Paris Hilton, whose cell phone supposedly got hacked because someone was able to find her dog’s name on her MySpace page. That story has since been discredited, but it can be a fable for the 21st century. Instead of “The Boy Who Cried Wolf,” we will tell our kids “The Girl Who Used Her Dog’s Name As Her Password.” So, if you’re trying to guess someone’s password (which you shouldn’t be), their dog’s name is a great first guess. If you don’t know their dog’s name, guess “Max.” Apparently 1% (which is a lot) of dogs in the U.S. share that name. Marc Pincus really blew it when he decided to name is social gaming network startup after his dog. Nobody would have ever guessed Zynga – he wasted a great password.

Social Gaming, Huh?

Now that you know why Zynga has its name, we should probably talk about what Zynga does. They claim to be the “#1 social gaming company on the web.” Social gaming isn’t really a new concept, but it seems like it is. If you can remember, games used to be played in-person with cards and boards. You and your family or friends would sit around a table, play a game, and have a good time. For a while the social aspect of gaming disappeared as personal gaming devices became all the rage. GameBoy, GameGear, computer games, and even many of the consoles focused on a single player experience. The Internet has gradually been bringing the social nature back through online multi-player gaming, but for a long time it seemed like it was easier to play against strangers than your own friends. Now that companies like Zynga are leveraging social networks (Facebook, MySpace, Bebo, Friendster, and meebo), you can play casino games (Texas Hold ‘Em is their biggest hit), word games, board games, role playing games and party games with your friends while you’re both working at your first entry-level job. We can be sure that Zynga won’t frown on that practice, although your friend’s boss might.

Game On!

Zynga’s gaming network has 18 million players and 55 million registered users. That’s a lot of people to show ads to, and that’s what Zynga is doing. That’s why they’re already breaking even without having laid a finger on their venture capital yet. They’ve already raised a total of $39 million in VC funding and have swelled to 80 employees. You can bet that number is going to grow as they start to dip into their funding to develop games that are better suited to withstand competition from video gaming behemoths like Electronic Arts. They’ve already swiped EA’s former Chief Creative Officer, Bing Gordon.

So how can you join Zynga’s team? Take a look at their Jobs page and find an opportunity that is right for you. Currently they have a number of jobs that might be well suited to new college graduates. These include Accounting Coordinator, Application Developer, 2D Graphic Designer, UI Web / Game Designer, Flash Developer, Web Developer, and Online Ad Sales Rep. Most of these job descriptions say that the jobs require slightly more experience than a typical entry-level candidate may have, but we think that if you knock their socks off by sending a standout cover letter and resume to jobs@zynga.com, they’ll at least give you a look. Maybe instead of a job interview, they’ll challenge you to a game over Facebook – if you win, you get the job. You can add Zynga to the list of companies that do a crappy job of telling you where they’re located, so we did some Googling to determine that they’re based in San Francisco, CA.

Links to Help You Begin Your Research

Don’t even ask in the comments, I’m not going to tell you what my dog’s name was.

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One response to “Zynga”

  1. Blake Loftus Jamieson says:

    Hey everyone, my name is Blake. I have been an employee of Zynga for three months now. I have nothing but positive things to say about Zynga; and nothing but sincere respect for the individuals who make the operation possible. I got a job with Zynga shortly after graduating from UC Davis (studied Economics).

    I was hired as a contract employee to perform various tasks for the iphone team. I was stoked just to land a gig in this job market – not to mention I had been an avid gamer since duck hunt. Looking back, I guess I have been a social gamer all along.

    What excited me even more was my first day on the job. I walked into an office buzzing with energy and inspiration. I got the vibe that everyone had specific roles to fill for an ultimate goal – and if they could do that, they would be compensated fairly. We all felt very appreciated.

    My initial tasks were somewhat remedial, but I enjoyed doing ANYTHING in the office because of the atmosphere. I also knew that how minor the task may seem was irrelevant. The most important tasks could not be completed without the building blocks. I always tried to exceed expectations and never put my name on something that wasn’t my best work. One day, I was asked if I wanted to make a game-demo video for the upcoming release of Scramble Live. Remembering a time during my childhood when Chad (my neighbor) and I would try to write down EVERYTHING you had to do to beat Donkey Kong, I accepted the task. I had already played a LOT of Scramble in preparation for launch, so I had a plethora of ideas to communicate the games features. I finished the video, editing included, in about 4 hours. Most of the shots were just one take. It turned out that the casual, one take, approach fit with Zynga culture. Shortly after the first video, I took up the alias ‘1 Take Blake.’ Truth be told, I’ve ALWAYS wanted to be involved in the film and entertainment industry. I was able to blend my passion for film making with my addiction to video games. All the while I was getting paid to do what I love!

    Since then, I have made 4 more videos for Zynga – and really feel like they are appreciated. My goal is to make a video for every department of Zynga – really focusing on the team dynamic. I love to include my co-workers in my work, because without them, I would not be doing it. I wake up every day grateful that I am living the dream.

    I aspire to be Zynga’s go-to guy for video and other creative media needs. I am proud to say I am a Zynga employee, and also believe that everyone is entitled to their own opinion. I guess it is not abnormal that bad press about companies seem to correlate to their level of success. There will always be haters. I accept that. I have always worked my ass of to reach success while maintaining my integrity. I can sleep at night comfortable with every decision I have ever made. Despite that, I have never gone a week without hearing somebody else’s negative energy. ‘Blake, you can’t do that because…” or “It’s impossible to reach THAT level of sucess without sacrificing your morals.” I shrug it off. The recent wave of negative press about Zynga – in a way – feels like an accomplishment. I realize that when society does not understand something, they will form speculations. Go ahead everybody, speculate about how Zynga continues to expand; continues to build out new departments and positions (like mine); and to remain profitable. I guess we just figured it out before the rest of you. But please RESPECT our business. We will always respect yours. We will continue to connect the world through games. They are fun as heck, you should try them! And smile.

    Anyone and everyone is encouraged to link up with me online. You can friend/message me on facebook. You can follow me on Twitter (One Take Blake)

    BUT!!! Please do not waste your time sending me Zynga hate mail. It will be deleted/marked as spam immediately. I am open to conversation with any open mind. I know that (deleting the messages right away) might be perceived as close-minded. But I just don’t have time to deal with people who have their mind made up on something I don’t agree with. I have way too much FUN work to do!

    Mark Pincus – Thank you, from the bottom of my heart, for making this possible. Rather, making it possible for US to make this possible.

    Email me at blake@zynga.com OR 1takeblake@gmail.com

    iPhone Mafia Wars
    Level: 180
    Mafia Size: 168
    Hourly Property Income: $1,352,415
    Attack Power: 2433
    Defese Power: 2581
    Friend Code 7501 4350 66

    I also play YoVille (YoBlake), Guild of Heroes, Scramble, Live Poker, and Vampire Wars. (But I would accept a challenge to ANY Zynga Game!)

    Brutally Honest,

    Blake Loftus Jamieson

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