Posted 2/5/11 : Social gaming giant is tightening its relationship with poker
 
The San Francisco-based social gaming giant Zynga Corporation, which has been attracting growing attention through its poker gaming activities, is intent on tightening its relationships with the real world of poker, judging by its latest convergence initiative.
 
Next week the company is expected to announce its inaugural PokerCon, an event aimed at interacting with the industry and scheduled for the Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas over the period March 18 and 19.
 
The convention and networking jamboree includes a live poker tournament with a guaranteed prize of $100 000 set aside for the winner, enough to attract online poker professionals who have agreed to make appearances at the convention, together with a list of other as yet unnamed celebrities who have agreed to pitch up for the final table.
 
Tickets for the event will apparently go on sale next week and will cost $125, which covers all activities during the two-day convention.
 
Zynga's social poker games have been a major hit on Facebook, where it is the third most popular game with over 37 million players….monthly!
 
The social gaming company was in the news in the UK recently when a 29-year-old hacker pleaded guilty to five charges of plundering Zynga virtual poker chips worth around $12 million, and then trying to sell them off on eBay, netting almost $86 000 before he was apprehended.
 
Computer whiz Ashley Mitchell, who now awaits sentencing, was told by Magistrate Philip Wassall that he faced a substantial jail term for hacking into the Zynga system, transferring 400 billion virtual poker chips to several fake Facebook accounts and then attempting to profit from his criminal activity by selling tranches of the virtual chips off on eBay.
 
Read about PokerCon at: http://blog.games.com/2011/02/04/zynga-pokercon-march/