Facebook's Zuckerberg 'pretty sure' company won't make social games

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Mark ZuckerbergRiiight. We're onto you, Mark. Jokes (momentarily) aside, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg (pictured) and COO Sheryl Sandberg told journalist Charlie Rose during a PBS interview that aired Monday night that Facebook will not build its own social games, Business Insider reports. However, it's interesting to note that the Big Z is the one who led the conversation into games, and continues to praise them.

"One thing that we haven't talked about at all here are games, right," Zuckerberg told Rose. "I mean, games is probably the biggest industry today that has gone really social, right. I mean, the incumbent game companies are really being disrupted and are quickly trying to become social. And you have companies like Zynga."

Despite his deep enthusiasm for social games, the Facebook chief said, "No, I'm pretty sure we're not going to build any games." That is, after Rose repeatedly interrupted the guy ... jeez. Zuckerberg went on to elaborate that Facebook is better off focusing its resources on creating a single ecosystem for smaller products, like games, music streaming services and more.

The guy kind of has a point. For Facebook to start its own game studio, it would draw focus away from the company's core product: a social network and platform. Here's a piece of the transcribed interview in which Rose appears to interrupt Zuckerberg, like, a lot:
Mark Zuckerberg: One thing that we haven't talked about at all here are games, right. I mean, games is probably the biggest industry today that has gone really social, right. I mean, the incumbent game companies are really being disrupted and are quickly trying to become social. And you have companies like Zynga.

Charlie Rose: Yeah, well –

Mark Zuckerberg: – which are going public soon and will be valued at most likely at multibillion dollar valuations. And basically all of their games are built on top of Facebook for the most part.

Charlie Rose: Exactly.

Mark Zuckerberg: And a huge number of other companies as well. So I mean, does Facebook build any games? No. We build no games.

Charlie Rose: You say that today –

Mark Zuckerberg: No, we –

Charlie Rose: You say that today.

Mark Zuckerberg: Actually –

Sheryl Sandberg: I'm pretty sure we're not going to –

Mark Zuckerberg: No, I'm pretty sure we're not going to build any games.

Sheryl Sandberg: [unintelligible] we're not going to build games.

Mark Zuckerberg: We build –

Charlie Rose: Well, why are you so sure?

Mark Zuckerberg: Here's why. Here's why.

Charlie Rose: I'm only saying this because people thought that Steve Jobs –

Mark Zuckerberg: I'll tell you why.

Charlie Rose: – would never go into retail, and he did.

Mark Zuckerberg: I'll tell you why.

Charlie Rose: All right.

Mark Zuckerberg: Because building games is really hard. And so that's –

Charlie Rose: So that's the only reason.

Mark Zuckerberg: And we're doing - what we're doing is really hard. And we think that we're better off focusing on this piece. I think that building a great game service is really hard. Building a great music service is really hard. Building a great movie service is really hard. And we just believe that an independent entrepreneur will always beat a division of a big company which is why we think that the strategy of these other companies trying to do everything themselves will inevitably be less successful than an ecosystem where you have someone like Facebook trying to build the core product to help people connect and then independent great companies that are only focused on one or two things doing those things really well.

Sheryl Sandberg: And those companies can't - don't have the discipline to do it, right. They get big, and everyone wants to do everything, and they just say yes. And then they don't do everything well.
[Image Credit: AP Photo/Jeff Chiu]

Do you think Facebook is smart for avoiding the social games space itself, and simply creating a platform for them? How has Facebook done in that regard so far? Sound off in the comments. Add Comment.
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