Zynga Advertising Guidelines

Zynga Advertising Philosophy

At Zynga, our mission is to connect the world through games. We intend to fulfill our mission in a fun and social manner while ensuring a quality user experience. Every element of our games, including the ads, should contribute to and be consistent with the overall user experience. Thus, we are committed to protecting our user experience by keeping our games clean, consistent, and free from intrusive, low-quality advertising. We believe that any ads shown on our games should be meaningful and provide clear value both to our users and to the advertisers.

The spirit of the ad policy is to align the ads with our overall philosophy. We have spelled out a number of specifics around policy, and fully expect that our partners operate within the letter and spirit of the policy. Zynga’s core values for advertising and offers are:

  • the product or service being advertised must deliver clear value to our users and advertisers;
  • product or service offered and billing terms must be clear and transparent to users;
  • ads must never be spammy or scammy.

Zynga Advertising Guidelines

The following guidelines apply to all ads appearing within Zynga applications including ads shown via “offerwalls.” Zynga reserves the right to make exclusions to these guidelines on a case-by-case basis for ads sold directly by Zynga and integrated into Zynga applications. In addition, all advertising on Zynga games must comply with Zynga’s Privacy Policy and Terms of Service. Zynga reserves the right to reject, remove, or ban advertising that we determine violates our advertising guidelines or deem contrary to our advertising philosophy. No rights are guaranteed to advertisers under these guidelines and, by submitting an ad, advertiser and its third party networks represent that its ad complies with these guidelines. These guidelines are subject to change at any time and Zynga may waive any of these guidelines at its sole discretion.

  1. Advertising Compliance
    1. Third Party Website Ad Guidelines
      1. Advertisers must comply with all ad guidelines specified by the third party website hosting Zynga’s application. Compliance is the responsibility of all companies involved in placing an ad on a Zynga application, be it advertiser, advertising network, agency, broker, or offerwall provider. All parties involved must know Zynga’s advertising guidelines as well as the guidelines and terms of service specific to the third party website hosting Zynga’s application that the ads are being shown on.
      2. All companies involved in displaying an ad on a Zynga game must ensure that ads are in compliance when advertising guidelines are updated by Zynga or the third party website hosting a Zynga application.
  2. Zynga Trademarks and Intellectual Property
    1. All ads, ad copy, and landing pages must adhere to the following restrictions:
      1. Ads cannot mention or refer to Zynga or the Zynga brand in any manner, including in the title, body, image, destination URL, or landing page.
      2. Ads cannot use Zynga logos, trademarks, or game-specific terminology
      3. Zynga game or site features cannot be emulated.
      4. Ads cannot mention third parties that host or distribute Zynga games including but not limited to Facebook, MySpace, Apple.
    2. Exceptions:
      1. Zynga virtual game currencies can be named in the ad copy or on the landing page of an ad if virtual game currency is being exchanged for completing an action specific to an ad. For example, “Receive 5 Reward Points for visiting Blogger.com” wherein a Reward Point is the virtual game currency being awarded for the user action of visiting Blogger.com.
      2. Zynga may provide additional trademark use exceptions for integrated ads and in-game ads at Zynga’s sole discretion.
  3. Ad Copy and Image Content
    1. Ads must directly relate to, and not significantly differ from, the content on the landing page.
    2. Ads must clearly represent the company, product, or brand that is being advertised.
    3. Ads cannot insult, harass, or threaten a user.
    4. Ads cannot contain audio or other media that plays automatically, without a user’s interaction.
    5. Ads cannot infringe copyrights or trademarks.
    6. Ads must contain price and billing frequency for offers that are subscriptions or ultimately bill a user on a recurring or auto-renewing basis. (see Subscription Offers for more information)
    7. Ads must not contain images or text that flash or blink rapidly (i.e., more than once every two seconds, and must not remain flashing or blinking for more than ten seconds).
  4. Landing page / Destination URLs
    1. Ads that contain a URL or domain in the body must link to that same URL or domain.
    2. Ads must send all users to the same landing page when the ad is clicked.
    3. Landing pages cannot use, mention or refer to Zynga or its games, brand, logos or trademarks.
    4. Landing pages cannot generate a pop-up (including “pop-overs” and “pop-unders”) when a user enters or leaves the page.
    5. Landing pages cannot use “fake” close behavior (i.e., When a user clicks the ‘close’ icon on the page, the page should close down and no other behavior should result).
    6. Landing pages cannot utilize “mouse trapping” whereby the advertiser does not allow users to use their browser “back button” and traps them on their site and/or present any other unexpected behavior (for example: navigation to another ad or page).
    7. Upon click of an ad, landing pages cannot auto-adjust the dimensions of a user’s browser (screen takeover).
    8. Upon click of an ad, landing pages cannot pop or auto-launch a download to a user’s computer.
    9. If virtual game currency is being awarded and is displayed in the ad, landing pages must only offer the amount of Zynga virtual game currency specified in the ad that initiated the user click.
      1. If the virtual game currency awarded is variable and based on the amount a user spends at a destination site via an online transaction, the ratio of real dollars spent to virtual game currency awarded must equal the ratio specified in the ad.
  5. Prohibited Ad Categories and Content
    1. Mobile Phone offers that collect a user’s number and charge a user’s phone bill
      1. The only exclusions are for users purchasing Zynga in-game currency via a Zynga-approved Mobile Payments processor.
        1. Approved companies are Boku, Zong, and DaoPay. Zynga at its own discretion may change these from time to time.
    2. Business Opportunity Offers
      1. Get rich quick and other money making opportunities that offer compensation for little or no investment, including money making schemes positioned as alternatives to part-time or full-time employment.
        1. For example, “Learn how to make $1,000/day on EBay”
    3. Quizzes, Surveys (and any variation thereof)
      1. Questions presented to users that have no actual bearing on the ad or offer displayed are not permitted.
      2. Exceptions for legitimate surveys are listed in the section Surveys.
    4. Co-registration paths and sites that collect user information for an offer or multiple offers that are not listed in the ad. This includes all offers that are commonly referred to as: co-reg, reg-path, email-submit, phone-submit, e-mail subscription.
      1. Destination URLs must not encourage, require, or force users to scroll through or click through ads in order to reach or complete the offer originally advertised.
      2. Sites must not display offers unrelated to the original ad once a user enters any personal information.
        1. Exception: Legitimate “up-sells” that are directly related to the offer originally advertised are permitted. For example, an acceptable up-sell would be a magazine subscription that offers an additional year at a further reduced yearly rate.
          1. The terms of any up-sell must be clearly displayed next to an un-checked opt-in box. If up-sells are present on a page, they must not require the user to take any additional action in order to complete the original offer if the user does not select an up-sell.
    5. Personal finance ads offering the following services:
      1. Collateralized or uncollateralized loans such as: payday loans, auto loans, home loans, education loans, business loans
      2. Debt services such as consolidation, consultation, settlement
      3. Credit cards, debit cards, and pre-pay cards that charge users a fee for signing up or submitting an application
      4. Credit score/report offers that are advertised as being free to the user
      5. Online Pawn Shops that offer services such as “Cash for Gold”
    6. Gambling Advertisements
      1. Gambling, including without limitation, any online casino, sports books, bingo, poker, or keno without written authorization from Zynga
      1. Including toolbars, games, file-share software.
      2. Exceptions may be granted by Zynga for high-quality advertisers on a campaign-by-campaign basis, as determined solely by Zynga.
    8. Prohibited Content
      1. Illegal activity;
      2. Offensive, profane, vulgar, obscene or inappropriate language;
      3. Obscene, defamatory, libelous, slanderous and/or unlawful content;
      4. Tobacco products;
      5. Ammunition, firearms, paintball guns, bb guns, explosives or weapons of any kind;
      6. Scams, pyramid schemes, or chain letters;
      7. Contests and sweepstakes unless given written permission by Zynga;
      8. Adult content, including nudity, sexual terms, prostitution, escort services and/or images of people in positions or activities that are excessively suggestive or sexual, provocative images in violation of Zynga standards, adult toys, videos, or other adult products;
      9. Adult friend finders or dating sites with a sexual emphasis;
      10. Illegal drugs, prescription drugs available without a prescription, unapproved pharmaceutical products, or dietary or nutritional supplements unless such supplement ad is approved by Zynga;
      11. Spy cams or illegal surveillance equipment;
      12. Web-based non-accredited colleges that offer degrees;
      13. Inflammatory religious content;
      14. Politically religious agendas and/or any known associations with hate, criminal and/or terrorist activities;
      15. Content that exploits political agendas or uses “hot button” issues for commercial use regardless of whether the advertiser has a political agenda;
      16. Hate speech, whether directed at an individual or a group, and whether based upon the race, sex, creed, national origin, religious affiliation, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or language of such individual or group;
      17. Content that advocates against any organization, person, or group of people, with the exception of candidates running for public office; and
      18. Content that depicts a health condition in a derogatory or inflammatory way or misrepresents a health condition in any way.
  6. Discounts, bonuses, free offers
    1. Ads cannot be deceptive or fraudulent.
    2. If an ad includes a price, discount, or ‘free’ offer,
      1. the destination URL for the ad must link to a page that clearly and accurately offers the exact deal the ad has displayed; and
      2. the ad must clearly state what action or set of actions is required to qualify for the offer.
  7. Subscription Services
    1. The ad for Subscription Services must comply with the conditions noted below and be approved by Zynga in its sole discretion. “Subscription Services” includes any site that induces a user to sign up for recurring billing or auto-renewal of a product or service.
    2. The promoted website must clearly and accurately display the price and billing interval (such as per week or once per month) on the landing page as well as any page that prompts a user for Personally Identifiable Information (such as name, date of birth, phone number, social security number, physical addresses, or email addresses) or billing information (including, but not limited to, credit card number, bank account number, mobile phone number, or account information for any online payment processor such as Paypal, Amazon Payments, Google Checkout). The word “free” must not be used in any misleading fashion.
      1. See “Section a” of Prohibited Ad Categories and Content for information on mobile billing.
    3. If the product or service is a subscription, the website must provide a prominent opt-in checkbox or other clear mechanism indicating that the user knowingly accepts the price, billing frequency, and subscription service, all of which must be listed directly next to the opt-in checkbox. This should be on the first page where the user enters personal data, and the user must not be able to proceed without opting in.
      1. The opt-in check box cannot be pre-checked.
      2. The opt-in check box must be in very close proximity to any “Submit” or “Continue” button that is used to enter user information, complete a trial or purchase, or move on to an additional step. The opt-in checkbox must be directly above the Submit/Continue button.
    4. All of the foregoing items should be located in a prominent place on your webpage, as determined by Zynga in its sole discretion, and should be easy to find, read, and understand.
  8. Surveys
    1. Only legitimate surveys are permitted and only under the following conditions:
      1. Surveys cannot lead to, link to, or be tied to any other offer.
      2. Surveys cannot present a user with any offer or promotion.
      3. Surveys that collect any personal information cannot use or pass on a user’s personal information to any offer, advertiser, or 3rd party.
      4. Surveys cannot ask a user if they would like to be contacted regarding any product or service.
  9. Data and Privacy
    1. All ads must comply with Zynga’s Privacy Policy available at www.zynga.com .
    2. User information cannot be used for any other purpose other than for the original product or service being advertised except with the users consent, if that consent is obtained through the user’s express consent with a posted privacy policy that is presented to the user before the user submits its information and the use is described in a straightforward, accurate and non-deceptive manner.
      1. Exception: If a user explicitly opts-in via a checkbox for allowing their information to be shared with a 3rd party or used for purposes not directly related to the offer being advertised.
        1. Advertisers cannot provide incentives for users to opt-in.
    3. Advertiser terms that automatically opt-in a user to allow for the user’s information to be shared with 3rd parties is not permitted. This applies to all parties involved in displaying an ad on a Zynga game, including but not limited to advertisers, advertising networks, agency, brokers, or offerwall providers.
  10. Enforcement
    1. Advertisers, ad networks, ad brokers, and offerwall providers must only deliver ads that correspond to Zynga’s ad philosophy and do not violate the ad guidelines. The parties must police themselves with human and technological means to ensure compliance. Technology failures are not acceptable.
    2. Zynga reserves the right to monitor ads and offers to ensure compliance. For ad placements that geo-target based on IP (such as offerwalls), Zynga may monitor ads from IP addresses around the world.
    3. Zynga reserves the right to remove ads that violate these guidelines and may take enforcement action against any advertiser, ad network, ad broker, or offerwall provider that violates these guidelines including but not limited to removing all traffic from and ceasing to do business with the offending provider.