On Dec. 8, the Tokyo-based Internet company DeNA received an on-site investigation by the Japan Fair Trade Commission (JFTC) due to suspected unfair trade practices. DeNA had allegedly interfered with their third-party game providers' development of games for DeNA's competitor, Gree.
DeNA is listed on the Tokyo Stock Market Exchange and the morning the investigation was reported their stock dropped 11 percent.
Just a week before, on Dec. 2, the JFTC was in the news for allowing a search alliance between web giants Yahoo! Japan and Google. Some competitors such as Microsoft and Rakuten had protested against the deal, which gives more than 90 percent of Internet searches in Japan over to Google's search technology. A similar alliance between Yahoo.com and Google had been rejected in the United States. So do the JFTC think the DeNA/Gree war is a more serious issue? Maybe. And if so, is social gaming really such a big issue? Yes, it is huge.