Actor and Words With Friends player Alec Baldwin has, very publicly, shared his perspective on what happened aboard the American Airlines flight that threw him off for using his iPhone Tuesday.

Baldwin wrote an apology to his fellow passengers titled “My Flying Lesson,” published in The Huffington Post. The 30 Rock star calls himself a 20-year brand loyal costumer of American Airlines, who had previously had entirely positive experiences with the carrier. He’s been in the habit of taking out his phone out when flights are delayed at the gate and would subsequently comply with flight attendants’ requests to turn off his device before take off. Baldwin writes that his flight attendant Tuesday got the better of him.

In this case, while other people were still manipulating their own phones, this one employee singled me out to put my phone away. Afterward, we still sat at the gate. I pulled out my phone again, while others did the same. Again, I was singled out by this woman in the most unpleasant of tones. I guess the fact that this woman, who had decided to make some example of me, while everyone else was left undisturbed, did get the better of me.

Baldwin proceeds to knock post-9/11 U.S. air travel for its filthy planes, barely-edible meals and flight attendants who “have made flying a Greyhound bus experience.”

“The lesson I’ve learned is to keep my phone off when the 1950′s gym teacher is on duty,” he writes.

What do you think of his response — was the flight attendant to blame for his misbehavior or simply his Words With Friends addiction?


BONUS: Alec Baldwin Leaves Twitter: 8 Other Celebrity Social Media Meltdowns


Ashton Kutcher

Kutcher got into hot water last month when he fired off a tweet defending Penn State coach Joe Paterno after Paterno was implicated in a scandal related to assistant coach Jerry Sandusky’s alleged history of sexually molesting children. “How do you fire Jo Pa? #insult #noclass as a hawkeye fan I find it in poor taste,” the tweet said. Later on, Kutcher tweeted, “Heard Joe was fired, fully recant previous tweet!” and “Didn’t have full story. #admitwhenYoumakemistakes.” Shortly afterwards, Kutcher announced that he was turning over the management of his Twitter account to Katalyst Media, a firm he co-owns.

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More About: air travel, alec baldwin, words with friends, Zynga





Social game developer Kabam has raised a whopping $30 million round of funding from Redpoint Ventures, Intel Capital and Canaan Partners in order to create multiplayer social games focused on hardcore gamers.

Kabam CEO Kevin Chou, a former associate at Canaan Partners, says that the fresh round of funding will be used to fuel new acquisitions and grow out the internal team to bring more products to market. A lot of the focus will be on launching new massive multiplayer social games. In addition, Kabam hopes to expand to other social and mobile platforms in 2011.

Unlike Zynga, Playfish and other social gaming juggernauts, Kabam doesn’t focus on the millions of casual gamers that permeate Facebook. Instead, the development firm is honing in on 25- to 35-year-old males who are looking for a deeper and more competitive in-game experience.

Kabam currently has three Facebook games on the market: Kingdoms of Camelot, Dragons of Atlantis, Glory of Rome and SI Fantasy Football. Kings of Camelot is by far the company’s most popular game, boasting 6.1 million monthly active users and 700,000 daily active users. The social gaming company has about 7.5 million monthly active users across its entire network.

Kabam’s games are far more like World of Warcraft than FarmVille. In Kings of Camelot, for example, users are actively trying to grow their kingdoms through commerce and battle. A key element to Kabam’s games is the player vs. player (PvP) aspect: Users are encouraged to form groups and actively attack other players to build their virtual empires.

Supporting massive multiplayer games and the calculations needed to make the battles happen instantly takes a lot of server power though, which is also where the funding comes into play. Not only will Kabam use the money from Redpoint, Intel and Canaan to buy more servers, but Intel Capital (a strategic investor) will provide assistance and insight in data center technologies and parallel processing. Redpoint Ventures led the round, while Canaan Partners is an existing investor in the company.

Social gaming is a rapidly expanding market, but there are countless companies in the space. We like that Kabam is distinguishing itself from the crowd and carving out its own niche with traditional hardcore gamers. Cornering even a slice of the social gaming market is definitely a recipe for success.

More About: Canaan Partners, funding, Intel Capital, Kabam, playfish, Redpoint Ventures, social games, social gaming, world of warcraft, Zynga