Google+ is a Game

So, I’ve seen a lot of the Empire Avenue community spending more time (like myself) in Google+ since its launch. This hasn’t diminished the value of EAv for me, but it likely should force the evolution of the Avenue into multiple lanes. Why couldn’t people choose their own adventure there? Only the first lane would be “the game.”

  • Lane One: for those who wish to continue down the path of Empire Avenue as it is currently paved. The features here should likely be frozen to make way for further development on other lanes.
  • Lane Two: for people who only want to see their social media scores and collect stats on them (ala Klout).
  • Lane Three: like Lane Two, but for brands who wish to see how current registrants are interacting with them.

In other words, I’m guessing that all most Empire Avenue users would want to see is this – coupled with richer statistics and suggestions on how to increase those scores (is something that I can help with):

At this time, I’m earning ~300,000e every day with my portfolio, and my stock is well on its way to 300e per share – so it’s not like I am suggesting a radical transformation because I feel I’m personally slipping. I see bits of the community slipping away to another game: Google+.

The achievements? Connections. The levels? Attention. The score? Credibility.

I’m not suggesting that Google has developed Plus to be a game – just that for any community or social network to drive addiction, the system must continually reward us for our behaviors. We post something, people comment and share. We comment somewhere, people respond to us. Even if you’re someone who loves to lurk, Google+ should prove to be an amazing idea exchange.

I know that some people don’t like Google+ already (although I’m a bit baffled by the logic that Plus would be the first place where cliques exist or insider information is shared). But things are definitely happening here – even with a fraction of users compared to Twitter or Facebook today, the number of engaged users on Google Plus appears to be higher due to how content is surfaced in the system. I feel more connected to others on Google Plus.

Due to a severe lack of time in the day (and night), I am usually drawn to one “entertainment” outlet over another. What brought me to and kept me in Empire Avenue was knowing that it was satiating curiosities – and was fun. That fun factor hasn’t worn off, but it’s been outshined by the fun of Plus.

Empire Avenue was already ripe for a reinvention of itself, but that reinvention seemingly needs to happen sooner rather than later. The team can drive that change forward with new lanes, given EAv’s powerful data collection engine driving the Stock Exchange. Some passionate players are already begging them to integrate Google+ data – which is very telling.

I can’t be the only Empire Avenue addict who is looking for a change – and this evolution would also likely address the standing issues people have had with the platform (learning curve, time requirements, communication challenges, etc.).

14 thoughts on “Google+ is a Game”

  1. Well as everyone is crowding around you in the plus I will comment here.  Just like to say, don’t let yourself be drawn away from Empire avenue, you are needed there.

  2. I kinda get what you’re saying and I kinda agree, except I don’t know what empire avenue is =)

  3. I’m surprised to read this as you have been on Empire Avenue for just over 2 months. Maybe you played hard & fast and reached all of your goals there. But that is a very fast burn-out rate. It makes me wonder if people will be bored with Google+ by September.

  4. Chris, I think Google+ needs to be added to EAv in major way and sooner than Foursquare. People are spending their time there because its new and better than GBuzz. Its like Facebook and Twitter which is already part of EA, however, its the lack of API for G+ that is stopping Empire Ave team from adding it. Plus they would presumably need to study the type of data points available and how it could be used with scoring. Right now, they can’t even credibly manage blog activity or determine proper algorithms that don’t require human interaction to adjust scoring. That along with making tweaks and updates to the EA site, it seems they are set on Foursquare (my opinion, its also a hot mess waiting for cheaters and content abusers to gain the most unless EA incorporates a good measurement and quality check).

    Its been difficult to force myself to be on EITHER Empire ave OR Google+ when my biggest circle is EA friends who are ON Google+. I do hope they find a way to add it soon as some things on EA are losing momentum. All around, kudos to EA for doing their best with the growth in the last 6 months alone.

      1. I have barely made a dent in my Google+ because it requires reposting the same info. It doesn’t even pick up the Google Buzz, treats it separate. I will be adding more content to see what things look like from the posting side. I have mainly been engaged in other people’s posts and conversation. 

  5. Chris, I think Google+ needs to be added to EAv in major way and sooner than Foursquare. People are spending their time there because its new and better than GBuzz. Its like Facebook and Twitter which is already part of EA, however, its the lack of API for G+ that is stopping Empire Ave team from adding it. Plus they would presumably need to study the type of data points available and how it could be used with scoring. Right now, they can’t even credibly manage blog activity or determine proper algorithms that don’t require human interaction to adjust scoring. That along with making tweaks and updates to the EA site, it seems they are set on Foursquare (my opinion, its also a hot mess waiting for cheaters and content abusers to gain the most unless EA incorporates a good measurement and quality check).

    Its been difficult to force myself to be on EITHER Empire ave OR Google+ when my biggest circle is EA friends who are ON Google+. I do hope they find a way to add it soon as some things on EA are losing momentum. All around, kudos to EA for doing their best with the growth in the last 6 months alone.

  6. Chris, I’ve been on Empire Avenue since December and have achieved a nice level of success for someone who is really no big deal in the social media world. I have gained friends & relationships that will change my life forever…no hyperbole. All that being said, within 2 weeks, Google+ has become the fun place, and doing my EAv tasks have become more of a chore. I hate even saying that because I love EAv & have a lot of loyalty for them because of what they have provided for a person like me. I know there has been talk of adding different platforms, but Google+ needs to be placed at the front of the line. Easier said than done since G+ hasn’t even released their API yet, but I hear exactly what you are saying. The place is CHAOS (in no small part to the GIFs you share ;] ) but there is a LOT of fun in that chaos & a game to be played. I don’t even know what that game is. Maybe it’s wanting to be established with everything in place when Google+ goes public…maybe it’s making new contacts…I don’t know. I do know that I’m having fun there.

    What I would love to see happen with Empire Avenue is for people to have more than the platforms you’ve listed above: Empire Avenue, Twitter, Facebook, Facebook Pages, LinkedIn, Flickr, and YouTube. Add Tumblr, Picasa (which will be Google Pics), Foursquare, Google+, and a SINGLE Blog just as you can have a single Twitter account. (I chose to separate Tumblr from the rest of the blogs because it’s set so differently and can be measured in terms of reblogging, etc. not much unlike Google+.) Remove blogs & feeds and all that can be done to fudge the data. Score each one fairly unto itself & add the top 5 scores to create your Dividends. Suddenly EAv truly DOES become a “Choose Your Own Adventure” because someone who wants to ditch Facebook to focus on Google+ won’t be penalized. As long as you have 5 social media streams that are active, you will do well in Empire Avenue. Then the fun of Empire Avenue returns because you can play it in a way that’s more customized to your style.

    Good stuff you’ve given us to think about, Chris. Thanks. 🙂

  7. You know @pirillo:disqus you may well be right. One of the strengths about EA is that it draws people together from many different walks of life and kinds of business. But that may also be its weakness, since most of the networking that happens seems to be chatting and socializing about the game itself, especially in the Facebook groups. It’s fun, but there’s little talk of actual issue/content/subjects outside of EA. 

    Google + has a social structure which draws together people with similar or adjacent interests so the conversation is less about the medium and more about what really interests people.

    Another issue is scale. I can’t really see EA with 10 million users, can you? (unless it is vastly simplified)

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