Two months ago I joined a website called “Empire Avenue” the virtual stock market. In the beginning it was exciting and a great ego booster. As time went on I realized it was becoming an extremely time consuming game that did not offer the handle (e)PHOTOG4YOU any real value.
Despite how much social media activity I performed on Empire Avenue website. I noticed that my dividends went down, my stock remain stagnant, for a week since joining the game were constantly in the red, the shareholders held in my portfolio were constantly in the red and the lack of customer service was the real killer for me. I enjoyed emeeting people but (e)PHOTOG4YOU could not justify giving away spare time on a virtual game.
My turning point came on Saturday when I was trying to play catch up with the game from a lack of participation for two days. I had an injured my wrist earlier in the week and needed to take a break for two days. When I returned to play Empire Avenue on Saturday, my dividends had dropped from 1.40 to 1.33. I must have clicked over 500+ thumb up actions on Saturday; uploaded images to my Flickr account; endorsed over 400+ blogs; listened and liked Youtube videos; tweeting and posting updates on all of my social media handles and invested in shareholders.
On Sunday morning when I checked into Empire Avenue, there was still no change at all with my Empire Avenue handle (e)PHOTOG4YOU. In fact it appeared that profile (e)PHOTOG4YOU stock had become stagnant, was still in the red and was decreasing in dividend value? When I checked other Empire Avenue players profiles with the same or less activity some were rising in the ranks, in the red and showed more or less activity than (e)PHOTOG4YOU. Not very encouraging to an active player to see a downward shift in dividends and virtual stock price. This is when reality became to whisper in my ear shifting my dedication to continue playing Empire Avenue. In the last two months I have played Empire Avenue everyday, checking in multiple times a day and maintaining an socially active level of play on the platform. It had became clear to me that my time online was not being spent productively and that my social media activity would be best serve elsewhere.
In another words it is impossible to measure the real value of simply endorsing others bloggers blogs, tweeting tweets from Klout, liking Youtube videos, and simply by upping my social media activity it did not garner (e)PHOTOG4YOU an increase in stock price or dividends . I often times wondered how could I translate (e)PHOTOG4YOU Empire Avenue virtual wealth into reality? How was (e)PHOTOG4YOU Empire Avenue participation and social media activity going to translate into a real world? Then there was the issue of how can anyone sit at a computer for an hour and have 1000′s of empire Avenue activity and only do it for 1 hour a day? Impossible….not humanly impossible. This made me scratch my head and I began to think the game is manipulated and totally not worth anymore of my energy or effort at this time.
On Sunday I made the decision to delete my (e)PHOTOG4YOU after considerable thought about Empire Avenue. I knew that I no longer wanted to be held hostage at my computer to simply win a virtual game. The time that I was giving away was simply not worth it anymore. It was not fun, there was not a lot of social media interaction as one would think and surely I could not actually measure the real benefit. The game reminds me of playing slot machines. At first the bells, sounds and the ringing pulls you in until you realize that you will never win at playing slots, no matter how much money you feed the machine….the odds will always be against you.
The up side of the game was I emet a lot of cyberpeeps that are quite interesting and have a lot to offer in terms of information and life experiences. Maybe one day I will come back to the game….
The more I think about it and I gave it a lot of considerable thought over the weekend before deleting my account. I am not much of a gamer. I lose interest very quickly. I get bored with the process of online gaming and video games. I like social interactions with no strings attached. I like to build relationships and tend to nurture them into lifelong relationships. I did realize from playing Empire Avenue that I have the ability to grow (e)PHOTOG4YOU virtual stock..that was interesting for me to learn. For me the game required a lot of my attention by sitting in front of my computer. The biggest problem I had with the game from the offset is the time that I needed to sit in front of my computer primarily focusing on the EAV platform. I prefer to shift my energy elsewhere at this time. I thought that it would be an courtesy to explain why I quit the game. It is not personal.