Empire Avenue – What is it Good for?

Empire Avenue is an interesting concept in this world of Social Media and Social Media Marketing.

We are told to network, to make connection in our industries and across others to broaden our horizons, to reach out to our customers. Engage, Engage, Engage!

With all of this engaging going on, who’s doing all the real work? (Only joking)

Many people still don’t see the benefits of Social Media, it took the advent of Tweetdeck for me to see the benefit of Twitter as a networking tool. But slowly as these things come more into the mainstream and more importantly, experiences are discussed about the benefits and pitfalls of this new form of marketing.

Empire Avenue takes all of this engagement and networking and turns it into a game.

I used to play AlexaDex, it was a share trading game based on the traffic that websites recorded according to Alexa.

Empire Avenue does something similar where it gathers information about your social connections via sites like Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Youtube and Flickr, plus what you do on the Empire Avenue site and give you a score, or a share price.

If people in the game think you are an upwards mover, they can buy shares in your profile to hopefully make a profit on your rise.

It seems to me that it is a really fun version of Klout, or similar social media analytics programs.

It is a great way to make measuring your connectedness and engagement fun.

To be honest, you may even engage more, to increase your share value.

A bit of a chicken and egg scenario then, not only does it report on your social engagement, but it encourages you to engage more.

I like it. I like the fact that it can make the measurement fun. It has encouraged me to be more vocal in social networking circles, which in itself is not a bad thing.

What is your experience? Do you like it? Do you think it is a big waste of time?

(I had to put this in…)


Spam Content that Makes you Laugh

I have a morbid fascination with the content of spam.

They ways that these people try and avoid the antispam brigade can be quite hilarious.

What I really can’t understand is when something is this bad, that people still respond.

Because, in the end, the proliferation of spam is collectively our own fault. If it didnt work, they would stop.

Here is the latest humerous additon to my spam collection.

Submit your own, and lets laugh at the spammers 🙂

Privet, my friend!

Love does not consist in gazing at each other, but in looking outward together in the same direction. It is spring and love in my soul and the scent of beautiful lilacs fills the air in my imagination. And I cannot get you out of my mind, because I am dreaming to find your precious love. Can you guess what I would like to do for you?
I want to protect you from all of the injustices
in the world and carry you off into a blazing sunset.
I want to do all I can to make you happy and make you fill loved every day of your life. My honey, I am here for you, so do not make me wait for too long, because I am hunger for you love.

Hugs and kisses

Using the Internet to Make a Point – Protest against Telecom’s XT

The internet has been hailed as a wonderful tool for everyone to be able to express themselves, whether that be for good or for bad.

There are plenty of bloggers out there who can write, just as there are plenty who can’t, but technologies ability to enable everyone with an internet connection to have their say has flooded the internet with voice and opinion.

Twitter and other social networks were lauded for enabling protesters to distribute footage and news of the Iranian elections and protests. Historically, these images would have been less likely to make it into the public eye.

While not as serious as protesters being killed during political demonstrations, the XT network has failings of it’s own.

Paul Reynolds hair has been widely acknowledged as the real winner amid the storm of publicity around the repeated failures of the XT network.

Who would have thought Trademe would have been the hub of one of the most intriguing protests of recent times.

Check out this auction of a Lemon (Sold as the XT Network)

Through the questions and answers section at the bottom of the auction, New Zealanders have been able to vent some frustrations at Telecom and their flagship mobile product.

Congratulations must go to the seller, for his efforts in replying to every question (well over 500) to encourage further conversation and comment about the networks failings.

If you have time, read them all (It will take a while), as it is a really funny read.

The auction closes later on today, but for a week (and who knows what will happen once the auction closes), XT was vilified, parodied and generally made fun of by ordinary New Zealanders having their chance to make their point.

NZ, Sri Lanka, India Cricket Trophy is a Digital Photoframe

compaq-cup.jpgWell this can be taken two ways:

  1. It is a bold move into the digital age, or
  2. It is trampling all over tradition

I am leaning towards a bold move, but man, it is ugly.

As part of the Compaq Cup contested between New Zealand’s Black Caps and India and Sri Lanka, Hewlett Packard have had a great idea:

Rather than inscribing a name on a silver trophy, let give the gift that keeps on giving ie. a digital LCD screen that displays highlights, fan messages and statistics from the winning team.

While this seems like a great innovation, I have a word of warning.

Imagine the trophy cabinet after a few years of these being given out for a successful team (Say India, not NZ unfortunately)

It would look like a Noel Leemings TV display area.

Imagine the amount of energy it would need to power all of those screens. Not like a simple tin cup!

The Twitpocalypse – Oh dear

Will it rival Year 2000? Will it make the world grind to a halt?

Of course not it’s only Twitter, but for some it is the end of the world as we know it if Twitter goes off-line.

Just like those people who need therapy every time their Blackberry stops working, Twitter is an addiction for some and the news that Twitter may have a capacity problem shortly, has people all a twitter (and adding to the potential problem by twittering about the subject, duh)

I haven’t gotten o the point where Twitter is a big deal to me personally or that I am ultra reliant on it for business, however, there are businesses that are reporting more and more successes from using Twitter to market themselves, these are the people that need to be the most concerned.

To me, it will be, well…. meh

Now if my internet access failed, now that would be the end of the world!

Comic Relief – Sketch comes true in England 2 – Ukraine 1

As a football fan, it’s great to see the footballers making fun of themselves.

For those of you who follow football, this was a recent sketch from Comic Relief.

Interestingly, Peter Crouch (one in the front row) did the “rope” as part of his celebration after scoring a goal in tonight’s 2-1 win over Ukraine.

Well done that man.

Comic Relief Sketch is here

Talk Like William Shatner Day

Bugger I missed it, yesterday was Talk Like William Shatner Day

Here is a great video of an impersonator giving lessons.

Very Funny.

So….I’ll have to….remember………it next…..year.

I’m Declaring 3/22 “International Talk Like William Shatner Day”!

Grand Theft Auto – New Zealand version

When a 17 year old designs a version of GTA for NZ, he gets a bit of stick for putting New Zealand Police insignia on the police officers in the game. From a position of skill and expertise, this guy needs some congratulations.

He has taken it on himself to provide a more local feel for the game he plays. Being able to produce new textures for the game is no simple feat, and to have the desire to do it and make the effort to go through with it deserves a pat of the back.

I can see where the Police are coming from too, especially with some of the more violent aspects of the game.

However, it is a rare glimpse of a teenager putting learned skills to use. He even says he wants to become a police computer forensics expert. Maybe he should out these exploits on his CV:

Recent Work Experience
2008 – NZ Police textures for Grand Theft Auto.

Go on NZ Police, give the man an apprenticeship!