Empire Avenue, the social stock market, yesterday released an upgrade allowing members to increase the maximum amount of shares they can hold in other people and companies listed on the exchange. It set of a bit of a frenzy on the site, and also underlined a bit of the problem it has around community engagement.
There are a number of distinct types of people interested in Empire Avenue, but to focus on the networking aspect, buying of shares is a key component. Buying shares is how you connect, and when the site was brand new, everyone had very little virtual currency and purchases were a big deal. For new members now, many of the mature players are out of reach for buying. And many of the mature players long ago maxed shares in hundreds if not thousands of people and no longer connect around buying.
Wealth disparities and max holds discourage networking on Empire Avenue.
Thanks to the added ability to buy shares, I heard yesterday from many folks I really like on the site but had not interacted with for months.
For those playing Empire Avenue, did you experience the same? What other networking bottlenecks occur due the design of online networks?
photo by kurafire
" YourKen.orgÂ will give thousands of volunteers the chance to actively participate in the most cutting edge and dynamic campaign London has ever seen," Livingston said of the site.
Labour supporters on Twitter welcomed the site as "natty," "slick," "brilliant," and "bloody great."
Livingstone's "YourKen"Â was designed byÂ Ben SoffaÂ of the UK firmÂ Organic Campaigns.
Campaign: Ken Livingstone launches campaigning site
TotalPolitics: The launch of YourKen
LabourList: London elections - could this be a game changer?
Evening Standard: Blogger Ken follows Obama and asks Facebook users to 'like' him
Ken Livingston, the first elected Mayor of London and architect of the successful downtown congestion pricing project profiled in Bill Eggers' "If We Can Put a Man on the Moon," has launched a NationBuilder-powered digital platform centered around his campaign volunteers. Livingstone is Labour's candidate to unseat the Convervatives' Boris Johnson in 2012.
"YourKen.org will give thousands of volunteers the chance to actively participate in the most cutting edge and dynamic campaign London has ever seen," Livingston said of the site.
The Conservative's Johnson has a website built by Boston-based Liberty Concepts.
In the 16 months I've spent on Empire Avenue, I've met many of the world's best networkers, visionaries and strategists. It's a fun bunch for sure.
And in the past few months, we've built out quite a community on other networks through the "[X] Bar" group of Empire Avenue fans. With that community, we've done fun stuff like the regular "Xpendapalooza" buying sprees, and several of us are working on "[X] Bar Gives" activities to extend our Empire Avenue community's influence in support of worthy charities.
Sometimes, though, it can be challenging to figure out exactly how to network when in large part Empire Avenue is constructed like a game. We build out all these networks to improve our connection scores - what then? It can also be a bit confusing trying to figure out exactly what is and isn't allowed in various moderated communities based on Empire Avenue connections.
So, I want to make it very clear: The [X] Bar community on Facebook and elsewhere is meant to be about much more than Empire Avenue the game. It is a place where you can feel free to share a blog post you're proud of, a particular business goal or achievement you're excited about, or a personal story. In fact, that kind of content is even better than the next Empire Avenue milestone or goal (we'll see those in your new badges on the Empire Avenue site!). The community is moderated by a bunch of great folks who exercize discretion in keeping the community spam-free and conversational.
To help folks increase the value of their networks, today we're announcing a new [X] Bar tradition - the "Happy 24 Hours," a Sunday-through-Monday opportunity to share your personal, business and other goals and updates about what's important to you. Forget about the dividends for a minute and share what's up with you. We'd love to hear it! (And thanks to Felissa Elfenbein for the idea!)
It’s a concrete example of open data at the municipal level. Shawnee is publishing a variety of maps to their citizens through the YouTown platform, and among these are Police Criminal Incidents and Computer-Aided-Dispatch (CAD) calls. The incidents appear as individual pinpoints on a Google map within the app. Residents can view the most recent activity of law enforcement in Shawnee, which could alert them to possible danger in their area (drunk drivers, burglary, etc.) Further, it sheds light on the moment-by-moment workings of the police department, fostering transparency and accountability -- perhaps even a spirit of camaraderie -- between citizens and law enforcement.
On the Shawnee maps, CAD calls refresh every 30 minutes. Residents can view recent calls about traffic stops, noise complaints, reckless drivers, and even paperwork stops made by officers. Clicking on a specific call provides details like the call number, time the call was received, location, and priority.
The Police Criminal Incidents map displays the last 99 occurrences, such as burglaries, violations of protective orders, information reports, public drunks, and etc. Further information includes date, time, location, and whether the incident is open or closed.
This information is totally open to public view -- an outstanding example of a city striving for openness and connection with citizens. It’s a particularly healthy way to foster transparent government since it deals with law enforcement, a department often subject to criticism, misunderstanding, or distrust. Stephen Nolen, CIO for the City of Shawnee, explains how he accomplished the 911 integration, and how other cities can do the same, in this article.
Yesterday I sent out an email that included two clear opportunities to leverage my network of 60 volunteers and more than 20,000 followers, subscribers, supporters and opt-ins. The first was for reaching the [X] Bar Gives community, and the second was an opportunity to guest blog on the Gov 2.0 Radio site.
Of the several hundred folks who recieved that email, two people really leveraged the opportunity.
Gov 2.0 reporter Alex Howard blogged a roundup of his stories of the week, including a promo for a big package he's doing today. I tweeted out that roundup as well as a couple direct links to great stories I'd missed.
Social media consultant Shonali Burke responded by asking my to be Blue Key Champion and to involved the [X] Bar Gives community in ongoing efforts to support the U.N.'s regugee programs and the Blue Key campaign. This is a great opportunity for our group to be involved in an important social media for social good campaign.
I see many, many people spending great amounts of time on social media. What I don't often see is effective leveraging of opportunity. Please, take the example of Alex and Shonali and use opportunity to push your mission.
It's been a busy summer in Adriel Nation and I wanted to share a few things that may be of interest.
First, the activity and response to organizing all my social tech projects here has been amazing - Adriel Nation now includes more than 23,000 people, including nearly 18,000 supporters.
Here's what we're working on:
A number of friends from Empire Avenue (the social media stock market site thatclosed its Series A funding round today) are interested in leveraging our collective networks to promore charities and special events. If you've got a charity that could use promotion by some of the world's most active social media users, check out [X] Bar Gives. We're also seeking sponsorships for this effort, which would go towards a part-time community manager to really get things going strong.
My new political club, the SF Tech Dems, is looking to put its mark on politics in the Bay Area and state of California by advocating smart technology spending and policy and getting more technologists involved in the Democratic Party. If you're interested, please check it out and leave your feedback.
Third Thursdays SF, a monthly mixer for folks interested in gov social media, technology's impact on civic life, and in developing with open data is going strong. Please join us or feel free to promote your own civic tech events on the Adriel Nation calendar. I freely share events and guest blogs with my social media networks.
My company, NationBuilder, led by Jim Gilliam - creator of Act.ly and GovLuv - continues to grow. If you're looking for an online organizing solution for your nonprofit, small business or political campaign (including free access to the voter file), check out our free trial. And please let your friends know about this low-cost organizing resource.
I'm an advisor for LegiNation, a cool gov data startup that is soon launching a 50-state legislative information service. If you've got a professional need for state-level legislative alerts, get in on the BillTrack50 beta by emailing Karen Suhaka, Karen@legination.com.
I'm now a regular columnist for The Social Media Monthly, the world's first print magazing devoted to exploring the impacts of social media. It's available in your local Barnes & Noble, and in the next edition I address the "real names" controvery at Google+.
Finally, Gov 2.0 Radio continues to grow, and CivicTec's Allison Hornery out of Sydney has been a great resource as our new regular co-host. We recently talked to Reno.gov webmaster Kristy Filfelski (pictured) and Chicago CTO John Tolva, and later this month we'll be live with Maryland CIO Brian Sivak and World Bank Open Data Evangelist Tariq Khokhar. Gov 2.0 Radio is also seeking sponsorhips; if you're interested, just drop me a line. Visit G2R's home on Adriel Nation to listen to archive episodes and subscribe by RSS.
With the NationBuilder platform, I've opened up the Empire Avenue [X] Bar community calendar, my Third Thursdays civic tech event calendar and both my personal blog and the Gov 2.0 Radio blog for guest posting by any logged in user. Please, please, take advantage of this global organization to get the world out about important ideas and events.
As is wont, a conversation on Twitter today became a discussion about why I blog. Althought I'm working to build a movement here at Adriel Nation, I generally blog for myself. That's even true when I'm blogging on other sites like SF Tech Dems or NationBuilder. At this point in my career, happily, I might get an assignment here or there that isn't from my inner muse, but I do 98 percent of what I do because I want to do it. And on my own blog, that goes 100 percent, event when it hurts.
I thought it worth sharing some thoughts from Midnight in Chicago on Twitter from today that help explain why I expect to provide leadership even when following my own drummer:
Successful songwriters write for themselves. The song is all about them at that point.
Successful recording artists sing for themselves. The song is all about them at that point.
The audience listens for themselves. The song is all about them at that point.
Radio stations program songs for the radio station. It's all about the radio station at that point.
My point is that at every different level, resonance happens because of a core value.
I hope resonance is happening for you, here.