On Wednesday night a few of us Empire Avenue players had the pleasure to meet Dups and Ric Williams of Empire Avenue for a beer while they were in town for social media week. As the most will probably know, Dups is the CEO and Ric the COO of the company. The event was announced in the New York City community for about two weeks.
We all met at a bar at Grand Central Station and had quite a good conversation about Empire Avenue, social media and what’s to come and what kind of opportunities lie within Empire Avenue. It was very interesting to meet people that are behind the operations and learn how they function. Listening to this and having some experience about working for and with technology start-ups and newcomers make me appreciate the Empire Avenue crew’s work much more. It also puts a few concerns of players into perspective. Empire Avenue is not Facebook that has already spent 100’s of millions for development, improvement and other things to get better and reach a bigger market. In my opinion, this is the most important thing to consider while attempting a comparison or asking for improvements. It is important for all of us players to know that the company leaders know that there is a lot of space for improvement and additions and that they are working on it. And, as I thought, they know and read about the concerns players have, even if it is posted elsewhere. It is not my intention, and not my job, to put everything I heard yesterday into this article and let the world know about it. However, it clearly looks like it even gets better.
I am on Empire Avenue for 5 month now and I enjoy the site for various reasons. First of all, the game part of it is entertaining and fun, no doubt about that. The social activity and socializing aspect, and that is my personal view, is much better and easier than the social media heavy weights like Twitter and Facebook provide. Much more important for me when I think about the future of Empire Avenue, the site can be exceptionally well used for business purposes, by every business that has an interest in social media marketing. And, the site is not a competition for Facebook, Twitter and others, it actually is in support of all the others. Looking ahead, this could very well be the breakthrough for Empire Avenue in the future when it comes to involving businesses in the site and the game.
The important things I took out of this meeting: EA is listening and is looking at the player concerns, they do their best to improve our experience and they have their own good ideas on how to make it better. Is it all happening in a few weeks? No, probably not, but, from my own experience in that world, that is a matter of resources rather than a matter of willingness.
Comments are appreciated.