I’m “all about” social networking. It first became part of my life in the fall of 2008 when I began my first blog, Lincoln Buff 2. By Lincoln’s 200th birthday, I was “experimenting” with Twitter, eventually found myself pulled to Facebook, and later, when Google+ hit the scene, I hit it, too.
I tried MySpace, but was a latecomer to it. It just didn’t pull me in – and that new kid on the block, Pinterest, I’m just getting to know her.
But, the one that prompted me to write this post this morning is Empire Avenue. I still don’t quite understand everything about it, but I can tell you this much. It’s a place where I have value. My interactions on other social networks translate to dollars and cents – not real, but virtual – on Empire Avenue.
Well, not dollars and cents, exactly. The “currency” there is called “eaves”. Members of the social network get eaves for things they do elsewhere, like writing a new blog post, posting and receiving comments on their Facebook walls, tweeting, interacting on Empire Avenue, and more.
Social media is not just my passion. Since April of 2011, it’s also been part of my job. That’s why I retired from one career and started out on another. That story – how I got from Point A to Point B, and why and more – is a tale for another time.
Let’s just say I’m almost as passionate about social media and its value to connect and teach as I am about reading, writing and Abraham Lincoln – some days even a little more so.
And, though I’m still a bit curious about the value of Empire Avenue in my life long-term, I like the way it makes me feel valued. Here’s why.
Each member of Empire Avenue has a value, beginning at 10 eaves. Just like real stock, the value rises or falls. Just like a real portfolio, a user’s net wealth increases as the stock pays dividends and as users buy stock in one another.
Right now, as I’m making more time to tweet, posting regularly on Facebook and writing blog posts, my value is increasing. Just this week, I’ve gone from 40.61 to 46.35, while most of January my stock ranged from 31 to 33. And, on Sunday, my Net Wealth increased to more than half a million eaves. I feel rich!
Because people I don’t even know are saying to me by their actions, “Ann Tracy Mueller, LINCOLNBUFF2, you have value.” As they do, I see my value increasing on the monitor in front of me. I feel more valued.
But, showing value happens more places than just on social media.
It happens at home, when we tell a youngster, “Great job. I’m proud of you.” Or when we tell our spouse, “Thanks for emptying the dishwasher. I appreciate that.” It happens when we tell a coworker or a boss, “Thanks for backing me up on that decision. It meant a lot to me” And when we tell a cashier, “I appreciate how carefully you handled my fruit. You’re good at what you do.” Or send a note to a photographer that says, “Great shot. Love how you let the light work for you in this one.” It happens when we send an email to a friend fighting cancer that says, “I’m thinking of you today. You’re in my prayers.”
Little things – little things any day, little things everyday – show others – those we know well, and those we’ve never met – that they have value.
That’s why I keep playing Empire Avenue. It tells me, “LINCOLNBUFF2, you’ve got value.”
© Ann Tracy Mueller 2012