I signed up for Empire Avenue because I like to try stuff out. The website pitches it as a stock market-like game where you buy and sell shares of your friends. Your stock value is based on their connected social network accounts (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc) and all the money is in-game play money, though you can use real cash to purchase items if you wish.

I set-up an account and played around a little and, oddly enough, some people have already bought shares in me. But even after a few hours of using it, I have to confess that I don’t really get the point.

It is just for fun? Is the point earning badges and watching your share price go up?

Is it a marketing tool? If so, how?

Is it another new social network? If so, how does it differ from what’s already out there?

I… don’t get it. As always, I’m willing to give it a try and play around even if I’m not clear of what I’m doing yet but for those of you that are already active on that site, I’d appreciate your view of what the value of Empire Avenue is.