Empire Avenue Mission Cheating – Even Some Leaders Cheat

Mission cheating is still in full swing. It is time that the leaders and influencers on Empire Avenue step up and make a statement. Remember, you have a lot of followers and they want guidance. You are offering guidance in blog posts, communities and many other ways. This is a chance to make a leadership statement and be a real leader and influencer.

Four weeks ago, I wrote a few articles about mission cheating and got a lot of positive responses. Positive in the sense that people don’t like it. It made me feel better that I am not the only one that can get fired up over the cheaters. In the days following my posts, I included a little warning that I will call cheaters out. That obviously took the sting out of a few of these people and those that had cheated on my missions in the past left my missions alone. The success rates of my missions went clearly up and most missions had actually a 100% success rate. As it always is, if you stop pay attention, things change. At one point I eased the message in my missions a little and just added “Don’t cheat”.  Over the last week or so I didn’t check on the missions anymore and I am sure if I go back and check, I will find bad things. Anyway, this morning I ran a, for me, big mission and the result is absolutely bad. Just 30% of people were willing to complete a mission after taking the eaves, even though I advertised that I will monitor the mission.

In the past people stated if you only put 500 eaves out for a mission, cheaters will walk over it and take it. Some came up with ridiculous excuses why that is. Today’s mission was for 3,000 eves and the result was absolutely terrible. Mission cheating is in full swing. This mornings experience thought me that even the big and respected players are involved in mission cheating. Here is what happened:

Over the past few days I ran a few missions and not all closed with all slots taken. Since I don’t want to archive the missions and take the eaves back, I got the glorious idea to run a “special mission” to get them closed. I put out 3,000 eaves to finish 3 other missions. I added the three mission links to a new blog post and set the mission link to this blog post.

This is the text of my “special mission”:

This mission has multiple steps, but also multiple rewards.

1. Click the mission link which leads to a blog post.

2. Scroll down and like the post

3. On the bottom of the post are 3 links to other missions. Take the missions as they are available. One has 1 slot left, one has 4 slots left and one has 5 slots left. If the missions are done, just leave a comment. Don’t worry if the missions are all gone, see below and keep going.

This completes the mission.

Extra Rewards: If you also leave a comment for the initial blog post and share, I will like bomb your Facebook, or give you a number of RT’s, or Klout, or find something else to extra reward you.

This sounds more complicated than it is. It might be a few clicks, but there are quite a few rewards besides the eaves.

One more thing: 3,000 eaves for a mission is a lot of eaves for me. I will monitor this mission and check on those that take the eaves and run.

Thank you for your support,

V.

Don’t cheat!

After launching the mission the picture was as following:

10 slots of the special mission were available

One of the missions described in step 3 had 5 slots open

One had 4 slots open

One had 1 slot open

So, that would mean, in an honest world, after 5 people take the “special mission” and cashing 3,000 eaves plus the eaves for the missions they were supposed to take, all slots should be at zero. Well, here is the picture of how it looked like when the “special mission” hit zero:

Zero slots open in the “special mission”

The one with 5 open slots at the beginning still had 2 slots open

The one with 4 slots open, had also 2 slots open

Only the one with 1 slot open at the beginning was at zero.

That would mean that only 3 people took the complete mission. Well, two did and the third did everything I was looking for, except cashing in on the mission. Probably tested the mission, found out it is easy and followed the steps and forgot to cash in.  Well, I will get in touch with him and tell him to take the eaves.

The good thing is, some people were able to follow all the instructions. This means that it was possible to follow and complete the mission. That leaves the cheaters short of an excuse. What struck me the most, even one of the leading players ice cold cheated on the mission. He couldn’t even follow step one, but left a trademark comment: “Have a Rock and Roll Tuesday”! Pretty poor for someone who runs a business and also runs multiple missions throughout the week. Much worse, if the major people and leaders of this “social” media site cheat on missions, why should all the other knuckleheads play fair?

After the first 5 mission takers were done, I had to contact all 5  and ask what happened? One came back and completed the mission half way, one didn’t respond but bought 300 shares and three didn’t respond at all (including the” leadership”) in any way. I didn’t follow up with the next 2 cheaters, but I am sure they feel satisfied with their game.

As you can take out of this post, I am pretty upset and I would love to tell people what I think of them in a way I only did on a soccer field in the past. That would bust the boundaries of good taste, style and manners and so I will not go down the numerous levels to meet these people. However, here is a hint for the mission cheaters: Take a look into the mirror and take a look into the eyes of the creature you see. If you are satisfied with what you see, do everyone a favor and get off Empire Avenue and all the other sites. “Social” Media is not for you.

I also want to add another thing, just for the fun of it. It is kinda funny on how this reminds me of Wall Street and the current discussion about regulation. It is no surprise that the Wall Street guys bite and scratch when they hear regulation. That would limit a lot of transactions that endanger common good and only fill the own pockets with other peoples money. To all the cheaters, what are you going to do when the missions are regulated and you are left out? Yeah, I know, you will find something else.

As always, I would like to hear your opinion in this matter. Please leave your comment below. I appreciate your contribution. If you are considered a leader on Empire Avenue or a so called influencer, your opinion is especially important. Go and make a strong statement on this subject.

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33 Responses

  1. abdulrbutt says:

    I laughed while reading this article, it is so true I see this happening every day in front of my eyes…. Great Points, You need to be read more keep coming please : )

  2. Tom Laing says:

    Empire Avenue is a strange place when it comes to missions and the redistribution of eaves. I have been blocked with no redress for something I don’t even know what I did, I’ve been told off, not for taking the eaves but for having the audacity of visiting the missions url and leaving a comment on their FB page, I’ve run missions and been ripped off by newbies and oldies. Probably the most frustrating thing is EA telling me I’ve completed too many missions too fast and to have some time out. This is a subject that needs more discussion and some action by EA that simply blocking – maybe three strikes and your out would work. Finally, do write some articles on better stuff but keep the debate going on this too!

  3. You have me wondering now if I completed correctly. Going to take a looksie. Missions have completely lost their appeal for me now. I don’t think I have ever had one with a 100% successfully completed. I jump for joy if I hit the 50% mark. I’ve actually been chastised that my mission reward was too low for the taker to have to pay attention before taking. Some of my BONUS ROUND missions cost a pretty penny. When I purchase 100 of your shares for participating, that takes my 500 reward & 500 to make the mission REALLY expensive when your shares cost 249.65!

    Good luck with regulated missions coming soon. Me thinks the EA plate is a little full right now. I’ve been waiting for them to contact me (I did an outo reply) to rectify a situation for me. Someone has come along and created a community with the same name that I had already created and named, I believe over 2 months before the new one. Short of the auto reply i think it’s about 2 weeks without any action, and I have to shovel the S*#T when people are confused, complaining that I’m not letting them into my community, and so forth.

    If I had a mission woopsie with you, at least it might hurt a little less where I own close to 900 shares of you, Lol.

    • V. says:

      You messed it up, Bill. You didn’t cheat. it is easy to see who is cheating and who made a mistake.

  4. saulman says:

    I commend you for not publicly calling out those you/others would deem “cheaters.” And, for a great article.

    In fact, I have accepted several Missions that send me on what I’ll term the “wild goose chase.” Some (otherwise very socially-savvy people) ask for a comment – but where is the place to comment… scrolling up, down, back and forth – just cannot find it. Some ask us to register for a new service/network – which demands far too much time to complete. Let’s be reasonable in what we ask for – and how much we reward. I wrote on this on my own blog. I wont pollute your blog with a link (unless the author asks me to do so), but really, every single day, I’d say that a good 1/4 of the Missions are what I term “Mission: Irrational.”

    • V. says:

      I have seen your article, Saul, and I commented on it. I don’t really agree with you on all that. While I agree that some missions are difficult to take, the rest is not agreeable to me. First, let’s talk about the eaves people have, or don’t have. I run only 500eaves missions, because I don’t have enough to pay more. I totally accept it when people don’t take my mission because the pay off is not good enough. No problem with that. The mission this morning was for 3,000 eaves plus the eaves from the outstanding missions, plus I offered other perks for completion. What is paid for the mission is completely unimportant, some people believe they are above everything and can cheat. If you display yourself as such a big shot, don’t cheat. Show class and comment and let the guy who is running the mission know what you don’t like and what to do better. Some guy in your blog was talking about time he spends and how valuable it is. To let such a comment fly, one must have his/her head pretty far up …
      As we all know by now, we can actually check on the mission before we agree to do it. It is really like buying a car. You don’t walk into the shop and take it just because it is standing there. Well, there are exceptions, just as there are with everything. A mistake can always happen and they are easily to correct. Leave a comment, explain what happened, do something. When it happened to me in the past, I explained myself, bought shares and did something else to make sure the guy didn’t lose his/her eaves. You know, some pay for eaves. Cheating means you take real money. To make this short, cheating is unacceptable.
      The reason why I haven’t called out cheaters yet has nothing to do with the fact that I am a nice guy, I have plenty of experience of being an a… The reason is, I like Empire Avenue, the guys that run it and the most people that play it. That doesn’t mean that I will not do it, if this nonsense doesn’t stop, but I will not put other people’s integrity on the line for some loser.
      I don’t mind if you put your link here in the comment box. People should read stuff like that, and they will. I commented 4 weeks ago on this problem and I got over 1,000 hits and comments on it. There seems to be an interest and much more, an agreement that this nonsense should stop.

      Thanks for your comment, Saul.

      • saulman says:

        Hey, V, thanks for such a detailed and thoughtful reply. Sorry to just find this now. I am no “hot shot” in EA, only in there 3 months, and like you, I have little to spend to run missions. You know what I do – after finding the cheating rate high and ignore rate high as well, when I offered 500e rewards? I now run missions with less number of rewards, but at least 1,000e each. I get cheated less. I also do not expect people to check to see if they are able to fulfill my fantasy; I simply run missions that anyone/everyone can complete, and without jumping through flaming hoops for their reward. Its working for me. Since you suggested it would okay, I wrote this a couple months ago (you commented. This is for your readers as well): http://osakabentures.com/2012/03/empire-avenue-mission-irrational/

  5. barry says:

    This game is just like wall street because it is mathematical and therefore the law of vibration and harmony is in the game, psychology of people is in the game as in the markets and leave a mathematical trial if you like.

    Nothing has surprised me about the game at all. Even those that cheat.

    I try to complete all my missions sometime I cannot due to computer crash etc ., This morning I clicked on a retweet and it had a virus of some description on it. Now I have to use explorer instead of Firefox before until I figure what the problem was. I have two profiles on separate computers and on the second profile I did not click on that mission and my firefox is working fine. So sometimes missions do not complete for reasons unknown to the people that created the mission.

    In any business there is waste…… Cheaters to me are just part of the business waste. I would rather focus on getting the job done and moving on. although it is handy if some focus on the waste / the cheaters because the missions success rate goes up….. so thank you for that …. your very helpful….. LOL.

    If you want to know about the Law of Vibration and Harmony in relation to the Markets go and take a look at my webiste http://www.revampyourmind.com

    Thank you for the opportunity to reply. Barry G.

  6. I like to take a look and maybe complete a mission before I take the eaves, if I am uncomfortable, then don’t take the eaves, then no harm no foul.
    However, I remember the mission you referenced and I am an offender not completing all and guess I thought the others were an option. Promise to reinvest back and be more careful.

  7. sallykwitt says:

    V – I don’t know who cheats and who doesn’t. There are some wonderful people who do such a good job on my missions so I am pretty happy. I am surprised that you got people to follow directions though. The missions have to be very simple to get results that I have found. I had one where I asked for a REPLY on a tweet. Only ONE person did it, the rest retweeted. I stick to the simple ones now! LOL I must say that I get the best results on blog post comments from missions on EA. I was doing really well at first on favo.rs, but the response rate is much lower now. I also found that people don’t bother for less than 1,500 to do many missions anymore!

    • V. says:

      :-) Thanks for your comment, Sally. I agree with you, it should be simple. I clearly overestimated people’s ability in my mission, which, by the way, was for 3,000 eaves plus more eaves from the attached missions plus some other perks I offered. If one can follow through and take eaves while cheating, there should also be a follow through on completing what is asked for. I don’t mind if they don’t do the mission because I am to cheap or the mission is too complicated. But if you take it, be a man and do what you signed up for. That’s the point here. Since I advertised that I will call out cheaters, I had success rates of up to 100%, for much less eaves. This morning I advertised that I will monitor the mission and the cheats did it anyway. Must be the money. More eaves, more risk, more adrenaline. Incredible.

    • Sally your are right, fact is I have been to seminars on listening and 2000 business people couldn’t get things right all week. Simple is better, two and three part missions are going to lose people not from cheating but from a host of other things like stupidity, and distraction, and ignorance. I also have been on mission impossibles where I can’t do what they are asking me to do. One asked me to vote and the whole site was in some other language and after finally finding how to vote it said it was closed. Grr… the waste of my time was not worth the eaves but I did comment and tell them. For the most part I am grateful I can get people to take action and accept the attrition.

      • V. says:

        I still agree that simple is better. You said it in your comment, you told them what went wrong. That’s the difference. We are talking about cheaters, not crazy missions.
        My missions this morning had multiple steps. So, that is for a lot of people too much to ask for. However, the first one that took the mission had to click 10 times to get all the eaves, which he did. He just didn’t do what the mission required him to do after every 3 clicks. There is just no excuse for cheating. I responded to another post further up the chain. Read it if you want, it answers a few other questions regarding bad missions.

  8. Good post, Overall I see the problem, I don’t think doing cheaper is better or worse, the cheap payout is more about who will do them not if they will complete them. I know I try and do them but I have been through ones I can’t do. I also know people are taking the eaves and running. I have some ideas on how they can fix this. I will follow up with a post as well. There are really issues with mission runners, mission takers, and people who are simply stealing the eaves. They are all separate issues, someone who doesn’t read the instructions well is not necessarily a thief, they are just poor at reading or following instructions and I think you would be surprised at how many people don’t read the instructions at all. I anticipate ignorance and so simple missions are better. Good post, I feel you.

  9. Barry Watson says:

    Great article Saul. Sometimes the instructions on missions are just too tricky to follow.If I’m too dumb to get what the mission setter is after I just try to leave them good karma in some other form.

  10. Scott Allen says:

    I’m disappointed in the fact that there is so much cheating going on, but in the end, I pretty much agree with Barry… even with the waste, it’s still a net benefit to me, and I’m willing to live with it until it gets better… and it will. I expect we’ll start seeing API integrations like with YouTube where it’s impossible (or nearly so) to cheat on the mission.

    One tip I can share to reduce cheating is to put a little more information in your description, namely:

    – If you want a retweet, put what the text of the retweet is in your description. I’ve clicked on missions a couple of times only to find that there was no way I wanted to do the retweet, for whatever reason.

    – If you want people to give you Klout or like your Facebook page, put a link in the description so they can check first before running the mission. I’ve had several times that I didn’t realize I had already liked the FB page or given +K or whatever, and didn’t realize it until after I had already clicked the mission button.

  11. emmageraln says:

    I try really hard to do missions properly, if they look in anyway complicated I check them out first. It’s got to the point though where if they look too complicated I don’t even bother reading it and just move on, because I’m afraid of getting it wrong.

  12. I’ve cut right back on missions after your earlier rant precisely because so many of them say something like yours above: “1. Click the mission link which leads to a blog post. 2. Scroll down and like the post”

    I don’t consider myself a cheater, but if I click and find the post not one that I want to put my name to, I’m stuck between two moral wrongs – taking eaves for something I’ve not done or putting my name to something I wouldn’t otherwise.

    I’ve made this point many times. Some missions include a post summary, copy of the tweet they want endorsed, description of the pictures they want liked, etc. Most do not. The first step to reducing ‘cheating’ is to stop asking people to endorse things blindly. That gives the impression that you are trying to trick or snow people, from which they’ll not think twice about taking your eaves since you appear to not be fully on the up and up yourself. And if honourable people see something they agree with, they’ll make the effort to do the mission. So win-win – more meaningful endorsements, and the moral high ground to really let rip at the cheaters.

    • V. says:

      It takes a lot until it comes to the point that I think I can’t finish the mission because of content. It happened once or twice and there is not much choice, you have got to do what is asked. As I got more savvy with the missions, I figured out I can actually check them before I click to accept. So, there is not much left as an excuse. Besides that, what we find is impossible to do or to agree to, might not be so difficult for others. Opinion and speech is still free. Fact is, we can check on missions before we sign up. It is also a fact that if you take the eaves and run, you cheat, unless you get back to the guy who issued the mission and explain what happened and offer something else. If you agree to paint my house for $100, take the money in advance and then find out it is huge you can’t say I don’t do it because it is too big. Taking the money and agreeing to it is a contract. Just because this is EA is not an excuse, a lot of people pay for the eaves and the missions are part of EA’s business model. The cheating can ruin this entire part of a business. I am afraid that at one point they will come up with something to police it one way or the other, and they should.
      Your comment and participation in the discussion is appreciated. Thank you for that!

      • How do you check them before?
        I have a music blog and I am highly selective about what I endorse there. Because of that I can’t just be clicking Like on any old thing and maintain any kind of reader loyalty.
        When I endorse something on my blog it means it’s top quality – not just that it’s acceptable or non-offensive. So being able to see what someone wants me to RT, like or otherwise endorse would be great. Otherwise I just don’t do the mission.

        • V. says:

          Under the blue “Click here to complete the Mission” is the link to the side the mission leads to. If you click there you will see where the mission link leads to. It will be opened in a new window. If you like it, close the window and click the blue mission link box and proceed. If not, move on. Hope this helps you.

    • Christi says:

      Let me ask this: Every mission allows you to click the URL link to preview the website before you click the “Complete Mission” green button. That means, you can preview the website and decide if you want to do it before taking points. My question is why didn’t do that first, preview the url first? If a person gives too many directions or created a bad mission, then that’s their business….its “your responsibility” however to check the website out first before you do the mission. Too many excuses people make for cheating…and most missions are not hard. If you take points and don’t complete the mission, then its cheating. People invest time and even money in this, as a way to promote their businesses or non profits, we need to respect that and start taking responsibility for ourselves.

  13. (e)ECLAIR says:

    When you see a mission: First read carefully what the person in the mission wants from you, second think if you can fully complete the mission, third check the link/s to see it first if you are capable to do the mission, or you have a doubt if you are willing to take the eaves, and fourth click the blue button to complete the mission. If you don’t have the time and you think this is a game for a 5 year old child then leave it, people are not struggling for nothing and they don’t spend lot of time and money to this social game wastefully to achieve nothing or less. They want full attention to their guidance and especially to their missions where they leave their currency, business and lives.

  14. emmageraln says:

    I have to admit I see little incentive to do missions, I’d rather interact with the people. I can invest my time people on FB, G+, Blogs, Instagram etc… and in doing so if i’m lucky I get some interaction back which boosts my EA performance. The most important thing is the relationships i’ve built, I don’t want to waste my time on people that don’t want to know me and just want to rip folks off.

  15. I am very new to EA and in the first few days I ran across some of your missions and saw how you pointed out “Cheaters will be blocked” I had not created any missions and so that alerted me that “something was rotten in Denmark”. It took me a some time and careful reading to understand how the missions work. In the beginning was not clicking the COMPLETE MISSION BUTTON and was cheating myself. Once I thought I had a handle on the process I ran two missions one for 1000e and another for 2000e and opened them for everyone I got a FANTASTIC response and my missions closed in a few hours with an average 80% ROI. I did pretty good. But I kinda knew what to expect. I see many missions specifically Facebook where a person has called for comments or likes but the page is marked private. I am not the first to take on the mission and I see where no one has alerted the Mission Creator that the posting is closed for non-friends. I am so glad that you in a quiet and dignified way gave me the heads up and what to expect and saved me from much expectation and disappointment. Keep up the great work and you have my support in where ever you would like to take this debate. @LISALORRAINE

  16. jasonwiser says:

    I have accidentally stolen some Eaves when i was just learning. i made sure to contact the mission director and apologize, and offer them twice the asking mission if possible, or what can I do to make it up to you? This is really all about the difference of those who are just playing a game and those of us who truly want to meet new influences and embrace new friends in this community. To me the game is fun, no doubt, the the real value is going and talking the time to meet new people. I hope to create lasting social connections. And this simply cannot be done if you just grab and go. Thanks for the great article!

  17. danajlange says:

    V. Interesting dialogue going here. Many great points already made in all the comments. I used to do things for people prior to missions with no compensation. Helping each other out, not just on EAv, is what this is all about. If you get more comments on your blog from EAv people, more of your targeted audience sees your blog (SEO). Unfortunately the introduction of missions have reduced this focus of mutual benefit. At the very least, it has changed it dramatically. You know me, and when I say I don’t “cheat” on missions, you know that is true. I do know however there have been times where I have missed completing a mission. I get a phone call, some other interruption, or my computer freezes up (never happens with Microsoft) and I just plain forget to get back to it. This doesn’t happen often, but it does happen. The problem, as you so eloquently pointed out, the frequency of these oops do not match up with the frequency of mission incompletes.

    I have found some similar frustrations with these “takers”. I have just come to the point where I block these takers, leaders or not. Generally not the first time, but if I see a pattern I will block. It’s really not about the eaves, rather it’s who I choose to associate myself with. I am a quality person and want to surround myself with quality people. People like you V. Thank you for sharing, start blocking, and breath my friend. Love to catch up again soon.

  18. geoffrey says:

    would it not be a relieve to be able for one to write about something else. from the time I started in EA, there was a variety of attitudes but things have changed, you could say an attitude adjustment and sifting has happened. granted there is still going on’s that need attention but I believe things are changing for the better and patience is required. Once we identify the rough diamonds it would be for us to either accept or decline but ultimately it is for us to decide as to whether we choose to accept or allow these things to happen. It is a learning experience. I have seen some so called leaders change and others not., yet for me to continue is not based on these factors, rather whether I want to proceed or not, if anything , just to see if I could be stronger from the whole incident. The facility to block, report or choose not to entertain such actions is in the premise of my own decision. This is just my opinion. I live and I choose to be Happy. Cheers

    • V. says:

      Awesome comment, Geoffrey. Thank you! I can assure you that the mission cheaters do not determine on whether I am happy at the end of the day or not. However, the fact of cheating is not something that should be supported or covered, by others. That we have some broken and unfortunate characters in the Empire Avenue community is normal. Every group or community has that. We all need to accept and live with that. I do so, but still watch here and there who the bad apples are and chose not to interact too much with these people. If it goes out of hand, and that happens from time to time, I post about it and might even publish names. A little reminder from time to time that they bark at the wrong tree showed good results. Some of these people don’t show up at my doorstep anymore.

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