By Duleepa Wijayawardhana • August 30, 2010

East of Erindale: Share Prices, Dividends and Earnings

This is the first in a series of posts that will deal with our next release, slated for the entire month of September. Wow. Yes, we're planning on releasing a lot this month and we like to tell you in advance, just like we did with the 'Road to Dublin' series in July/August.

1. Share-price Calculations

In August we quietly launched a beta version of our Influence Scores. This was partly done to show you the relevance of your online activity in calculating your share price and partly in preparation for the increase in relevance and importance we are now making to the value of your online activity, as it relates to calculating your share price.

As of September 7th/8th, 2010, your share price will be more reliant on Market Makers. This addresses a number of issues: most importantly, we believe that in order to achieve our vision of evaluating your online Influence, we need to take into greater account your external activities. However, what hasn't changed is that to prove your Influence you need to get people to buy you. Your ability to sell shares will *always* make you more valuable/influential than a person that cannot.

This means next week many of you will see a one-day correction in your share price. There is just no getting around such a correction. Our models show that the new share prices will be more reflective of people's influence on and off Empire Avenue. This is a necessary and relevant step as we move towards a greater real-world relevance of those share prices and attach more external services and get ready to invite millions of people and business onto the system.

2. Rules on Buying and Selling

We will also be removing a few rules related to buying and selling shares. Our 100 shares/12 hours for selling shares achieved its intended goal of minimizing "runs" as stocks are sold en masse, but did so at the cost of adding more rules than we wanted. Also, it made it difficult to divest oneself of all shares if you disagreed with someone's content.

From September 7th/8th, 2010, that rule will disappear, as will the rule for elevated commissions between two parties when they do multiple share transactions.

Instead, we will introduce the concept of a fast-moving stock or "Fast Mover". These stocks will face commission increases that will be clearly displayed in the user interface. When you reach "Fast Mover" status, we will start increasing commissions on that stock for a limited time (up to a maximum of 50% commission!). You can then judge when to jump in or jump out.

Monitoring of coordinated Buys and Sells to manipulate shares will remain in place, and we will aggressively warn, suspend and ban accounts that participate in such activity, depending on the circumstances.

3. Earnings and Dividends

Our third set of changes deals with how you use our Earnings and Investment Earnings (Dividends) structures to invest in good Influencers.

Our Earnings structures have not changed since our Friends and Family Beta in March! As of September 7th and 8th, we will change our activity payouts to be more reliant on your Influence Scores. Similar to how it is now, simply posting 1000 tweets to make more earnings will not work. We will, however, better reward your activity based on the influence of that activity. Our goal is for you to better use earnings numbers of others to judge your value online.

So, to be precise, we will reward you for tweets, photos, postings, blogs, etc. as before albeit in a different formula, but now there will also be multipliers and additions for sharing, engagement, audience, and the influence scores of the audience that these reach.

Naturally, this will spill over into the earnings you get from your Investments, but we'll also be adding a small twist. Before these changes, when someone expands their shares available, the amount of dividends you receive from such an Influencer lessens. While this is how it works in the real world, many have correctly suggested this is an impediment to getting people to invest in you, especially if you have great content! We'll be increasing the amount you pay out as you expand your shares. It will not be linear, but it will ensure that, as long as you continue to produce *quality* content, you remain an attractive investment for others.

More "East of Erindale" posts coming up. These changes are currently slated for September 7th/8th, 2010.

Disclaimer: Our owners, writers, and/or guest post authors may or may not have a vested interest in any of the above projects and businesses. None of the content on this blog is investment advice nor is it a replacement for advice from a certified financial planner.