Change isn’t easy for many folks. EA’s passionate user community is both a tremendous opportunity and a great risk. Folks joined EA for many reasons. The changes will not always align with everyone’s goals. When folks who have invested time, passion and cash see changes that don’t fit perfectly; they become vocal and upset.
The biggest change I can see is that EA is trying to become profitable. EA is about 3 years old. I suspect the investors are ready for some return. The team has been at work for longer than that and is ready for a pay day. The user base is too small for ads on the site to make any serious money, and Dups seems opposed also. Where can they go to find this pot of gold? Looks like they have identified two places.
Today EA players provide much of the income I suspect. Purchasing upgrades and eaves seems to be a central source of revenue today. They are trying to figure out how to increase this revenue stream. Recent changes to the eave price of upgrades are certainly designed to encourage more folks to spend cash. Premium accounts and features seem to be the other opportunity for revenue that EA has identified. Better account information and analysis seems to be the idea. I am not sure what else is in store(like the pun). Somehow EA needs us to pay more.
The other place that EA is receiving some income is from marketers. Those folks are lured by the promise of free advertising. They often end up using cash because the cost of free becomes too high. The recent push to encourage folks to do 100 random missions seems an effort to condition folks to complete high volumes of missions. The feedback system seems designed to provide marketers some confidence in the system. Dups has also mentioned allowing players to receive real value for their social presence. Sounds like he expects the marketers to pay in more than eaves.
These are just my guesses; so I may be right or I may be wrong. Entertaining to speculate for me at least.
In the famous words of David Bowie: Ch-ch-ch-ch-changes