OK, so I’ve seen all the “experts” talking about how Foursquare is going to be the next big thing, and I’ve seen other folks using it, and looked at what it is, and how they’re using it, and I’m just not seeing the point.
Oh I see the point for commercial opportunities, isn’t having all this data about where someone goes, how often, how much time they spend there, etc. pretty much the holy grail of advertising data? Heck, you can get users to advertise for you, for free, simply by coming to your place of business a lot, and checking in with FourSquare!
What I don’t understand is why I, as an individual, would want to use it? To let people know where I am? I can do that with Twitter without checking in and sharing that information with the foursquare database, and even then, how often do you really care where I am? Seriously, it’s one thing to share a favorite restaurant tip with folks via twitter, it’s quite another to announce via Foursquare and Twitter every time you go to the grocery store, or to your office, or stop at Starbucks. Sharing that I’m a big fan of a local pizza place might be helpful information to local folks, letting the world know every time I go there, is borderline creepy, and completely useless to the people who follow me, unless they really want to stalk me. (But since most of my followers are not local, it’s even useless for that!)
As I see it now, the only real “benefit” to using it is that some businesses might be willing to give me free stuff, if I “check-in” on average more than other users. So, again, I’m trading my privacy for a free coffee? No, thanks.
If there’s a place I feel really strongly about and want to recommend on Twitter, or my blog, I’ll gladly do that, without bugging all of you each and every time I go there, and without allowing a marketing company to track my coming and going.
So, those of you are convinced this is the next big thing, hit the comments and tell me if I’m missing something?
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