How I use Foursquare and how you can make it better

October 22, 2009 at 1:13 am (Social Networking) (, , )

Foursquare went live in St. Louis last week, and it seems to me it’s people are using it as an extension of Twitter, rather than its own separate social network. The concept is great, but I don’t think some people “get it”. Foursquare has a very open platform, but has a much more specific use that separates itself from other social networking tools, therefore users must use their own discretion.

I’ve put together my personal preferences and some suggestions to other users. Obviously there are exceptions to these, they are just suggestions.

Who I friend:
My rule of thumb is this, If I’m not interested on hanging out with you, I’m not your “friend”. Don’t take that the wrong way.

Where I check in:
Places of interest. I ask myself, “Does anyone care that I’m here or would anyone want to come here?”. If the answer is no for both, then I don’t post it. I’m sure no one cares if I visit a gas station, grocery store, McDonald’s, home or work (Unless work is someplace you spend your free time or want visitors).

My suggestions to users:

  • Don’t check it at your work or home.
  • Tag venues so others know what to expect.
  • Suggest tips on good dishes and drink specials.
  • Don’t check in at the same place twice in one visit to say something site specific. Either add a tip, tag it or use the “Shout” function.

Foursquare is a completely unique social service, and should be treated as such. I don’t want 100+ Foursquare friends and I don’t want to know their every move. Obviously you can make up your own mind and do whatever you want, but this is how I find value in it, and might be why I’m not your “friend”.

How do you use Foursquare? What are your pet peeves? Am I taking this too seriously?


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