Wednesday, 28 July 2010

Foursquare, Gowalla and Google Latitude

[Gowalla and Foursquare] pioneered the then-uncharted territory of location-based social networking. On Foursquare, a user "checks in" to locations (as pinpointed via satellite) to invite along friends, leave tips glued to GPS coordinates (like ordering advice at restaurants), and compete for digital rewards in the form of badges, or titles like "mayor" (for the user who checks in the most at a venue). Similarly, Gowalla asked users to check in places in order to collect digital goodies, akin to virtual geocaching." (Snow, 2010) 

"When we set out to build Gowalla, we simply wanted to use collectibles and a lightweight game to reward users for exploring the world around them." (Williams, in Snow, 2010).

"Google Latitude broadcasts your location from your mobile phone, letting your friends know where you are and allowing you to keep tabs on them. Latitude shares your current location with your friends by using Google Maps’ My Location feature. Like the iPhone’s built-in geo tools, My Location uses the signals from nearby cellphone towers to plot your whereabouts." (Gilbertson, 2009)

Social networking sites give new ways for its users to interact with one another. Geotagging, which is potentially useful for my project, has been seen as a new privacy concern. People's ideas over privacy has also changed over time, and many don't perceive it as a problem, too. 

Gilbertson, S. (2009) Google Latitude Broadcasts Your Location. [Online] [28/07/2010]
Snow, S. (2010) Foursquare vs. Gowalla: Inside the Check-In Wars. [Online] [28/07/2010]

Gundotra, V. (2009) See where your friends are with Google Latitude. [Online] [28/07/2010]
Kiss, J. (2010) Battling it out on the streets: Gowalla v Foursquare. [Online] [28/07/2010]