Here is a good blog on Foursquare.
Do you play Foursquare? And no, I'm not talking about the old recess game on the blacktop. I'm referring instead to the newest application craze on the iPhone, BlackBerry, and Droid.
The premise is simple. Whenever you are out and about in the community, load up the Foursquare app and "check in" wherever you are. For instance, if I'm attending a class at UNT, I could find the name of the building in the list provided and check in there, so that my online network of friends would see how studious I was. After class, if I head on over to Fry Street for a beer with some friends, I can check in there too. I guess to prove I have a social life. I can even check in to the Keller Williams office, so everyone knows I'm at hard at work.
If you check in on several unique visits, and you've checked in at that location the most, you will become the virtual "mayor" of that place, and future visitors will see your name and photo and know that you are the mayor, and you may or may not be treated with more legitimacy now that you have electronic proof that you are a "regular." You can also earn a series of badges for interesting or frequent check-ins.
Now, the first issue that most people raise when learning about Foursquare (and similar apps like Gowalla) is SAFETY. For instance, Emily Lowe in Nashville raises a good point about whether or not women should feel safe publicly broadcasting their location all the time, and whether homeowners should feel safe knowing that they are confirming online that they are not home, basically inviting burglary. Not that I don't think it will ever happen, but the cases are and will be few and far between in which someone will be nabbed by a stalker after checking in to Chili's, but the fear is still there.
The next issue you have to get past in order to embrace Foursquare is PRIVACY. As Realtors, many of us already invite our clients to see a snapshot of our lives on Facebook. Imagine your clients getting a steady stream of location-based updates on top of that. I'm not too enthusiastic about that part, which is what has held me back from using Foursquare for business yet. Many clients can be demanding, and would be remiss if they thought their Realtor had too vibrant of a social life, for instance. "Why are you going out for lunch instead of doing XYZ? You should have packed a string cheese!"
Foursquare is a game meant to encourage the internet junkie generation to get out and DO something, and for that it should be commended. There are even endless marketing opportunities attached to the Foursquare phenomenon. And despite my concerns for safety and privacy, I'm by no means a Foursquare naysayer. I have an account, and have even checked in once today already. But like with most things in life, I've decided I'll use it in moderation only. Because as much as I don't want my clients, friends and family to know exactly where I am and what I'm doing every second of every day, they don't really want to know that much either.