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Holy Crap, I’m Using Foursquare Again

March 18, 2011


Badge fatigue. Privacy concerns. Another likely-to-pass technology fad. I thought these were the reasons I quit checking into Foursquare.

Turns out, it’s a hell of a lot simpler than that:  I lead a boring life.

Last week, when I touched down in Austin for SXSW Interactive, I checked back in at the airport. (At the risk of sounding even more curmudgeonly, I even found myself rationalizing it: I needed a digital memento from my first trip to the Salt Lick.)

It may have been the Jetsetter badge I earned, or the fact that Foursquare told me that two of my friends had recently checked in there, but immediately, I found myself pulled back in by the Foursquare tractor beam.  Over the next several days, I tracked down friends. I racked up points. I earned a slew of new badges (though I’m still missing the coveted “Room Service” – curse you, @gmdclark!). I even referred to the “Tips” section when making dinner plans.

So what was I doing with Foursquare before SXSW?

Well… There was that time I checked into JWT.  And that other time when I checked into JWT’s café.  Oh yeah, I went to the Spotted Pig once.  And then I checked into a chat room… at JWT.

In the category of “things most people learned in 2009,” it turns out that Foursquare is only as interesting as you are. The second your check-in list tips in the direction of work, fast food restaurants or (god help you) your apartment, it’s over. The corollary is you’d better have interesting friends or… I’m not naming anyone, but honestly, I don’t really care about your Applebee’s check-in.  Joe.

Now that I’m back, I find myself checking in more frequently, excited by the possibilities of the app. Here’s hoping it’ll make me a more adventurous person.

Things are looking promising: after all, it’s only two more days before I become mayor of chat room 3A at JWT.

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