October 3rd, 2011 by Katherine Sola
Location based social networking is a new frontier insocial media, with a dizzying array of possibilities
.According to Mashable.com we use it in five ways: meeting
up with friends, competing in game dynamics, recording apersonal diary, sharing experiences with others and scoringdeals. We take a look at how Foursquare, Gowalla and Loopt
help users do just that.
s appeal is based in game dynamics. Its most famous feature is the
„checkin,‟ by which users register their position in the different places they visit.Crucially, the user who checks into a place the most becomes its mayor. It‟s
amazing how much time and effort people expend in pursuit of this entirely virtual
title. Foursquare lists “a passion for exploration” as the third thing its users need,
beside a smartphone and the app of course. They say they help users discover newplaces in the city they live in, as well as giving them discounts.Gowalla,having tacitly conceded dominance of the check-in game to Foursquare,now caters to travellers.
It‟s organized by countries and cities rather than shops
and restaurants. When you click on the Arches National Park in Utah,for instance,
you see pictures taken by users, their comments and their recommendations.
Unlike Foursquare it‟s image
-based, strikingly so, with some quite stunning userpictures. The site has also collaborated with National Geographic to produce aseries of guides to major cities and national parks.Both Foursquare and Gowalla use Badgeville-esque stamps, pins and badges todrive user engagement