March 17, 2010
Posted: 10:15 AM ET
Many of you are active users on Foursquare. More of you have at least heard of Foursquare. And the rest of you are probably just annoyed by your friends posting updates from Foursquare.
Foursquare is a very rapidly growing social network allowing users to “check-in” and share their location with their friends. There is also a gameplay component, drawing a page from the original four square game’s book; users collect badges and become “mayors” at spots they frequent. Its been lauded as this year’s Twitter by Mashable’s Pete Cashmore, and was certainly the talk of the town at SXSWi this year, a tech conference in Austin, Texas.
There are several ways you can be cool and more importantly not uncool on Foursquare. Here are a few tips and guidelines for being cool. (Full disclosure, I am an avid badge hound, and am moderately guilty of one or two of these myself.)
1. It’s all about Serendipity, baby
2. Don’t check in if you’re not there
3. Don’t do drive-bys
4. Don’t check in at work or home
5. Don’t ignore real people who you’re with
6. Friend your friends
The exception, however, is for the Foursquare users whose paths you keep crossing. You might discover someone new you’ve got something in common with who could be a new (real) friend. But still, at least buy me a drink first.
7. Think twice about broadcasting an activity
8. Add a tip or a to-do
So there you have it: Eight simple tips from some random, opinionated Foursquare user. I might have just set a record for use of the word serendipity. But if everyone followed these rules, the world would be a better place … or at least I would get to enjoy Foursquare a little bit more.
But of course, some of the same rules can also apply across some of the other location-based social networks like Gowalla or Yelp (and maybe even Facebook soon). What do you think? What are your rules for Foursquare?
Posted by: Dermot Waters -- head of product development at CNN.com
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