There really isn’t much to write about in this particular post other than I recently received some Foursquare “swag.” About a week ago I asked Dennis Crowley for some branded merchandise so I could help promote the company when I’m in Atlanta. Promote. Foursquare. Atlanta. Awesome. That’s pretty much how the chat went between us.
Shortly after our chat Dennis was nice enough to hook me up by shipping out some stuff so I could pass it around inside my circle of friends as well as share it with potential “Foursquare-ers.” I’ll be keeping a few items for myself of course.
Recently there has been a lot of confusion about how mayorships are awarded on Foursquare. Hopefully this blog post will help clear up some of the confusion and provide users with a better understanding of how mayorship battles are won.
After doing some digging, I have noticed that more than 90% of the blogs, and even a few websites, I have read are feeding wrong information to its readers about how mayorships are awarded on Foursquare. Unfortunately, at the time of this writing, mayorship information isn’t explained very well on the Foursquare website. According to Foursquare’s “Help” and “Learn More” Web pages, mayorships are awarded “If you’ve been to a place more than anyone else.” Although this information is posted on the Foursquare website, it’s not how the algorithm works. Since there has been a lot of questions surrounding this topic, I decided to send a tweet to Foursquare about this issue so they could clarify how mayorships are awarded on their website.
Recently, the location-based service, Foursquare, crossed the one million user mark and since then they have not looked back. The company is growing their user base at a nice clip and as more people use the social media service, the more venues are created. While this is absolutely encouraged by Foursquare since it helps expand the service, it could lead to a lot of duplicate venues.
This is when a “Superuser” comes into play. Foursquare Superusers are users who are very active with the service and are handpicked by the Foursquare staff. These users are usually people who have checked into a lot of venues and spent time creating new venues. Superusers play an important role in the Foursquare service because they improve the service by editing venues, merging duplicate venues, closing fake venues, adding aliases, adding useful tags, removing incorrect tags, and ultimately keeping the database nice and clean.
So today I jumped the gun and congratulated CEO Dennis Crowley and the Foursquare team for hitting one million users when in actuality the company fell a bit short of that milestone today. Whoops! I assumed Foursquare was using the sign up user ID as the official count to determine the one millionth user, however, Dennis Crowley corrected me and let me know that the user count was only at 983,000 the last time he checked.
After Dennis was kind enough to share that information with me I decided to do a quick calculation. According to my math, the user ID count should be at approximately 1019000 in order for Foursquare to hit one million registered users. Foursquare sees thousands of new user signups each day so Friday looks like it will be the day Foursquare crosses the milestone and joins the One Million Member Social Media Club. Well, there is no such club, but it’s not a bad idea.
Yesterday marked the first global social media holiday in history, Foursquare Day. If you missed it, Foursquare, the location-based social media service, announced last month that every April 16th will be Foursquare Day, a social media holiday. This particular day was chosen because April is the 4th month of the year and 4^2 = 16. Simple enough, yeah?
Foursquare, the popular location-based social media service, made it official last month when the start-up declared April 16th Foursquare Day. Why April 16th? We’ll, it’s the 4th month of the year and since 4^2 = 16 there is really no other day on the calendar that is fitting. Foursquare has been growing at a rapid pace in the social media arena and three days from now it will gain even more popularity. April 16, 2010 will be the first social media holiday in history and will be celebrated across the globe in cities such as Beijing, Sydney, London, New York City, and San Francisco to name a few.
Foursquare Day is not one of those holidays when we all share gifts so let’s get that out of the way first. Instead, it’s a day of social media fun, discounts at participating venues, special events, sharing information, and unlocking badges like the official “4Sq Day 2010” badge. That’s right, there is an official badge for this holiday, but I’ll come back to this in a minute. So, if you are not sure what events are taking place in your city, feel free to visit 4SqDay.com to view the list of participating cities.
Recently Foursquare pushed out app updates to both iPhone and Android users just in time for SXSW so it was only a matter of time before BlackBerry users got their hands on an update. Well, as expected, Foursquare pushed out a new update to BlackBerry users this morning. If you are running the Foursquare app and don’t already have the v1.7 update, simply launch your Foursquare app and it should automatically update to the newest version. You can also download the app from the BlackBerry App World store or visit the Foursquare Web site to download.
There is not a whole lot going on under the hood in this update other than changes to the UI. After firing up the app you will notice four icons in the top navigation menu: Friends (F), Places (P), Tips, and More. While some of these icons might look familiar to you from the previous version, the “Tips” icon is a new addition to the navigation menu. Let’s take a quick look at the new navigation menu and what changes took place.
HubSpot, the company that created Twitter Grader, has launched their latest tool, Square Grader. The tool simply analyzes your usage on the location-based social media site, Foursquare, and gives you a grade and rank based on comparison to other Foursquare users who have already been graded. Since Square Grader is still in its early development stage, it might take several weeks or perhaps months before the database grows and has a large enough sample to make the grade and rank accurate. Although this tool is for amusement purposes only, let’s take a quick look how the grades are generated.
It is rare for a company to publicly discuss their algorithm details simply because there are people out there who are always trying to game the system. However, according to HubSpot Co-Founder, Dharmesh Shah, Square Grader uses several algorithm factors when measuring your Foursquare grade. Although Dharmesh did not go into detail about the priority or weight of each factor, he did mention some of the factors that are taken into account when measuring your grade.
When Foursquare launched their location-based service back in 2009 there was one particular badge that received a lot of attention, the “Douchebag” badge. While some users thought the badge was funny, others felt the badge was offensive and did their best to avoid unlocking it. Although it is outside the scope of this article, you can read more about the “Douchebag Problem” at TechCrunch.
Regardless how you feel about the badge, if you unlocked the Douchebag badge or any other badge and want it removed from your profile you’re in luck.
One of the Foursquare gaming elements that seems to attract a lot of attention is the plethora of badges users can unlock. Badges are awarded to users for doing all sorts of things. For example, users can unlock badges for visiting certain venues, attending certain events, accomplishing certain tasks, being consistent with their travel habits, and so much more.
Since the location-based service launched last year, the Foursquare team has been rolling out badges based on their own ideas. However, the company has always encouraged its users to submit their badge suggestions so they can get an idea of what badges are of interest to Foursquare users.