Becoming a location connoisseur…

Written by Remy Kozak

I read a very insightful post on MediaWeek yesterday entitled Nowhere to Hide by Barry Lowenthal of Media Kitchen.  In it he describes his progression from “Check In” enthusiast to a more discerning “Check In” connoisseur.  Aside from the fact that the writing style itself was very engaging, this is not the first article of its type to surface regarding a writer’s increased awareness of the implications of  “Check In” and privacy. However, it is a very telling chronology of “learning” about what we are putting into our own social network domain (and sometimes the public domain) when we “Check In”.

Few of the pieces of personal information about us are as telling or invasive as location. Nick points this out is a prior blog post.

My favorite quote from Barry’s post is: “The brilliance of Foursquare, and many other location-based apps, is that they satisfy many of my narcissistic primeval urges. After all, doesn’t everyone I know really care where I am and what I’m thinking right now?”

I would venture to say that this narcissistic urge is highly developed in 99% of Foursquare and Gowalla users and also highly developed in a good portion of people that blog about their lives, heavy Twitter posters, and Facebook personalities with over 1000 friends.  For business bloggers, Twitterers and Facebookers, I would add that private enterprise is, by its nature, narcissistic – so their personalities cannot be judged by their actions 😀

But as Barry correctly deduces by the end of his experience (at least partially) location is a very different animal. Not one you want to share with anyone but the closest people to you, and then only for specific purposes.  In Barry’s case he only uses “Check In” now to help build on a desired reputation within a chosen social network.

So what might Barry use to make meeting with friends for dinner a little easier – without oversharing?

I would suggest echoecho – for the discerning location-sharer 😉


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