Being quite a fan of Foursquare, I found this Gawker article that labels me and a million other users as “annoying jackasses” very interesting and insightful. (And thanks to @OKDigitalMedia for highlighting it) Here are the insights I have gained:
Firstly – it’s made me realize that to write for Gawker and get hundreds of comments on an article, all you need to be able to do is rehash very, very old news; jump on a bandwagon; and shout some outspoken statements that others on the bandwagon will love to cheer lead.
Secondly I know that I could back up such articles with ill researched and incorrect statements (e.g. “Twitter, whose popularity was built on the back of celebs”). I’d love to see the statistics to support that one. Passengers on US Airways Flight 1549, eyewitnesses to the Mumbai terrorist attacks, Iranian election protesters, communities in Canada and Australia (including my own) that were hit by forest fires in recent years would certainly argue that point.
Thirdly, it’s highlighted to me just how many people seem to resent others having FUN. Yep – that word that is intrinsic to a happy existence. Show me a happy person that doesn’t have FUN and I’ll show you a Pope that isn’t Catholic.
For many – and that many will be millions by the end of the year, Foursquare hits social media’s magic equation of fun + simplicity + value = success.
If you don’t see fun, simplicity and value in Foursquare that’s fine – each to their own. Personally I see little value in watching NBA, MLB & NASCAR. But I see no reason to attack and abuse those that do. I ACCEPT these differences as part of the wonder that is human diversity and don’t feel the need to overpower those that enjoy them.
Here’s the bottom line: humans have needs and values that can be placed in nine categories : Security, Adventure, Freedom, Exchange, Power, Expansion, Acceptance, Community, Expression.
Each person will have cognitive behaviors that represent how they prioritize these. If, for example, you value Security, way higher than you value Adventure and Community then Foursquare will not be for you.
If you value Power way higher than you value Acceptance, then you will need to force that opinion on others.
If values of Adventure, Freedom, Acceptance & Community dominate and you refuse to take anything in life too seriously then you may well love Foursquare.
Here’s some supporting articles from my blog: