My Small List of Foursquare Improvements on Foursquare Day

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Today being April 16th or 4/16 or four squared there’s a bit of attention being played out with Foursquare people. People are having parties among other community building things for Foursquare Day. It’s been a crazy week for me so I might have to miss most of it, but the idea is kind of fun. When was the last time people that were on Facebook declared a Facebook day? But with that said I have a small list of things that I wish they would improve on. No doubt that they’ve already considered some of the options of what I’m about to point out and don’t have to bandwidth to fix the issues/features, but I think it’s still worth mentioning.

Badge Management
A couple weeks ago I mentioned how I wish they had a park badge. I walk through a lot of parks in NYC and thought it would be a good idea to represent that. A week or two later I noticed a badge that had a slide on it—it’s the Babysitter badge. I thought how cute, there’s a badge for all those parents in Brooklyn. I had a good laugh until I suddenly earned that badge after checking in at Madison Square Park. I don’t have any kids so that badge feels kind of creepy. I wish in the settings that I could either hide or kill any badge that I’ve earned. I hate the fact that I have that badge and there’s nothing I can do about it. And since I’m gathering data why not let me know how many more check in’s I have to do to gain other badges. The data is already there, it just needs to be visualized.

Update To Do Lists with Places I want to visit
I follow quite a few interesting people that are going to cool places. I wish I could just save the name and location of the venue (typically a bar or restaurant in NYC). Right now all I can do is add To Do’s which is something that I really don’t care or value. What is valuable is having a directory or list of cool places that I can view when I want to go somewhere new.

People that I know outside of my city aren’t relevant at the moment
When a bunch of people that I know in NYC went to Austin for SXSW, they feel off my radar. Currently for the iPhone version of Foursquare it shows the people that have checked into my current city, followed by older, followed by Friends in other cities. I almost never scroll that far down. I should either star people that I’m interested in to stay at the top of my list or make some sort of distinction between hometown and where they’re currently situated.

Dead Pages Everywhere
There’s really no motivation on the mobile site to click on a person’s profile unless A. you want to see a bigger image of the person or B. see if they’re on Twitter. At that point a person can click on Twitter which will let them see what the person they’re interested in is saying. That’s an okay experience except for the fact that if a person wants to click on the Twitter about button they have to jump to Safari. There’s a ton of opportunities to make a better profile page. Sure people are concerned about privacy—but if they’re linking outside to Twitter already they’re sharing a lot of private info. I also don’t understand the value of the homepage of Foursquare even after I’ve logged in. It should be aggregating data that is interesting. I don’t really care about who’s become a mayor of places in NYC. I want to see trending data. I want to see trend for the hour, day, week and month. I also think the profile page isn’t adding much value. At this point I go there to view some of the minor data that has been recorded showing how many times a day that I’m checking in etc.

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  • arainert

    Agree with you 100% on most of these and there' already some stuff in the pipeline (and going into the pipeline) to address them. Keep em' coming! 🙂

    The badge one is tough. The mystery behind them is to a certain extent deliberate so there's a certain amount of exploration involved in figuring out how to trigger them. Being able to show/hide them after the fact is a new suggestion to think about so thanks for that.


  • michaelsurtees

    good to hear!