Tag Archives: foursquare

Wall Street Journal uses Foursquare list feature for hurricane evacuation centres

As Hurricane Irene lashed the east coast of the US at the weekend, the Wall Street Journal used Foursquare’s recently-launched tip lists feature to provide details of the locations of New York City evacuation centres.

The tip lists were launched on 15 August and were used by the WSJ for a breaking news story less than a fortnight later.

Users of Foursquare, the mobile phone app and social network which has 10 million members worldwide, can check-in and share their location with their friends and contacts by using the WSJ’s NYC Hurricane Evacuation Centers Foursquare list.

A total of 130 people follow the evacuation centres on Foursquare, a low number when compared to other networks (the New York Times @NYTLive Twitter account accrued 22,000 followers in three days when reporting on the hurricane), but the WSJ’s innovative use of lists is another example how news publishers can interact with readers.

Eric Friedman, director of business development at Foursquare, told Journalism.co.uk how the WSJ list works:

This is a page that the Wall Street Journal can administer and actually people can follow the list, which is a great way for them to interact with their current fan base on Foursquare and also as resource for anyone else for a quick way to develop something that was extemely helful in a potentially very damaging storm.

Friedman went on to explain another way in which the WSJ has used the platform.

It’s a way for them to build a following on a new network, which is Foursquare, and for them to get really timely and relevant information attached to a place.

In the past they’ve use [their Foursquare page] to attach breaking news to a place, when something is going on in Times Square, for example. They’ve also used it in a way which is very interesting, for past historial events to let someone know “hey, I’m at the Brooklyn Bridge”, here’s what happened at this time on this date many, many years ago. So it’s a way of bringing the old Journal information to the forefront as well as a way bringing new information to someone in a breaking way.

Mashable has more information on user-generated tip lists allowing users to create crowdsourced lists.

News sites can now create a branded page on Foursquare

Newspapers, news sites, broadcasters and even journalists can now set up a branded page on Foursquare without having to go through Foursquare’s business development team.

Foursquare pages are now self-serve and any brand, organisation, or publication can create one.

Publishers can use a page to gain followers, share tips, check in, and reach fans. One advantage to a page is that it can now have a number of ‘managers’.

Foursquare’s blog lists the following features of benefit to brands:

  • Reach the whole Foursquare community with your tips and check-ins (and push those check-ins to both Facebook pages and Twitter).
  • Let entire teams of people manage the same page. With our new tool, you can make multiple people page ‘managers’, so that they can all contribute. It’s perfect for big organisations.
  • From the web or your mobile phone, you can upload photos to your tips and check-ins. It’s great for making them really shine for all of your followers.

There’s a gallery of Foursquare pages to help you get started.

To create a page click here and sign in with your company’s Twitter account.

If you create a branded page for your news site, let us know by leaving a comment below.

Hyperlocal news source EveryBlock relaunches as community site

EveryBlock, which was first launched in 2008 as an address-based news feed, has been redesigned as a “community-empowered” site.

EveryBlock has been developed so that people can make connections with those living nearby and then share news stories, crime reports and events. It is only available in 16 US cities at the moment but the relaunched version of EveryBlock has expansion on the horizon.

As Mashable reports, EveryBlock has partnered with Groupon in the US for revenue and has plans to integrate Foursquare‘s API in order to make further connections between neighbours with similar tastes and habits.

“We’re shifting from a one-way newsfeed to more of a community-empowered website,” says EveryBlock founder Adrian Holovaty. “Instead of going to the site to passively consume information, we’re going to offer a platform for posting messages to your neighbors, to discover who lives near you.”

10,000 Words looks at what the redesign, which includes badge incentives and ‘following’, tells us about the future of hyperlocal sites:

“Following” is the new “liking”: Crucial to Everyblock’s redesign is the functionality of the “Follow” button; users can now follow blocks, zipcodes and even specific businesses. A “Get to Know Your Neighbors” sidebar displays links to the profiles of users who follow the same places that you do, making it super easy to meet new people with similar interests.

Eastern Daily Press providing content through Foursquare

Thanks to Stephen Keable from the Eastern Daily Press for alerting us to the title’s use of Foursquare after we reported on Metro’s deal with the location-based service.

The EDP already has a Foursquare presence. When users of the service check in to many locations around Norfolk, the EDP provides restaurant reviews, mobile downloads and information on where to buy a copy of the paper locally. It seems there’s only been a couple of check-ins so far, but as if Foursquare user numbers grow the title will already have itself represented on the network.

Let us know if your title is using Foursquare and how in the comments below.

Canada’s Metro to add Foursquare feature to news sites

Just yesterday, Journalism.co.uk signposted its readers to a post by 10,000 Words blogger Mark Luckie discussing how news sites can make more of location-based services. The very same day, Canada’s Metro announced it was adding Foursquare link buttons to its online news pages.

The service will be added to pages on Journalmetro.com and metronews.ca above articles which feature venue-relevant content such as restaurant reviews, according to a post on the Shaping the Future of the Newspaper blog.

Through addition of this new feature on the news site, users can add a visit to a location as a “to do” in their Foursquare account and either link back to the full article or post a review on the Metro website.

See the original post…

10,000 Words: Making better use of location-based networks

Inspired by the successes of location-based services such as Foursquare and Gowalla, Mark Luckie offers some starting-points over on his 10,000 Words blog about how journalists and publishers could make better use of the technology.

His suggestions include greater exploitation of first person media by pulling together items such as tweets, photographs and audio recorded within a geographical area for a multimedia record of events or news.

Luckie adds that newsrooms could create apps or check-in alerts which centre on the technology which is able to pinpoint places of interest, such as cinemas, restaurants and shops near to a mobile phone user and then provide them with relevant reviews and articles.

With a little extra tinkering, an app can also aggregate reviews from other locals or like-minded movie viewers.

(…) So far though, the majority of those companies that are exploring and taking advantage of the technology fall outside of the journalism realm. Hopefully, as these services and social media applications become more mainstream, newsrooms will be more likely to adopt them for their own uses.

See his full post here…

How new Fourwhere maps plotting Foursquare, Yelp and Gowalla could be useful for journalists

Fourwhere, a location-based search service, first launched a few months ago with data from geolocation gaming service Foursquare. Now it has developed its service to also include data from other location services, Yelp and Gowalla.

The mapping service, launched at the SXSW technology conference in Austin, now has arrangements with Foursquare and Gowalla to allow extra access to information, and says it’s in discussions with Yelp for unrestricted access to its platform.

Fourwhere says it can match different service updates on the same venue, even if the services are not using a standardised naming or location convention. Following the latest update, Cnet’s Josh Lowensohn pointed out a few of the glitches, but also said:

Despite the current shortcomings, I really like the idea of having one place that aggregates not only the tips from these sites, but, more importantly, the check-ins. When done right, and given a sense of time, Fourwhere could prove itself as a very powerful tool for showing what’s hot and what’s not based on a much larger group of users than any of the three services could offer on their own.

I asked Sysomos, the social media monitoring and analytics company behind Fourwhere, how the service would be useful to journalists.

“Fourwhere will make it easy for journalists to see what is going on at certain locations,” says community manager Sheldon Levine. It can provide insight as to what’s going on from the people actually there, he says.

“It can even help them search out locations where something interesting is happening and with story ideas by seeing where people in their markets are, and what they are talking about while there.

“Fourwhere will help connect all kinds of users, from those on the ground to, say journalists, making it easier for everyone to see what’s going on around them.”

I’ve taken a grab to show how it looks for the area around the Journalism.co.uk office in Brighton. Admittedly, some of the updates are out of date by several months, but that’s probably due to low level user-activity. I was briefly excited by the promise of free beer at a local pub, before realising someone had made the comment six months ago.

But, imagine a lot more people were using these services in a concentrated area, with more regular updates. It’s not just the comments: as Paul Bradshaw commented in a post about Foursquare, location based services give you an extra layer of information: frequency of visits etc.

I’ll be keeping an eye on Fourwhere, and on Twitter’s development of Twitter Places, which will also be integrated with Foursquare and Gowalla.

As more people embrace these location-based services and use them more creatively, the more useful they could become for journalists.

On Friday, at Journalism.co.uk’s news:rewired event Yelp’s head of European community management, Miriam Warren, will be talking about mobile and the development of Yelp’s online review service.

Yelp, which now attracts over 32 million monthly unique visitors to its online reviews, has recently developed new version of the Yelp iPhone app: when a user checks-in to a combination of businesses, they will be able to earn “Yelp Badges”. More details at this link.

Publishers who offer similar review or local information services might be interested to see what and how Yelp is developing, while news journalists might consider how they could use Yelp and other location-based products to feed their stories and make contacts.

ReadWriteWeb: WSJ shares location-based news with Foursquare users

The Wall Street Journal has followed in the Financial Times’ footsteps by teaming up with Foursquare. As part of a new focus on New York City, FourSquare users who ‘check in’ to a location around the city will receive a link from the Journal relating to that location.

Some media observers have been critical of the partnership, focusing on the addition of a few new WSJ-related badges that Foursquare users can now add to their collection. That might seem like an underwhelming feature for a media giant like the Journal to add, but the addition of location-specific, hard news stories as tips is a very intriguing experiment that could point to a big new future for news. It also looks like a lot of fun.

Full story at this link…

Business Insider: FT deal with Foursquare will offer free subscriptions

The Financial Times is working with Foursquare to provide free subscriptions to users of the location-based social networking site who “check in” to selected locations, Business Insider reports.

The deal will target younger readers, for example by featuring coffee shops and other spots located close to universities and business schools, who may be turned off by the rates for a premium subscription to FT.com.

[T]he Foursquare deal opens the FT up beyond their typical straight-laced business subscribers, and attempts to get a decidedly younger, more web-savvy potential consumer interacting with their brand.

Full story at this link…

Editors Weblog: What Foursquare means for newspapers

Elizabeth Redman looks at how newspapers, including the New York Times and Metro International, are making use of Foursquare – the relatively new social network where users “check-in” to real life locations and add information and recommendations to earn points and rewards.

Full story at this link…