Foursquare, the social media network that allows stalkers to know exactly where you are at all times, has devised a plan to get paid for its service to merchants. The company has announced that it is ready to charge the  500,000 registered business to access the Foursquare services that have been available for free up until now. Some ten million users have “checked in” at over 15 million locations across the globe (including the foolios who check in at their homes).

Users login via smartphones and other internet devices and share their location with followers, thus promoting the coffee shop, sporting goods stores and even doctor’s offices they frequent. Some merchants have begun offering perks for Foursquare users.

While there is likely to be some resistance from some of the businesses who have gotten used to Foursquare’s free services, its pretty unreasonable to expect for a company to provide free advertising for other companies without eventually asking to be compensated.

The forthcoming charges will not affect users who wish to make themselves a target for stranger danger by using Foursquare to announce “Getting my braids did! @Marcy Houses w/ 4 others”. However, we would like for you to stop doing that, lest you get rolled up on by some internet McCreeper.

(Source)

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  • rkj

    Why post about 4sq if the writer is so obviously against it? This isn’t Mashable so I wouldn’t have expected an article on it.

    Is it better to share what you’re doing via Twitter, Tumblr, FB, G+, or MySpace (for the 5 people left)? One can be just as easily stalked via those methods.
    The user is in control of what they share, if they share, and when they share.
    Has stalking been a huge issue for 4sq users?

  • Natalia

    I agree with @rkj. The post is unnecessarily snarky. Could’ve just bypassed the story.

  • To the user above, on every other site you mentioned you have to change your settings in order to automatically share you location. So, it actually isn’t as easy to be stalked unless you change your settings to be stalked. The default of foursquare is letting everyone know where you are at all times.

    So… “Is it better to share what you’re doing via Twitter, Tumblr, FB, G+, or MySpace (for the 5 people left)? ” I don’t think she was trying to compare the networks.

    “One can be just as easily stalked via those methods.” If they choose to be.

    “The user is in control of what they share, if they share, and when they share.” … yes… even if that means they’re giving away way too much information about their location way too often…. which leaves you vulnerable…. which is all she was saying…

  • Courtney

    I see no problem with charging businesses, at least the ones who do Foursquare rewards for people.