Comments on: The Place Race Responses to Media and Culture Fri, 12 Feb 2016 19:35:04 +0000 hourly 1 By: Sabine Gruffat Tue, 07 Sep 2010 14:18:18 +0000 I am reading Henri Lefebvre’s “The Production of Space” and so it is influencing me in this reply. If Foursquare wanted to define social space it would have to consider communal and shared spaces not just privatized spaces.

The Foursquare attitude entails a certain logic:
This space belongs to you or to me. This is already problematic.

As Lefebvre writes “every space is already in place before the appearance in it of actors”. is there a way to think about space that does not privilege a subjective relationship to it?

By: Germaine Halegoua Mon, 08 Mar 2010 00:18:18 +0000 I’ve also been really frustrated with the promotion of places to “check in” as places of consumption (as well as noted landmarks). Not being able to check in at parks, on cars and trains, or other places where I might be doing something really check-in “worthy” is equally frustrating. I want to display the fact that I’m riding my bike around the lake at 2pm sometimes more so than the fact I’m going to a bar on a school night at 2am, but unfortunately the former is not really an option. (Interestingly though there’s a badge for the latter, but I think you need to stay out until 3am to get it).

I sometimes also feel like there’s this rendering of certain places as safe (for lack of a better word) when they come up on the Foursquare roster, verifying that you’re supposed to be there. Which is another reason why I find the consumerist slant a bit unsettling — that the bounds or possibilities of the city are being defined through places of consumption. But I do feel like I’ve leveled up or gained experience points or something when I have to type in the location I’m at because it doesn’t register on foursquare — there should be a badge for that.

By: Liz Ellcessor Sat, 06 Mar 2010 15:58:03 +0000 Sean, your point about consumerist tendencies was interesting for me, because I’ve had some conversations with students about that element of Foursquare. One of them was frustrated that he could only check in at “bars and restuarants” and we tried to brainstorm other options – and came up with retail stores, coffee shops and university buildings.

In that way, though I know you find it frustrating, people who check in on a specific flight, or a street corner might be doing something interesting in terms of marking transitory, limited place/time experiences?

By: Sean C. Duncan Sat, 06 Mar 2010 15:53:24 +0000 So, as someone who vocally and petulantly ridiculed Foursquare users for a long time… only to eventually succumb to its charms, your post got me a-thinkin’ about why that’s the case. You say: “There’s a further tension between exploration and familiarization in some mobile locative media projects as well. The promotional descriptions and gaming aspects of these projects encourage the user to explore the unfamiliar, but simultaneously reward participants for repetition.”

For me in Foursquare, at least, it’s about this exploration/familiarization tension — I think you hit the nail on the head. Going to a new place (even if it’s just the umpteenth airport in a week) is rewarded, taking a little bit of the edge off of the unfamiliar and adding a little bit of fun exploratory sheen to the activity. That is, it might encourage players to explore, sure, but it also casts regular everyday activities as fun and engaging. That’s the big positive spin to it, though I still find it a bit sad when I see friends apparently quite excitedly checking in at Target for the 10th time in a week. It also reifies consumerist tendencies that I find a bit troubling.