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In Brief Technology

Pitfalls of location-based services as they hit the mainstream

My colleague at ReadWriteWeb, Sarah Perez, does a fantastic job articulating the trouble people may have with location-based services as they hit mainstream adoption in an article this morning. There are some great points in here, especially with regard with how people tend to want to have as many friends as possible on a social network and how that doesn’t translate well to what should be the much more private world of location-based networks. Don’t let me keep you, though, read it now.

Categories
In Brief Technology

Twitter geolocation ‘imminent’; I’ll stick with Brightkite

Smarterware says geocoded tweets are imminent. Twitter geolocation is a win for newsgathering situations where it may be more expedient to tick off a “share my location” box than it is to check in on Brightkite and start posting notes. They’re doing a couple things weird here, though: scrubbing the data after 14 days (apparently to elude subpoena) and only giving the user control insomuch that they can specify whether location data is embedded in the tweet (though I’m sure app developers will be able to do more to the data before it’s posted). I like this for quick and dirty situations, but the lack of persistence of the geocoded data bothers me a bit. I still prefer the Brightkite approach to places as objects and the association of notes and pictures to those places. I also prefer Brightkite’s privacy controls, as you can still give your location to just a certain subset of people. It will be interesting to see how Brightkite’s data is enhanced by geocoded tweets — Brightkite could effectively hook into Twitter streams and import geocoded tweets into their placestreams (if the user so wishes, of course). I’ll be interested to see how app developers flesh this out. (Thanks to Mandi Engram at Social Media Club Columbia for pointing out this article!)