You’re the Manager but I’m the Mayor: Understanding Foursquare Check-ins in Claimed Venues

This talk is based on a work in progress. The presentation includes preliminary findings and analysis from an ethnographic study of Foursquare users in the Boston area, focusing on their relationships with “friends” as well as “claimed venues” on Foursquare. This project aims to investigate how and why managers of Foursquare’s claimed venues and their patrons use location-based services; what relationships are forged between vendors and customers via Foursquare; how participants understand their own participation and the audiences for their actions; as well as attitudes about locational privacy and the meaning of location announcement over these networks. Some of these findings reflect information flows, practices of listening and responding, and relations of power that are relevant across other social network sites as well.

Speaker Details

Germaine Halegoua is finishing her PhD in Communication Arts at the University of Wisconsin – Madison. She will be starting as an Assistant Professor at the University of Kansas in Fall 2011. Her research interests focus on the relationships between urban environments and networked technologies, as well as power relations within social media and emergent technologies. In particular, she’s interested in how visions of networked spaces by public officials and urban planners often conflict with vernacular imaginations and actual uses of networked technologies. As an intern in the Social Media Collective she focused on investigating location-based social media practices and information flows. This talk focuses on her work with vendor and customer relations over location-based and social media networks.

Germaine Halegoua
University of Wisconsin – Madison