by Kim Taylor
Last summer, after hearing friends and followers rejoice over badges and mayorships they’d earned, I joined the “check-in” craze to see what all the fuss was about. After adding a few friends to my Foursquare account, I began checking into various locations. Soon enough I was rewarded with a few of my own badges—and several months in I actually earned my first mayorship … probably because nobody else was ever checking into the Orlando Rowing Club at 6 a.m.
Beyond the badges, there have also been a few cool things along the way. Once, after checking into a bar in town, I noticed an online friend I’d never met in real life was also there. A few tweets later and we had our first in-person interaction. Then, last month while vacationing out-of-state, I used Foursquare’s “nearby” feature to see where the locals were hanging out.
But lately I’ve noticed something. The badges have stopped, and beyond the actual check-in, there’s little reason to participate. The check-in rewards that businesses are supposed to be using to market themselves are few and far between.