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I Prefer Foursquare over Gowalla

Let me start with a rant…

Mashable stole my original title for this post on December 25th, 2009. Merry Christmas to you too. I had originally planned Foursquare vs. Gowalla…

I had been working on my post for over a month now, you see… I am not reviewing a social media application, I am using it everyday to understand and then talk about it… that takes time.

Okay enough, let me now get straight to the point.

I started using both Foursquare and Gowalla couple months ago. Location based iPhone apps are HOT and seems like there is one coming out everyday. Foursquare and Gowalla are most popular by far. If you are working on the next location based surf the city game, STOP! (hint: loopt)

Foursquare
Gowalla
 

Both apps have pretty much the same features but I Prefer Foursquare over Gowalla, and here’s why:

GPS Capability

I am at Via Mia Pizza, and it is time time to check-in. I tap Foursquare and check-in. I tap Gowalla but it relies on a different algorithm I guess, it told me I wasn’t even on El Camino Real. I restarted the app, it said finding address… hmmm I have a Pizza to eat, sorry!

Sounds like I am generalizing but I am not, it has happened to me quite a few times.

Cheat Me Not

Gowalla ASSUMES I am going to cheat, so what it does is it asks the person who first discovered the location to create a marker. At SFSU, I think the person who created the marker was standing at the BART shuttle right on 19th Avenue. When I park my car at the other end of the campus, Gowalla doesn’t let me check-in because I am not within certain meters of SFSU. Of course I am not, the parking garage is a mile from 19th Avenue. Foursquare doesn’t care, it doesn’t ASSUME I am going to cheat.

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Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays. I know all of you are in a festive mood. I found this video via Facebook and thought you guys might find it funny. It is Jingle Bells, bhangra style.

Disclaimer: I am not Punjabi.

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Buy, Beg or Bug?

The New Rules of Marketing and PR keynote presentation and Q&A session delivered by David Meerman Scott at the Business Marketing Association 2009 national “Unlearn” conference. Scott argues that when others spread your ideas and tell your stories online, buyers are eager to do business with you and all kinds of doors begin to open.

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Why Was Twitter Hacked Today?

By now you must be well aware that Twitter was hacked, don’t worry it is now running smoothly. I visited the usual social media suspects and found out that most of them were just running with the story and no one addressed why it was done today and if it will be done again.

Here is what the image that Iranian Cyber Army put up looks like:

Twitter Hacked

So Why Was Twitter Hacked Today?

It is the 1st of Muharram in Iran, Islamic New Year. Muharam marks the beginning of the Hijri (Muslim) Calendar. Iranian Cyber Army was just trying to wish Twitter “Happy New Year” in a way one wishes an enemy.

On a more serious note, Muharram is the most sacred month in Iran as the majority population is Shi’a. The first 10 days of Muharram commemorate the Martyrdom of Hussain (A.S), the grandson of Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H). He was killed while defending Islam, Iranian Cyber Army chose 1st of Muharram for a reason. See the big picture?

The red wording on the green flag says “Ya Hussain” in Arabic (I don’t speak Arabic, I can read it though). Rest I believe is in Farsi, I have asked an Iranian friend to translate but if you know it, please let me know what it means so that I can update the post.

Why Twitter and not Facebook?

Here is a quote from CNN that I think sums it all up:

Earlier this summer when Iran’s disputed presidential election spiraled into bloody protests, the opposition took to social networking and used Twitter to inform the world. Protesters beamed images from the violent protests at a time when the mainstream media outlets had a hard time getting access to Iran. Twitter became so fundamental in spreading news of the protests that followed that the U.S. State Department asked the company to delay a planned shutdown for maintenance.

I have highlighted the reason why I think Twitter was hacked and not Facebook in BOLD.

Just a heads up for Twitter, they might want to consider beefing things up for 10th of Muharram.

Blogging Strategy: Extending Your Voice To The World

Jeremiah Owyang is very well known social media strategist and was recently in Doha, Qatar for ictQatar. He did a keynote presentation about blogging strategy in general and how to connect to the world.

Owyang’s presentation is insightful and informational. Without getting too political, I would like to outright say that blogging is form of expression and self thought process, it serves it purpose well only when there are no boundaries, freedom of speech.

Though it is interesting to see that countries like Qatar and U.A.E are at the forefront of innovation, it is important to point out that blogging is a step by step process. It has to start at the grass roots and then move to the next level, not the other way around.

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