When I first started using Foursquare, the mobile app that lets users “check in” to locations to gain points and discounts, I thought it would be a great way for technology to bring my friends and I closer together. What would be better than spontaneous meetups at a local bar after realizing we’re all in the same quarter-mile radius?
That didn’t happen. In fact, I just felt more isolated when I learned that friends were nearby and they didn’t bother to tell me.
Then, after businesses caught on to the benefits of using check-ins to encourage repeat patronage, it seemed as though I would start reaping rewards, like freebies or significant discounts.
That didn’t happen, either. I have one free Peanut Butter Snickers to show for that concept, along with the realization that I don’t WANT to visit my local burrito joint enough to qualify for “Mayor Monday.”
Finally, at Walgreens this past Saturday, I found a use for location-based services that I can get behind.
One flu shot donated for every Facebook and Foursquare check in. I feel as though I’m finally doing some good while playing with my nerdPhone, someone gets a free jab, and everyone (including our public health department) wins.