Yesterday, Cult of Mac posted a long and useful read meditating on the intersection of social networking and location-based apps, using a Russian-developed app called "Girls Around Me" as its touchstone example of how problematic default privacy settings can be. The app actually provides two fairly simple functions, albeit in a very creepy way. It lets you see recent Foursquare check-ins in your vicinity (categorized by gender) and then gives you a quick like to that person's Facebook profile — assuming she (or he) connected it to Foursquare. While the app doesn't technically broach anyone's privacy, it does show just how much many people are revealing about themselves on Facebook.
In response to the article, Foursquare has revoked access to its API for the app, effectively shutting it down. A Foursquare spokesperson said in a statement that
We have a policy against aggregating information across venues using our API, to prevent situations like this where someone would present an inappropriate overview of a series of locations
Foursquare's API Platform Policy has plenty of rules and regulations for app makers, though it's not clear which of the rules there this app has run afoul of or if it's simply an unofficial policy. Nevertheless, that's one creepy app down and a good reminder to visit your Facebook privacy settings and make sure you're comfortable with everything that's public.
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