Facebook (or Foursquare) Check-in as Rhetorical Act
I just got an iPhone about a month ago, and I've been taking advantage of the check-in feature from time to time. I can't help but notice where people are when they choose to hit the check-in button, though. The laundromat? McDonald's? Walmart? The Exxon station? The free clinic? Not so much. Check-ins are all part of the crafting of the person we want to show people. Why else do we do it? To let others know where we are in case they're also there? We would have seen them already anyway. To let people know where we are if they're nearby?* They probably wouldn't actually come to that place to see us, for fear of seeming stalkerish (I wouldn't take it that way).
I'm as guilty as anyone of checking in at certain places: the gym, the public library, the science museum, the farmers' market, church. These places tell people what -- that I care about being a good mom, that I care about health and intellectual enrichment. One of my FB friends has great check-ins: Big Lots, Long John Silver's. Oh well. I suppose I ought to just not check in at all, but it's kind of fun; the novelty hasn't worn off yet. I think I'll try checking in from a place I go today that's not so obnoxiously in line with my perception of my idealized self.
* Although I have to say, when I go to Florence, AL soon to see my family and friends, this will be exactly why I check in; I want to bump into as many people as possible.