Jan 302013
 January 30, 2013  Posted by  Online, U.S.

I’ve been checking Foursquare’s site occasionally today as they indicated that a change in their Terms of Service was forthcoming. Now it’s here, and it’s great.

As I blogged earlier today, Foursquare had implemented their new “full name” privacy policy, announced last month, even though it seemed to be in conflict with their media statements that suggested nyms could be used, and their Terms of Service that required “truthful” registration information.

Their new TOS, dated yesterday but uploaded today, states, in relevant part:

Registration and Eligibility.

You may browse the Site and view Content without registering, but as a condition to using certain aspects of the Service, you are required to register with Foursquare and represent, warrant and covenant that you provide Foursquare with accurate and complete registration information (including, but not limited to a user name (“User Name”), e-mail address and a password you will use to access the Service) and to keep your registration information accurate and up-to-date. Failure to do so shall constitute a breach of these Terms of Use, which may result in immediate termination of your Foursquare account. We recommend, but do not require, that you use your own name as your User Name so your friends can recognize you more easily. (emphasis added by me)

This is good news, indeed, and I think they made a great policy decision. Hopefully, they’ll allow users who registered using real names to change to usernames if they so desire.

Frankly, I have no idea if any of this was already under internal review before Jules Polonetsky, Greg Norcie, and I individually contacted them with our observations and questions, but either way, it’s a good outcome for user privacy.

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