I saw this tweet today by @eric_andersen: "Great point! "Foursquare can paint a very vivid picture of your life"--and had to laugh because I can't help but think this exact thing every time I use Foursquare. As in, my life, as depicted through my Foursquare activity, is exceedingly lame. Seriously--I mean, by the looks of my Foursquare activity you'd think I was an obese housewife who lives in the burbs (I'm the mayor of Dunkin' Donuts, McDonalds, 7-11, Rita's, Taco Bell/KFC, Sam's Club, T.J. Maxx, Homegoods, Rite Aid, CVS and Giant Food). With a drinking problem (I'm the mayor of Olney Beer & Fine Wine).
Well, actually, now that I type that out I realize that aside from the obese part and the drinking problem part (really!), I am a mom who lives in the burbs (albeit not a housewife) so it's a pretty accurate depiction of my life. Sigh.
I'm old enough to be ok with that, but if I were one to be concerned with my personal brand, the post @eric_andersen was tweeting about makes some good points. As in, if I cared more about my personal brand maybe I'd skip checking in at...well, basically all the places I check in.
She also makes some good points about HR stuff like don't call in sick then later check in at a movie theater, and you also might want to watch those week-night check-ins at bars. And be mindful of your privacy settings and how much you share on Twitter and Facebook.
The bottom line is no matter how tightly you lock-down your Foursquare profile--limit your friends to only people you know, don't publish to Twitter or Facebook--you're still putting a lot of information about yourself out there, both from a personal privacy standpoint and a personal brand standpoint. Be careful, um-kay?