Dave Taylor

How To Unfriend People On FourSquare

By: Dave Taylor
June 28th, 2010

Based on your enthusiasm for Foursquare, I have been getting more into it and am connecting with a variety of different people in my community. Generally it's good fun and since I only check in when I am in a public setting, I have no worries about privacy with people I don't know. Except there's this one guy who uses his checkins to advertise his workshops incessantly and it's annoying to get those alerts. I want to unfriend him. But how can I do that in Foursquare?

Dave's Answer:


Ah, ain't the amazing new world of social networking fun and interesting? I have also seen people who use Foursquare checkins as a form of word-of-mouth advertising and I think it's a pretty ingenious idea if used properly. Unfortunately, it seems more likely that it's going to be a bit spammy and annoying, particularly if you have checkins show up as alerts on your mobile device or cellphone!

There are two ways to deal with this. One is to set your relation with them such that their updates don't show up as alerts on your iPhone (or whatever), but the other way, the way you're asking about, is to just disconnect and jettison them.

Either way, you'll need to start by going to the Foursquare web site -- not using the mobile app -- to better manage your friends.

Once you're there, look for the "Friends" link:

foursquare delete friend 1

Click on it and you'll move to the Friends area of the site. Still one more link to click on:

foursquare delete friend 2

Once you've actually clicked on the Friends link that includes a count (and as for me, I can't believe I have 76 Foursquare friends!) you'll see a long list of the people with whom you're connected on Foursquare:

foursquare delete friend 3

You can see in my little example here that the check box on the right side of the entry for my friend Laura Fitton isn't checked, while the one for my friend Lori Ruff is: this means that Lori's updates show up as alerts on my celphone, while Laura's do not. Why? Because Laura lives in a different city and there's essentially zero chance we'll be able to spontaneously bump into each other.

If I wanted to turn off the alerts for Lori, I could simply click the checkbox and they'd stop, but let's say that I wanted to disconnect / unfriend her entirely. To do that, click on "DELETE" and...

foursquare delete friend 4

An "OK" click means that the relationship is severed (and I'm pretty sure that they aren't notified you've done that and can only infer it when they realize that they haven't seen any of your checkins for a while) and a "Cancel" click means you're still friends.

Hope that helps you gain control of your friend lists on Foursquare!

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About the Author: Dave Taylor has been involved with the Internet since 1980 and is internationally known as an expert on both business and technology issues. Holder of an MSEd and MBA, author of twenty books and founder of four startups, he also runs a strategic marketing company and consults with firms seeking the best approach to working with weblogs and social networks. Dave is an award-winning speaker and frequent guest on radio and podcast programs. AskDaveTaylor.com http://www.intuitive.com/blog/