Locative mobile media and time: Foursquare and technological memory


  • Michael Saker Southampton Solent University
  • Leighton Evans




Foursquare, location-based social networking, memory, lifelogging, spatial archive, smartphones


Foursquare is a location-based social network (LBSN) that can be used to explore locations and mark one’s movements in the form of ‘check-ins’. This paper investigates why some Foursquare users are choosing to record their locational past, and in so doing using it as a ‘mediated memory object’ (Dijck, 2009). The paper explores the different ways users then interact with their preserved spatial pasts, owing to Foursquare’s mode of preservation. A close engagement with phenomenological theory on the importance of engagement with technology and technicity as a shaping force on the experience of time conceptualises the use of Foursquare as a memory object. The functionality of Foursquare is positioned as a key element in how the location-based social network is significantly different from older memory related practices, as well as signalling its importance for the individuals that employ Foursquare in this manner.

Author Biographies

Michael Saker, Southampton Solent University

Michael Saker is a senior lecturer at Southampton Solent University. Dr. Saker’s research explores the physical, spatial and social effects of mobile and locative technologies. He predominantly teaches on units that explore the social, cultural and technological dimensions of the new media environment.

Leighton Evans

Postdoctoral Researcher at the National Institute for Regional and Spatial Analysis (NIRSA), National University of Ireland




How to Cite

Saker, M., & Evans, L. (2016). Locative mobile media and time: Foursquare and technological memory. First Monday, 21(2). https://doi.org/10.5210/fm.v21i2.6006