Foursquare is big in Jersey. Or at least it will be, if DJ Pauly D has any say.
This week, the co-star of MTV's Jersey Shore reality series became one of the first to try Foursquare's "Celebrity Mode," where big-name users of the social network can either choose to send updates to all their followers, or just a smaller circle of friends.
More broadly, Viacom
"There's a desire to be involved and get a good buzz, because there are lots of people involved," said Foursquare co-founder Dennis Crowley in an interview. "But it's difficult to get, say, an Ashton Kutcher on without having him broadcast his location. Every time he goes into a bagel shop is going to result in a paparazzi nightmare."
Crowley's right. Cyberstalking is an often-voiced concern for those who refuse to try Foursquare or peers such as Loopt and Gowalla. Celebrity Mode, if extended to regular users like yours truly, would alleviate some of those concerns.
For now, Foursquare is private. Crowley says the company has raised $1.35 million in venture capital and has plenty of money left in the bank. Meanwhile, TechCrunch reports that Accel Partners, Andreesen Horowitz, Khosla Ventures, and Redpoint Ventures are battling to lead the company's next round of funding, which could reach $10 million.
There are three reasons for tech investors to pay attention to Foursquare. First, there's the quality of VCs backing the company. Accel helped fund AdMob and Facebook. Andreesen Horowitz partner Marc Andreesen helped create Netscape and is backing a browser technology that threatens Microsoft's
Second, both Google
Finally, there are the celebrities. Foursquare doesn't match Twitter yet -- with a reported 600,000 users, it's tiny by comparison -- but like its sibling social network, Foursquare is attracting enough of the A- and B-lists to merit red carpet consideration.
Call it an uprising that has a chance to become a full-scale rebellion, the kind that unlocks billions in value.
What does Foursquare need to do in order to become the next Twitter? Discuss in the comments box below.