Texas Governor Rick Perry joins the location tagging service Gowalla. With Gowalla you can “check in” at your current location with your smartphone and earn rewards for frequently checking in at various places. Your friends on Gowalla can see where you have checked in at and what rewards you have earned. Gowalla just happens to be a tech start up based in Austin, so of course Governor Perry would use Gowalla and not one of its out of state competitors.
Join Gowalla here for free and check in at the next campaign stop you are at with Governor Perry! Here is the Texans for Rick Perry “passport stamp” that you can earn by checking in on the campaign trial with Governor Perry.
The tech website CrunchBase describes Gowalla as the following.
Gowalla is a mobile and web service that gives people around the world a new way to communicate and express themselves through the everyday places and extraordinary settings they enjoy.
People can capture and share their spot in the world with friends and family, while discovering new places, events and trips as they go. Gowalla offers businesses, campaigns, and organizations the unique opportunity to reward loyalty, reach new consumers, and to create memorable experiences.
Based in Austin, Texas, Gowalla was launched in 2009 by Josh Williams and Scott Raymond. The company is backed by notable investors including Greylock Partners, Alsop-Louie Partners, Founders Fund, and other prominent angel investors.
Governor Perry and two other out of state political campaigns are the first ones to join Gowalla and use it for campaign purposes. Governor Perry’s campaign and Governor Perry himself have been effectively using social media, so it is no surprise that they would be the first to break into Gowalla. Governor Perry himself even twitters, you can follow him @GovernorPerry. Yes it is really him, not campaign staff.
Gowalla and other location based tagging services like Foursquare could have some great real world applications in terms of political campaigns. There are of course security concerns of tagging the location of a candidate for the whole world to see.
The most potential for these location tagging services is when early voting and election day come around. The services could display the nearest polling locations and the times the polls are open. They could allow their users to check in at their polling location when voting and earn a special badge or passport stamp. This would be a great way for the politically active users to remind their friends to go vote! If the services went really in depth they could tell a person not only what polling locations are around them, but also what their specific polling location is for election day.