Your Battle for "Mayor" Just Got a Whole Lot Easier

New sites help keep track of your foursquare competition

By Lauren Bertolini
|  Tuesday, Jun 8, 2010  |  Updated 3:18 PM EDT
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If you're stuck in a never-ending foursquare battle to become 'Mayor' of your favorite neighborhood spot, you're in luck.

We just discovered two sites that will help you get a leg up against your competition.

With a quick search, "Be The Mayor!" reveals how many check-ins it will take to oust the current mayor of any location in your city. The site is easy, but not perfect: You need to authorize your foursquare account each time you pull up the site.

Heavy promotion for the site began Tuesday, but it's been in the works for a while, Rick Webb, one of "Be The Mayor!"s creators, told us via email.

"We soft launched about 4 months ago and have been tweaking it quietly since," Webb said. "I *think* we were first to launch, though I can't say definitively. It's kind of an easy idea, and I suspect we all latched on it around the same time."

"When Will I Be Mayor" takes that easy idea and rounds it out with a few extra features.

Rather than requiring you to search location by location, "When Will I Be Mayor" pulls in your most recent foursquare check-ins and provides you with the number of check-ins you have at each location, and how many more you'll need to be the mayor. Plus, you can sign up to receive weekly e-mail updates on venues you monitor.

More than 3,000 users have signed up for the site since it launched on May 21, said Gregory Avola, the site's developer, a number which he said he's proud of.

Now he's working on enhancements for the site and a new idea -- There are plans in the works to incorporate public sharing, which will allow users to share their mayoral progress with friends. In the long term, Avola wants to clone "When Will I Be Mayor" for badges.

After spending time on both sites for this article, it is easy to see how they can feed into someone's foursquare addiction. The problem is that they are only valuable if you're already hooked into the gaming aspect of foursquare -- They aren't going to help you "find new ways to explore the city" something foursquare promotes as one the site's main utilities.

Yet another point to consider, something that "Be The Mayor!" reveals on their site, is that only one check-in per day counts toward your mayorship for any specific location. Which means even with all the data in the world, you may be fighting an uphill battle against that woman who spends seven nights a week at your favorite bar.

That said, Webb doesn't seem worried.

"I do think it's pretty great that there's a competition in an utterly profitless, hobby area already," Webb said. "I think it shows how much interest there is in Foursquare."

So, even if you aren't a 'Mayor' fanatic, at least both sites offer you one option beyond sending threatening @replies to the Mayor of that corner bar.

Wait, does anyone do that besides me?

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