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A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this app.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Gowalla is a social media app geared for grownups. Users communicate their locations using not just the app, but also by using Twitter and Facebook, which means friends -- and potentially strangers -- can track a user’s whereabouts. Among the locations listed are adult venues, including bars and dance clubs. User comments are unfiltered and rely on community policing to flag posts that include profanity, hate speech, or inappropriate sexual content, but it's likely that these will appear on the site, at least occasionally. Comments frequently reference drinking, partying, etc. Also note that users can create “trips” that suggest multiple locations for others to visit; some of these trips have adult themes, such as pub crawls. For more parent advice about location-sharing apps, check out our article.
Is it any good?
Similar in design and function to the popular Foursquare app, GOWALLA has users check in at various “spots” (restaurants, stores, bars, landmarks, etc.) and post their location on the app, as well as to Twitter and Facebook. Some differences between the two include Gowalla’s ability to let users post photos of the locations they visit, find directions to spots via Google Maps, and create “trips,” which are groups of spots created by one user for other users to visit, such as landmark tours or pubcrawls. Like Foursquare, Gowalla’s location-sharing features and inclusion of mature spots and trips makes this app best used by adults.