Now: crowdsourcing crowds

Monday, 28 May, 2012

Launched last week, the Now iPhone app detects hot events taking place in four major cities: New York, Paris, London and San Francisco. Other metropolises will follow, no doubt. Berlin, Sydney and Vancouver are three on the Rainy Day list. The nifty thing is that the app rates “hotness” by analyzing the number of photos taken of an event that have been uploaded to Instagram. It’s clearly banking on crowdsourcing driven by the Facebook masses and clever events managers will want to be in on the act as the potential for crowd manipulation, er, management is enhanced by this kind of innovation. A company doing a product launch, for example, could flood Now with images of their event and, depending on the coolness of those attending plus the quality of the schwag being handed out, this could encourage more people to pile on with the result that the event maximizes publicity.

Could Now dethrone the venerable/vulnerable Time Out from its seat atop the “urban happening” throne? The timing, if not the app, is right. And the website costs a lot less to maintain, too.


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