The widespread outcry that the “Girls Around Me” mobile app is a ‘tool for rapists’ - as it facilitates users in stalking women nearby, with the help of location-based social networking service Foursquare – has prompted the removal of the contentious app from the iTunes app store.
Despite the fact that the ‘stalker’ app was perfectly legitimate, it was criticized for being too ‘creepy’ because it made use of FourSquare’s publicly available information to unfold for the users a map which depicted the locations at which close-by women had checked-in. In addition, the app also provided a quick link to the Facebook profiles of these females.
The app was initially marketed on the girlsaround. me promotional website, where it was mentioned that the service would essentially help the users “see where nearby girls are checking in,” as well as show “what they look like and how to get in touch.”
Furthermore, the website also mentioned that the app – which US technology blog Gizmodo described as the "world's creepiest" app - could also be used for searching for men, and to “see who's hanging out at a particular place.”
Noting that “Girls Around Me” app was booted by FourSquare for accessing its data, FourSquare spokeswoman Laura Covington told the New York Times that the app marked “a violation of our API [application programming interface] policy. Covington further added that FourSquare had “reached out to the developer and shut off their API access.”
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