Over the weekend, Yelp announced that they would be adding the ability to earn badges and "rule" a location if you check into it more than anyone else.
Sound familiar? Well it should, because it seems that Yelp is borrowing heavily from their main competitor: Foursquare.
Some people will view these latest changes by Yelp as competitive, while others will just look at it as copycat tactics.
But what I see is the idea of "badges" and "mayorship/ruling" becoming not only an integral part of location-based social networking, but that Foursquare will be the monitored more and more by current location-based services and future startups as well.
We saw this same thing in 2006.
That was when Facebook was launched globally, utilizing a few major social media concepts like "friending" and "status updates" that the general public really seemed to connect with.
The meteoric rise of Facebook that followed caused every other struggling social network to start copying what Facebook was doing in hopes of achieving that same level of success.
Just like that, Facebook became the gold standard of friend-based social networking.
Fast-forward to 2010, and Yelp's transparent attempt to surpass their biggest rival could actually solidify Foursquare as the top location-based social network, giving it that same gold standard status Facebook acheived in 2006.