Stalking celebrities is about to become a whole lot easier with the launch of a new website that collates celebrity sightings around the world in real time and plots them on a Google Map.
JustSpotted.com, which is already up and running but officially launches in five days, uses celebrity sightings published on Twitter and data from services such as Facebook, Foursquare and blogs.
The site uses computer algorithms to scan through the millions of tweets that get published every day and to pull out celebrity sightings. These are then published on a map of the world with information about their location such as the name of a restaurant at which they are dining.
A database of about 7000 celebrities will be tracked and, while the site is sure to raise the hackles of privacy campaigners, JustSpotted.com argues it is simply aggregating publicly available information.
One of its investors is Ron Conway, an early investor in Google, Facebook and Twitter.
Celebrity publicist Max Clifford told The Independent that the launch of the site was "potentially very dangerous" and "another step in the direction of Big Brother society".
"There are a lot of very funny people out there. If they are going to be able to easily know where celebrities are, then there is a chance it puts [the celebrities] at risk," he said.
But the site has suffered an early setback with Twitter appearing to renege on a deal to provide JustSpotted with direct access to its "firehose" data feed of all public updates.
Twitter said that the licence was terminated because the agreement between the two companies related to a real-time search engine called Scoopler.com, not JustSpotted.com.
But JustSpotted's co-founder A.J. Asver told The Hollywood Reporter that he did not need access to Twitter's firehose in order to use the site to track celebrities.
"We were actually going to call Twitter and end the deal anyway because we're using publicly available applications and websites to organise Twitter data," he said.
In addition to the stalker tools, the site will pull together news stories about the celebrities it tracks.
The site is similar to Gawker Stalker Maps, which was launched in 2006 and asked users to email or text in celebrity sightings. It has since been shut down after a backlash from celebrities, including George Clooney...