Facebook has acquired the team that created the location-based, social check-in service Gowalla. Much of Gowalla’s staff will begin working at Facebook, and the Gowalla service will cease operation by the end of January.

The acquisition brings only the personnel to Facebook, not any aspect of the Gowalla product or its data. In fact, a Gowalla representative was careful to clarify that your personal data will not be handed over to Facebook unless you choose to export it there.

According to CNN Money, the former Gowalla team members will work on Facebook’s new Facebook Timeline feature, which at present is an overhaul of personal profiles but which may be extended to other components of the social network.

Details about January’s “winding down” of existed Gowalla services aren’t yet available, but we’ll share them as soon as we know them.

[Image credit: Dave Newman]