Since its release in 2010, Pinterest is the new “it” of social media. Users can upload and share content (pins) of their own, or borrow someone else’s pins (re-pinning) onto their own board.
The cool thing about Pinterest is that it lets you keep everything in one place, and you can pin whatever you want! For example, one of my favorite things to do is baking. I also enjoy quotes, Christmas, do-it-yourself projects, and I like dogs more than people. Random interests, right? Not very similar to each other. But Pinterest allows me to create boards specific to each of these interests and collect information, articles, and images about each respective category – kind of like digital scrapbooks for each of my interests.
But regular people like me aren’t the only ones who can benefit from Pinterest. Businesses can and have taken the opportunity to market towards Pinterest users (mostly women – more on that in my final project). Many companies have generated Pinterest contests. For example, Babies “R” Us hosted a “Pin Your Registry” sweepstakes, in which registered mom’s could pin their dream nursery as a board on Pinterest and send it to the company – one mom (from Maine, incidentally) won thousands of dollars worth of merchandise. In addition, companies can offer Pinterest-only coupons, deals, and ads to generate more interest in the organization.
Politicians also have a lot to gain from using Pinterest. Recently, Michelle Obama and Ann Romney have taken to the boards. Both women have patriotic categories as well as family photos and wholesome images posted under their profiles. Interestingly, I think this shows a lot of gender sterotyping on behalf of Obama and Romey’s campaign teams – why don’t Barack and Mitt have their own Pinterests? The candidates are likely using their wives to appeal to the large majority of female Pinterest users in hopes of gaining their votes.
Ultimately, Pinterest is a great way to stay organized and share new ideas at a global level much more efficiently – the site categorizes and labels different materials based on common interests. There is definitely opportunity to remix material quickly and internationally – what will Lessig think about that?