Pinterest is a pinboard-style social photo sharing website that allows users to create and manage theme-based image collections such as events, interests, hobbies, and more. Users can browse other pinboards for inspiration, ‘re-pin’ images to their own collections and/or ‘like’ photos. Pinterest’s mission is to “connect everyone in the world through the ‘things’ they find interesting” via a global platform of inspiration and idea sharing. Founded by Ben Silbermann, of West Des Moines, Iowa, the site is managed by Cold Brew Labs and funded by a small group of entrepreneurs and inventors. It is one of the “fastest growing social services in the world.”
Pinterest users can upload, save, sort and manage images, known as pins, and other media content (ie. videos) through collections known as pinboards. Pinboards are generally themed so that pins can easily be organized, categorized and discovered by other users. Pinterest acts as a personalized media platform, whereby your own content as well as anyone else’s uploaded pins can be browsed on the main page. Users can then save their favourite pins to one of their own boards using the “Pin It” button. Content can also be found outside of Pinterest and similarly uploaded to a board via the “Pin It” button which can be downloaded to the bookmark bar on a web browser.
There are several ways to register a new Pinterest account. Potential users can either receive an invitation from a friend already registered, or request an invitation directly from the Pinterest website. An account can also be created and accessed by linking Pinterest to a Facebook or Twitter profile. When a user re-posts or “re-pins” an image to their own board, they have the option of notifying their Facebook and Twitter followers; this feature can be managed on the settings page. Users that choose to log into Pinterest via Facebook must currently be using Facebook’s “Timeline” format.
On the main Pinterest page, a “pin feed” appears, displaying the chronological activity from the pinterest boards that a user follows. When browsing for new boards and relevant pins, users can visit a “Tastemakers” page that recommend pinboards with content similar to previous pins saved by a user. For both guests and Pinterest users, there are currently four main sections to browse: everything, videos, popular and gifts. These subcategories provide an organized system of browsing, which helps fellow users to connect and share interests.
Quick links to Pinterest include the “pin it” button that can be added to the bookmark bar of a web browser, “Follow me” and “Pin it” buttons added to personal website or blog page, and the Pinterest iPhone application available through the App Store.
The website has proven especially popular among women. The most popular categories on Pinterest that got the most popular pins are food & drink, DIY & crafts, and women’s apparel.
In March of 2012, law enforcement is using Pinterest to reach new audiences beginning with the Kansas City Police Department in Missouri.
Pinboards can be used by educators to plan lessons. Teachers can pin sites for later referral. Students can pin and organize sources and collaborate on projects.
Pinterest has played a role in the 2012 US Presidential Election. The wives of both candidates created accounts. Ann Romney debuted her Pinterest account in March and First Lady Michele Obama announced hers in June.
What Can You Do with Pinterest?
Redecorate your Home!
Joy uses Pinterest to save decorating ideas for her new home in LA. She saves patterns, furniture, and accessories that catch her eye.
Plan a Wedding!
Divya and Ben use Pinterest to plan their wedding. Their Moms can leave comments about the dresses, flowers, and ties they pin up.
Find your Style!
Tim uses Pinterest to share his personal style. He pins clothing, shoes and accessories he finds while browsing stores and fashion blogs.
Save your Inspirations!
Sha uses Pinterest to save design inspirations for his job. He can reference inspiring design work to share with his team at Trulia.
Save Your Recipes!
Jessica uses Pinterest to discover new gluten free recipes. She always has a collection of tasty appetizers and desserts she can cook when she’s hungry and looking for ideas.
Is to connect everyone in the world through the ‘things’ they find interesting. We think that a favorite book, toy, or recipe can reveal a common link between two people. With millions of new pins added every week, Pinterest is connecting people all over the world based on shared tastes and interests.