Friday, November 1, 2013

Curating with Pinterest

First thing is first. Sorry about the late post. I got some exciting news on Thursday and was a little distracted!

For my curation tool, I have been using Pinterest. Pinterest, as you may well know, is a very interesting medium. My purposes in using this as my creation tool are to study identity according to what is posted on individual users accounts. Think of it as "you are what you pin," if you will. I think the main point of Pinterest is used as an expression of individuality, although the interesting thing is people don't really pin their own content; they repin other people's content. I also think this is relevant with the book that I chose: Girl Wide Web 2.0, and I'm excited to see how each contribute to the idea of girls' and women's identity.

Courtesy of jackie vanover on flickr.com

People can create pinboard and pin things that are relevant in their life at that moment: for example, a user could be planning for a wedding, getting a haircut, teaching a class, etc., and they will pin things that are relevant to them or that they want to remember for later. It's a good way to collect content so that it can be reviewed later.

There are a few problems that I have noticed with Pinterest, however. The first is the problem with copyright (see my previous post), although unless an owner really has a problem with his or her content being pinned, it is mostly ignored by Pinterest and its users. The second is that even though, to me, this is primarily a social bookmarking site, if the content doesn't have an image or video attached to it, it can't be pinned; this limits the content that users can keep track of. Annoying.  The third is that because users primarily go off of the images as a representation of the content, it is really easy for people to add a spam site as its url so people go and visit that site.

Despite the problems, though, Pinterest is a very popular website (85.5 million views a month according to this source), and I think there is a lot of valuable data to be found when it will be studied as a curation tool for identity. I'm really interested to see how people differ as individuals even though many of them repin the same or similar content.