I find myself suddenly addicted to Pinterest. Don't get me wrong, I signed up long ago, but never actually got into it. I took a second look at it recently, after doing the memento mori entry. So many of the Google results gave me Pinterest as the source, and so I found myself spending quite a lot of my evening perusing people's boards. There is so much to look through that a person could get lost for weeks! Since then, I've dedicated quite a few hours to building up my own boards.
Pinterest is a fantastic tool when you use it correctly. Its a cornucopia of ideas sorted by topic where a person can go back again and again to enjoy the fruits of their internet labors. You can find anything from fashion to cars to tattoos to home decor and everything in between. Whatever you're interested in, I guarantee you will find a board (or many) dedicated to the topic.
You have the ability to follow a person (like me, click here and you can follow me, sonpec) to see all their public pins, a board (like my Books I Love) to see what's pinned to that topic, or even a general theme, like women's fashion. Your home page then lists the newest pins from these areas, along with some boards or pins which fit in with your interests.
You can pin stuff directly from your internet searches, from other pins or upload from your computer. I especially appreciate that you can also have private boards which do not show up on your main feed or in any search. I created one just for family photos that I have stored in my email until now. These can only be viewed by me or someone I invite by email. You can also allow other people to pin to your public boards the same way. Say, for example, you've started a board for your high school. You can invite your friends to pin to that board also, so it's more of a community board, which is such a great idea. Anyone can see it (as long as you haven't made it private), but only those you authorize can post pins.
When you pin directly from the net, a description and the URL will be automatically generated. Unless you're pinning from Google or some other search-type sites, then you'll be prompted for a description before you can save. A great example is: you're at beyondtherack.com and you see a stunning vintage Dior bag. Pin it, and you get the website, the name and the price, usually. A handy tool if you're thinking about saving it for later (after you've slept on that $2500 price tag). Anyone following your board may see it and want to buy it - they just click the link in your pin and they're taken right there!
This site is perfect for people like me who have a hoarder living inside them. I love collecting things. I can't do it in real life, I don't have the funds or space in my home to collect all the things I would like, but I can do it here, reorganizing as the fancy strikes. Board titles, topics, themes and descriptions can all be easily changed and pins moved with the 'edit' button. Today that picture of a tree is in a board titled 'greenery' - tomorrow it's moved to 'haunted forests'. Instead of a folder on my desktop containing all the great pics of Maynard I find on the web, I can now simply pin them to a board on Pinterest and share them with the world.
My one gripe is that it can be difficult at times to track down the source of the photo if you're searching for more information about it. One pin I tried to track took me through the boards of six different people before I gave up. The pin will tell you if it's been pinned from someone else, and give you a link to that person. Then you have to figure out which board it's on (not always easy), then search through that board for that pin. Click it, and you may be starting the process all over because that person pinned from another board. I understand it would be too much to list the whole pin flow-chart (if you will) as some pics have been pinned numerous times, but it makes life a little difficult when researching a specific pin. On the other hand, it may be a first pin, but there's no real information. Say, they pinned it from Google two years ago and just wrote 'great car' in the description. Good luck finding out what type of car or who originally uploaded it to the web. Some people give an amazing amount of detail in their descriptions, some a line or two, and some none at all. I truly enjoy the ones where people have taken the time to give the background info - especially in the cases of antique photos or historical people and places.
So I think this is a fantastic time-waster, sorter of ideas, hoarding therapy and research tool all wrapped into one. I wish I'd started to actually use it when I first signed up, but I'm glad I've re-discovered it now!
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