Having never tried Pinterest, but with the ‘visual artefact’ in mind, this morning I signed up and had a play. Already, I can see the scope for compulsive collecting of images. I liked Pinterest’s need/option to choose five initial interests to spark the whole thing off. This afternoon, I got an email suggesting some more images for one of my boards and that set me off on another trail, and the setting up of a couple more boards. I feeling – well – if not hooked, at least involved.
In that light, here are two questions for other users:
First, does anyone any good advice on what I do with the images, beyond collecting them? I guess a short answer would be ‘whatever you want to do with them’. Behind the question, though, is an underlying one for education and digital cultures – how we nurture (in ourselves and others) the creative use of a multiplicity of tools, when life is short and attention spans sometimes seemingly not much shorter.
Second, does anyone know how Pinterest ‘works’? Is it simply a sum of its users contributions, or what? Behind this question lurks the ethical / political question of what the technology is doing, especially behind the scenes. I ate a banana for lunch, with (shamefully) barely a thought for the conditions of its cultivation and sale. I feel I risk the same empty-headed move with the multiplicity of technologies at my finger tips.