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What is Pinterest?
It’s hard to know how to use Pinterest if you don’t know what it is. According to about.pinterest.com, Pinterest is a “tool for collecting and organizing things you love.” If that made you think “ehh?” you’re not alone. Like a good accounting statement, that definition is completely accurate but tells you very little.
Use Pinterest for sharing
We’ll start more simply. Pinterest is a social networking platform, with which you can identify and collect things you like from the Internet. It also provides tools with which you can share your collections with others.
When you find things you like, you “pin” or add them to your “board” or personal collection. “Things” can include pictures, posts, videos, books, or anything else that you find or even upload to the web. You can name and organize your boards in whatever way appeals to you.
For example, in my Pinterest account, I have one board that showcases good ideas for sharing memories, another that is simply quotes I like, a third that is paper crafting ideas, etc.
How to create Pins:
Start by creating an account. Once that’s done, you’re set to start pinning.
Many Web Pages will have a little “Pin it” option right on their page. After clicking on it, you simply choose (or create) a board onto which you want to organize the content (photo, video). You can also add a description; Pinterest keeps track of the originator of the content.
Alternately, you can install an “add-on” to your browser that allows you to simply right-click to “pin” content you are viewing. (To find this add-on for Firefox, I simply entered “Firefox Pinterest app” into my Google search bar. The add-on Web Page then gave me simple step-by-step instructions on how to install it.)
- Pin old family photos. You can upload them yourself or repin photos uploaded by other family members.
- Pin historical documents that relate to the stories you’re telling. For example, if you’re telling a series of stories that took place during the WWII era, you can find many powerful images about that time. (Example) Related post Find Historical Documents to Illustrate your Writing.
You can pin images of your favorite things. (See Your Favorite Things Tell a Lot about You.) For instance, if you hobby is architecture, you can create a board of cool buildings. Similarly, if you’re into odd-looking cats, you can pin all sorts of photos of from CatsThatLookLikeHitler. (See, you learned something!)
- Pin items that you remember from your youth. To find them, do a search for “nostalgia.” Most of us don’t have pictures of our Malibu Barbie’s, wringers on washing machines, rotary dial phones, etc., but there are gads of them floating around the Internet. (You can later use them for illustrations. Just give proper photo credits. )
- Pin photos or maps of your favorite places or places to which you’ve traveled, like an electronic postcard collection. You can also make a bucket list board.
- Pin your own blogged reflections and stories, organizing them into boards. You could sort stories by sides of the family, time period, or content. A great example of this is this “Family Stories!!” board.
Why You Should Use Pinterest for Memory Sharing
- Some people complain that Pinterest is a huge “time-suck,” which I think is a very negative code for “It’s fun!” If you find it entertaining to use Pinterest, do it. (Unless you’re a minor, in which case I’m not advocating additional screen time.)
- It does help you share. You can connect and stay in touch. Your friends can sign-up to follow your boards to see what you’re up to and you can see what they’re pinning. It doesn’t beat sharing photo prints over coffee, but if your loved ones are far away….
- You can find others who share your interests. Pinterest suggests “pins” for you to consider. Once you’ve found a few things that interest you, you can also find other people “pinning” that type of items.
© Laura Hedgecock 2013