Another social media platform is coming in hot and giving Facebook a run for its money. Pinterest has taken over the social media world, especially when it comes to women. Within the month of March, Pinterest racked up 104 million visits and has become the third most popular social media site following Facebook and Twitter, according to Forbes.com.
Although the site has become extremely successful recently, I personally do not believe Pinterest will overpower Facebook and Twitter any time soon. For one thing, Pinterest is missing a massive audience. The site consists almost completely of women, and 97 percent of its Facebook fans are female, according to techcrunch.com.
Take my Pinterest account for example. Out of the 78 followers who follow my four boards, only four are male, and every single person that I follow is female.
For those out there who have not even heard of Pinterest, let me explain. Pinterest is a social media site that is visually stimulating. Users have the option to pin interesting, beautiful, inspiring or humorous images onto a “board.” Boards are usually categorized by topic. For example, one of my boards is titled “Old Soul” and consists of vintage photographs of Audrey Hepburn, Frank Sinatra, Grace Kelly, etc.
Some might wonder, “What’s the purpose of that?” This particular board of mine has no purpose except for my enjoyment. I like photographs from old eras. Therefore, when I come across an image that I find appealing, I pin it.
Women tend to have common themes for their boards. Many have boards that consist of fashion trends and wedding ideas (don’t judge; it’s a girl thing).
“I use Pinterest because I could find recipes and ideas for house décor,” Shannon Lenhart, a senior psychology major, said.
Cooking and interior design are also popular themes for most women. But what do the guys pin?
From what I observed of my male followers, it really depends on what these individuals enjoy. One has a board consisting of tattoo images and a board titled “zombies!” Another collects photos of recommended books while his other board is made up of different kinds of watches that he is interested in.
“During my study abroad trip, there were a bunch of guys who got [Pinterest],” sophomore youth ministry major Meghan Easley said. “They got it for different things, like cars, for example.”
Perhaps with these descriptions, Pinterest may seem somewhat dull. However, there are many individuals who spend significant amounts of time on the site. In one sitting, I tend to spend more time on Pinterest than I do on Facebook. The site’s design may have something to do with this.
Users see pictures with very little words involved, unlike Facebook, which can be text dominant. Pinterest’s simplicity makes browsing pleasant and easy. In fact, I would think that men would be attracted to Pinterest’s straightforwardness.
It is so effortless that I often enjoy Pinterest during times of relaxation: right before bed, when I am watching television, during downtime at work, etc. It does not demand much of one’s attention. Since there are no constant feed updates, one can browse the site at his or her own time and speed.
What one uses Pinterest for is up to the individual. A person’s personality, hobbies and interests are conveyed through images, and a picture really does become a thousand words.
But do not fret, Facebook fans. Until Pinterest can capture the interest of more men, it will pose no significant threat to Facebook. Even then, I believe Facebook will remain dominant because of its usefulness in sustaining relationships.
“Pinterest is more for hobbies,” Easley said. “Facebook is used to connect with friends and family…If I had to pick one or the other, I would pick staying in touch with people.”
Tara Donavanik is a senior English major. She is from West Covina, Calif. and loves dance, the beach and Starbucks.