Maryland Bar Bulletin
Publications : Bar Bulletin : April 2012

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Just as I decided I didn’t need another social network in my day, a new one came to light that fit a very specific need.

My work and life relies heavily on the Internet, and often I come across Internet-inspiration that I need to store somewhere convenient. Bookmarks get lost depending on the computer, and it never seems like an appropriate way to use other social networks. Pinterest, however, fills that collecting void without feeling burdened by status updates and information. Posts are based on there being photographs available, making the experience primarily visual. With Pinterest, you’re your own virtual museum curator about topics only you care about.

The basic setup is simple.

You start your account, and by default Pinterest sets up a series of default “boards” based on categories that are often used. Some examples include:  for the home, things I like, my style, etc.

I highly recommend you take a few minutes to create your own boards based on things you know you look for already. Perhaps a board each for your home, travel, recipes, DIY projects, or fashion. Click on your account name on the upper right and then “boards” to customize your pinboards. Clicking on the Pinterest logo at any time will show you pins from your followers and the rest of the world depending on your interests. 

Along the left side you will see a list of people who have re-pinned any of your pins, and by clicking on a username you can see their boards and choose to follow specific boards or all of them. Following users will improve the variety and volume shown on your feed of items you may want to repin for yourself.

It won’t take long for the pinning obsession to take over your Internet browsing habits.

Cardigan you love? Pin it.

Find a recipe to try? Pin it.

Home project to do when you have time? Pin it.

Like a pin someone else has posted? You can repin it to your board or simply “like” it if it doesn’t fit in to any of your categories.

No status updates, not many personal pictures, no game invites. Not to mention, no privacy settings, which is something to keep in mind, although I don’t think it is a problem with this platform when it is used as intended.

Your boards and information are available to all Pinterest users. Be as anonymous as necessary. Try it and tell us what you think. The MSBA has created a Pinterest account here: pinterest.com/mdbarassoc/.  As I find new information relevant to the practice of law and the MSBA, I will be posting it here. You are welcome to share pins and ideas you might have about your profession. If anything, Pinterest offers a hassle-free place to organize some of the excess information in your life, whether it is directly related to your career or not.

More Pinterest

  • Since Pinterest is still under development, it is invite-only. You will have to request an invite and they will send you an e-mail when space is made available. It will be a bit quicker if you ask a friend for an invite instead.
  • The network is completely image-based, which means it will not post something to the network without a relevant photo on the page. This is actually affecting how bloggers and my fellow web workers are publishing content.
  • Install the Pin It bookmark to your browser. If you missed it during account creation, you can log in and find it under the “about” menu at the top of the page. 
  • There are apps available for  download to iPhone and Android smartphones.
  • You cannot pin photos directly from Facebook, which is a good thing for privacy.
  • Statistically speaking, Pinterest is highly appealing to women from 18 to 34 years old. An unaffiliated website was created to play off this information: gentlemint.com. You’ll find less information here about wedding plans and home decorating, and instead, mustaches, hot rods, sports, and grilling recipes.

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Publications : Bar Bulletin : April 2012

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