10.02.2012

Pinterest and Journalism

Class assignment today: After we have discussed Pinterest, I want you to search Pinterest and media watchdog sites for journalistic uses of the tool. Find one board that is being used effectively, in your opinion, and write about it and link to it on our class blog (in the comments, below). What site is using it? How active it is? Does it tie back to stories/projects on the site? Are the pins all of site content (photos from a story, for instance), or are they pins from the community? Other comments are welcome.

18 comments:

Jenny Kay Paulson said...

PBS is using Pinterest regularly to link to to stories. Strangely, the images they're pinning aren't always linked to their website. I'm not sure why they want to drive traffic to other sites, unless they have some sort of connection I don't know about. It seems they are using Pinterest more to interact with their audience than to drive traffic to their site. They have 671 pins on 16 boards, but they don't have a high rate of repins. A good example pinning a story on Pinterest is Missing Tombs of the Pharaohs. The image was not ever repinned though, so it is hard to know how many people were interested in the story.

Julia said...
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Allison said...

TIME Magazine appears to have a valuable, user-friendly Pinterest site with clearly organized content. Given that the site has over 14,000 followers it appears that they are posting things that appeal to a large number of users.

When looking at individual boards from TIME, organized by categories that are either topic oriented like "TIME Parenting & Kids" or event oriented like 2012 London Summer Olympics, I was most impressed by their "TIME Style & Design" board that has 79 pins and 11, 946 followers. Most of the posts have been re-pinned at least once and have pretty detailed descriptions of the image's meaning/relevance. Also, each post leads directly to the article to which it is most relevant.


Julia said...

The Guardian has a pinterest account with 2,199 followers and 19 different boards. The topics of their boards range from a collection of 83 Guardian front pages to a tribute to Andy Warhol. They have a board named "On Our Radar," which is a variety of stories from their own site and other news sites, all of which are credited appropriately. I like the diversity of boards because they combine hard news with more special interest boards that are more in line with pinterest's most popular use.

There is a board devoted to Olympics sports guides with images of a track and field athlete, sprinter, a tennis player, a handball athlete, gymnasts, and others that were posted on the Guardian's website during the summer (www.guardian.co.uk).

The Guardian created a unique board called which is a compilation of their favorite infographics used in old and new stories.

I think they could do more with their "Behind the Scenes" board, which gives users a glimpse into their office life and newsroom. There are 1,707 followers but only 10 pins, which means they could be pinning more on this board and giving followers a better look at their organization.

K. Nancoo-Russell said...
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Amber Larkins said...

CTV News's pinterest site has 636 followers, 19 boards and 1,760 pins. Most of the boards and pins seem to be geared towards entertainment stories, but there is one board entitled "Tragedy and Triumph" which has stories that are meant to be inspirational. The captions give a brief description of the stories and above the pictures there are links to the full story. However, the Arts and Entertainment board doesn't link to stories. It only has links back to the pinterest site. There is a community section which links to the "mynews" section of the CTV news site, where users can submit photos of newsy things, which appear to mostly be fires. Basically, these photos submitted by users are then pinned to the "mynews" pinterest board.

ymshah09 said...

People Magazine is quite active on Pinterest, which in terms of social media, works perfectly for them for a number of reasons. A majority of Pinterest users are women and I imagine that People has a large female following, seeing as it revolves around fashion and celebrity news. People has over 25,000 followers and 40 boards, covering the range of topics featured in the magazine from red carpet to fashion and features. Their Celebrity Style page is a good example of how they take content directly from their site and put it back on Pinterest. It's highly visual content and works well with the format of Pinterest.

K. Nancoo-Russell said...

Many news organizations are using Pinterest to post their stories and hoping that the photograph accompanying the article would draw people in and encourage them to click on the story, which usually takes them back to the news organization's website. After all, the site is very visually-centric.
However, the Wall Street Journal is taking a different approach and posting quotes from their articles. If a user is interested in the story, when they click on the quote it will take them to the Wall Street Journal's site. There's also a brief caption that tells what the story is about.
This appeals to me as a news consumer because most times, the news story is what draws me in, and not a photo.
The Wall Street Journal account does have visual boards as well, but I think the quotes set them apart from other news organizations.

Soongy12 said...

I think the Huffington Post Politics page works well because of the variety of pins on its board. Several of pins link to Huffinton Post stories and therefore is likely to drive more traffic to the website via its Pinterest audience.

The page current has 8,794 followers and 36 pins. Nearly all the pins on the board has been repined, liked or has been commented on. In addition to photos, the board has pinned videos, such as campaign ads, as well.

The board, however, does not appear to be updated frequently as most of the pins are of Obama and the Republican primary candidates. There are very few of Mitt Romney.

Jeremy B said...
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Jeremy B said...

The Washington Post does a good job on Pinterest. The Post does not pin items frequently -- they only have 416 pages as of Oct. 2 -- but they have covered specific events well. In particular, they pinned 106 compelling photos (with captions) from the London Olympics. They also frequently pin items to home, garden and food categories. Their coverage of the 2012 campaign is lacking on the page, however, which is likely a strategic choice. It makes sense to focus on areas that will appeal to Pinterest users, considering their demographic profile.

Sean Henderson said...

The Los Angeles Times uses Pinterest.com to pin graphical content from their website to draw interest and drive traffic to their news site. As Pinterest is a site for primarily visual postings, The Los Angeles Times tends to focus on pinning fashion, travel and food related topics. Over 1,500 people have repinned content from The Times' page, and most of the photos include a link back to the original article or blog post. Being a newspaper located in Los Angeles, there is also a decent amount of celebrity, music and entertainment content posted on the page. The front page is very visually alluring as it is colorful and includes a lot of professional photography. In addition to The Los Angeles Times' original content, they also include a section entitled, Newspapers Pinning, which is a way for any newspaper with an account on Pinterest to post to The Los Angeles Times page. The Pinterest page has 61 boards and 1,766 followers. Overall, The Los Angeles Times' use of Pinterest appears to be an effective way to both share visual content, while simultaneously generating web traffic from those who follow the links to their site.

WildeJessica said...

The Wall Street Journal uses Pinterest to engage readers in a very creative way. Its focus is not on hard news, but on creating a community of WSJ readers. For example, WSJ has a board called #morningWSJ and all of the photos that are pinned are from readers. But they are not posted directly from the readers. They all begin with the caption, "We asked readers to send in photos from their phones about how they start their morning routines. Here is one from..." While these photos are not newsworthy, they demonstrate a little bit about the WSJ community.

They did a similar thing with a board called WSJ Manhattanhenge. Each photo caption begins with, "Twice a year, New Yorkers are treated to a sunset that aligns with Manhattan's street grid. We asked WSJ readers to share their best 'Manhattanhenge' photos on instagram and Twitter."

WSJ's news stories are almost secondary in their placement on the pinterest page, but they do have a board for WSJ Graphics and Top Stories from several news organizations.

VoyeurLawyer said...

The Dallas Morning News has a Pinterest site and its “boards feature the best of our photography: food, nature, art, travel and more.” There are 54 boards, 1,754 pins, and 595 followers. The pins link back to standalone photographs or ones in a slideshow on the dallasnews.com website.

Most of the boards are from The Dallas Morning News itself, but there are a few boards, such as “Texans are pinning it BIG!” where contributors “can pin ANYTHING that is to do with Texas!” There is a disclaimer requesting no pins of spam, false information or seriously offensive material.

There doesn’t appear to be a serious journalistic purpose, since they do not link to stories, but it has a nice photojournalistic appeal.

Lucas High said...

Yahoo Sports Pinterest board features multiple categories for most major sports, as well as boards for things like fantasy football and game day tailgate recipes.

While there is little creativity on display here, the boards are well organized and easy to follow/understand.

The main board is Sports News and Updates and features dozens of posts about the latest news, rumors and trends in the world of athletics.

The board is popular (over one million followers, Yahoo doesn't harness the full potential of Pinterest. The pins do not link to an original story on Yahoo Sport's main website. The blurbs on Pinterest are very brief and many users may want more information. Providing a link will satisfy users as well as provide additional page views for Yahoo Sports' main site.

VoyeurLawyer said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
VoyeurLawyer said...

The Dallas Morning News has a Pinterest site and its “boards feature the best of
our photography: food, nature, art, travel and more.” There are 54 boards,
1,754 pins, and 595 followers. The pins link back to standalone photographs or
ones in a slideshow on The Dallas Morning News website.

Most of the boards are from The Dallas Morning News itself,
but there are a few boards, such as “Texans are pinning it BIG!” where
contributors “can pin ANYTHING that is to do with Texas!” There is a disclaimer
requesting no pins of spam, false information or seriously offensive material.

There doesn’t appear to be a serious journalistic purpose,
since they do not link to stories, but it has a nice photojournalistic appeal.

Jason Ruiter said...

I would expect USA Today's content, for a site that produces news every hour, to be a little larger. However, a balance between actually mirroring news production and being too overwhelming should be struck, and most likely is. The main pinterest page, with has 29 different genre's of which to "follow." Some of them as general and paltry as "Valentine's Day"--although the site's users is 80% women--to "Top Stories" and "Comic Con."

I also have to inclue how interesting I think the sections like "snapshots" and "social media" are for their dozens of aesthetically pleasing and easily digestible infographs.
http://pinterest.com/pin/275423333431904902/

Not all the stories are tied back to the site. Many are from Google plus. LInks to the website are not often included. I don't know enough about the usage of pinterest news organization to be able to judge if 4,100 followers are a lot.