I’m still trying to get over the fact that Shelby admitted to being wrong about Pinterest yesterday. She was so wrong in fact that she not only opened a new account for herself, but also one for my company ColorMetrix. You can read about that yourself, however, because now it’s my turn to share the value I am finding in Pinterest.
It’s all about the app
I’m not saying I’ll never use the Pinterest website. It’s just that I’m finding the most value in the iPhone app, which I’ve been using for about a week now. I’m using the app in a manner similar to the way I utilize Instagram. I’ve written before about how I like Instagram because I follow fewer people there than on networks like Facebook or Twitter. I also like the almost purely visual interface.
Instagram is about scanning through the photos your friends have chosen to share whenever you have a few minutes of spare time. Scanning those images can be fun, inspiring, insightful and informative. Sure, I read the captions of the pictures that catch my eye, but first I scan the stream for what’s interesting to me. Then I “like” or comment on images I find most interesting of all.
Where Instagram comes up short is my ability to re-share the image and, more importantly, the ability to filter or segment your stream. Because there is no ability to filter your stream, your friends have two choices: Follow you and see everything you post or don’t follow you. You’re also losing the ability to curate your images into galleries or folders making them easier to find later.
Enter Pinterest & their iPhone app
Pinterest allows you to organize both your images and those you “pin” or share from the web on boards. First, this helps you curate your images and pins. Next, it allows me to not follow all your boards. For example, let’s say a friend has a great board in graphic design I find very interesting but another on women’s fashion in which I have little interest. I can choose to follow just the graphic design board. You’ve gained the power to sort and organize your stuff at the same time you can filter the stuff of others you choose to view.
Let’s not forget about the Facebook issue with Instagram
Facebook is acquiring Instagram and, if this goes like other recent acquisitions, the service will be dead inside three months. I won’t pretend to understand the logic of paying a billion dollars for something you then shut down. Heck, I could be wrong about this assessment but I’m hedging my bets in case Instagram goes away. I think at the very least Instagram will lose the ability to simultaneously post to Twitter and Facebook. I like that feature and for now Pinterest has it.
I’m moving most of my iPhone photo posting form Instagram to Pinterest for more features, functionality and more security about where the app and service will be in three months.
That’s my take, but please chime in with your thoughts about Pinterest and Instagram.
Also, take a look at my personal and company Pinterest boards here: