Monday, March 26, 2012

Pin Me: A Geek's Guide to Pinterest

by Megan S.
You've probably heard of Pinterest, the virtual pin board that enables users to share images, articles and more with friends, but you may not know how to use it or who to follow.  Not to worry, dear reader.  We've got you covered.

Here's a handy-dandy guide on how to get an invite, start using it, and a list of geek icons to follow!

Getting Started

First, you'll need an invite since the site is still in Beta testing.  If you'd like an account, feel free to send me a note here and include your name and preferred email address.  I'll add you to the list!

After you've received your invite, created your account and logged in, you'll want to set up your boards.  Pinterest has already created a few blank ones to get you started and you'll be able to edit their names and assign categories to each board from a list of approximately 30 options provided.  For example, my recipes board is categorized as "Food & Drink."  Categorizing boards makes it easier to share with other users not following you.

Adding Content

There are three ways to add content.  Accessing the website and clicking on the Add+ button (right below the tail of the red arrow) then providing all of the necessary links,  using the iPhone app (the Android app is an unauthorized version full of spam), and the uber easy Pin It bookmarklet (the red arrow is pointing to the button on my browser.)  Pin It is a tiny application you download that pops up on your browser's toolbar.  Just click on Pin It and the application offers you a choice of pinning any available image or video on the particular page you're viewing.

After choosing the correct image, pick the board you wish to pin it to or create a new one.

The image will serve as a link to the page where your originally found it so you can use Pinterest as a way of organizing craft inspirations, articles, or anything you'll want to visit again. 

Who To Follow

Pinterest has just begun snowballing popularity-wise so there aren't as many geek icons using it as say Twitter, but those on the social media site are pretty damn cool.  The subsequent list includes authors, bloggers, and purveyors of geeky goodness worthy of following:

Know anyone else that should be on the list?  Add 'em in the comments along with the link to their Pinterest page!

Following people allows you to see their content on your main page/"People you follow" stream.  You don't have to follow every board the person has created, so if there's one you aren't interested in, click on the unfollow button below the specific collection.  It's important to note that because people create new boards all the time, you'll have to visit each person's page to see if another has been created.  Only when you click on "follow all" will pins from new boards be automatically posted in your stream.

Wading into the Stream

Being able to view the incoming stream of pins from all users by category is one of my favorite aspects of Pinterest but it can be a bit overwhelming.  There's so much content in the stream that I start to feel like a Cylon Hybrid.

He Who Shall Not Be Named is enamored with Glee and the betwitching Endora weilds a Jedi's sword while Wu Tang evolves into a favorite custard. End of Line.

While a good portion of the pins are (to be frank) crap and, once in a while, spam, the stream is chock full of little gems you've never come across before.  It's a dream come true for someone like me who thrives on discovering breaking news and awesomeness.  You can preview the Everything:Geek stream here.

So, what do you think?  Are you ready to start pinning? Remember you can email us for an invite!
Pin It


  1. Thanks for listing me! Pinterest is so much fun!

  2. Thanks for the instructions! Pinterest really interests me.


  3. I love being able to use it as a visual bookmarking tool, but following people is unnerving. I'm cowed when strangers follow me. It's so unlike facebook or twitter. I feel like I'm finding Waldo looking at pins too it's too much pretty sometimes.

    PS My husband sent me a pic of the zombie Snow White eating her apple last week. <3.

  4. I didn't get pinning until this weekend, actually. My friend Betsy said, "Pinterest is digital scrapbooking." And I said, "Eek."

    Do you know how many of my friends do the scrapbooking thing? And I'm the only one who finds it utterly boring. Sometimes, I feel like it's one of those obligatory things like, "Man, bitches love them some scrapbooking!" I... don't. And I've felt sort of like the pariah of femalekind for not being interested in it.

    On the other hand, I can get on board with some of the stuff I've seen that's more geek-ish. I may have to try my hand at it just to see if the digital scrapbook is as repellent as the physical one.

    1. I wouldn't say scrapbooking because that implies it's a collection of things you've done. I'd say it's more like a pirate's treasure chest of ideas for the future. At any time, you can open it up and admire your little beauties and use them for whatever you'd like. I often use it to visually catalog ideas. It's also an amazing way to find new and obscure things.

      BTW, That recipe for the beer and bacon braised sprouts I sent you the other day? It was a pin from someone I follow. Join us, Laurie. Jooooooooin us.

      Oh and I've never felt compelled to scrapbook in my life so you aren't alone!

    2. I will find a way to work "Bitches loves them some scrapbooking" into a conversation, or I will die trying.

  5. I love Pinterest and feel there's so much more to see, so little time. Scarily addictive though, just sucks you in.....

  6. I love it. at first i was sure i wouldn't but it helps keeps ideas all together.