’A million DIY projects.’ : The Netnographic Study of Pinterest as a Creative Community for Women

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http://urn.fi/URN:NBN:fi:hulib-201703272340
Title: ’A million DIY projects.’ : The Netnographic Study of Pinterest as a Creative Community for Women
Author: Polynczuk, Kinga Natalia
Contributor: University of Helsinki, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Social Research
Publisher: Helsingfors universitet
Date: 2013
Language: eng
URI: http://urn.fi/URN:NBN:fi:hulib-201703272340
http://hdl.handle.net/10138/38866
Thesis level: master's thesis
Discipline: Media and Communication Studies
Viestintä
Medier och kommunikation
Abstract: This qualitative study adopts netnographic method to critically explore one of the social media, Pinterest, as a creative community for women. Creativity is not only a current buzzword, but also one of the most fundamental pillars of the modern world. Nowadays, creative industries are emerging as a one of the basic industries. In many instances, creativity becomes a professional currency and a foundation of identity. In addition, creativity becomes embedded into everyday life, also through the advancement and continuous use of social media and other digital platforms that lower the threshold for participation in creative activities. Thus, the meaning of creativity is constantly being altered. In this thesis, the concept of creativity describes in fact everyday creativity in its broadest delineation. This research focuses particularly on the act of providing media content to Pinterest, thereby creating unique collections of visual links. Community, in turn, translates into a group of people who participate in some online spaces, gathered primarily around some shared interest. Such an understanding of community does not imply the existence of any offline ties between its members. Within this framework, the research asks the major question about how creativity is mediated on Pinterest. The main question is followed by some more detailed sub-questions about affordances and constraints of Pinterest with regard to production, distribution and consumption of the content; the relations between creativity and consumption on Pinterest; and the ways in which the community of Pinterest is constructed. The research results in five major results: (1) on Pinterest, DIY and Crafts is an overarching category, embracing diverse and, at times, unconventional content; (2) Pinterest challenges and alters traditional understandings of creativity and creative activities in such a way that it does not call for any physical act of making; (3) creativity on Pinterest is intertwined with, and very often anchored in, consumption; (4) on Pinterest, crafts refer not only to creating external objects, but also to modelling bodies and forming skill sets of users; (5) creativity is a binder of the Pinterest community: it brought pinners together in the joint effort of pooling knowledge, and it was the ideal that each user seemed to connect with. The study is based on the volume of data obtained from Pinterest through participant observation. Participant observation, adapted to the circumstances of an online setting, is the core netnographic method of data collection. The data at hand were analysed through thematic analysis.
Subject: social media
women
creativity
social network
verkkoyhteisöt -- naiset
luovuus


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