The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

Pinterest and the death of creativity

We’ve all heard the familiar phrase “I found it on Pinterest.” Everyone has heard it, whether it is in regard to a new recipe, bathroom design or fashion trend. But does anyone, other than myself, feel a sense of alarm when hearing these dreaded five words? When I originally heard this phrase, and then heard it repeatedly with more frequency, I became worried that Pinterest will overtake a hallmark of human intelligence: creativity.

For readers that do not know, Pinterest is a social media site that focuses on photos and a pinboard-style design to create image collections based on themes, such as food, fashion, and design. Like Twitter and Tumblr, users are able to like and  “re-pin” posts for others to see on their own board, as well as browse millions of image collections compiled by other people.

It’s an interesting concept, but my concern is that creativity is becoming a concept of antiquity. Photos on Pinterest are replacing original, novel ideas created by the human mind. The ability to combine flavors into a new recipe, to weave an intricate garment, the ability to match furniture, paint and accessorize into a seamless design are all coming from what people see on this site.

Did Vera Wang create her wildly popular and fashionable wedding dresses from images she saw online? Did Rachael Ray develop the time-saving concept of 30 minute meals from Pinterest? Did Candice Olson become a top-tier designer by getting inspiration from this site? The answer is a resounding “no.”

Luckily, these experts came before the time of Pinterest. They succeeded in their respective fields through ingenuity and creativity, not through images on some silly, social media site. However, experts and truly innovative minds will cease to exist if Pinterest continues to flourish.

Now, some of you readers might be thinking, “The images on Pinterest had to come from someone’s mind. Someone designed that dress and put it online.” While this is true, soon, laziness will run rampant, and people will resort to looking on Pinterest for ideas on how to decorate their house rather than developing their own style. Inevitably, this will lead to a vicious cycle where no new creative ideas will come to fruition, and all that’ll be left are old concepts that exist on Pinterest.

Readers, we stand at a crossroads of human civilization. From this point forward, we can choose to uphold the hallmark of creativity, abolish Pinterest and go back to the ways of old, with people thinking creatively and inventing new thoughts that will keep our world blossoming. Or we can choose to keep Pinterest and take the chance that creative and new ideas will be a thing of the past.

I implore all of you to get into the kitchen and bake something new, to sit at that sewing machine and weave a fresh fashion design and to go into that living room and design a luxurious new living space. Because after all, creativity is such a terrible thing to waste.

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Comments (12)

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  • T

    TheCarThatJumpsDec 26, 2018 at 4:47 pm

    Wow,,,so Pinterest is the enemy now

    Reply
  • A

    amyDec 8, 2012 at 12:36 pm

    You say ‘people will resort to looking on Pinterest for ideas on how to decorate their house rather than developing their own style’, but you could say that about any form of visual media – like magazines. People don’t lift ideas straight off Pinterest to replicate them in their house, they use them as inspiration to curate and develop their own style, it is not a substitute for style, it is a media that allows you to further your interpretation of you’re style.

    Reply
  • T

    TesstimoanSep 14, 2012 at 7:03 pm

    By your observations, once stories were bound into books and began to be available at libraries and book stores, no more books would have been written. When art galleries and museums began displaying works of art, no one would bother to create any new work. Your alarmist pessimism reminds me of the Urban Legend about the head of the patent office that thought, in 1899, that the office should be closed because everything had already been invented.

    Reply
  • D

    DebbieSep 14, 2012 at 1:03 am

    Also, one doesn’t “weave” at a sewing machine. You do that on a loom…

    Reply
    • P

      Philip McDermottSep 22, 2012 at 11:34 am

      I couldn’t help but think of this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hc0NxKgoUfU

      Reply
    • P

      Philip McDermottSep 22, 2012 at 11:34 am

      I couldn’t help but think of this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hc0NxKgoUfU

      Reply
  • M

    mlouryanSep 13, 2012 at 11:45 pm

    artists do not create in a vacuum. Inspiration and design feed on the creation and design of other people. Artists have mentors who share and teach what they know so that their students can learn and develop their own style, or voice. This article suggests a real lack of understanding of what creativity is and from where it is derived.

    Reply
    • O

      ollieSep 14, 2012 at 12:41 am

      Exactly! Nicely put!

      Reply
    • O

      ollieSep 14, 2012 at 12:41 am

      Exactly! Nicely put!

      Reply
    • W

      Wes CargillSep 15, 2012 at 9:23 pm

      “Artists do not create in a vacuum,” nor do they recycle cliches. They create with inspiration, sure. But they don’t look at the same posts as everyone else in order create something something new. A artist uses their experiences. When I look at art, I want to see someones unique experiences, their unique perspective. I don’t want to see a new spin on an old idea. No, there is no completely original idea, but creativity is hampered in places that encourage copy and pasting more than looking inward

      Reply
    • W

      Wes CargillSep 15, 2012 at 9:23 pm

      “Artists do not create in a vacuum,” nor do they recycle cliches. They create with inspiration, sure. But they don’t look at the same posts as everyone else in order create something something new. A artist uses their experiences. When I look at art, I want to see someones unique experiences, their unique perspective. I don’t want to see a new spin on an old idea. No, there is no completely original idea, but creativity is hampered in places that encourage copy and pasting more than looking inward

      Reply
  • G

    GeorgeSep 13, 2012 at 11:22 pm

    Sharing interests and cultures from around the world is suppose to be a bad thing?? This is inspiration at it’s finest.

    Reply