Update: My notifications have returned to normal. I hope that it has for others as well.
The notifications section, on both the mobile and tablet apps and the desktop site, of my Pinterest account changed about two weeks ago – and not for the better.
To put it bluntly, the change appears self-serving and lacks an understanding of a fundamental reason Pinterest is addicting – validation. But more on that in a moment.
Previous to the change, each notification showed the specific pin of mine being repinned by others. Now, each notification shows the repinner’s board to which the pin has been repinned. In other words, I have no idea what pin was repinned.
So why would Pinterest change the notifications?
Because the Pinterest team thinks that it is in their best interest, at least that’s my suspicion. Here’s what they want to have happen:
- Someone repins one of my pins
- I see their board and think to myself something like this, “I wonder what else is on their board?” or “What pin did they pin? I should go look.”
They are trying to
force encourage me to engage more with fellow pinners. The problem is that it is very aggravating not knowing which pin others found worthwhile.
I reached out to Pinterest twice on Twitter asking them why they made the change but did not receive a response. For shame.
Pinterest notifications provide validation
Seeing that little notification pop up causes a moment of slight excitement. “Someone thinks I pinned something awesome!” That social validation is very important. In fact, it shows up pretty high on Maslow’s hierarchy of needs as esteem. We need to be respected by others. Being repinned provides that respect and validation, which is much of what makes Pinterest so addictive.
By taking that moment away, the Pinterest team is taking away that feeling of validation and excitement and diminishing the value of using Pinterest.
Tell Pinterest that you don’t want them to change what you see in the notifications by clicking the link below.
I hope that what I’m seeing is merely a small test that results in poor results and causes Pinterest to give me back the old notifications. Don’t mess with what makes your social network valuable!