Pinterest announced in a blog post today that the site has added a new custom field to its account settings.
“Pinterest is all about helping people discover and save creative ideas. And everyone—lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans*, intersex, ally, straight—is included in that mission,” wrote Pinterest’s Software ‘Engiqueer’ Tilde Pier in the post. So if descriptors like ‘male’ or ‘female’ don’t quite work for you, you now have another option.
Currently, a Pinterest user’s profile information is hidden, so changing your gender doesn’t really show up anywhere that’s visible to other users.
The move is more “symbolic—letting gender-marginalized folks self-identify however they would like to is important even if we don’t display that information on a profile for privacy reasons,” Pinterest spokesperson Jamie Favazza said in an email to the Daily Dot. “We’re working on additional options around custom gender that could more directly change a user’s experience of Pinteres—this is only the first step.”
Favazza said the new custom gender tweak wasn’t in response to public pressure, but just part of the company’s broader mission. An LGBT employee group meets regularly to discuss “ways to help Pinterest be more open and inclusive.”
Since Pinterest introduced new search marketing aimed at male and female users this January, it should be interesting to see how the customized search results respond to custom gender entries. For example, Pinterest currently tailors search results for ‘shoes,’ displaying women’s shoes to accounts marked ‘female’ in the gender field, and men’s shoes to accounts marked ‘male.’
Of course, the customized gender option will also let trolls and pranksters play around with the setting as well. I, for one, can’t wait to see what Pinterest shows me now that I’ve entered my custom gender as “horrifying she-beast.”
Photo via mhkmarketing/Flickr (CC BY 2.0)