Pinpal the hot new dating service for Pinterest or an April fools joke?

The headline on Pinpal states –

The new casual dating service for Pinterest fans. It’s more than influence – it’s Pinfluence!!

I first noticed this today on @dannybrown ‘s website where he had the shocking title of

PinPal Wants to Use Your Friends to Create a Sex Meat Market

This created a lot of chatter and comments from various people including many tweets from Jimmy the co-founder of Pinpal – @pinpalwizard who obviously wasn’t happy that people were not saying good things about his site, which has just been launched in beta – midnight on the 31st of March. Great timing everyone thinks.

Craig andrews from Peerindex tweeted this

And Sarah Evans tweeted this

Its certainly got a lot of attention since it was launched in beta not 24hours ago.

What Pinpal does…

It is basically a dating service, that connects you with your best match and to find your match, it searches through your favorite social networks to find your friends and also their friends then, finds you the best matches, also using Klout scores in the formula.

You are then presented with a private Pinterest board with your potential pinpals.

However I think its more the FAQ page that give people the reason to think that it is a joke with statements like.

Is my privacy safe on PinPal?

Let us ask you a question – is your privacy safe online anyway? We don’t think it is, as much as we’d like it to be. So, to answer the question of privacy, you have as much privacy on PinPal as you do elsewhere online – we think that’s the fairest way to go.

And

How safe are your PinPal dates?

As safe as any online dating service, with the added security that this is all happening with social media, so if something goes wrong you can let people know about it. That’s pretty powerful stuff right there!

Pinpal tweeted that they just want to honest with everyone, and that just how it is. Jimmy says if you don’t like it you don’t have to sign up.

Which is also true…..

I haven’t signed up to try it, it not something I want my networks to be connected with, not being single myself and after reading Danny’s post I would probably wait a few months to see how it turned out.

Its a very expensive aprils fools joke if it is one, and Jimmy is very busy over there on twitter defending the site and apart from sometimes sounding aggressive this seems to be tongue in check as he is obviously pretty happy.  Whatever it is all about – I’m finding it very amusing and interesting and – Pinpal or the founders  have had amazing exposure today and on sunday!

Update – So it was actually a very good April fools joke provided by  Punk views and created by many people that we all know. Jimmy was completely made up as some people suggested but I for one will miss his “charm” and “tongue in cheek” humour.

The part that got me was that the actual platform wasn’t even there, this thought hadn’t occurred to me  (and I wasn’t about to try it) the testimonials and the fact that Danny had tested it were all fabricated, so not that expensive a joke after all.

Loved watching all this turn a slow moving Sunday evening, into a battlefield of tweets and comments.

 

 

 

 

 

Helping kids learn about Virtual Lives – Gaming and Networking.



Tuesday the 8th of February 2011 is Safer Internet Day. 

Safer Internet Day is organised by Insafe to promote safer and more responsible use of mobile and online technology for children and young people around the world.

Insafe are Co-funded by The European Union.

This is the 8th year that Safer Internet Day will be celebrated, last year saw 500 events in 65 countries worldwide.

Each year Insafe chooses a different theme for people to base the activities on.
This year is its Virtual lives, and the slogan is – Its more than a game, its your life

Virtual lives: Online gaming and social networking, the two most popular online activities for our youth. 


The aim is to get the message across to children and young people that although they are hidden behind an avatar or a gamertag, actions in virtual lives can and will affect real lives.  

We all need to be aware of the consequences of our online actions, whether good or bad.

Children especially need to know how to be safe and responsible online and they can learn this the same way they learn everything else, with our support and encouragement

A few easy ways you can help

·                 Inform your school and find out if they are taking part.  
·                 Become a fan of the Insafe Facebook page – Insafe
·                 Become a fan of the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre Facebook page – CEOP
·                 Put the banner above on your website.
·                 Host an event in your community.
·                 Repost this blog.



You will find lots of information and free resources from these links

Insafe – www.saferinternet.org. 
Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre – http://www.ceop.police.uk/
I hope you can join in helping our children have the best virtual and real lives possible and also assist in raising awareness of this excellent event with me, thanks.

Safe Social Networking for our kids!




Whether you like it or not your child will probably have access to a computer and the internet at a very early age, by the age of 5 these children will be able to use many areas of a computer and surprisingly enough the first thing they remember is how to connect to the internet.  
Has your young child asked for a Facebook account yet?  

Sites like Facebook MySpace and Twitter are being blocked from many school networks as they are not suitable for young children, which is right those sites are not, but young children are aware of these sites, they see their parents or guardians and siblings using the networks and understandably they want to join in.
(I’ll just remind you that sites like Facebook, Bebo and MySpace  set minimum ages of around 13)
Why shouldn’t they become involved? We can teach them how to use social networking sites safely and efficiently when they are young so that by the time they get to teenagers they know how to keep safe and be more responsible. Firstly by showing them how important it is to customise their settings. Secondly and as important how to behave and communicate on line.
I think we should encourage children have their own blog sites as well, its great, it encourages them to use their imaginations’, improve their writing/typing skills and IT skills. It doesn’t have to be personal it can be about their favourite subject.
There are so many child friendly, safe networks that your child can join, on various lists, that are   designed just for younger children, and which grown ups can monitor.  
Here are just two of them,
http://togetherville.com/
Togetherville is linked to Facebook, thereby adults who possess a Facebook account can sign up and register their kids
or
Education is right at the heart of the Moshi Monsters experience. Every day your child’s monster will create a series of fun puzzles that test everything from vocabulary and arithmetic to logic and spatial skills.
I haven’t personally tried these sites as my son is much older than this now and I wouldn’t want to join on my own, for research purposes? What would people think! –  but have seen some good reviews on them, just Google them for more information.
I’ve seen Habbo hotel on some lists, which I wasn’t very impressed with a few years ago. I’ve no idea if it has changed but at that time there were older children there, that obviously haven’t been taught how to communicate online, so not favourable for the younger ones. You need to be with them when they try these different networks so you know if it is suitable. 
Don’t let them feel left out or feel they have to lie about their age to get on to the sites they should not be on, because they will.
If they are going to go on social networking sites anyway, we may as well start teaching them ourselves, and at a young age when they are not going to complain about us looking over their shoulder or knowing that we are monitoring them.  It could even become some “together” time.
There are many reasons we could be against this and want our children as far away from social networking or the internet in general  but we live in a social media age, its going to happen eventually and there is little anyone can do to stop it. So take charge and educate them as soon as possible while they are  young enough to know that parents/grown ups know best.
Like we obviously do 🙂 



Illustration provided by ……..Me.