Unintentional (public) diplomacy: Conflict of Pinterest 2012

There is a new campaign (well now a couple of months old), Conflict of Pinterest that makes use of social media, citizen involvement, and some kind of measurement metrics that aims to find the answer for the million dollar question: “What is the most beautiful country in this world?” The campaign brings all the buzzwords of public diplomacy studies – therefore requires a closer look!

Conflict of Pinterest 2012

Let me back up a little bit. Visual.ly is a new web platform where creative people share their infographics and data visualization projects with the public. Pinterest is a virtual pinboard where users can pin the photos they find on the internet. And as far as I can see, First Choice, a travel agency, bring these two new social media platforms together in their Conflict of Pinterest 2012 project, and launch (what I would like to call) their unintentional public diplomacy campaign.

Users can vote for the most beautiful country either by tweeting about the project or pinning a related photo on Pinterest. Based on popular voting, Conflict of Pinterest shows the most beautiful country in an interactive map. First Choice manages to promote itself, the project, and have auxiliary impact on place brand images.

Practically, Conflict of Pinterest acts as an aggregator for social media data, and encourages people to voice their opinion.

Questions I have in mind for the project (and hopefully questions I might answer when the voting period ends):

1 – What is the impact of visual rhetoric on social media and place branding relations?
2 – What is the impact of cool graphics on user participation? (or should we get cooler graphics if we want to do e-diplomacy?)
3 – What is the impact of internet penetration on the results?
4 – Does anyone vote for a country expect for their home country.


One thought on “Unintentional (public) diplomacy: Conflict of Pinterest 2012

  1. kwai says:

    This is such a great little tool to get people looking into different countries!
    Although I struggle to understand why Latvia and Estonia are so far apart in the results despite being next to each other geographically?!

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