Pindex Promises Pinterest for Educators
- By Dian Schaffhauser
Although Stephen Fry has left Twitter, the popular British actor and writer hasn't given up on social media altogether. Numerous sources have reported that Fry is involved in an education start-up being pitched as a "Pinterest for education." Pindex allows teachers, students and anybody else to create online pinboards for collecting "the best educational material."
A "board" in Pindex parlance is a collection of content — images, video and documents. To add content to their boards, users get a bookmark button from the site and then click it as they browse the Web to capture a specific image and link. Educators can post quizzes to their boards or "completion awards" that visitors can earn by getting 100 percent on the test or checking each post on the board
The site's founders also expect to create original content, which is where Fry comes in. The actor stars in a popular British comedy TV show called QI, where panelists get points for "being interesting." Now he'll be narrating videos for the site, such as a series of short segments on the Large Hadron Collider.
According to recent coverage in UK-based The Telegraph, Fry is one of four people involved in the site. This isn't the first tech venture he has participated in. Previous investments have included Summly, created by then-15-year-old wunderkind Nick D'Aloisio, which was acquired by Yahoo; and Pushnote, a now-defunct service that allowed users to add comments on any Web page.
Fry recently made headlines when he chose to deactivate his highly popular twitter account after facing major online criticism for comedic comments made during a British awards show. The experience didn't turn him off online activities altogether. As he told The Telegraph, "At a time when it is easy to lose faith in an online world that seems to center around trolling, bullying, hating, trivializing and belittling, it is worth remembering the incredible power of the Internet to inform and educate, lucidly and entertainingly. We'd like to welcome teachers, professors and anyone with a passion to share the most engaging and captivating material at pindex.com."
Dian Schaffhauser is a senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal and Campus Technology. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @schaffhauser.