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Pinterest (San Francisco, CA) and Instagram (Menlo Park, CA) are 2 popular photo-sharing social media platforms among young individuals. We assessed differences between Instagram and Pinterest in relaying photographic information regarding Zika virus. Specifically, we investigated whether the percentage of Zika-virus-related photos with Spanish or Portuguese texts embedded therein was higher for Instagram than for Pinterest and whether the contents of Zika-virus-related photos shared on Pinterest were different from those shared on Instagram.
We retrieved and manually coded 616 Pinterest (key words: “zika” AND “virus”) and 616 Instagram (hashtag: #zikavirus) photos.
Among the manually coded samples, 47% (290/616) of Pinterest photos and 23% (144/616) of Instagram photos were relevant to Zika virus. Words were embedded in 57% (164/290) of relevant Pinterest photos and all 144 relevant Instagram photos. Among the photos with embedded words, photos in Spanish or Portuguese were more prevalent on Instagram (77/144, 53%) than on Pinterest (14/164, 9%). There were more Zika-virus-related photos on Instagram than on Pinterest pertinent to Zika virus prevention (59/144, 41%, versus 41/290, 14%; P<0.0001), the effects of Zika virus on pregnancy (27/144, 19%, versus 32/290, 11%; P=0.04), and Zika-virus-associated deaths (4/144, 2%, versus 0/290, 0%; P=0.01).
Pinterest and Instagram are similar platforms for Zika virus prevention communication. (Disaster Med Public Health Preparedness. 2017;11:656–659)