Field Notes: Getting Started

Part I: Pinterest

Q: What is an artifact?
 We are observing fandom communities by watching what they create and share online. These things they create and share (memes, GIFs, quotes, videos, fanfiction, blogs, etc.). are called artifacts. We are collecting these artifacts to make overall observations about their media literacy practices much like Jenkins did in his article about why Heather can write.

In Class Today FEB 12

Step 1: Go to Create an account or use your existing one. After you login go to and click follow all.

Step 2: When I call your group number come up to my computer so I can send you an invitation to your group board. All of your group members will pin artifacts to the group board. You will be pinning artifacts about your assigned fandom. Once you have accepted the invitation you should be able to start pinning on your group board.

Step 3: On the search bar for pinterest enter your fandom name. When the search results come up you will see individual pins that you can repin. On the top of the page is the option to see boards instead of individual pins- click on boards and follow a minimum of 3 boards about your fandom. Pins from these boards will show up in your feed on Click on your account name to see your own boards.

Step 4: After you have followed at least three boards search for artifacts that you can pin. You need to pin a minimum of 5 artifacts for the first field note assignment (see the Field Note handout on our class website).

Step 5: Due before midnight on Sunday are your actual fieldnotes. You are using Pinterest to collect and organize your artifacts. You will then write about them in your field notes (in a word document) and turn them in the dropbox on eCollege. See the fieldnotes handouts for instructions for the fieldnotes.

Go to (our class website). Click on field notes on the top link. Download the handout for more information about field notes. There are also helpful guides. Under links you can find tutorials for Pinterest.


Q: What am I looking for?
A: See the artifacts question above. Also: Look for images with frequently quoted dialogue or text, words that are specific to that fandom (like Shinny is a word frequently used in Firefly that fans would know the meaning of), examples of things that fans have made (such as videos or jewelry or fanart, etc.), photos of cosplay, etc.  Look for maps or diagrams about spaces (buildings, etc.) of the show/movie/book, character profiles and maps, lists of terminology or weapon types or space ships types, etc. You are looking for media that fans are creating and documenting how they are sharing it, how they talking about their fandom, how they are participating in their fandom (a discourse community), etc.

(These instructions are also attached as a word document in case you want to save them.)

Class Website:

*Pin any layouts of buildings on the show or maps of areas featured on the show/book/film!


Complete Field Notes Handout with more information: FieldNotes-ENG1302 (updated on 2-13-14)

Bookmark the permalink.

Comments are closed