Since its launch in Spring of 2010, Pinterest has seen unprecidented user growth. It was the fastest site to reach 10 million unique visitors, and it has acheived an estimated 20 million users. A majority of Pinterest’s users are female. Some estimates pin female users outnumbering males 4 to 1. This may help explain a curiosity that Pinterest’s servers experienced yesterday.
Pinterest’s IT staff got an alert at about 10AM that server traffic was only 1% of normal volume. This is normally a symptom that something is preventing users from accessing the site. They scrambled to find out what it was that was blocking people from the website. Internally, the servers showed no connectivity problems. Amazon’s cloud services were all operating normally. No one at the office had trouble getting to the website. The Pinterest employees continued trying to identify the problem until about 1pm when server traffic started slowly climbing.
At this point, they realized that all of their users were being taken out to brunch. The demographic of females between 25 and 54 with children were all celebrating Mother’s Day. At that moment, the intrepid IT team remembered to call their mothers and wish them a Happy Mother’s Day. Except for Steve, who just sent his mother an offensive but witty link on someecards. She pinned it later that day.
We contacted Simone Overton, 48 year old mother of two, to get a users perspective on the false alarm.
Oh sure, I’m normally on Pinterest first thing on Sunday mornings, but Frank took me down to Millie’s Cafe for Brunch. It was so sweet of him. They had the most delectable kale and goat cheese frittata. I found a recipe online as soon as I got home and pinned it to my brunch board. I was happy to see that it got two repins that afternoon! My girlfriend said that she would have her daughter make it for her next Mother’s Day.