I’ll admit that at first I resisted the urge to join Pinterest. I’m not much for being a bandwagoner, but eventually I caved to the peer pressure. I mean how could I say no to the eye candy and inspiration that can be found there?! Very basically, if loving Pinterest is wrong, I don’t want to be right.
For those of you that have been living under a rock, Pinterest is a virtual pinboard where you can create collections by “pinning” the ideas you find online. So when you see a great project or recipe you can add it to one of your pin boards making it really easy to reference later. It’s an addicting little time sucker, but it’s a great way to keep all of your favorite ideas, projects, inspiration images, recipes, and more categorized. I’m nothing if not a complete geek when it comes to any and all things related to organization.
Although, there are a few kinks in the pintastic system. Let’s just say that in some ways the honeymoon is over. For instance, I’ve noticed that many times images aren’t pinned from the original source sending you on a wild goose chase when you’re trying to find the details/tutorial behind an image. I’ve also had many of my own projects pinned from sites other than my own. I’m sure I made many pin mistakes when I first started; but now I’ve made it a habit to only repin images that have linked the original source, and I only pin from the direct URL rather than the main blog URL. This post on “proper pintiquette” from Amy @ Positively Splendid is really helpful in explaining the ins and outs of good practices on Pinterest.
However, I’m left wondering if anyone outside of those that are bloggers or etsy shop owners actually cares if a pin is linked to the original source? I mean if I wasn’t a blogger and I was on Pinterest purely for entertainment purposes would I care if the images I pinned were giving credit where credit is due?
I think Pinterest is really changing things in the blog world. I loved this post from The Nester on Pinterest and Blogging as I’ve found that much of my own blog traffic comes from Pinterest. I took her advice in regards to my photos, and I do think that it helps to add a quick description and a watermark.
|DIY Chalkboard Globe|
Over the weekend, I came across this post from Kristin at My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia. To say that my eyes were opened is kind of an understatement. I certainly did not read the fine print when I signed up for my Pinterest account, did you? I read the post that Kristen made reference to at The Knoed, and it definitely made me think. I didn’t realize when I signed up for an account that I was agreeing to this:
1. That I own whatever I’m pinning or have permission to do so from the original source.
2. That I agree to let Pinterest sell anything that I pin.
3. That I agree to pay their legal fees if any issue should arise from something I pinned and ultimately I ACKNOWLEDGE AND AGREE THAT, TO THE MAXIMUM EXTENT PERMITTED BY LAW, THE ENTIRE RISK ARISING OUT OF MY ACCESS TO AND USE OF THE SITE, APPLICATION, SERVICES AND SITE CONTENT REMAINS WITH ME…” source
Did you know this when you signed up for your account? I understand that ultimately Pinterest is just trying to cover themselves in case any issue should arise from users pinning illegal content. I’m just wondering what sites don’t allow you to pin their images? I think most, if not all, bloggers allow you to pin their images, in fact many bloggers have added the “pin it” button to their posts to make it easier for you as a reader to pin from their site. Pinterest has, as I mentioned before, become a main source of traffic for many bloggers, so it’s obvious why a blogger would want to promote their blog via Pinterest.
I’m wondering then how would I know if I pinned something illegally? I certainly would not have pinned an image from a site that said in big, bold letters at the top – PLEASE DO NOT PIN MY IMAGES. Are there actual sites that say this? I see number 1, listed above, being a problem for users only because I seriously doubt anyone intentionally pins images illegally. To hold users responsible seems a little unfair, but at the same time I’m not sure how else they (meaning Pinterest) can keep themselves legally covered if they don’t hold users responsible for what they pin.
In reference to number 2 above, I see this being a double-edged sword for bloggers. On the one hand you don’t want to bite the hand that feeds you, but at the same time if they have the right to sell your content then you’re kind of giving them permission to bite you. For instance, Pinterest can according to their current terms sell any images that you pin. So if they want to sell pictures, of say, my kitchen they would be within their legal right to do so, and I would have no say in the matter. I think for the most part that any company that would buy images from Pinterest would probably look to credit the source of the image in some way, but legally they are not bound to do that.
Anyhow, I’m not a lawyer, but after reading the terms I agreed to I feel like I need to go to law school! For the record, I’m not abandoning the bandwagon. I love Pinterest! As any real relationships go – in the words of the hotness that is Adam Levine (if you don’t watch The Voice something is wrong with you, just sayin’) – it’s not always rainbows and butterflies, it’s compromise that moves us along. I’m hopeful that all the legal mumbo jumbo will get worked out, and that it will be easier for all users to identify those sites that do not want their images pinned. To make things very clear about where Our Fifth House stands on the issue: I hereby give you permission to pin any image you want from my blog, just please try to pin it from the blog post and not just the main blog page.
So, what are your thoughts on this pinteresting discussion?
Did you know what you signed up for when you started your account? I wonder what the average Pinterest user (one that isn’t a blogger or etsy shop owner or professional photographer) thinks about all of this. I can’t help but think of my mom who checks her e-mail like once a month, who isn’t on Facebook, who doesn’t even know what a tweet is, who is anti-almost anything online, who reads my blog (and no others), who started a Pinterest account – I certainly don’t want to see her slammed with legal fees because she accidentally pinned something illegally. How many other users are just like her? Pinterest is unlike all other social media, and I think it attracts a great many people who don’t really know a ton about the way the internet works. What do you think?
In other Pinterest related news, did you take the challenge?