five great things someone else said, vol. 34

In the last few weeks I’ve seen plenty of posts about Pinterest as it explodes from this small site I joined a little over a year ago to what it is today. Posts on netiquette, like I’ve discussed here.  More often I’ve seen posts that discuss how to use Pinterest for marketing and self-promotion, received emails from magazines and companies inviting me to follow their boards.

It was a wakeup call. Or rather, a confirmation that what I was concerned about was, in fact, something to talk about. Again. And I’m really thrilled to know I’m not the only one struggling with the issues of this great inspiration board in the ether and protecting the artistic work of myself and others.

After weeks of leaving comments on people’s Pinterest articles saying that we need to Pin With Love a la Link With Love, you could say I was thrilled to see this new piece by Kal Barteski on the Link With Love site yesterday:

courtesy of kal barteski

If you are in any way creating content – be it design or writing or photography or some other work of your staggering, unique genius, be aware your own work may be pinned without proper credit.

I can list so many reasons why this matters, but I’ll give you one. A personal one. I have had my work, as both a writer and photographer, used for profit without my consent more than once. My work has been taken and money made from it.

I was not asked. I was not paid. It was not OK. And I don’t want to see that happen to anyone else if I can help prevent it.

These things happened to me in the print world, where things like this seem harder to do, and I look at Pinterest (and similar sites) and see how easily your work can be Pinspiring to others.

All imitation is not flattery.

If your art is your livelihood, even if it isn’t, you deserve credit for your work. For your contributions to this great, big, beautiful, creative, inspiring, tangled web.

It doesn’t take Nancy Drew to click through a pin to its source,  see that a recipe came via Martha Stewart, and know that means the blog you’re reading it on wasn’t the original source. Go to the source. The creator.

I have so much to say on the subject (and will), and yet, here’s the funny thing. I still like Pinterest. Love it. I’m still weeding through my boards to make them right, but I’m adding new content, too.

I want to believe that we can make Pinterest better. I want pinners and the Pinterest powers that be to do their part. I want the web to be a place where we can all share our creativity without frustration or foreboding.

I want a lot of things. Go ahead, call me Veruca Salt. She wanted the world. I want the world wide web to be better. I believe it can be.

And now, five great things someone else said on the subject:

It is not enough that we do our best; sometimes we must do what is required. – Winston S. Churchill

Keep a light, hopeful heart. But ­ expect the worst. – Joyce Carol Oates

Don’t mistake activity with achievement. – John Wooden

Be yourself; everyone else is already taken. – Oscar Wilde

Whoever is careless with the truth in small matters cannot be trusted with important matters. – Albert Einstein

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6 thoughts on “five great things someone else said, vol. 34

  1. Frau Haselmayer

    Being nice and crediting images with the original source does not change the fact that that the pinner might violate copyrights as long as the owner didn’t share the images himself or unless they are licensed with a CC license which allows sharing.

    I see that Pinterest can be a mighty marketing tool to generate traffic but I see it misused way too often…

    Reply
    1. alexandrawrote Post author

      I agree that “being nice” by crediting isn’t going to make something legal. That’s why I want Pinterest to clarify this. I want them to tell me how it its legal to be doing what we’re doing. If it is not, then I want them to explain why they’re facilitating it. They may not be responsible for what we’re sharing, but if they’re adding things like affiliate links to what we share, then they’re spending some measure of time looking at what is posted on their site.

      Reply
      1. Frau Haselmayer

        I’m pretty sure we never get this reply…As much as I understand (I am no legal expert) it’s legal what they are doing because they make their users responsible for everything they post (which is possible in the US – but it wouldn’t be possible in Germany). Of course they know what is posted on their site and their confusing and contradictory terms/pinning etiquette show that they know exactly what’s going on and even endorse it.

  2. 1house1couple

    Confusing indeed, whether to use or not to use. But I agree that, as in your personal experience, although it adds a little pride to see our work used by someone else, we actually don’t get the credit. That’s sad.

    ~Lisha

    Reply

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