Thursday, March 15, 2012

Pinterest :: a plea...

Normally here on the blog, I'm all about rainbows & sunshine. I am naturally upbeat, smiling & generally pretty positive. Today, I just have to get something off my chest.

For the love of the hard work of people like me, PLEASE give proper credit when you use Pinterest.

Confused? If that's because you don't know what Pinterest is, check it out here. It's a visual bookmarking tool, organized into virtual bulletin boards according to subject where you "pin" things you are interested in. For example, I have one for "renovation of my dreams" and "things I want to make." You're smart people. You get it.

What most people would find confusing about my plea is that Pinterest is supposed to automatically remember the website where the "pin" came from. And it does! But what if you're not pinning this amazing (fill in the blank) from the original source?! What if you are repining it from someone else? Unless there is a URL on the picture or each person pinning the picture has mentioned the original source, it tends to get lost along the way.

What does that mean? I means that after 1 or 2 people pin my picture of my awesome new product on Etsy or cool blog photo, no one knows where it came from. All my hard work down the drain.

Now, there are some things that I can & should do about that. You'll notice that many of my pictures here (and in other places, like Facebook) will all start to have small watermarks on them, stating a url to find me. BUT!! As users of Pinterest, I think it's EVERYONE'S responsibility to make sure that proper credit is given to the work we are all enjoying. Find out where the pin really came from. Consider it a mini-bibliography.

I don't think this is anything that Pinterest users mean to do & largely I don't think it's malicious. Until Amy Locurto from Living Locurto started publishing about it (here and here),  I had taken it for granted that Pinterest was able to track back to the original source. I wasn't paying attention at all. Now I'm hyper aware of the situation. Yesterday I tracked a pin through SEVEN boards before I got to a pin that gave the original source. SEVEN boards!!

The moral of the story is: the right thing to do is pin from the original source. Please give the person whose hard work you appreciate the respect they deserve. How do you do that? Well, you could go all Inspector Gadget like I did yesterday OR you could start mentioning them in your description. Then, as your pin is repinned, your source will hopefully go with it.

I love Pinterest & will keep exploring how to use it (follow me here). And I recognize, as a blogger & business person, that part of the responsibility here is mine. I just want you all to be aware of how Pinterest works & how it impacts the sources of all that material you are growing to love. Give a girl a little help :) Thanks, peeps!!

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