We are wrapping up our Pinterest How To series by tackling a topic that most everyone is interested in: copyright.
Copyright and Pinterest
Over the weekend, Pinterest updated their governing policies, including the terms around how your content is shared. And in case you don’t want to spend time pouring over the updates and deciphering what they mean, we’ve highlighted some of the Pinterest use basics, both new and old, below.
In fact, you might even say that everything you need to know about Pinterest, you learned in kindergarten.
(Origination credit: Robert Fulghum)
1. Share Everything
Sharing is the name of the game when it comes to social media, no?
Pinterest allows you to pin and post content on their site. You retain the copyright to any content that you own and share on Pinterest.
One of the biggest changes Pinterest made over the weekend was to remove their right to sell your content. When you pin your own content, what you are entitling Pinterest to do is display, re-pin, reproduce, and even re-format your images.
2. Play Fair
As a user and citizen of the Internet, you should be nice to others. Just say no to finding an idea on Pinterest and then passing it off as your own. Not only is that bad blog karma, but you’re also not likely to make oodles of friends in the crafting and photography circles.
And don’t try to make money off of images you pin on Pinterest that aren’t yours. Translated: That quote you thought was hilarious, put on a tee-shirt, and are now selling on Zazzle? Bad, bad idea. That’s not yours to profit from.
3. Clean Up Your Own Mess
Here’s an example: If Pinterest gets sued for copyright infringement because of something you pin, re-pin, etc, then get ready. Because you’re about to get up close and personal with their legal team. In other words, you’re on the hook financially for Pinterest’s legal defense fees should they get dragged into court because of how you are using (or mis-using) your Pinterest account.
4. Put Things Back Where You Found Them
Credit, credit, credit, and then credit some more. Pinterest is all about sharing and getting inspired. If you find a recipe or craft that you are dying to try out, then give it a go! Just be sure you don’t act like a douche and try to pass the brilliant idea off as your own. Give credit back to the blog or website where you found the idea, rather than to your Pinterest board where you originally pinned the image.
Amy Locurto wrote a great post on why it is incredibly important to credit your original source and why she is adding photo terms to her images.
In the below photo, you can see Amy’s photo terms in action. You’ll even note that she is directing her readers to which photo she’d prefer they pin by placing her Pin It button immediately underneath in the first image in her Easter Marshmallow Pops post.
If you want to be like Amy and have mad Pinterest skillz when you grow up, check out our post on Pinterest Pin Buttons.
5. Don’t Take Things That Aren’t Yours
No one likes a bully. Again, if the image isn’t yours, please don’t try to pass it off like it is.
If you are pinning images that send the link credit back to Pinterest or even Google Image, then stop. Thanks to a super easy tutorial from The Graphics Fairy, it only takes a matter of seconds to find the original source for a photo. Give it a try!
More Pinterest Use Explained
How Long Pinterest Keeps Your Content:
Once you delete or deactivate your account, Pinterest may retain your content for a “commercially reasonable period of time.” How long is that exactly? It is up to Pinterest to define.
What you should also know is that even if you delete your Pinterest account, any of your content that other users have pinned, re-pinned, or happen to have on their boards, stays on Pinterest. In other words, your account may be gone, but your content lives on.
Pinterest is Not for Anyone Under 13:
It’s just like Facebook. If you are under 13, please get off of the computer, go outside and play. There will be plenty of time for you to fall into the social media blackhole when you’re older.
Copyright Pitfalls to Avoid
Sara from Saving for Someday wrote a post on Avoiding Copyright Pitfalls on Pinterest that should not be missed, especially if you are looking to learn more. Not only is Sara an attorney, but she’s been with us as a speaker on our blog conference tour.