And Copyright

Posted on 1/30/2012 by Jim Pickerell | Printable Version | Comments (0)

There’s a lot of buzz on the Internet about a new “social media” site It is designed to let people organize and share pictures they find on the web.  “People use pinboards to plan their weddings, decorate their homes, and organize their favorite recipes.” Users can browse pinboards created by others, discover new things and get inspiration from people who share their interests -- all without paying a penny to use the pictures.

Consumers have always clipped magazine and sometimes share the things they find with a few friends, but the Internet and the concept of social media expands the range of sharing exponentially. It will also greatly reduces the needs for certain types of printed publications that have served consumers in the past. As just one example spend some time searching for recipes on Pinterest.
Photographer Sean Locke has done an excellent explanation and analysis on his blog of the site and how it operates.

The site provides a place where users can “pin” images and text of interest. The information can then be socially shared with friends, or used as sort of a remote “bookmarking” system. The “pinned” images are copied to the Pinterest servers for display through their interface, at full size, as well as a version created at thumbnail size.
The license agreement to use Pinterest requires users to hold the appropriate rights to all content they “pin.” The operators must be aware that the vast majority of the images uploaded were not created or paid for by the person doing the upolading, but it is a clever move to try to shift blame to the user.

The site provides a remedy for copyright holders to have their images removed, but it is up to the copyright holder to actively police millions of Pinterest pages for their works.

Copyright © 2010 Jim Pickerell. The above article may not be copied, reproduced, excerpted or distributed in any manner without written permission from the author. All requests should be submitted to Selling Stock at 10319 Westlake Drive, Suite 162, Bethesda, MD 20817, phone 301-461-7627, e-mail: wvz@fpcubgbf.pbz

Jim Pickerell is founder of, an online newsletter that publishes daily. He is also available for personal telephone consultations on pricing and other matters related to stock photography. He occasionally acts as an expert witness on matters related to stock photography. For his current curriculum vitae go to:  


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