Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Important Link

or how to give yourself a headache pondering moral societal dilemas

So I deleted my FB page last year for personal 
moral reasons about their privacy policies.

I have never downloaded music illegally.

I boycott Walmart and not because of their pay scale
 or lack of promotion for women and some ethnic groups, 
lack of health care for employees, etc. 
but for the owner family's minuscule amount of philanthropy.
I support the employees however, and damn I miss
my favorite scala rolls, and I do succumb 
maybe 2 times a year, just for the rolls... I'm weak that way.
anyway..where the heck am I leading you?
to beloved Pinterest.

yes, the world is abuzz about the copyright infringement issue,
and I was on my high horse just tonight saying to a dear friend
 "but I conscientiously pin and look how we promote others..."
and then I read this.
So many valid points plunked right into my lap, 
and up my nose.

so shucks, dang it all, I guess Pinterest has got to go for me.
I'll have to go back to my old way of bookmarking
 a zillion spots and then never organizing them, 
so I never do find them again,
and spend hours cussing at the screen in exasperation.

But I like to look in the mirror and know I am
 being honest and true, and doing the right thing, 
and I'm not sure anymore that I am.
Of course I can just pin my own personal stuff I suppose, 
but that will not excuse my looking 
at other stuff that is illegally pinned.
The point here is quite valid.
Even giving appropriate credit, we do not have permission from
these sources to use/share their work.. not even a little... 
much like a "little lie", a 'little cheating", a "little stealing" or 
a "little pregnant" whoops, off topic...

A quick test for me is always 
"What would Dad say?"
and damn, just now I got an email saying
"_____ just repinned your______"

I have to sit on this and 
slosh it around in my head a few days..
gosh that sounds like my head is up....
never mind

If my big red Pinterest widget disappears
well, you know....

Some days I hate being a grownup.


Joanne@ Desertmountainbear said...

There was much debate about this on a Teddy Bear Artist forum I belong to a couple of weeks ago. Someone "pinned" a bear and it was not welcome. For them it was a privacy issue.
It was decided that if t was OK to "pin" that the logo was to be added to the Guild members page.
I have that logo posted there on my page, and on my blog.
I guess maybe that is where it will have to go with Pinterest. If "pinning" is welcome add the logo.

Mugwump Woolies said...

Hey Z,
I just wrote a bit about this on my blog. I don't have a Pinterest account, but I see my photos popping up there. At first, it was a little flattering, but quickly, it got "spooky" was I going to be able to protect my photos??? I wonder how far all of this will is infringement...absolutely.

Laura @ 52 FLEA said...

I truly understand your pain as this is so conflicting. On one hand...I love saving all these inspiring photos in one spot...and then on the other...I'm always stunned to see my own photos out and about...especially with no reference to their original source. So...what to do? I don't know the answer...don't think Pinterest will be going away anytime soon. I will be interested to follow the comments to your post. Being a grownup isn't what it is cracked up to be!

Low Tide High Style said...

Z, I just had an email exchange last night with a lovely follower who alerted me that the images on my photography website could be pinned. I freaked out because my website is supposed to have safeguards in place to prevent people from even right clicking and copying my images, much less being able to pin them. I mostly freaked out because the images on my website, unlike my blog, don't have watermarks on them, and they are also high res images which I don't use on my blog.

I have no issues with people pinning my low res images and linking back, I appreciate the exposure and see it as a great marketing tool. I wrote to my web provider and asked them what the heck?!...and why could people pin my images from my website without my we'll see what they have to say. I do have to say that when the article stated that when you pin something you get the full res image she may be incorrect about that. When you pin off of my website you do not get full res images, but they are still larger than what I would allow or be comfortable with, but not particularly useful for much else. But I also use software that allows me to track my images to see if someone is trying to use them claiming them as their own, and unfortunately all photogs need to do this because of the web.

I think it's only a matter of time before we see Pinterest in the news, not being lauded for its greatness but because it is embroiled in a major lawsuit...or someone using it is being sued. I don't agree that it's the same as Napster though, for a number of reasons.

Ok, I wrote a book to say that I too have qualms about Pinterest, but like you, I'm still on the fence!

Kat :)

erin said...

i have been torn about this issue too....your link is definately informative... recently i have been pinning only pins with a direct link (not from tumbler!)...that is a very small attempt at not feeling guilty about this?? i wonder of pinterest will has grown sooo fast...the thing is, i really enjoy it and use my pins for inspiration...i am sooo fickle.
you have brought up a very valid discussion...i like that about you, my friend.

Robin Larkspur said...

I have a friend who has been urging me to join Pinterest, and I have been putting it off. Now I am glad I haven't thanks to your post and the link. I read as much as I could of all the legal jargon, but bottom line, the ethical points are too hard to ignore. I feel for everyone who is "addicted" to the site, but best just go back to cutting and pasting from magazines, etc. Thanks Z.

Jacqueline @ HOME said...

Hi Z,
Well, I haven't joined Pinterest but I do re blog images from other blogs. I always say where I found them but, that's obviously not enough. There are many of my own photographs that have been reblogged or pinned on Pinterest and, I see my own images all over blogland with no credit to me so, how can we solve this? I don't give a **** whether people use my images, but I do understand if it's someones livlihood. I guess this debate will run and run. XXXX

MEM said...

Thanks for your comments re:pinterest. Took me a while to get on the bandwagon but haven't done much. Will wait before I do any more pinning. I do not shop Walmart for all of your reasons. Haven't been to one since 2003 when my mom passed. she loved the prices and just "looking.". glad you brought up the topic for discussion.

Joy said...

Oh gosh, I love Pinterest and had thought I was using it for personal reference. So tired of the stacks of magazines and clippings...easy to get caught up in the pinning. I thought I was giving credit to the wonderful talent in this world and always try to pin with direct links of my source. I don't want to give up my account but I'm with you...copyright infringement is just stealing.

I'll be interested in the outcome of this topic. Thank you for bringing it to our attention.

miss flibbertigibbet said...

I appreciate your angst about this. I have wondered about this ever since I began blogging. I have learned a lot about blogging by looking at other blogs as well as following tutorials. I saw quickly that everyone used photos from everywhere but they always cited the source. I assumed it was fine. I took it for granted that Pinterest was the same. I agree with some who say that if you even use the internet for your work then you are accepting an inherit risk but, that doesn't mean I have to be involved in taking your work! So, as someone who values integrity (doing the right thing even if NO ONE knows), I have to really make a decision about everything I am doing. Gosh, just when I was feeling comfortable too.....

Poet Whale said...

Katherine Tyrell's blog, Making a Mark, has 2 posts about 3 to 5 days ago that tells how stop people from pinning your blog photos in Blogger and Flickr using the Pinterest code.

I think Pinterest arose out of so many bloggers all ready posting photos without the proper credit/permission. There didn't appear to be a big whoop about it until Pinterest making money hit the news.

oldgreymare said...

here are bits of my replies to comments, and you can see why I am struggling with this. My friends will tell you, I don't just ponder something, I examine and dissect and stomp on it till it's dead.

Some replies from me to comments so far:

I want to  go back and take down my photo of  Robert Downey JR, I feel so guilty not giving credit but I was going for the laugh

Now pinterest could go a long way to avoiding these issues by providing a linked pin that would "give auto permission" to use a site such as mine and not use a site where the owner does not wish to be pinned. Lord, we can land stuff on Mars, can't we do this the right away....

It is a real head thumper issue for sure. Lots of discussions, good points and facts everywhere in blogland. After discussing with a friend, I stumbled upon this post.. No matter how many excuses I make for it's positive effects, I am still nagged by that moral issue of permission, not so much the legality but that is scary also. An old school friend's college kid got whacked by the illegal download of music. She was at a very prestigious school and got randomly selected. Court costs and years of fear ended up in a reduced settlement for her of 5,000 in fines. Far less than the hundreds of thousands, but still hard on a  20 something woman..
so head thumping continues..thanks for weighing in...

Ye gads, another modern dilemma... Like tv..when is it too much, when does it raise the social conscience and enrich lives and  better conditions ? I abhor "tech readers" for books, because I fear the demise of books, but if it makes people read...ARGH!! headache returning....

and now all those apps people download are legally saving and storing personal info because people blindly signed the Terms of Use. It's a brand new world folks...
But at least we are discussing it and trying to figure out fairness...and that is cool...

I was trying to decide this am if my life has grown exponentially complicated as I aged or as the world changed? I think you know I do attempt to keep my world small and spend most of my free time in the pursuit of helping others and often I feel I am living a "true" life but then some issues tend to bunch up on me and throw me a huge learning curve...But now instead of struggling alone in my chair in my bedroom I put it all out there and wise women like you help me sort it through to a satisfying conclusion.
thanks my friend

don't thank me, I am only the messenger..I felt a mite funny about it all when I joined but ignored that nagging voice because I have enjoyed it so I said I hate being a grownup some days but I have to live with me and that nagging conscience will not shut up! Now if there was only a moral dilemma about sugar so I would be forced to give it up. sigh... oh health...

keep the comments coming girlfriends. I obviously need help!!!

much love,

Anonymous said...

I respect that you stand up for what you believe in...I have been to blogs where most (if not all the photos) were copyrighted to someone else, with no acknowledgement of that fact. I've been to blogs where quotes were used, no acknowledgement. I was following a blog from a Mediterranean country...the blog owner used photos and pages of description from a book I had just finished reading, with no indication that the words and photos were not hers. I've had concerns about Pinterest...but I've had times when it would not allow me to pin something from the web. And anything I pin from my own personal creations I expect to be used as other peoples creations. The very fact that I'm on the web in any application puts me in the position of having everything that's me stolen. I do my best to treat other people online the way I want to be treated...that's the best I can do.

Susan McShannon-Monteith said...

You've done the right thing Z.
I would admit I am guilty of looking but I have never joined.
This post is so honest and heartfelt it speaks for many of us.
Susan x

Jill said...

I can't read the link right now, but will tell you that I'm really concerned about it all too. said...

HHMMMMMMMM interesting. I'm torn. I'd want to do the right thing too. Any way, I may or may not have mentioned you and your tatas in my blog today;)
~Debra xxx

Chatty Cathy-Clip Your String said...

It was such a hard decision for me, but like a band aide, I just hit the delete button and I'm trying not to think about how much I'll miss Pinterest. I had only been on for 4 months! I wondered from the first pin how it was even legal, but figured they knew what they were doing (dumb me). Your article link was an eye opener. I'm not debating it, I just did it. I have a seriously high regard for artist that keep art alive. I personally do "old" crafts. Paper cutting, english smocking, quilling. The thing is, I don't want to take a chance I have someone's art pinned without their permission, it's not right and I consider myself moral and don't want the risk even. Heavy hearted I am no longer a "pinner" :( Boo Hoo. Thank you for the article link.

Linda @ A La Carte said...

So much to think about and consider. I will have to read that article and think some more on it. It's a new world where we can 'infringe' on someone so easily and don't mean too! Good post!
hugs, Linda

Anonymous said...

Hi Suzan...I just discovered this...wondered if you'd read it already!

It's about Google and privacy changes!

Anonymous said...

Oh brother! This is exactly why I never started a blog. It seemed like it all started out just for fun then it became very competive. Once money is involved in anything the party's over. No I don't have an account on Pinterest. Really I just looked at that as one more place I would start piling up crap that I don't even remember I have. When something becomes this complicated in my life I tend to toss it. With all the stress in life this just isn't worth it. Well, that's my opinion haha.


Olive Cooper said...

My dear thoughtful Z, you have compiled a set of issues I have had from the start. I have not joined the site because of them. I have folks tell me they pin my images frequently and I do appreciate that but are others not telling me? I have never used anybody else's images on my blog except for my daughter's. I spend so much time right here on the blogs frankly I do not need another enchantment anyway especially with sticky moral and legal problems. olive

juNxtaposition said...

i learned a LONG time ago that if you post it on the net, it is out there for anyone to comment, copy, or steal..this includes, ebay, etsy, blog, website, facebook, webshots, etc etc etc..right or wrong..i think it's just one of those things that is going to happen. i feel that you just have to 'know' it could happen, and therefore, dont post it if you dont want it to happen. it's a downside, for sure, but it's just like people coming in your booth at a show and taking pictures of your items...they do it, they copy it, they make money off it, ?? such is life on the net.
after a show, i blog about where i've been, i show tons and tons of picures from the is for entertainment, not for profit, and i always feel i'm doing them a favor...but?? maybe not?? it's a tough call.
there is now a code you can put on your site that will make your photos 'unpinable' add it if you dont want your stuff pinned.
funny, just today, i got 2 completely different messages from places i sponsor. one...NO MORE pinterest, and the other "tips to market your items on pinterest"...i guess everyone is gong to have a different opinion....sigh..

Nella said...

Dear Suzan, I just started blogging eight months ago, a newbie to the game.....keeping an interesting,glitch free blog, a business running, a son still at home and all the other daily challenges which arise keeps me hopping. I love Pinterest and honestly wonder how all you gals manage it all! I try to keep things simple, my magazine files are antiquated but work for me, I scan, save and go...I try to maintain balance in my life. It is no surprise to me, that you Suzan, being the person I have come to know in a very short time would be so conscientious and moral about all will do the right thing..much love,N.xo

Marcela para Colorin Colorado said...

I opened a Pinterest account but didn't know you are not supposed to pin your own work! and that's exactly what I was doing until I got bored with the whole thing and stopped pinning or doing whatever I was doing. Glad I did!!! I have found pictures of mine in Facebook giving me no credit at all for it and it sucks! Very complicated matter, technology runs 100 times faster that law and lawmakers can!

Linda Starr said...

And here I just joined Pinterest and I am pinning my own photos and linking them with my blog. I did read that there is a way to add code to your blog to block others from pinning photos from your blog but I have yet to figure out how to insert that. Apparently Pinterest made that available because of the issues you have brought up here.

Jillayne said...

Well, we haven't had a Great Debate for a while so it's high time we did... and this is a good one.
I am a hesitant user and like many, wondered how it could be alright but then figured that they must know something I don't know about the legalities. Foolish me.
It would be so easy if you could only upload your own photos and only re-pin what others upload but I guess that would be too complicated for the inventors.
It's all part of your "playing nice" thoughts... I'm thinking the thing to do would be to only pin your own, and look at what you like on others by Following them - kind of like what we do here... but that might be unwieldy....lots to think about Z, and thanks for the prod.
I'm with you; being a grown up sucks and sometimes doing the right thing isn't doing the fun thing, but once you know something, you can't un-know it.

Anonymous said...

I just spent the last 2 weeks ensuring my Pinterest pins went to the orig source THINKING that was responsible. What Pinterest tells us @
is to use Pinterest like this:
"Save your Inspirations!
Sha uses Pinterest to save design inspirations for his job. He can reference inspiring design work to share with his team at Trulia."

Their example of how we should use Pinterest. I'm feeling sick.

I wrote to Pinterest just last week suggesting two ideas to help credit the original source. No response back from them so far.

Why not send Pinterest a link to your blog post, z, and ask them to enlighten us.


Diane Duda said...

I'm going to think hard on it too. On the up side, if I do delete my account, my house will probably be a lot cleaner. :)

Anonymous said...

Just deleted my Pinterest account. After reading one article after another on copyright infringement & Pinterest's policies. So sad. I loved it... but that's the way the Pinterest crumbles.
~ the other Z

TheCrankyCrow said...

You're right dear Z - growing up sucks. And having a conscience, morals, and ethics sucks even more.

What a timely post my friend. I came across Kristen's article a few days ago and, as a fellow attorney, I think her analysis and conclusions are spot-on. I shied away from Pinterest from the git-go - I "peeked" a few times but certainly didn't need another addiction - and I was even more troubled by the copyright issues. I was seeing more and more blogs posting photos that simply said "from Pinterest" and absolutely no link or any way of tracing back to the original artist/creator. Hello? And even if there are links back - so what? Unless you've gotten a license (i.e., express permission) from the owner to use the image, a link back is really just putting perfume on a pig. I think many folks have gotten confused given the "accessibility" the internet provides and by the fact that you do NOT need to file anything anywhere for your original work to be copyrighted. (And, no, you don't even need that cute little "c" with a circle around it symbol.) And whether I SAY my work is copyrighted or not means diddly....If it's mine, and it's original, it's protected by copyright, and anyone who "borrows" it is guilty of copyright infringement unless they've been given a license by me to "borrow" it or it falls within the fair use exception (which, in the context of blogging and/or Pinterest, is highly unlikely).

Anywho - thanks for posting this. I hope some folks take heed - because, as Kristen says, who knows who might be chosen to set the example??? I guess I have been most disheartened by those who have been given this food for thought and spit upon it. Someone whose blog I follow and enjoy recently was touting the wonders of Pinterest and I suggested there might be some "issues" there and, suffice to say that I now know what the little boy who cried wolf must have felt like. A plethora of comments - but all whipping up a frenzied chorus of how great Pinterest is.....Trust me, it's not likely Pinterest who will be left holding the bag.


Susan said...

You have to do what makes you feel right with yourself. Doesn't matter what anyone else thinks!!!

Elaine @ Sunny Simple Life said...

I guess I will just pin my own photos. That way I am safe right?