PINTEREST: THE WORLD’S CATALOG OF IDEAS
Idit Kohan-Harpaz & Mia Torres
Pinterest is an application that brings the idea of the “inspiration board” to the digital world. Before Pinterest, one might physically pin things like magazine and newspaper clippings, photographs or small objects to a wall, corkboard, or even their refrigerator door. You might have flipped through National Geographic to find images of animals and nature, or Glamour Magazine to find fashion inspiration.
Now, with the ubiquity of the Internet, Pinterest allows you to gather all these things from the Internet or from other Pinterest users to save for later in collections you’ve created and curated yourself. Pinterest lets you get inspired, brainstorm, share, like, comment, and follow other users.
(Image source: https://outnow.ch/Movies/2005/EverythingIsIlluminated/Bilder/005)
STATS, STATS, STATS!
Founder: Ben Silberman, Paul Sciarra, Evan Sharp
Status: Privately Owned
Launched: December 2009
HQs: San Francisco, CA
Staff: 500 Employees
Worth: $14.3 Billion CAD (2017)4
Active Users: 100 Million per month
Registered: 176 Million users
Demographic: 85% Female (42% of all women in US)5
WHAT CAN YOU PIN?
With Pinterest, you can pin nearly anything you find online like photos, videos, articles, recipes, how-to’s, travel tips, fashion trends, etc. Pinterest allows you to gather all these things from the internet or from other Pinterest users to save for later in collections you’ve created and curated yourself. Pinterest allows you get inspired, brainstorm, research, share, like, comment, and follow other users!
Pinterest allows you to search for content based on a keyword or key phrase. It also suggests similar topics based on other common searches.
ELEMENTS OF PINTEREST
PINNING – choosing and saving a resource or content from anywhere on the internet. Some browsers will include “pin” icons that let you automatically pin to your account without opening the Pinterest website. Phone companies also allow you to integrate pinterest into your phone so you can pin photos you have one your phone.
REPINNING – Pinning someone else’s pin to one of your own boards.
SAVING & LIKING – Save other users’ pins to look at later, or simply ‘like’ them as you browse.
KEYWORDS & RELATED SEARCHES
PINTEREST vs. INSTAGRAM
PINTEREST AS A TOOL
TIPS, TIPS, TIPS!
(SOURCE: https://www.theguardian.com/culture-professionals-network/culture-professionals-blog/2013/dec/11/how-to-instagram-pinterest-arts#top10 )
MUSEUMS, GALLERIES, ARCHIVES & LIBRARIES, OH MY!
All these institutions use Pinterest as a marketing tool to achieve their unique agendas and to promote public interest in their institutions. We looked at a number of specific institutions from around the world, and we found that their Pinterest boards are generally small selections representing a cross section of their entire collections, organized around themes, concepts, specific exhibitions, or locations.
For example, the Metropolitan Museum of Art has created a Pinterest board called “Met Selfies” on which it has posted various self-portraits, in a variety of mediums, it has within its collection. It is interest that such a well-known and establish institution has adopted the colloquial term “selfie”, relating it to traditional self-portraits in order to relate to current trends and a younger audience.
The British Library has a board called Manuscript Mondays where in posts images of manuscripts from within its collection, riffing on the popular hashtag trends of “throwback Thursday”, “flashback Friday”, “Woman crush Wednesday”, etc. This brings content that may not normally be interesting to or sought out by the average person, but makes it relatable in small, easy to digest, trending topics.
COPYRIGHT or COPYWRONG?
As you might expect, copyright is a big issue with online content. Pinterest is no different, and received much backlash around 2012 for (unintentionally) allowing users to violate copyright policies. Since then, it has fine-tuned its policies and distilled the information into easily digestible “More Simply Put” blurbs. However, even though Pinterest covers its rear end for the most part, many aspects of copyright are inherently abstract.
WHAT’S OK TO PIN?
Many sources advise that users only pin what they own, content from websites with the “pin it” sharing button, content that other users have uploaded directly to Pinterest, content that falls under public domain, or content that allows for sharing under a Creative Commons license.
“Creative Commons helps you legally share your knowledge and creativity to build a more equitable, accessible, and innovative world. We unlock the full potential of the internet to drive a new era of development, growth and productivity.”
TOPICS FOR DISCUSSION
If someone uploads content that doesn’t belong to them (violates copyright), and another person re-pins this, are they violating the copyright too?
A museum has a collection of photographs to which it holds the copyright. It pins one of these images to its account and that pin gets re-pinned 1,000 times and generates $10,000 in ad revenue for Pinterest.
Does this violate the artist’s/museums copyright terms?
Does the amount of (potential) exposure the museum receives from these pins outweigh the need/desire to claim copyright infringement? What if the institution is a Gallery? Or Archive?
Does it matter if the photograph is contemporary or if the photographer is still alive?
– Idit & Mia
Pinterest. “Introducing Guided Search.” 2017. Accessed February 3, 2017. https://about.pinterest.com/
Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 2017. s.v “Pinterest.” Accessed February 3, 2017. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pinterest
Digital Image. “Bild Zu Everything Is Illuminated (2005).” September 12, 2005. Accessed February 3, 2017. https://media.outnow.ch/Movies/Bilder/2005/EverythingIsIlluminated/movie.fs/05.jpg
Smith, Craig. “270 Amazing Pinterest Statistics.” Accessed February 1, 2017. http://expandedramblings.com/index.php/pinterest-stats/
Pinterest. “Copyright.” 2017. Accessed February 5, 2017. https://about.pinterest.com/en/copyright
Caines, Matthew. “How to Use Instagram and Pinterest for Your Arts Organisation.” The Guardian (The Guardian), December 11, 2013. https://www.theguardian.com/culture-professionals-network/culture-professionals-blog/2013/dec/11/how-to-instagram-pinterest-arts#top10
De Jager-Loftus, Danielle P. and Abby Moore. 2013. “#gathercreateshare: How Research Libraries use Pinterest.” Internet Reference Services Quarterly 18 (3-4): 265-279. doi:10.1080/10875301.2013.840714. http://resolver.scholarsportal.info/resolve/10875301/v18i3-4/265_hrlup
Archambault, Michael. “Photographer Suing Pinterest in Federal Court over Repeated Copyright Infringement.” May 27, 2015. Accessed February 5, 2017. https://petapixel.com/2015/05/27/photographer-suing-pinterest-in-federal-court-over-repeated-copyright-infringement/
Brundige, Ellen. “Is Pinterest a Haven for Copyright Violations?” April 28, 2016. Accessed February 5, 2017. https://turbofuture.com/internet/Is-Pinterest-a-Haven-for-Copyright-Violations