Posted by: meredithalawrence | November 5, 2012

Pinterest, Copyright and Complacency

Earlier this year, right about the time that Pinterest became so popular it seemed as though every single girl was on Pinterest planning her imaginary dream wedding, posts started to circulate about Pinterest’s violation of copyright law.  Most posts centered on the fact that someone positing on Pinterest could be in violation of copy right law, if he or she did not have permission to post content, say from another website, and that the poster was solely responsible for posting potentially copyrighted material. (See article: http://www.popphoto.com/news/2012/03/pinterest%E2%80%99s-photo-copyright-infringement-issues-get-more-complex)

In the wake of this revelation, Pinterest users threatened to drop left and right if Pinterest didn’t fix the loophole. Pinterest made a few adjustments and tightened up the language and now each post is a link back to the original site. For a current copy of the site’s copy right statement, see: http://pinterest.com/about/copyright/. But it seems to me that due to the nature of the site and the way in which it allows you to pull images from nearly any site without necessarily giving credit to the site, that it is still pretty easy to violate copyright law or fair use law without even knowing it. And yet, to my knowledge, the droves of users who originally threatened to leave have not left.

And so I wonder, in this age of “share everything” are we becoming complacent because we are surrounded by constant sharing of images and material, and in so doing, do we put ourselves at risk because of the pervasiveness culture of content-sharing?

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