I make it a point not to share controversial opinions on this blog for a number of reasons. Número um, I want this to be a happy place for you and for me not a place of arguments and angst. Number two, crochet should be celebrated and enjoyed and most of the time should not be controversial. And number three, I think it’s important for me to present both sides of a story and not just my personal opinion since I know I’m not “direito” but just have a particular view. Dito, I’m going to veer off my chosen course today and share my personal opinion on the controversial topic of Pinterest pins. I’m doing this because I do have a strong opinion here and it’s one that I’ve seen hugely underrepresented in the recent Pinterest conversation.
Background of the Controversy
I’ve been watching the Pinterest news and opinions with a little bit of interest and then a little bit of horror. Many people are attacking Pinterest and its users primarily over issues of copyright and somewhat over Pinterest profiting off of pins. You can read all about it online in other places but to be fair, here are some of their arguments:
- People are pinning photographs that they don’t have permission to pin.
- People should pin items only with links to the original source.
- People are repinning and liking pins without following the links.
- Pinterest can add affiliate links to some photos and profit off the pin. They shouldn’t.
- Pinterest should bear some responsibility for preventing pinning of copyrighted material. They don’t do enough.
Here’s what I say: poppycock. And I’ll tell you why …
It’s Your Job as a Creative Person to Be Unique Enough to Stand Out
Let me explain …
I think that the whole nature of pinning and liking and quickly responding or reposting to things that you’ve barely even looked at is the way of the Internet right now. People RT links they haven’t actually read. They hit the like button on Facebook shares they’ve barely glanced at. And they like and repin on Pinterest. And I think that’s fine. I think that people online today know what this does and doesn’t mean. It doesn’t mean that you’ve followed every link and researched to make sure it’s a credible source and that you agree with every single point in the article or like the exact details of the pattern. All it does mean is “ei, Eu gosto deste, and it was shared by someone I generally find credible so I’m going to share it too”. É isso aí.
What does this have to do with being unique? It is my opinion that if you create something truly unique then people who are interested in it are going to take the time to find you as the source. If I really adore a crochet fashion item that I see on Pinterest and want to know more about it, I’ll follow the links to find out the information I want to know. And you know what, se o link real no Pinterest não me levar para a fonte original ou um site confiável que liga à fonte original, está tudo bem, porque como um consumidor de informações na web eu sei que eu tenho opções. Eu puder:
- Google as informações. Se o artigo é original e único, Provavelmente, vou encontrá-lo. Por exemplo, se alguém coloca-se um pino para uma foto de Patricia Waller'S Who Killed Bambi? e as ligações de pinos para algum site ou esboçado uninformative, Eu posso apenas digitar no Google algo como “Bambi crochê sangue” e eu vou com facilidade e quase que instantaneamente descobrir que o criador é Patricia Waller, mesmo que a Pinner não compartilhar essas informações.
- Coloque a imagem em uma pesquisa de imagens Google. Você já fez isso ainda? Você pode realmente arrastar uma imagem da web (a partir de um site como o Pinterest) into the Google image search box and the genius web will find where else that same photo and similar photos have been posted. You can easily see which sources are credible and which ones aren’t and find what you’re looking for.
- Ask about the item on your social networks. If you see something unique and cool and you want to know more about it and truly can’t find that information then you can always blog about it, Tweet about it, FB about it, asking your contacts if they know who the creator is. You’re probably going to get an answer. I know that I’ve never failed to get an answer about a crochet item source from going to the experts on social sites.
Se você criar algo que é bom, mas não é único, então ele pode não ser tão fácil de encontrar o seu material através destes canais. E, francamente, Eu acho que está tudo bem. Eu acho que incentiva a inovação na criação, oferecendo ainda um lugar on-line para as pessoas que fazem medíocre-qualquer tipo de material. As pessoas podem fixar a foto de seu cachecol de crochê normal e algumas pessoas podem gostar dele e eu acho que deveria ser considerado uma coisa boa que eles gostam. Então, eles não seguem todos os links durante todo o tempo para a sua criação. Talvez ele apenas significa que o que você está colocando lá fora, não é criativo o suficiente para um grande mercado de compra pública de buzz sobre você.
Qual é o seu trabalho como um empresário criativo?
I’ve asked myself the hard questions when it comes to this topic. Você vê, I’m primarily a writer rather than a photographer or a crochet designer and since my work isn’t necessarily visual in that same way, do I have the right to have these strong opinions on Pinterest sharing? And here’s what I’ve concluded: I’d feel the same way about it if I were making my primary income selling crochet patterns or working as a photographer. And here’s why …
I feel that it is my job as a creative businessperson to adapt to changes in the market and changes in technology, not to get the people who use them to adapt to me.
Então, digamos que eu tenha criado um padrão de crochet para a venda e que ficou uma série de novidades no Pinterest, mas alguns dos links estão indo para locais que não são minhas. Enquanto eu absolutamente não acho que alguém on-line deve ser repostagem padrões completa de um criador que eles oferecem para venda, Eu acho que como um empresário criativo gostaria de focar meus esforços em descobrir como eu posso adaptar o meu modelo de negócio para oferecer algo tão atraente para o mercado que esta pequena parte que não vai importar tanto. Posso dar aulas de crochê locais ou online? Posso melhorar a minha presença on-line para que as pessoas sabem, sem dúvida, que este projeto criativo é meu e pode facilmente encontrá-lo on-line? Posso vender este padrão de crochet para uma revista … What can I do to take my business to the next level so I succeed regardless of what sketchy people are repinning or RTing or whatever.
Likewise if I were a professional photographer, I wouldn’t care if someone pinned a few photos of mine. I’d consider it my job as a creative business person to be offering photography services, classes, photo tips on a blog, prints of my work, etc. Afinal, if I’m creating truly unique photos and people are pinning them, that’s buzz for me regardless of improper linking. People will find me through my creativity and they will arrive at my site and know how to support my work with a creative purchase of goods or services.
Agora, before anyone jumps down my throat because I’m not a crochet designer and I’m not a photographer and what do I know … I get it, I really do. I make my living from writing. I do a lot of research. I sit down even when I don’t want to and craft hard to write articles. I work in a kind of isolation that many people can’t handle. I climbed my way through a lot of ladders and hoops to establish my income as a writer. And did you know that pretty much every single day someone steals my content? They literally come in, scrape exactly what I’ve written and publish it online (and I’ve even seen it published offline) without giving me any credit and often under their own names. Or by printing my name as a “blogueiro convidado” or something like that even when they have no permission to steal my content. E sim, I hate it. I think it’s rude and unethical and it irks me a lot that sometimes those sites get meu traffic. But over the years I’ve come to accept that bad people are going to do these things. And instead of wasting my time and energy trying to change that, I’ve adapted my business practices to try to stand out as a writer and to broaden my own income streams because I think that’s what’s most important for my career. I genuinely believe that if I put effort into crafting my own business and standing out as a unique individual and offering something that no one else is offering then it’ll pay off for me even when people are stealing my content.
Pinterest Melhores Práticas
Despite my opinion on this, I do think that there are some best practices that people who care about this issue can implement when using a site like Pinterest.
Here are the two rules that I think are imperative and obvious for me:
- Never claim content as your own when it’s not. If you didn’t make the item and you’re the one pinning it for the first time, say in the comment box who did make it. I don’t really care if you link to the original source or not but say the name of the creator. Don’t pretend that you made it.
- Never publish a significant body of someone else’s work. Pin the photo of the cool crochet item. Don’t pin a link to the whole pattern. Pin the stunning awesome photographer’s photo. Don’t pin every photo in their portfolio.
Honestamente, those rules are really enough for me. But there are some other best practices that I can understand the reasons that people follow them:
- Try to give a link to the original source. Or at least to a credible source that will help the person find an original source. Por exemplo, I might Pin something that’s on CRAFT or Knithacker. That link isn’t to the original photo or tutorial but those sites always link to the original source so I’m okay with that. Someone interested in the item can find the original source.
- Follow boards on Pinterest that are from people you generally find credible. I do this same thing on Twitter. I sometimes RT a crochet related article before I’ve read it because it sounds interesting, I’m telling people I think it sounds appealing and I generally trust the source because I know their work and social activity. Same deal on Pinterest.
My Guilt-Free Pinterest Confessions
Honestamente, I think that you bear more responsibility in ethical consumption of material than you do in repinning or sharing work. I engage in plenty of Pinterest practices that some people would say aren’t good practices and that recent articles say I shouldn’t be doing. And I’ll confess them here because I’m personally okay with them:
- Eu “como” pins without following the links. I do it a lot. All I’m saying is “ei, Eu gosto deste”. No more, no less.
- I occasionally repin without following the links. Same deal although I do it a lot less. A “repin” to me is something that’s really special. It’s more than a like. So I give it a little more attention.
- I pin links to my own blog rather than the original source and I pin photos without getting express permission. Here’s the deal; I write a lot of articles and every day I look at those articles that have gone live and I pin the best photos that I’ve shared. A lot of times they’re my photos. Sometimes they aren’t. I’m not going to go back and find the original photo and ask the person for permission to share it and wait for permission and link back to that original source. It’s either share the item from my own blog or don’t share it. As a creative person, I’d rather someone shared it. Now I do always try to say who the real creator is on my pin. And I do share the link to the original source in my article that the pin has linked to.
And this is where I think that the issue of a consumer’s responsibility comes in. I don’t think that it’s my job to make sure that something is from a totally legit source before I “como” it on Pinterest. Contudo, if I’m going to write an article about that item and put out fresh information then it IS my job to follow those links and find the original source. If I’m going to create my own version of that crocheted item, it IS my job to find out who the original creator was and to buy the pattern from that legit source.
My Two Cents on Pinterest’s Responsibility
I think Pinterest has received way too many attacks lately and it’s not really justified. They’re a high tech business in a new age of visual social media and they’re still learning the ropes and best practices too. I think it’s about how they respond to issues that come up, not what they do from the get go. And from what I’ve seen, they’re responding. They’ve added some things to their site about good Pinterest etiquette and their commitment to follow up on reported copyright violations.
As for them making a profit off of pinned images using affiliate links … I think that if you don’t add your own affiliate link to the pin then there’s no reason they shouldn’t take advantage of that. I have no problem with sites making money off affiliate links or ads or anything like that. They have to make enough money to be able to respond to what consumers want and I think, pessoalmente, that this is a legit way of doing it.
Pessoalmente, I’d like to see them add something on the Pinterest site that’s akin to the “report for spam” e “bloco” options that are available on Twitter. I use those frequently on Twitter when I see bad links, spam stuff and other bad Twitter practices. I would do the same on Pinterest and I think others would too, allowing the Pinterest community to help police the site so that it offers good content.
Ok, so if you agree or okay with my practices and want to follow me on Pinterest, I’m here. Se não, have at it in the comments with your own two cents but try to be thoughtful and gentle in your response as I’ve tried to be respectful in sharing my opinion.