Pinterest and Copyright Law
October 24, 2012 9:17 AM Subscribe
Help deciphering Pinterest and copyright law, please! The short story is that I'm a food blogger. A picture from my blog was pinned to Pinterest, then someone else used the "embed" feature on Pinterest to put it on their site. I say this is not okay, she says this is totally kosher. What say you?
posted by Bella Sebastian to Technology (15 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
The long story: I have a Pinterest account, and because I get a good amount of traffic from Pinterest, I encourage users to pin my photos via a "pin it" button on my blog.
One day on Pinterest I saw one of my pictures--let's say a picture of My Unique Delish Muffins--had been pinned and had tons of repins--awesome! But when I looked closer, the picture actually linked to another site that posted this picture, along with a slightly tweaked version of My Unique Delish Muffins.
I have no problem with her recipe--she re-wrote mine and made some changes, so that's fair game. But I think it's lousy that she's using my picture as representative of her recipe, and I think it's REALLY lousy that it's all over pinterest linking back to her instead of me, and she's getting page views and advertising dollars as a result.
I wrote her nicely and asked her to take it down, and she basically said that since she used the "embed" feature from Pinterest, she was in the clear. [She never claimed the picture was her own, and in fact there's a very small link near the picture back to my website.]
First of all, is what she says true, per US copyright law?
Complicating factor: SHE is the one who pinned it from my site, this is not a picture I put up myself. As I understood it from the Pinterest TOS, when you pin something you're technically claiming to have the rights to pin it (ie, ownership). Of course no one uses it that way, but I thought that's what the terms stated. So if she pinned it herself from my site, then used the embed feature to put it on her site, is that kosher or sketchy?
I have filled out the Pinterest form asking them to remove this pin since it's my product and I didn't upload it--if she's embedded it from that pin, then that might make it disappear off her site. However, the picture is still all over pinterest so there's nothing to stop her from finding another copy and embed from that one, and so on. I could remove all instances of the pin from pinterest, but some point back to my own site...argh!
My other thought was to file a DMCA notice with her ISP, but since I'm not 100% sure it's NOT okay to do what she's done, I don't know if that will get me anywhere. (Legally, I mean. Morally, I think she's lame for not taking it down when I've asked.)
This was way too many words about a minor problem, but she's gotten under my skin. I'd love to hear everyone's thoughts, and if you have some relevant links for me, that would be awesome.