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Can't Pin It? You Could Be Blocked

So, have you been surfing the web and finding cool images you want to pin, but when you click that pin, the website shakes a finger at you and says no?

Well, prepare yourself. You’ll be seeing a lot more than that soon.

Flickr has led the way, installing the new code that Pinterest is offering to help site owners prevent images from being pinned. According to Search Engine Journal, a Flickr representative said:

“Flickr takes privacy and content ownership very seriously and is committed to continue to build features that protect members’ photos and videos. Flickr has implemented the tag and it appears on all non-public/non-safe pages, as well as when a member has disabled sharing of their Flickr content. This means only content that is “safe,” “public,” and has the sharing button (e.g., also for Facebook, Twitter) enabled can be pinned to Pinterest.”

Pinterest is always struggled with issues surrounding copyright and privacy, and there have been plenty of artists and photographers that have really hated the frequency with which they find their work on the site, uncredited and unlinked to their websites. Copyright continues to be an issue, and this is largely the reason that Pinterest has instituted this new code option.

You can find out directly how to block the pinning of images on the newly updated help section of Pinterest here, but this is what it looks like.

A better option, perhaps, might be to simply embrace Pinterest. Artists can increase control of the pinning of their images by including a “pin this” button to their sites. And not all artists are opposed to Pinterest at all; photographer Trey Ratcliff encourages artists to embrace it. In a recent blog post he says:

Despite what fear-mongers have told you, everyone will not steal your images. Most legitimate companies will work out a proper licensing arrangement with you. Even though I use Creative Commons Noncommercial, I still license my images with the Copyright office. This enables us to sue companies that do not go through the proper channels. There was a well-publicized case lately where we sued Time for using my images in an ad for their iPad app. But that is another story. The point is that most people do not steal, and on those edge cases where it does happen, you have many reactive options.

As always, the battle for copyright and Pinterest continues. It also continues to be interesting to watch.

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