Ever surfing the wave of novelty, I finally had some time to "hang ten" with Pinterest this week. Pinterest, in case you don't know, is yet another, newly-evolved form of social media. It allows users to "pin" images and share them. When I first heard of it, my initial reaction was, "So?"
But now I'm seeing that it has possibilities as yet another place for the working artist to promote himself. I discovered, for example, that I can also pin video. I was able to pin my two promotional videos for my Paint Sedona and Paint Campobello workshops.
Additionally, I've set up a board where I can feature links to instructional books, magazines and videos for the aspiring painter; another with links to recommended art products; another where I can store publicity shots of me and my workshops; and, of course, a board with images of my own paintings. Visitors can go to my Pinterest page and then follow links to all kinds of useful things.
At one point, I even set up a couple of boards where I could share images from both living and deceased painters. I really liked this idea, because there are so many excellent painters I want people to know about. But there was a problem with this, and I decided to delete these two boards. Why? Because I didn't own the copyright to these images, and posting such is against the Pinterest terms of agreement. (In fact, it's against the terms of agreement for most social media sites, including Google+, Blogger and Facebook.) Despite this, most Pinterest boards are made up of nothing but stolen images. Is posting images you don't have copyright to morally wrong, especially if you make no money off of them?
(UPDATE. I did a test and found that, even if you aren't intentionally copying images, Pinterest will do that for you. When you "pin" an item from a site using the pin marklet, Pinterest actually copies the image to its server. So who's violating copyright here? I'd say Pinterest is. If you're pinning images, you're just the mechanism that shows Pinterest where the good images are. So maybe I'll put back up those two boards I deleted.)