Pinterest promotes Attribution
Pinterest is essentially a space for sharing ideas and likes via photographs. The photographer of a photograph owns the photograph under copyright law, unless the photographer contracts in writing with someone else to own the photograph. (Yup, that’s right – the person who takes the picture owns it!)
Pinterest routinely stripped photographs of all metadata, including the name of the photographer. Most copyright lawyers, this one included, believed that alteration of the metadata violated DMCA and was just down-right, wrong.
Now, Pinterest has announced that it is promoting attribution by working with various photo and other file sharing sites to encourage attribution. Flickr has launched a “Pinterest” button in the share menu of its site that automatically credits the image when it’s shared. Other sites also getting automatic attribution with Pinterest are YouTube, Behance and Vimeo.
And the news gets better: From Mashable: “All of the pictures shared from Flickr will be updated retroactively.” Because the attribution cannot be edited, pins and repins shared through Flickr will always be credited back to the original photographer.
Under U.S. copyright law, creators such as photographers are not entitled to attribution. However, photographers are not so concerned that their images of milk and chocolate chip cookies will be resold in the form of posters or giclees (the images are too low of a resolution for that); rather, they just want their skills to be credited so that people will hire them for additional work.
And, for purposes of DMCA, the Court’s require that the ISP undertake some steps to discourage use of copyrighted files. Not too sure if this will pass muster at that level, but it is a great step in the right direction for the folks at Pinterest.
Now, about that DMCA Designated Agent form Pinterest just can’t seem to correct…