Friday, March 30, 2012

10 Controversial Pinterest Pins To Avoid

The rising popularity of Pinterest is sending users to the site in droves; however, this vast influx of visitors unfamiliar with the accepted etiquette can lead to established users becoming offended at the types of pins being pinned. Here are ten types of pins that are best avoided, in the interest of preserving the peace.

  1. Uncredited Sources – One of the things that makes Pinterest such a popular site is the community feel; sharing interests and great finds is the cornerstone of this community, which makes neglecting or outright refusing to credit your sources a bit of a faux pas in the eyes of other users.

  1. Self-Promoting Pins – Promotion of your own brand or business is one of the quickest ways to draw the ire of the DIY-centric crowd of Pinterest enthusiasts. Blatant pushing of your own goods and services to the exclusion of all else is regarded as a form of spam on Pinterest.

  1. Racist Pins – Any pin that alludes to racism or racist viewpoints could eventually lead to the deletion of your entire account. Pinterest is a place for sharing things that interest users in a positive and motivating manner, hence the name; however if your interests include racism, this community is not the place to share those views.

  1. Overtly Sexual Content – Pinterest does have a decency policy which states that any overtly sexual content or any pins that contain nudity will be deleted upon discovery. Site admins generally become aware of these pins when offended users report them, which means that you won’t have gained any friends from these controversial pins.

  1. Inflammatory Political Views – Political tensions are always running high, but are especially the source of potentially contentious debate during an election year. Though sharing your political views is perfectly acceptable social behavior in the appropriate venue, the breezy lightheartedness of Pinterest makes it a less than ideal setting.

  1. Incendiary Topics – Hot-button issues like abortion and gay marriage are causes that many people feel very strongly about, be it on either side of the debate. Pinning images that are related to these topics and others of their ilk is best avoided in keeping with the happy-go-lucky feel of the site.

  1. Discriminatory Religious Pins – Much like political views, religious beliefs can be the source of many in-depth and passionate arguments. Sharing your religious views in a respectful manner is acceptable; being heavy-handed and argumentative or bashing the beliefs of others is not.

  1. Anti-Gay Pins – Hate speech is officially forbidden by the administrators of Pinterest, which includes any sentiments bashing gay marriage or endorsing sexuality-based bullying. Pins reflecting these views are certain to lead to a significant loss of followers and a spike in reported content.

  1. Sexist Content – When it comes to Pinterest, the oft-repeated advice of mothers everywhere comes to mind: “If you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all.” The vibe of Pinterest shoots for positivity; sexist pins certainly don’t hold to this tenet and are forbidden under the sites Terms of Use.

  1. Copyrighted Images – One of the more recent bits of Pinterest-related controversy stems from photo giant Flickr blocking the ability to pin their images. Already, savvy users have found a way around the security measure though this is still considered impolite, and violates the terms of both sites as well.

When venturing into a new venue on the web, it is always wise to take some time to observe before utilizing too heavily. Etiquette is usually easily detected with a little time and common sense.

Contacts and sources:
Melanie Slaugh

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