June 22, 2017

Pinterest, My Top Recipes and Stealing Content

Mar27

DIY (Do It Yourself) Coffee Bar – Creative Party Ideas

Pinterest, Pinterest, oh how we love thee.

You have opened our eyes to recipes, creativity and inspiration, but who ever would have known that for a blogger, you would bring both beauty and bedlam.

My time is valuable, and when I first heard the word pinterest, I categorized it as one more social media tool I didn’t have time for. As a professional blogger, that attitude put me behind, and little did I know the fun that I was missing out on.

For me, now Pinterest is such a valuable tool because it does my on-line organizational thinking for me. I don’t have to wonder anymore where I bookmarked that last project idea that I “had” to do. I strategically use it to only pin things that really inspire me, shout outs for my friends,  or ideas that I might actually do. When you follow me, and I hope you will, you don’t have to worry about gazillions of pins showing up 24/7. I love to be inspired by Pinterest, but I have set boundaries.

My emotional encouragement regarding Pinterest cautions you. Don’t allow it to snare you and make you feel as if you don’t measure up, let it inspire you. Bloggers are beginning to change how they blog just to be more Pinterest friendly, but the reality is that we don’t live in a Pinterest perfect world. They might take hours to take photos and make photo collages, just to get those great shots.  My commitment is to continue showing my bedlam, even if it’s not “pinnable” because that’s my life (and most likely, your life as well.)

One of the ways you will see my pictures changing is by seeing watermarks on my photos. Over the years, I avoided taking the extra time to put my “stamp,” so to speak, on my pictures because it was more thing “to do,” and I thought I just didn’t have the time for it. Now, I regret that decision. I had no idea how many times my photos would be taken and claimed as someone elses.

A huge downfall with the rise of Pinterest are copywriting issues and basic stealing of content. This happens WAY to often with recipes, and I want to take a small moment to educate some of my readers who are not familiar with how it works.

Anyone can pin anything onto Pinterest. Unfortunately, I have seen pins go “viral” (meaning a crazy, huge amounts of hits and traffic) and there was no original source found, or someone has purposely used a pin for traffic and didn’t give proper credit . I’m sure you’ve even repinned something innocently enough, and when you double clicked on it to get the instructions, it led no where, and you really wanted to get that recipe or DIY project. Double clicking and going to the original source is something we have all learned the importance of as Pinterest as grown.

But the main issue that really irks me with Pinterest is how bloggers are abusing it. Stealing of content has become a new form of blogging, and I want to encourage you to realize its form if you see it.  Too often lately, I have seen bloggers copy and paste pictures and entire recipes onto their own blog (without permission), and then said somewhere on their page, “Oh, and I found this on pinterest, isn’t it great?” By giving one small link saying they got it from pinterest, in some way, made them assume they had the right to take other people’s content without permission. It’s always right to ask first.

Now, I am not talking about someone using one of my picture and then stating, “Go to  Balancing Beauty and Bedlam for instructions.” That sends me traffic, and I appreciate that.  I am talking about the number of recipes that are being copied in its entirety on other blogs. As a professional blogger, our content is our livelihood. For food bloggers, recipes take a lot of work. The ability to snap a good picture takes time, and most likely a lot of self study in good photography. I haven’t arrived in that avenue yet, but I’m working on it.

I ask that if you see that being done on other blogs, please do not pin those posts or recipes. Take the extra second to click over to the original source and give proper credit where it is due. Celebrate other people’s hard efforts because blogging is hard work.

I learned this the hard way, most recently with my  Gratitude Rolls (at Thanksgiving.)  I love to inspire others and my desire is for others to take my ideas and use them, but if it’s going to be reprinted on a website, copywrite issues should be respected. With this tradition idea, I did not have my pictures watermarked, and soon my concept went viral. The problem? No one had taken the time to find the original source, so soon, my pictures and ideas showed up on many blogs with no link going back to my site.

As technology changes and more social media ideas pop up, we learn and grow. Hopefully, by understanding the importance of finding original sources and giving credit where credit is due, things we learned in kindergarten are rising to the surface. We should know better. 🙂

I think I better stop now because either my teacher soap box voice or my “frustrated momma” voice is definitely on the prowl.

I do not have the time to go back and watermark all my photos, but slowly, I am trying to do a few every week.

Here are some of my top older posts that were not watermarked and have been stolen “shared” liberally. It was fun to look all the way back to 2009, and I think you will enjoy these posts that have been buried.

And yes, I’d love for you to Pin them, if they inspire you. 🙂

DIY (Do It Yourself) Coffee Bar – Creative Party Ideas

Too often, we forget that some of the best and most creative party ideas do not have to cost a lot of money.

Cake for veggie lovers1 Veggie Cake (Great Twist on the Typical Veggie Platter)

Veggie Cake – something so fun for the non sweet eater in our life, or just a creative way to jazz up the traditional veggie tray.

Neiman Marcus chocolate chip cookies Neiman Marcus Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe

$250 Neiman Marcus Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe (Feb. 2009) – Yes, I’ve had this $250 recipe in my binder since I was a child. Now, I’ve improved on it, if that’s possible.

Cinnamon Rolls Cinnabon Homemade Cinnamon Rolls (Copy Cat Cinnabon Recipe)

Copy Cat Cinnabon Recipe – Homemade Cinnamon Rolls – the closest thing you will get to a clone of a Cinnabon, and one of my most searched recipe.

Easter Resurrection Rolls Resurrection Rolls –  Making Easter Recipes MeaningfulResurrection Rolls (Easter tradition) Such a special food tradition to do this year.

Sesame chicken Simple Sesame Chicken at Home

Simple Sesame Chicken – Have that yummy Chinese take out taste without all the fat. So simple – a family favorite.

Gratitude Rolls – a special way of showing gratitude and celebrating the little things.

Beer Dip for Pretzels1 Beer Dip

The infamous Beer Dip. This recipe has been posted more than any of my recipes. I continually laugh about that because I do not drink beer, at all. The only time I use it is for recipes. With summer coming, you will definitely want to keep this one handy.

It’s a very unique tasting dip, which is highly addictive. So far, just one reader hated it, yep, didn’t like it at all, and I keep thinking they had to have done something wrong. 😉

So, I hope I didn’t sound like that mean teacher from your 6th grade nightmares. I just want to encourage everyone to share liberally with credit. Honor others work and rejoice in their hard efforts, not take advantage of it. 🙂

Now, it’s time for you to inspire us with your Tasty Tuesday recipes. Remember, link up, link back and share your original post.



Comments

  1. You spoke my heart and I am so thankful you wrote this! I’ve had my Personal SIzed Baked Oatmeal with Individual Toppings go viral on Pinterest over 1100 shares/pins now. I’ve had other bloggers take my ENTIRE recipe and pictures copy and paste it onto their blogs and did one link back to my original but its still wrong! No need to go to my blog when they’ve copied the whole thing on theirs! And I’ve asked nicely and since they “linked” back to me they think its ok. I’ve perfected this recipe( money, time spent) its very frustrating. As it continues to grow I see I’m fighting a losing battle. I need to watermark my pics so thank you for the prompt to do so.

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  2. Thanks so much for hosting.

    I shared info on using foods to create all natural Easter egg dyes and tips on getting your seeds started for the garden.

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    Jen Reply:

    I just bought some seeds today, although for NC, I am behind. I should have started them a bit earlier inside. 🙂

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  3. I totally agree with this huge con of pinterest! I used to scrapbook semi-professionally, and it really stinks to have the credit for your hard work go to someone else who stole your design, or words 🙁 Not cool.

    With that said, I just posted a recipe today that was inspired by a couple of pics I saw on pinterest, but the recipe was entirely my own.

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  4. Ugh, drives me crazy that all that “copyrighting” happens. Your photos are always so classy, I can see why people would want to take credit for them 😉 I love that veggie cake, haven’t seen that before!

    Do you watermark your photos just by inserting text over them in Picasa or something similar, or is it a more complicated process? I should really start doing that with my own photos.

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    Jen Reply:

    Jenn – it’s very easy. I have been using Picnik but it’s going away in two weeks, so I did buy photoshop elements, although, you can easily do it in Picasa.

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  5. Excellent post. I’ve actually stopped using Pinterest temporarily due to the TOS & copyright issues even though I love it. Delicious looking recipes as always.

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    Crystal Brothers Reply:

    @Janet, They just revised their TOS, so take another look…not sure what your beef was, but my main issues were addressed in the new TOS (mainly that they don’t own the content anymore).

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    Janet Reply:

    @Crystal Brothers, The content ownership was my biggest issue. I did skim through the new TOS when they released it and it did seem to address that. I just wanted to read it a little closer before jumping back in.

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  6. Thank you for hosting this and your recipes look delicious!

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  7. Great post.

    I don’t understand why people just can’t give credit. I think it has to do with the fact they think if they don’t create it themselves, or it’s not an original recipe, they will lose traffic or people won’t be interested.

    There’s inspiration everywhere and who cares if your dish is based on something else you saw. It’s not a sign of weakness — it’s just life.

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    Jen Reply:

    I agree. I remember when I was a new blogger, and thinking that maybe if I link to others, they won’t come back to mine. It was so narrow minded. Now I realize it’s completely the opposite. When I share the love, it comes back around and we can all encourage each other. 🙂

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  8. Funny you should post this because lately, I’ve definitely been noticing that this whole blogging thing is definitely for the “big girls” (and I don’t necessarily mean that in a complimentary way). I was surfing the net one day, and found a blog by the same name, created after I had created mine. This person got around blogger by hyphenating their blog name. And, I have also seen a lot of what you are talking about. I have recently started watermarking my photos, and am slowly going to go back over some of my better ones.

    To say I was naive when I started this is putting it mildly. And, part of my naivety, was expecting better because quite a few of the bloggers are Christians. I have even linked back several times to other blogs that I got inspiration from. I believe in giving credit where credit’s due. And supporting each other, and not just for what we can get from it. Just to do the decent thing. My only concern at first was that I didn’t know the “rules”. I actually thought they would be annoyed! Go figure! I am starting to understand how it goes. Lesson learned.

    Sorry to have rambled on so badly, lol! Your blog just hit a nerve. It was very appropriate and something people need to hear! Thanks for having the courage!!!

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    Jen Reply:

    Yes, when bloggers are new, there are so many unknown “rules,” aren’t there? But sharing the credit is one of those things that we should have learned in Kindergarten. 😉

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  9. Great tips on Pinterest! I found a person who was regularly using a picture from pinterest and someone else’s recipe who was linking up to my carnival. I discovered when I went to feature her post and realized the entire thing was ripped off. I was so disappointed. I sent her a private email saying that was not acceptable. I am now very careful about sharing posts on any social media and try to verify that the picture and recipe are their own.

    I need to start watermarking my photos even though they are not that great. Thanks for the reminder.

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  10. Thanks for hosting. It is too bad that people think they can take credit for others work and it is okay. Especially with how easy it is to link back.

    Along those lines (and this might hit a nerve with some people) but I think posts that are part of a link party should ALWAYS have that link in the post. Not on some random page on their blog or when people say “I may link up to these parties” I don’t think it is fair to the hosts of the link parties and how many people are going to go through 25 link parties to see where it was linked up.

    Okay enough ranting. I shared another homemade dressing recipe. Hope you enjoy!

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  11. Thank you – well spoken.

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  12. Great post!!! Now…can you do a tutorial on how to watermark your own pictures??? I have no idea how to do that!!

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  13. Ah, the copyright issue. I think all blogging conferences should include a session on copyright. So many people don’t understand or don’t feel they need to understand when in reality they are stealing someone else’s work.

    I just started watermarking my photos when the Pinterest issue came to the forefront. I need to go back and watermark the other ones. I was hoping to get my ds15 to do it as a paid project.

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  14. Youve probably already seen this, but I thought this was a great post about the scary features of Pinterest: http://rettspace.blogspot.com/2012/03/why-im-currently-not-using-pinterest.html
    I actually deleted my account after I read this. I LOVED Pinterest. I started using the minute it went live and probably had thousands of pins. I kept telling my husband that it seems too good to be true to have a service like that and it be free…well, if it seems too good to be true it is. I am not a blogger and I’m not very creative. I am so thankful for the people who share their creativity on the internet. I’m afraid that bloggers will get sick of being taking advantage of and create more “pay to use” sites. Another issue I’ve really noticed on Facebook, is people taking pictures of things they’ve made/done and letting people ooo and ahhhh over their accomplishments without saying they saw it on a website/blog. They just say they saw it on Pinterest or say nothing at all. I posted the above article on my Facebook page in hopes that others would be aware of pinterest’s terms of use. I know I blindly agreed because it looked so cool. The terms are actually quite scary and appear to have the primary purpose of taking advantage of the pictures/projects bloggers post on the web. Thanks for drawing more attention to this. I would be so sad ( and totally at a loss in the creativity department) if bloggers became reluctant to post their ideas.

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  15. Thanks for this post! I am new to the blogging world and I haven’t been watermarking photos, but I’m going to start doing so now. I love Pinterest because it helps me keep my life organized. It seems like the problem is not as much Pinterest in itself, but the people who are using and how they’re using it.

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  16. So glad you brought up this topic. I signed up for Pinterest a month or so ago and had done NOTHING with it at all. Thanks to your post and thoughtful words on credit I now have a recipe pinned to my wall. My first pin was your beer dip and I checked, it comes right back to your recipe. So THANKS!

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  17. Tanya Stewart says:

    I looked back through my pins of the MANY recipes of yours that I have and they show beautyandbedlam at the bottom and link directly to your site so I’m hoping anyone that pins from me will link to you too. The pics don’t have your watermark so let me know if you want me to repin them once you finish redoing the pics. I was always trying to check that a pin was going to an original site but now I realize I was just looking for the recipe or info and maybe those recipes were taken from someone else and re-blogged. I can only dream of having your creativity, faith, and motivation. The legacy you are creating for your “real” family is followed closely by your “blogging” family. It’s a shame that people don’t follow the golden rule.

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  18. Thanks for posting this. I have been thinking about it since I am now a “professional” blogger as well working for The Old Schoolhouse reviewing homeschool products. I am like you, though, just one more thing to do!!!! But I see how important it is, so I guess I will figure it out. 🙂

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  19. I have had articles copied numerous times on the internet and it is so frustrating! I don’t have the time to chase down all the offenders and ask them to remove their post and if I do only about half of them do. I can’t stand it!

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  20. I am very skeptical of all social media. I have been wanting to jump on the Pinterest bandwagon but now not so sure. Sounds like a huge headache. Ugh! Maybe I will wait a few more months until all the kinks are worked out. Privacy i also always a huge factor for me.

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    Jen Reply:

    Believe it or not, the concept of Pinterest is a favorite of mine, it’s just some of the users who ruin the fun, and it’s not necessarily on Pinterst where the problem lies, but what people do with it from there. 🙂 It’s still jump on. You can always just use it for organizational and inspirational ideas without putting your own things on a board.

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  21. This whole issue is why I am just about over blogging.

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    Jen Reply:

    Yep, it is definitely not for the faint of heart, for sure. I think we all have moments like that where we want to hang up the towel, but I dont want the few bad ones in the bunch get me down. 🙂

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  22. Thanks for your insight – and thanks for the hard work you do to keep your blog and the inspiring posts!! (Those cinnamon rolls??? Seriously yummy looking!)

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  23. I do not consider myself to be a creative person…just a person that is really good at digging around the internet for great ideas to implement. Since I now have a blog that is read by more than my granny, copyright has been on the front of my mind. It has surprised me how difficult this is. Especially with sites like Pinterest, there is no telling where an idea really came from. For example, I recently put a link for the resurrection rolls in my blog, but it was not linked to you. In fact, until I read your post, I had no idea that this was your idea at all! That makes me sad, because it is such a great idea. You deserve the credit. I have gone back to my post and changed the link to yours, so at least that one is legit! 🙂 I wish there was a way to know if someone has copied the idea or not.
    Blessings, friend!

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  24. Stacey Hughes says:

    Gulp! I’m very thankful to find this post as I just started trying to chip away at figuring out blogging for hobby a week ago.
    I googled hairstyle images and ones I loved, I created a page for them. (With help!) I’m wondering what the code of ethics are for posting google images or youtube videos? I simply said I found some great images and on another that I found a helpful video. Will definately learn how to check for source code or link.

    I have also noticed many copies of the same recipes on blogs. So much, and so often that I assumed that must be normal!! So one week into my attempt to figure out blogging I’m GRATEFUL for this post!! 🙂

    I do however instinctly know copying someone’s article would be wrong, but the images I truly didn’t know…..so thanks for the post!!!!

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    Jen Reply:

    I think with You Tube videos, if they have a link that allows you to enbed them, you are ok, but in my opinion, you need to write a few lines under it telling that it’s not your video, so people don’t assume it is, and then the link where you found it.

    Recipes can be tricky if they are very basic, simple recipes. Obviously, if it’s a recipe with only four ingredients and something that a lot of people have been making for years, it may not change a lot, but you can never you the exact same recipe. Change it up a bit and make the verbiage ones own. There should never be identical sites on any blogs. If there are, they’ve been copied. 🙂 Hope that helps.

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  25. Oh Jen…it breaks my heart people would do that. But I’ve read so much about it and seen so many copyright&footer changese when a friend & relatively new blogger (with yrs of biz experience)started pinning & putting up “pin it”buttons a few mos ago, I was immediately compelled to bark “watermark your everything! Copyright your everything!” And I sounded like some nasty teacher who hasn’t even set up her long-planned blog yet! You were one of the first I read, from the 2010 31dayers, and I lurk but learn. And I could. Never lift stuff. And someone as respected in bloggyworld as you? That’s like lifting from The Bible! So I am sorry I didn’t bark at you. 🙁 and Biblically-speaking, wishing all a blessed Palm Sunday. May we all walk thoughtfully & with true purpose. Back under my rock…s

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  26. I am a blogger but I’m not well known yet and I don’t blog about anything that I would be horribly upset if it got stolen (I mean, I would be upset but not to the same degree – I blog about my opinion on politics, so it’s not like I’m creating anything – now my creative work, that would be different, but I also don’t put it on the internet for that reason). But I have recently gotten into Pinterest. I try always to source it back to where it came from because if it’s not there, it’s worthless to me, but I have to admit, if somebody copied and pasted the whole thing and then put one sentence in it “Oh I got this from Pinterest.” I probably wouldn’t see it, even if I was looking closely for it (which I usually am). I hope I’m not accidentally causing this, because I’m trying very hard not to. I am just now teaching myself to cook and I mainly use Pinterest as a cookbook for myself. But if I make a recipe and it’s successful, I will always post the original link on my Facebook to it, not just take a picture of it and say I found it on Pinterest. Mainly because I’m too lazy to always be taking pictures of what I cook (I just want to eat it!) so I link to the blog posts of food I like. I am trying very hard all the time to make sure that I am linking back to the original, but I might miss it sometimes. Oh and nothing drives me nuts more than people just linking to a photo of some food because if I click on it, I want to learn how to cook it!

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  27. Oh, boy, do I agree with you! I don’t like the aggregate posts, either, that are nothing but a list of Pins. IMO, if there wouldn’t be a post without the Pins, there shouldn’t be a post.

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  28. We Googled “Pintrist Stealing Content” and we’re so glad that your post was at the top. This is what we needed to hear.

    Every day more and more of our DIY content is ending up on Pintrest. We’ve always watermarked, but even so, why would people come to our blog if eventually all of our best stuff is on Pintrist? It is stealing, plain and simple.

    We just found a WordPress plugin that disables the right click feature so that images can not be easily grabbed.

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Trackbacks

  1. […] post is linked to Tasty Tuesdays at Balancing Beauty and […]

  2. […] Linked to Tasty Tuesday […]

  3. […] recipe is linked to Tasty Tuesday at Balancing Beauty & Bedlam, Slightly Indulgent Tuesday at Simply Sugar & Gluten-Free, […]

  4. […] the original sources, I want to mention the heartfelt article Jen over at Beauty and Bedlam wrote about the proper way to not only pin things we find on the Internet, but also how to blog about the… (credit the source, not just the pin!). I love Pinterest and hope it stays a fun place to find and […]

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