As social photo and video sharing site Pinterest continues to dominate social media blogs for good reasons and bad, its growth has brought it under the scrutiny of bloggers and users alike. Friday, they made 4 major changes to their terms of service that address two major known issues and that preempt two potential issues in the future.
Their biggest challenge of late is addressing the speculation that they’re a copyright- and trademark-infringement haven. They have attempted to head in the right direction by making the tools and ability to report allegedly-infringing content more easily. How they handle reports will determine if this will be enough to stave off the wolves, but it’s a step in the right direction.
The second big conspiracy has surrounded the language with which they claimed the right to sell the content that users post on the site. This was not uncommon but was considered by some to be exceptionally absolute, in essence taking the ability to profit from the site under their own blanket. They have removed this portion from their TOS altogether.
In what can be called the “Tumblr Rule” they have cut off a challenge that Tumblr and Facebook have faced by cutting off the allowance of pins that show or encourage self-harm or abuse. Tumblr had to address this issue last month and some speculated that Pinterest would end up collecting the refugees.
Lastly, they added language that would allow advancement of the site’s potential by paving the way for API development and private boards.
As with nearly any news that is posted on a Friday, this was intended to quietly roll out so as to not draw too much attention to their previous shortcomings. This was a mistake; they should be proud of growing up as a social media site and addressing concerns publicly and boldly. This should have been rolled out on Monday or Tuesday when it would have received bids of confidence from more tech blogs.
Either way, these are all good moves and good signs for the future of the site.