social media

  • The Failure of Etiquette On Pinterest (and Tumblr)

    Given the popularity (and quick growth) of sites like Pinterest and Tumblr, they obviously have something to offer the internet community. However, one thing none of them do (or truly can do themselves) is guarantee proper citation and attribution to the work that gets shared. That’s where users need to be diligent and respectful of the intellectual property of others, not just the source of discovery. Which is much easier than observed practice would suggest.

    Both Pinterest and Tumblr have built-in UI elements that attribute the source of discovery (e.g. via) which gives credit to where the user found the image, and Pinterest goes a step further by linking to the original source (followed by clicking on the image itself). This constant link along the lifespan of a single pin shows an attempt at proper citation, and is all they can realistically do, but it still has loopholes. As an example, let’s use the typographic image I found pinned to someone else’s board today. It had no reference to where the work had come from, nor did the source they found it on, nor the next one, nor did any of the thirteen boards all the way back to the original pin. That’s sixteen pins without attribution to the original creator. I’m not sure if it’s better or worse, but several of the shares were merely using the illustrated words to promote a separate unrelated topic, not the art itself — but that’s a different discussion.

    The Failure of Pinterest and Tumblr: A Case Study
    So what about the original source link we mentioned earlier? That led to a Tumblr blog, which once again offered attribution to the source of discovery but nothing to the original source or creator. Following the thread of shares leads back through ten more Tumblr blogs before terminating at an account that was deactivated in 2011. All told, that’s twenty-eight points of sharing where no one bothered to give credit to the artist who drew the original work. And that’s only a single thread. There are easily more divulging branches at each of the twenty-eight points, as each one in turn was repinned & reblogged by more than the user I followed back.

    Was it really that hard for any of those people to use Google Image search (even here, our sought for result was three pages back, buried by all the reposts of the image) to trace the image back to the Flickr  account of justlucky, who’s user profile conveniently linked to his personal website, wherein was his name — Drew Melton — the original creator of the now twenty-nine times shared image.

    Curator's Code

     

  • SOPA, PIPA, and the Inability to Share Music

    So, yesterday was eventful, right? Parts of the internet ‘blacked out’ when people, businesses, and organizations shut down or otherwise altered their website viewing experience in opposition to the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and the Protect Intellectual Property Act (PIPA). Google kept it simple, donning black in protest, but after Wikipedia closed off it’s site Twitter exploded as students everywhere realized they no longer knew where the library was or how to find the reference section, and common outlets for distraction couldn’t be counted on either as they too were blacked out for 24 hours. I won’t bother pointing out all the reasons and arguments against these two bills (or argue in favor of them) as the information is all across the internet right now, but I will go on record and say that I oppose SOPA and I oppose PIPA.

    zselter.com was censored for January 18, 2012zselter.com was censored for January 18, 2012My post yesterday was ironically well-timed as one of the main reasons I had not posted it sooner was because I was hoping to find a simple and safe means of allowing you to actually listen to the music without infringing on copyright laws. If I were to post tracks, and offer them for download even though they were not mine to give, I could be reprimanded, and rightly so. But the issue many people have with this bill is the vague way in which it is written. If someone were to post links in the comments as a misguided attempt to help, many people fear that the vague way that SOPA is worded would allow the government (or the entertainment industry) to effectively shut my entire site down. So, in the end I put the responsibility on someone else and resorted to using Spotify, even though it requires registration and doesn’t actually offer all the tracks I used. I would love to find a safe way to host music on my site, so if anyone has a suggestion for doing so, sound off in the comments.

  • Do You ‘Like’ Me?

    Check Click yes or no.

     

    I consider myself to be fairly adept at the social aspects of the Internet — or what we will call social media. I built my first website in the now defunct Geocities to share my interests with friends (and potential random strangers). I used IRC to <enter chat rooms>  and talk to people.[1] I shared more of my personal world on Livejournal, MySpace, FacebookTwitter, and was in the Google+ beta. I partially began my digital artistic skills by customizing 2D avatars for the Palace, and later entered the 3D world of Second Life to see what that was all about (spoiler: generally not worth your time). I check in with Foursquare, and Gowalla (I stopped using Loopt). I watch videos through YouTube and Vimeo; listen to music on Pandora and Spotify (I’m on the beta waiting list for Google Music). Suffice it to say, I live in a digital world and have been here for quite some time.

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