There's been a lot of discussion about Pinterest lately here on the DT blogs and forums. Some feel its a great social networking promotion tool while others think its the spawn of the devil and yet another example of rampant copyright infringement on the Internet. Others simply don't know what to make of it yet.
Personally I'm kind of on the fence about Pinterest. When I first checked out Pinterest I thought - whoa boy this site is just full of copyright infringements. Unwatermarked images with no links to their source, obviously famous images of celebrities and all kinds of stolen images. Not unlike Google images which sells ads by serving up other people work. (Pinterest hasn't figured out how to make money from its site as of yet).
But then I've slowly come around to the promotional possibilities of Pinterest. Surely most of the users are girls dreaming about their wedding, housewives collecting recipes and furniture samples, and social networking addicts looking for more friend-ing opportunities. But somewhere among the millions of users are probably designers and image buyers. Certainly there are a lot of people who appreciate art and design.
You can create boards of your watermarked DT images around themes or categories and promote them. It really a nice format for showcasing images and its free. One could use it as their portfolio. Plus search engines count how many times something is linked to, every repin is another point in the old search engine optimization game.
Cross Agency Lightbox?
Now the idea that hit me is that a designer could use Pinterest as a sort of cross agency lightbox. I don't know if anyone is doing this but if a designer uses multiple stock agencies for images, they could potentially use Pinterest as a cross agency lightbox to gather images. One could set up various boards for different projects and pin images from various micro stock agencies.
In the olden days of stock, a designer might have done something similar by cutting out photos from stock catalogs and magazines and posting them on a cork bulletin board. Pinterest takes this idea and puts it online. The only catch is whether or not you might want someone else to see what you've been working on.