Pinterest, the fast-growing online image board, is infamous for its unresponsiveness to ordinary users and big brands alike.
Angry content creators, concerned about their photos being copied wholesale to the site by Pinterest users, are looking for somebody to take their complaints.
Now, Amazon.com has reportedly gotten involved. Pinterest, like many Web startups from Foursquare to Path and Zynga, uses Amazon Web Services for Web hosting so it doesn’t have to buy its own servers.
After the Artists’ Bill of Rights, a photographers’ lobbying organization, discovered this, the group asked the online retailing giant to take notices of copyright violations under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act regarding Pinterest. (The DMCA provides a process for Web services to deal with claims of copyright violations by their users; as long as companies comply with the act, they can avoid liability for copyright claims.)
“Amazon has now accepted that they will process DMCA notices concerning infringements by Pinterest members,” said the site, citing an email exchange with the company.
However, the photographers may be overstating what Amazon said it will do.
“We do monitor our customers with respect to DMCA compliance and will take whatever action we feel is appropriate if we believe a customer is not in compliance with the DMCA,” Amazon wrote to the group.
In other words, Amazon is willing to make sure that Pinterest is complying with the DMCA—but it’s not saying, as the photographers suggest, that it will do anything other than forward the complaints to Pinterest and make sure Pinterest follows the correct process. (Amazon has not yet responded to an inquiry by the Daily Dot asking it to clarify.)
Amazon asked concerned copyright holders to file complaints through its online contact form.
Not surprisingly, Amazon at first suggested the Artists’ Bill of Rights contact Pinterest directly, on the grounds that it would be “more efficient.”
The Artists’ Bill of Rights disagreed: “We believe that submitting notices directly to Amazon will enhance their capability of monitoring DMCA compliance by Pinterest.”
Next, the Artists’ Bill of Rights hopes to target third-party services related to Pinterest. It expressed especial concern about Print-erest, which even Pinterest itself worries will infringe content creators’ copyright.
“This issue of infringement by Pinterest members is becoming ever more important due to other services being launched to profit from the infringed material on Pinterest,” the group said.