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Pinterest: what happens when you close your account

With bloggers publicly dumping their Pinterest accounts in fear of their potential copyright violations, the breakup may not be as clean as they had hoped.

Breaking up with your Pinterest account?

Since the launch of visual bookmarking site, Pinterest.com, we’ve led the conversation on the changes, the etiquette, the professional uses and the fallout of fears of copyright violations.

Pinterest has changed their Terms of Service recently, but that hasn’t stopped people from leaving anyhow in fear of violating copyrights. It has been our assertion that sharing a link (and subsequently a photo) on Facebook is the exact same thing as posting a link on Pinterest, but the fears remain and many people have decided to delete their Pinterest accounts.

But, guess what? Your deleting your account doesn’t mean what you may think it means. Sure, you can’t pin anymore and people can’t look you up and your former URL no longer works, but your pins are still within the ecosystem and Pinterest can keep them there for an undisclosed amount of time.

What Pinterest has to say about this

Item 1c of the Pinterest’s Terms of Service reads, “Following termination or deactivation of your account, or if you remove any User Content from your account or your boards, Pinterest may retain your User Content for a commercially reasonable period of time for backup, archival, or audit purposes. Furthermore, Pinterest and other Users may retain and continue to display, reproduce, re-pin, modify, re-arrange, and distribute any of your User Content that other Users have re-pinned to their own boards or which you have posted to public or semi-public areas of the Service.”

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Cat’s out of the bag

While we maintain that sharing a link on Facebook (praised by content producers) is the same as sharing a link on Pinterest (feared by content producers), it should be noted that for people leaving the site, closing their account and writing lofty goodbye notes on their blog or Facebook account about how they fear violating copyrights, the proverbial cat is out of the bag and any content a user puts on the site may continue to display and be re-pinned, even after their account is deleted.

Lani is the COO and News Director at The American Genius, has co-authored a book, co-founded BASHH, Austin Digital Jobs, Remote Digital Jobs, and is a seasoned business writer and editorialist with a penchant for the irreverent.

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