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5 Reasons Why the Pinterest “No Pin” Code Hurts your Blog

Penned by Kathryn Vercillo

Pinterest offers users the chance to implement a “no pin” code that prevents people from pinning their images. Bloggers use this code for many reasons, and some of those reasons are definitely valid.

However, I find myself regularly unfollowing blogs that don’t allow me to pin from their site. I do this in spite of (and in some ways because of) the fact that I love supporting the great original work of other bloggers. For this reason, I think it’s something bloggers should be aware of as a potential issue before choosing to implement that “no pin” code.

Here are five reasons of why I personally dislike it when bloggers stop others from pinning from their site.

1. Gives the Wrong Impression

I really enjoy sharing the work of other bloggers when I think that my own readers and followers might be interested in it. When I see a post that I like, I immediately spread it around my social networks. I do weekly link love roundups on all of my blogs that celebrate my favorite posts from around the web. Yet, when I try pinning an image and see the “no pin” code there instead I feel a bit threatened.

Here’s the thing: some people don’t like their work shared and others have very specific rules about how it can be shared. I generally feel comfortable sharing an image from a post I like, but I include the appropriate link to find the rest of the content in that post. Often most bloggers are fine with this sort of courtesy.

Yet when you don’t let me pin your images, I begin to wonder if you’re going to get disgruntled with me sharing your work in these other ways as well. I’m too afraid to include you in things like my link love roundup without asking you and I don’t want to have to ask every time.

I read blogs in Google Reader. I don’t want to have to click through to find out if you allow pins or to see what your policy is on letting me share images and links to your blog. So if I notice that you don’t allow pins, I start to think you probably don’t want me sharing your work. Rather than risk upsetting you I often decide that I just won’t follow you anymore so I don’t have to deal with the question of it.

2. Makes it Inconvenient

Each morning I read through the hundreds of posts in my Google Reader with an eye towards what I can share with others. Sharing is a way of supporting the work that others are doing but also a way of getting more relevant, interesting content out to my readers through the social networking sites that they follow me on.

When I see something I like, I open it up and quickly share it. If what I like is a great image, Pinterest is the site that I want to share it on. If I frequently open up posts that are beautiful but don’t allow images to be pinned then it slows down this whole process of reading through my social sites. As a result, I sometimes find myself unfollowing those blogs so I don’t keep making this time-consuming mistake in my social reading process.

3. Stops Natural Bookmarking Behavior

Sometimes the things I pin on Pinterest are just things that I want to go back to and look at again for one reason or another. The article or image is something I like and I’m basically bookmarking it for myself.

If you implement that no pin code then I’m unable to save the material in a way that works best for me. This means I’m not going to be as likely to keep coming back to the articles you’ve created that I really liked. So if I can’t use that content myself in an ongoing manner than I may stop following your blog altogether.

4. Impedes Reciprocal Sharing

If you don’t allow me to pin your images then chances are that you’re not sharing stuff with me on Pinterest and you’re likely not sharing the images from my blog with others. This isn’t a big issue for me because I pin to share great content with others, not to get rewarded for doing it.

Nevertheless, social networks are designed to be … well, social. If I have to choose between supporting the work of someone who is likely to spread the word back about me and supporting the work of someone who isn’t then the decision is easy. I’m often going to devote my time in supporting those who are active in supporting my work, too.

5. Creates a Passive Consumer of Content

What this all boils down to is that social networking today allows us to be more than just a passive consumer of the content on a blog. It allows us to take that content, curate it into ways that work for us, share our inspirations with others and network with the bloggers that we like.

When you make it difficult for me to do that by implementing that “no pin” code, I get the impression that you don’t really want to interact with me. Instead you would rather just have me consume your blog and be done with it.

In a digital world with limited time to do everything, I’m not inclined to spend my time as a passive consumer of content. So there’s a good chance that even if I like your blog I may stop following it if pins aren’t allowed.

Kathryn Vercillo is an author and professional blogger who writes daily at Crochet Concupiscence and Diary of a Smart Chick. Her Pinterest boards are focused on crochet with other boards for art, writing and fashion. You can learn more about Kathryn at www.kathrynvercillo.com.

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