Tuesday, December 30, 2014

It's Gone Viral

I'm a little uncomfortable about this picture and not sure what to do about it.

In 2010 I went with my neighbors to a garden tour of several private gardens in a nearby town. I took pictures, mostly to show myself what I could accomplish in my own garden.

I don't remember now what the addresses were or the names of the people who opened up their gardens for strangers to tour.

Kit drove, so I don't even recall the driving directions to get to any of them.

I pinned this one photo to my Pinterest board to show me what my own climbing hydrangea would look like after several years. It's been a helpful picture, especially since it shows how the lower limbs were pruned up, and my own plant is starting to look like this now.

Putting it on Pinterest meant others could see it and pin it to their boards too. It's my photo, I own it, I posted it knowing others could duplicate it, and, thinking only a few if any might re-post it, I didn't mind.

But then something disturbing happened.

Hundreds and hundreds of people started re-pinning this shot. It's all over Pinterest now, and once a picture achieves a certain level of distribution, further re-pins increase exponentially. After four years, this picture is being posted constantly on people's boards.

What disturbs me is that this is someone's house. I own the photo, but it's of a private home. I don't know the people, and they don't know a picture of their house is all over Pinterest. Some day they will see it out there and will say "hey!! that's my house!"

I could remove it from my board, but it has been pinned so many times that it's now being repinned from sources multiple times removed from my original post. I've lost control of it.

It isn't particularly revealing -- it's not like the address shows or the front of the house is recognizable, and nothing even identifies what part of the country it's from.

But the whole viral posting thing is making me uneasy. I would hate to go on a garden tour and be told "please, no pictures". But I can see what the pitfalls are when private gardens and homes are photographed.

1 comment:

  1. This has happened to me as well....I think we are living in a new age friend! It is such a gorgeous photo! I am sure they won't mind as the picture isn't (like you said) showing their address or anything....such a stunning climbing hydrangea!!! Wishing you a wonderful new year!!! Nicole xoxo