July 9, 2012 | Mac Bartine

Can You Use Stock Photos on Pinterest? We Asked.

Stock Images and Pinterest


Wondering how stock photos and Pinterest work together, and if there's any legal concern to be aware of?

We were wondering the same thing after a recent blog post got pinned and re-pinned on Pinterest, and we'd used a stock image in our blog post. So I decided to call the customer service lines of Dreamstime and iStockphoto to get their response to the question: is it OK when a stock image is pinned on Pinterest?

Both companies' representatives were helpful, polite and apparently very prepared for the question. Here's what they said:

Dreamstime's representative said yes - it's absolutely fine because Pinterest refers back to the original post.

iStockphoto's representative also said it's fine, but she was a little more specific. Basically, it's fine as long as the following conditions are met:

  1. You've in some way altered the image that was pinned
  2. The image that's being pinned is less than 1200 pixels wide


Of course, it's always best if you have a design staff that can create all of the images that you use, so you never run into an issue like this. But now you know: if you're going to use stock imagery and there's a chance it can be pinned on Pinterest, be sure that you're meeting the above criteria to help protect yourself and your company from breaking terms of use for stock imagery.

FYI, you should always confer with your attorney if you have legal questions. This article isn't meant to act as legal advice, nor is it intended for publication in fine literary journals, blah blah blah, etc.

Social Media Image Sizes Guide and Templates


Mac Bartine

Mac Bartine

As one of VIEO Design’s four owners, Mac Bartine served as our COO and web strategist until July 2014. Today, he advises VIEO as a partner and uses his considerable skill as a digital strategist in his positions as CEO of several startups.

Related Post: