Pinterest has become the latest social media network to reveal a transparency report with the offering from Pinterest showing the number of requests that the site has received in the past six months from state and federal government agencies is much lower than other social media platforms.
While other reports have shown that it is quite usual for the government to seek help from social media networks such as Facebook and Twitter, Pinterest it seems is not on the government radar quite so much, with fa fewer requests being filed.
In a blog post about the report, Adam Barton from Pinterest wrote: “Every company that stores information — from banks to phone companies to email providers — must respond to requests for that information from folks like law enforcement agencies, courts, and others. We think it’s important that you know about these requests. That’s why we’re publishing our first transparency report, covering the six months from July to December 2013. “
In the report it was shown that during the six months between July 2013 and December 2013, Pinterest only received 7 warrants, 5 subpoenas, 1 civil subpoena, and no other requests about 13 user accounts.
All of the requests made to Pinterest came from US officials only and non from other countries in the world and only one of the requests was at a federal level, all the rest were at a local level.
There has been a lot of interest surrounding the results from Pinterest, in particular because there are so few requests being made by governments and only from the US.
This is in stark contrast to the number of requests being made to Facebook and Twitter. Twitter has been publishing their own transparency reports since 2012 and in the final six months of 2013 the company received a total of 1,410 requests while Facebook showed that in the first six months of 2013 they had around 38,000 requests for information.
There is no need for any social media company to create a transparency report, however Apple, Facebook and Yahoo all now produce such reports following the release of information which showed that the companies were sharing information with the US National Security Agency.
Since this revelation, users have been more aware of the links between social media companies and government agencies and the transparency reports are designed to create a bridge between the two and to help to forge a new level of trust between social media users and the sites themselves.
With so many government requests being put in to Twitter and Facebook each year and so few coming to Pinterest, it looks like anyone wanting to keep their information private from the government should be looking to operate on Pinterest in the near future!