04 November 2017

How images are handled in Pinterest

On Pinterest, a Pin is composed of:
  • 1 image (MANDATORY)
  • 1 link (OPTIONAL)
  • 1 description (OPTIONAL)
  • 1 board (MANDATORY)

An image can be added:
  • Case 1: by selecting an image from a web page on the internet. This is noted as "Saved from [Web site]". 
  • Case 2: by uploading an image from the computer of the user. This is noted as "Saved by [Pinterest user]" or "Uploaded by the user".
  • For case 1: by default, the link points to the web page on which the image was found, but the link can be modified or removed by the user. Be aware that the link can become invalid in the future: either no more existing, or the image is not more on the web page. If the original link is removed, the image will be considered as "Uploaded by the user".
  • For case 2: the user can add whichever link he wants or let the link empty.
  • For case 1: the description is automatically taken from the original web page, but the description can be modified or removed by the user.
  • For case 2: the description is added by the user, or can be left empty.
All images are cached (saved) on the Pinterest servers at full resolution.

All the images are first displayed with a maximum of 564 pixels in width. If you click on the image, you go to the link's destination, or if there is no link, the full resolution image is displayed.

The images can be displayed at different resolution; the downsampling of the images is made at the  server level, not at the client level (web browser / HTML code):

a) Lower resolution (type “1200x” or “564x” or “236x” or “170x” in the URL):


564x = display at maximum 564 pixels for the width


A 2000 pixels image will be displayed at 564 pixels
A 200 pixels image will be displayed at 200 pixels

b) Full resolution (type “originals” in the URL):


Remark: if the image is in PNG format on the source web site, it will be saved in JPG format on Pinterest, and the "originals" size will not be available.