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CorinaMarie

The End of an Era (Photobucket Borks the Internet)

142 posts in this topic

I've seen a few other peep's images turning into this and now mine have too:

00%20Rocks_zpsja37ou19.jpg

So, every guide and Shoppe I've created are now worthless. And they want $400 per year to allow me to post images here on Simtropolis. :cry:

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I think Photobucket are the next business to mess with their online customers images. Probably the terms and conditions have changed so that you get much reduced bandwidth, I'm waiting for the same problem to strike myself. Although thankfully I have been slowly moving over to FlickR (who are great BTW) for a few months, so hopefully I don't get hit so hard.

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Since $400 a year isn't in my budget and I'm not going to spend weeks and weeks moving stuff to another host that'll prolly bork everything too, I guess I'm done with most of my participation in threads here. I have more to say about my feelings, but I'd have to issue myself several warning points if I did.

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Yeah, a quick Google search reveals the problem:

https://www.google.co.uk/?gws_rd=ssl#q=photobucket+3rd+party+hosting+changes

I know right now it sucks, but I've been preparing for this possibility for a while. Such online hosting services have no real revenue generation stream and PB in particular have upset even their paying customers in their attempts to make the business profitable. Sadly the effects such things continually have on the wider internet community will keep happening, because there is no such thing as free. But the paid alternatives are crazy-money for normal folk.

Hopefully though in time you'll feel ready to keep going.

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I have lost files before due to my own mishandling and was very upset. I can't imagine how it feels to have someone take away all the hard work you have put in to your content here at ST.

I wish I could do more than offer my sympathy. It truly sucks.

CorinaMarie and huzman like this

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7 minutes ago, Handyman said:

I wish I could do more than offer my sympathy. It truly sucks.

Thanks. I kind of saw this coming starting about 6 months ago. They started having a pop up each time I logged into my PB account suggesting I get their $90 plan. They didn't, at that time, warn me that 3rd party hosting would be borked and not even available in said plan.

I understand that providing free hosting isn't profitable. It's just that a year and a half here trying to help the community is all trashed. In the long run it's now a total waste of my effort. To say I'm unhappy is putting it mildly. (Yes, I understand, but no, I don't like it.)

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If you want to have a temporary on-line location for your pictures and so your guides, etc continue to look ok, while you look around and decide just what you want to do, you are welcome to set a picture album here

https://www.city-builders.info/cb-community/albums

Just checking if picture linking works ok

bbanished0001_original.jpg

seems to work ok.

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1 minute ago, catty-cb said:

temporary on-line location

Thanks so much for the offer. :wub: 

But, re-hosting a couple hundred pics for a temporary solution is just more than I can see myself doing. *:(

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Just now, CorinaMarie said:

Thanks so much for the offer. :wub: 

But, re-hosting a couple hundred pics for a temporary solution is just more than I can see myself doing. *:(

Feel free to make it permanent, I've got the room (think I might have a restriction on picture size I'd have to check what it is, but I'm about to head off to bed) and while there are no guarantees in life I'm certainly not planning on disappearing anytime soon

:thumb:

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This is completely deplorable. Corporate greed at its finest. If you or anyone else would like a special quota of storage here at Simtropolis, please let me know and this can be arranged. That way as long as ST is around, so will the images.

MushyMushy, FlyHigh, huzman and 6 others like this

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Back. Up. Everything.

If you don't have images saved locally, download whatever you still can from the net.

 

In the future, Imgur and Flickr seem the most 'stable' image hosts. Imgur is much simpler to use, but compresses images over 5mb. So I'd recommend Flickr for large images and Imgur for standard images.

 

Heck, you can even embed links for albums on Simtrop. Example:

 

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It happened to me twice already, that free image hosting services left me hanging up and dry. That's one of the reasons that add up to why I don't CJ anymore. So much effort for nothing, if you see my old updates, they're all dead links. As soon as I chose an image hosting service, chances are it dies on the next year.

2 hours ago, Cyclone Boom said:

This is completely deplorable. Corporate greed at its finest. If you or anyone else would like a special quota of storage here at Simtropolis, please let me know and this can be arranged. That way as long as ST is around, so will the images.

It can be considered corporate greed, but probably if I ran one of these services, I'd do exactly that. Procure myself a loyal userbase during say, 1 year or 2, and then, charge a hefty sum a month for the service just because people are generally lazy and prefer paying the sum than moving aaaaaaaaaall their stuff and re-linking everything they have posted on the internet.

2 hours ago, Haljackey said:

In the future, Imgur and Flickr seem the most 'stable' image hosts. Imgur is much simpler to use, but compresses images over 5mb. So I'd recommend Flickr for large images and Imgur for standard images.

For Flicker/Imgur, I'm not really sure about that but, do they allow posting just the link on the post? No albums or paraphernalia, just the picture, full quality, no resizing...? Other than that, I won't take it.

We feel you, @CorinaMarie. My mini-advice is, try to take some weeks off tutorials or posting with images, and soon you'll feel again like you want to do it and go through the process of re-posting. It just takes quite some time.

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6 hours ago, CorinaMarie said:

I've seen a few other peep's images turning into this and now mine have too

That's just deplorable. That shows how dirty WWW has gotten. Although I haven't ever used those pirate sites, A while ago, I did get a bad feeling from PhotoBucket precisely. What I don't understand is why those pix are lost. Don't people keep their originals with them?

Now CorinaMae. You have done more monumental work before like files quantity, number of URLs into hundreds, and so on. Trying to retrieve some or all of them may be a little pain in ... but if anyone can do it it is you.
I have all your Shoppes if you may need/want them, among others.
In other words, how can we help?

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1 hour ago, huzman said:

Don't people keep their originals with them?

Most people do. It's going though re-uploading everything to a new provider, then tracking down all the posts and updating the links that is soul destroying. Easier to do when the images are still around, i.e. with some advance warning of the change.

6 hours ago, Cyclone Boom said:

This is completely deplorable. Corporate greed at its finest.

Honestly I'm not so sure, the way they've done it is terrible, but greed is not likely the motivation here, the need to make money is not the same thing. The problem is that the business model of such sites is really poor at getting money for the services they give away for free. The idea being, a percentage of paying users will eventually make the business profitable. When this doesn't work out, you end up haemorrhaging through money and something needs to change. The real problem here is that everyone wants to host pics but not pay anything to do so. PB has been trying to monetise the service for a long time, but their attempts one must assume are failing. Given the crappy way they've treated their paying customers, I can't say I'm surprised. Still, it's annoying to think I have to do so much work to keep my images working.

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5 hours ago, TekindusT said:

 

For Flicker/Imgur, I'm not really sure about that but, do they allow posting just the link on the post? No albums or paraphernalia, just the picture, full quality, no resizing...? Other than that, I won't take it.

 

Yes.

 

Imgur example:

NnSG5v1.jpg

Flickr example:

35263541996_bd3bd5a1f4_o.png

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Many of my pages of my CJ and my lotting projects have been contaminated by this. All those "look who's popular" stuff had made me stop using PhotoBucket and start using Flickr. You have 1 Terra of free space to upload whatever you wish. It looks to good to let it be, but it's the best deal we have right now. I suggest you to relax (the most important), get as many pictures as you can from PB, upload them on Flickr, and take you time to fix your links.

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I don't use Photobucket, and while all the images on Imgur (just over 1000 I think) are on my local disk, I can't imagine I'd have the time or inclination to update all the links.

I really don't think it's fair changing this with what seems like no notice, without really considering the impact, and $399 a year? That's just extortionate. If it came to it, I'd be happy paying a few pounds a month to keep all my images online, as much as I wouldn't want to, but this really isn't a good move from PB. 

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9 hours ago, Cyclone Boom said:

If you or anyone else would like a special quota of storage here at Simtropolis, please let me know and this can be arranged. That way as long as ST is around, so will the images.

Yes, that'll great. Since ST is where I live now, hosting my pics here seems like a good plan. If the site goes down it won't really matter if the pics go with it since this is where the topics are they'd be in. (I'm simply not going to spend the time to re-upload everything to Imgur or Flickr as their days of free hosting are likely numbered. 100 million PB users moving over to another host is going to overwhelm them. I understand that there is no free lunch. At least not in the long term.)

 

9 hours ago, Haljackey said:

Back. Up. Everything.

If you don't have images saved locally, download whatever you still can from the net.

4 hours ago, huzman said:

What I don't understand is why those pix are lost. Don't people keep their originals with them?

Ok. Wait. Let's clear this up. I have not lost my images. I have lost all of the time I spent uploading and linking them in various threads. I have the original screenshots on my game comp, a copy on the flash drive I use to xfer them to this internet comp, and (ofc) a copy of them on this comp. Then I have my weekly backups of both comps to separate external USB drives. (I switch off which backup goes to which drive each time so they are also in two more places.) Then, further, Photobucket is simply asinine. Not evil. One can log into their bucket and all the images are still there and a link in the Library let's me download the whole shebang in one fell swoop. (Which I did.) So, it sent me a 231MB zip file of all 1,514 pics I have put up there over the past 5 years.

 

3 hours ago, rsc204 said:

It's going though re-uploading everything to a new provider, then tracking down all the posts and updating the links that is soul destroying.

Yes. This is precisely my frustration. Couple that with my original post of not knowing CB would offer a home for the pics and knowing I simply would not trust another free site with them. I was beside myself with anger.

Now let's consider 1500 pictures. Assume I can fix one every 5 minutes. That'll be 7,500 minutes or 125 hours. The excitement level of posting them the first time showing off something or other won't be there. It'll be drudgery. Let's say I force myself to spend 2 hours per day not playing the game or having fun at all. That would take a little over two months to finally get back to square one I was at as of yesterday. Needless to say the world hasn't ended for me, but life became a whole lot more sucky this morning.

 

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4 hours ago, rsc204 said:

Honestly I'm not so sure, the way they've done it is terrible, but greed is not likely the motivation here, the need to make money is not the same thing.

The way I see this, greed is a by-product of the motivation. Since for greed to flourish, it needs a desire. The purpose of this change in policy is surely driven by the sole, selfish and steadfast desire to make an extra buck. Not at all considering the global implications for communities such as ours. This move is clear proof that sadly, they couldn't care less about the wonderful work Corina and others do to help others with guides, tutorials and journals. It's not personal, but it affects everyone equally who has depended on their services.

While any business requires cash to survive and prosper, there are absolutely much better ways of generating a profit than thoughtlessly pulling the rug from under everyone's feet. For me, it's greed because of the methodology -- what they're doing to obtain it. They know all too well everyone won't fall for their nasty trap, yet will still take such extreme measures regardless. Putting aside people's views and feelings in a desperate attempt to boost their wallets.

Let's say they do make enough profit from this foul scheme. No business strives to fail, and that must be the objective after all. So all's well and good, apart from the small fact of ensuring absolute chaos for sites relying on the images for content. We're the ones paying the price here, without spending a penny.

What they've done is intentionally hold people to ransom. No prior notice given before rendering millions of images unusable for their intended usage. Want your images back? Sure, then pay the fine. But who will seriously go from spending absolutely nothing, to suddenly requiring a subscription with an exorbitant fee?

It's absolutely ludicrous.

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So at 100% usage of free space offered by Photobucket, all images linked return a demand to upgrade to a paid account, all the user's participation in using the free space as a promotion of Photobucket is betrayed, and the user is humiliated.   This is 100% pure unethical and offensive.   The correct action consistent with any modicum of dignified human behavior would be to inform the user that the limit has been reached and that any further use will require upgrading to a paid account, leaving the linked pictures already uploaded intact.    Good thing I only got to 1% use.  I will use Photobucket no further.

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I believe what that 100% is saying is that all of my pics hosted there are only viewed on 3rd party sites. I'm only at 12% of my 2GB limit storage-wise. The original agreement said I could embed them on other sites. That was the whole fricking point of using their damn site. They are the ones who breached the contract. Not me. If anyone has heard of E=MC2 ...

Ok. I'd better quit talking. I'm getting all worked up again. :angry:

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1 hour ago, CorinaMarie said:

I believe what that 100% is saying is that all of my pics hosted there are only viewed on 3rd party sites. I'm only at 12% of my 2GB limit storage-wise.

In how Photobucket has proven to operate ethically on the freebie side of the equation, it would not be in anyone's best interest to actually pay for the service or otherwise engage in any business.  

1 hour ago, CorinaMarie said:

E=MC2 ...

We'll be making some significant modifications to that equation reasonably soon enough, and the world of crappy ethics will go the way of the Dodo anyway. *:thumb:

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2 minutes ago, RandyE said:

... it would not be in anyone's best interest to actually pay for the service or otherwise engage in any business.

They could've handled this much better. Like give 6 months notice and then say us little peeps would have to start paying $9.95 per year and I'll bet a bunch would do so if they explained how otherwise the whole business would fold up. For power users, sure charge them a bit more. Make tier based on the bandwidth usage. The problem is some accountant (who's body resembles a Mobius strip due to the location of their head) has multiplied $400 times 100 million users and liked the result that shows. The complete lack of wisdom to know that won't actually happen and will likely bankrupt the company is beyond their comprehension.

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32 minutes ago, moSonče said:

postimg.org

Thank-you. I just read most of terms of service and the FAQ, and I'll try this one.  It seems to be specialized exactly for this kind of forum.

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It's ImageShack all over again.

One day the internet will capsize in a garbage-filled sea of dead links, broken images, irrelevant searches, pop-up ads, and bot attacks.  What will the archaeologists of the future make of it all?

 

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I feel your pain - I (was) a paying member - admittedly the minimum amount and not the $US400 extortion fee that they want - but to get so little notice that my plan was no longer allowing 3rd party linking was just utterly appalling.>:(

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But again I must stress, this is the problem with wanting the internet for free, it's not free to provide the service.

Imagine a local shop starts giving away newspapers and everything else it sells, how long do you think it'd take before it tanked? Now you can't have a local shop, because it no longer exists, but whilst it was free, everyone would take advantage of it, it's human nature.

Another example of this philosophy... in the UK, we used to have many local municipal bus companies. Sometime in the 70's/80's they were all privatised, by around the turn of the century there were for all extents and purposes only 2 companies running bus services. One example of how that happened was that the big companies would compete with local firms by running free buses, until the local firm went out of business. The day it did, the charges went up by extortionate amounts and people wanted the small companies back. You know, the ones they wouldn't support when there was a free option.

The internet is one of those things that only works for a few, Google, Facebook and some other large companies can mine your data and make huge profits. But the average firm needs to charge for the service to make a profit, but no one wants to pay because the internet has always been free. This business model is flawed and can not continue indefinitely.

Again, I'm not defending the way PB made the change, that's obviously appalling, especially for those who were paying in the first place. But similarly, can we really expect all these images to be hosted and linked for free for the rest of time? If everyone moved their hosting directly onto ST, we'd have huge bills to pay too. It's hard to imagine sites like ST having those additional costs, without charging for the service it provides, likely donations would no longer cut it.

On a more practical side, perhaps we as users should hedge our bets a little in future. If you use multiple image hosts and split your images between them, at least it would limit the exposure to such problems. None of this is new, it's happened plenty of times before and will likely happen again. The sad part is pretty much summed up by @Odainsaker:

2 hours ago, Odainsaker said:

One day the internet will capsize in a garbage-filled sea of dead links, broken images, irrelevant searches, pop-up ads, and bot attacks.

Surely there has to be a better way? What we need is regulations to protect content, such that users can move between services without loosing all their hard work. It's the lock in part of such online services that's really causing all the harm.

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Man, that price though. The ImageShack debacle was bad, but their plans start at $38/annually. The problem with ImageShack was that they deleted all the free accounts, and most of the users who had posted stuff to their accounts were either dead or had long abandoned them, which meant that they could neither upload nor convert.

But $400? That's highway robbery!

I understand the need to make money but that's just ridiculous. I'd consider moving to ImageShack (I keep everything on Dropbox or Flickr these days, especially after Majhost's sudden silence) just because the plan seems so reasonable (and my images never get that many views anyways). We had considered even crowdfunding something for BadSim's MD at SC4Devotion after his image host announced a move to a paid-only platform (because moving image links for almost 10 years worth of images was far too much effort), but even then the total cost I think we were looking at was only around $30-40/year.

It kills me, not that they did this, but that the plan is so ridiculously expensive. The PR headache from doing this to all the free users' accounts had to be bad enough, but to do this to paid users, and then to make that paywall $400? People will flee Photobucket out of spite. If I had a business I'd pay someone $400 to migrate all my photos and image links to another paid service rather than pay them that fee, even if it's the same price somewhere else, just because of the way that they hit me with that change.

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