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Why optimize for Google Image Search?
Do people respect authors copyrights at all?
OutdoorMan




msg:3153637
 4:44 pm on Nov 11, 2006 (gmt 0)

Hi.

I have seen several posts about how to optimize for Google Image Search and I don't see the point.

By making it easier for other people to find your images e.g. via Google Image Search, ain't that allmost the same as advertise "Come on, people. Go use my images (the same images that I have put a lot of time and efford in producing) as if they were your own?".

The web is full of copycats -- that's at least what I have read in a lot of forum posts around the web -- and if it's true, then why help the thieves by showing them an open door?

I have made my own images and grafics for my website and I certanly don't want to invite anybode else to use them as if they were their own.

Have I missed the idea of Google Images Search?

 

photopassjapan




msg:3153736
 6:56 pm on Nov 11, 2006 (gmt 0)

Nope.

It's not for you >:)

It's for us.

Beachboy




msg:3153740
 7:04 pm on Nov 11, 2006 (gmt 0)

It's just another way people can find your site. If you sell red widgets, and you have a lot of competitors also selling red widgets, and you have any reason to believe potential customers would be looking for pictures of red widgets before buying, by all means take action to help them find those pictures on your site. If you're concerned about theft of images, fine, shoot a couple pictures that you feel comfortable optimizing for Google Images as a means of attracting the picture hunters to your store.

OutdoorMan




msg:3153754
 7:16 pm on Nov 11, 2006 (gmt 0)

Thanks for the explanation. Now it makes more sense to me.

If you're concerned about theft of images, fine, shoot a couple pictures that you feel comfortable optimizing for Google Images as a means of attracting the picture hunters to your store.

I haven't really thought about allowing only a few images in GIS. But your post gave me an idea.

Thanks.

koan




msg:3154037
 3:47 am on Nov 12, 2006 (gmt 0)

You can block the Google Image indexer with robots.txt, or even block all images in an image folder for all search engines, if you feel like they're mostly being stolen by other people through these means.

OutdoorMan




msg:3154111
 7:08 am on Nov 12, 2006 (gmt 0)

Koan > I am aware of that (but thanks for the suggestion anyway).

I allready have blocked Googlebot-Image in my robots.txt, but I might allow a few (to me) unimportant images to be indexed in the future.

However, it seems to me that I'm the only one who are worried about someone stealing images.

Aren't you guys worried at all? If not what kind of images do you optimize for GIS -- are they of any importance to you at all?

jetteroheller




msg:3154130
 7:51 am on Nov 12, 2006 (gmt 0)

I received last week a request from a pupil to allow him the use of one of my pictures

"It's for a school work, where we just learn about copyright"

The only problem, he forgott to fill in his email address in the form.

Also picture search brought me this year a single 200.-EUR hit. A publishing house wanted one of my pictures for a brochure.

photopassjapan




msg:3154205
 12:12 pm on Nov 12, 2006 (gmt 0)

OutdoorMan...

Are those pics works of art?
Are those illustrations you created for your site?
Are they put up for sale on your site or somewhere else?
Are you a designer and are worried that your "general image" as in overall style will be ripped off?

I mean i can't say we aren't disturbed by people who use images without permission but... that's more or less collateral damage, in exchange for more people finding us for what we are. Do some media watch, and get them to take off pics you find to be of your own when needed, but closing all doors and windows to your site just because one in a hundred, or one in ten thousand people will not only save but use the pics is... probably not a good idea. It's a fight for your copyright, but a fight well worth it.

We don't have anything else than a barely visible watermark, copyright notice, and some tweaks no one will find unless looked for precisely, but images are all available even in a resolution you wouldn't want them to if they were up for sale. So if someone wants to, they can decorate their room with them :)

We've been asked by someone for the non-watermarked versions for a (high?)school project. The guy was credible, and we sent them the pics, and you know what? We could see in the stats when the school newspaper was published :)
...
( although this has a sad side to it as well if you know what i mean ;)

But i can relate to what you're saying.
You can use one or all of the following tactics:

- have images in a relatively mid-small, higher compression version format available for G
- just so that imagesearch WOULD show your results
- thumbnails are thumbnails anyway :{
- ( note that pics under some 150-200px will be intentionally scaled below the thumbnails of med-large sized pics. Otherwise they're almost the same size in the index )
- have the larger versions protected. or don't.

you can protect them by...

- putting them in the n-th frame of a flash file
- displaying them through css, as a table background, under a transparent gif/png file of the same size
- displaying them as the n-th frame of an animated gif file... but this isn't the best thing to do
- the usual right-click javascript protection
- use .htaccess to prevent hotlinking, accessing from anywhere else than the pages they appear ( tho i only know you CAN do it, i don't know how ;) go to the Apache forums )
- watermark them
- put copyright notice on them
- put copyright notice in them

... and the list goes on. Please note a very important thing.
Just because you're not in ImageSearch, anyone can still steal them.
How are you gonna go about just exporting them from the cache of the browser? Or if even that doesn't work... someone doing a screen capture at high resolution? See, all you can do is make it harder for anyone to grab them. But then again, if someone just casually looks for pics to be used for whatever, they will unlikely be spending more than 3 seconds trying. For the net is vast and infinite ;)

They'll just do another query and go elsewhere where there's no security.

If it's a moral thing not a practical thing, then there's a pretty sad resolution to this problem... which reads as...

"If you don't want it to be stolen, why did you put it up the net?" ( please note this can be applied to anything not just pics )

But if you can stand the occasional stress and adrenaline rush, getting upset on a personal level... for being ripped off with something you like to do, and pursue those who did it... in exchange for another way for people to find your work, see what you do... then you should know that either way above is common practice.

OutdoorMan




msg:3155277
 5:42 pm on Nov 13, 2006 (gmt 0)

photopassjapan > Thank you for your very long and helpfull post :)

The images I'm worried about, is my general design + pictures/graphics in my articles.

To me the images and pictures are art, my very own art. I have worked on my website over a period of more than a year and it took me very long time before I finally had succes in developing the perfect design for my site (I did abandoned about 50 full designs before I came up with the one design that I use now).

Naturally I got a bit worried when I discovered that Google index every image it discovers and makes them available for everyone that search the GIS (without any notice for the webmaster).

Google don't want to see duplicate text contents in the web, just as I don't want to see my own design duplicated on another website, by someone finding it on GIS.

I am aware of this: "If you don't want it to be stolen, why did you put it up the net?"

and in general I'm not worried about someone stealing my design or contents. I just don't want to "put the mead before the dogs", if you know what I mean.

Thanks for your suggestions on how to make a better image/design protection. That gave me some ideas.

calumniate




msg:3155328
 6:33 pm on Nov 13, 2006 (gmt 0)

Question: how do you 'shoot a couple of images' googles way?

thanks :)

russell

calumniate




msg:3158621
 3:25 pm on Nov 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

? :p

photopassjapan




msg:3158809
 5:51 pm on Nov 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

You make a site relevant enough, crawled enough and go off to do something else until like march, 2007.

That's the best recipe i'm aware of.

:{

Of course you'll need alt tags, and the page be relevant to the pics, and meta and bla bla and bla blablah... but you know all of this already, don't you. ImageSearch doesn't exactly work the same as web search. Data is added less frequently and positions determined every three months at most.

So don't hold your breath ;)

webdude




msg:3158836
 6:11 pm on Nov 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

Concerning watermarks...

One of my sites is for a photography studio that wanted to display the quality of their product shots. In studying log files, I found a bunch of the images were hotlinked on a bunch of blogs and other personal sites. We even found a few that were hotlinked by sellers of some of the products that were shot.

I watermarked all the images with the URL and business name of the photography studio - didn't stop them at all but the studio got a bunch of free advertisement out of the deal.

Worked for me ;-)

calumniate




msg:3158878
 6:40 pm on Nov 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

Thanks Photopass,

I guess the only thing some of my images are missing are alt tags. That shouldn't be hard to fix, but I don't want to overdo it either lol..

ken_b




msg:3158895
 6:49 pm on Nov 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

I watermarked all the images with the URL and business name of the photography studio - didn't stop them at all but the studio got a bunch of free advertisement out of the deal.

Worked for me ;-)

That's about what I did too, and it worked very well for me also.

Now why optimize for image search?

Here's one possibilty. In my niche images often come up at the top of the regular search, that means they push the text listings down the page, and very possibly to below the fold.

If you have a site loaded with searched for images and you want to be at the top of the page in the regular serps, getting your images up there might be the way.

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