I had better traffic before switching to watermarking. I just had fear that google would drop those images that prevent google hotlinking.
Google never talks straight, and never gives directions, only hints.
One thing I noticed is that it's allowed to redirect to a watermarked image as long as the image size is the same. If you redirect to a smaller size image but with same scale it won't show up. That's a small signal telling you that it's ok to watermark... otherwise why would they allow same size redirection?
I used hotlink protection from the first day they implemented the new design, and gradually every day more and more images of my sites that were in top search results were replaced by same images but that did not redirect when clicked "view original"
I am certain that googlebot considers this as cloacking and images are dropped from search results...
|I am certain that googlebot considers this as cloacking and images are dropped from search results... |
I don't believe so, I've had hotlink protection for maybe 3+ years now and have never suffered from this and since using my 403 Fordbidden plus re-direct and getting it correct, this week I'm actually seeing an increase in image views.
What the Panduin twins bring in their next update is another matter altogether.
|this week I'm actually seeing an increase in image views. |
I think the increase is just initial. I experienced it right after the launch of the new design, but I noticed that I am getting traffic from different keywords every day.
I am assuming googlebot is shuffling the results and changing images until it comes across a nice non-redirective result.
Just look at the search results for any keywords and you'll see that 99% of the image don;t use hotlink protection.
that is just my opinion, but honestly i don't want to wait and see my ranks dwindle down. I will wait for a month or two and see how things play out.
Also I think we waited too long, we should have organized and started redirecting right away to pron content in order to draw attention of people and media.
|it's allowed to redirect to a watermarked image as long as the image size is the same. If you redirect to a smaller size image but with same scale it won't show up. That's a small signal telling you that it's ok to watermark... otherwise why would they allow same size redirection? |
If it's the same size, the computer "thinks" that it has met a run-of-the-mill redirect where the image has simply acquired a new URL. If it's a different size, the computer "knows" that there's some hanky-panky going on.
|Also I think we waited too long, we should have organized and started redirecting right away to pron content in order to draw attention of people and media. |
It's not too late.
Can anyone dream up some standard protest message that we could perhaps overlay on our images, instead of watermark only?
I think that would be more productive than redirecting to websites that may offend people, they wouldn't know why it's happening.
^ Dr. Seuss would probably have a good quote for the occasion.
By computer you mean user browsers or google? What I meant was that google could simply check the response code and not to show anything if it's not 200. But instead they left some space for us to watermark.
I meant google. At any given time in any given search, there will be some legitimate redirects. It's a byproduct of caching: the version you saved may not be the version that's there now. So if you're serving up content to users-- as in "view original image" --you can't ignore all redirects all the time. Otherwise it would make the search engine look inept. "We're just got through saying this image exists, but now we can't find it."
But if it's an ordinary redirect, the new image would be expected to fit into the same visual slot as the old one.
If the page says <img src blahblah width = "abc" height = "def"> and your cached copy has physical dimensions abc and def, then you might have grounds for suspicion if you are redirected to an image with different dimensions. Filesize wouldn't matter, because that's not reflected in the originating html.
Topic for further investigation*: Does anything behave differently if the original html did not specify size attributes in pixels?
* By someone else, because all my <img> tags do give explicit pixel size.
Read an interesting blog post from a public domain image site today who are using things like GET parameters and trap URLs to calculate where the image is being requested from. It looks interesting.
I was using Google Image search and I came across a wallpaper wabsite that had denied access to the picture to Google. All I saw in the enlarged picture field was Google's own thumbnail blown up into spectacular fuzziness. On the right, the original was listed at 1600 pixels in height.
I think a lot of webmasters out there aren't shouting like we are, but just quietly doing what they need to do to protect their work.
The more of this I see, the better the chances that Google will dream up a compromise solution; but I'm not too hopeful since Google is trying to make a dent in Pinterest's copyright infringement orgy.
Time to take a step back and see what develops.
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