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Google Images' New (Bing-like) Layout

 8:49 am on Jan 18, 2013 (gmt 0)

Clicking on images now opens a layer with the larger image and a link to the page.




 10:15 pm on Jan 25, 2013 (gmt 0)

50% adsense earnings down today!

[edited by: nicolass at 10:17 pm (utc) on Jan 25, 2013]


 10:17 pm on Jan 25, 2013 (gmt 0)

What Google cares about:

-- Google
-- Advertisers
-- Users

That's a pyramid. Advertisers are valued because they give you money, and they will only give you money if they believe lots of Users will see their ads.

Follow the line of thought.

Users will come to your search engine if it's good ... or if it's the only one they've heard of. At this point google would have to become pretty lousy for Users to desert it in droves. You can't make it lousy by locking it out unilaterally. Not unless you get together the top million websites on the planet and get them all to block g### at the same time

:: pause for invigorating chorus of Union Maid or similar anthem ::

so humans are forced to notice that its results stink. Or that its results no longer include anything they've ever heard of.

Not Pygmalion likely. So scratch that idea.

Second line of thought.

Who are the users? What are people looking for when they do an image search?

"I need a good picture of a widget that I can swipe for my presentation/ logo/ own site." (Ages ago I de-indexed some directories because people were only using them for hotlink fodder. People who wanted the page content didn't arrive via image search.)
"I forgot what a widget looks like."
"I want to look at lots of pictures of widgets." (Follow-up question here: Do you want them all bunched together on a search-results page with no distracting text, or do you want to find a site that includes a number of good widget pictures but also words?)
"I want a detailed diagram of a widget with text that explains what the parts do."

What will Users accomplish on your own site that they won't do by looking at your picture on the search engine's site? Is a body count enough, or do they have to spend time and/or money with you?

An overly helpful image search will eliminate most of your warm-bodies class of users. Were they important? (If so, you are probably SOL. De-index your images and move on.) Which others have you lost? Where have they taken their time and money instead?


 11:21 pm on Jan 25, 2013 (gmt 0)

Many will block google and bing as I also have, so soon they will show 40.000 less images and thats only me, many will follow and we will soon see millions out of google image.

Just place the .htaccess code and remove your image folder with WMT.


 7:22 am on Jan 26, 2013 (gmt 0)

If someone wants to sue Google for stealing images, i would support.

And, that doesn't apply for few webmasters only, but all the webmasters who have their websites online. So, in short, Google is now stealing images. If they tell that people should block their bot, they should tell that everyone should block their bot.

Its purely stealing. Our client is using high resolution images from Getty Images and other agencies. Google is stealing those images. I am sure, Getty Images or other agencies also won't like this.


 11:48 am on Jan 26, 2013 (gmt 0)

Ohh one more thing, you know all those sites that use frame breakers be cause of google image, you will 100% see those sites, will not accept this, will then block google or find another tric, within a short time.


 11:56 am on Jan 26, 2013 (gmt 0)

If Google doesn't load the page in background, they can't find any trick to redirect visitor to their page.

Frame breaking was only possible in earlier way of showing images.


 4:54 pm on Jan 26, 2013 (gmt 0)

One thing we also have to note is that Bing is worse here, then Google, be cause if you click the big image you get to the original site, which is good.


 5:50 pm on Jan 26, 2013 (gmt 0)

Bing also tries to copy the image only and to not load the page.
Google has started copying Bing and has now taken the image only.

If this isn't called scraping, i don't know what they understand by scraping.


 6:21 pm on Jan 26, 2013 (gmt 0)

I added hotlinking protection for both thiefs: Bing and Google. Instead of my original they are now showing a fuzy cached version of the images. People clicking on "View original image" are redirected to a huge colorful banner with details about my site and the domain name in huge characters.


 6:45 pm on Jan 26, 2013 (gmt 0)

yeah hotlink protection need to do stuff here...It will be cool if is possible on fly to write on requested image some text ie. "To see original image Visit...mysite.com" over whole image. I know it is possible to serve some other "default" image..but don't know is it possible write on fly ie via imagemagic or similar


 8:44 pm on Jan 26, 2013 (gmt 0)

When you click on the full size image link, my site sends you to a page that locates the photos location in our database then offers to redirect you to the photo in its original context.


 8:23 am on Jan 27, 2013 (gmt 0)

There are a lot of high resolution photos on my website. Before adding the hotlink protection my server had bandwith problems. The problems are gone after adding the protection. Coincidence?


 8:51 am on Jan 27, 2013 (gmt 0)

Unfortunately hotlink protection is not available for most CDN services.


 6:37 pm on Jan 27, 2013 (gmt 0)

This new design is a poke in our eye!
I have in an engl. gallery about 50% less traffic (and earnings). But it's a small site (about 500 pageviews per day).
Google changes it's goal - from Search-Engine" to "Find-Engine". And they use our content for that - without asking or giving us a chance to chenge it. It usually took some weeks untill images disappear from image-search if you change only robots.txt .
In my eyes absolutely illegal.


 7:22 pm on Jan 27, 2013 (gmt 0)

The previous system with iframe was also a rude thing, but since it is passed, what else to expect from Google, Yahoo, Bing etc, but to go ahead with the rudeness.

They need to back to thumbnail preview with description and direct link to websites or I think is time to tell them STOP !


 7:25 pm on Jan 27, 2013 (gmt 0)

The previous system with iframe was also a rude thing

At least you could break out of this one with a frame breaker script.


[edited by: goodroi at 1:20 pm (utc) on Jan 28, 2013]
[edit reason] TOS [/edit]


 2:00 am on Jan 28, 2013 (gmt 0)

They need to back to thumbnail preview with description and direct link to websites or I think is time to tell them STOP !

Google: "Thank you. Your objection has been duly noted."


 9:38 am on Jan 28, 2013 (gmt 0)

If you are on Apache servers, you can add a line to an .htaccess file in the directory where your images are:
Header append X-Robots-Tag: noindex
to prevent your images from being indexed (in the future, anyway). This adds a noindex metatag to your images AND any other files in the directory served by that .htaccess file - so it is not for your site's .htaccess file or all your files will be noindexed.

@Not2easy - theoretically this should work and I even posted this as a solution in the thread for the New Bing Image Search a few weeks ago. I have the X-Robots-Tag: noindex in the headers for all files in my image directories - yet - Google Image Search and Bing Image Search still display my images from these directories.

And I was careful not to prohibit their image bots from access to these image files, either by blocking UA or disallowing them in robots.txt, so that the headers could be read.

I have sent both Bing and Google numerous emails/feedback without any response. I can only conclude they're telling us "screw you we'll do what we want."


 12:28 pm on Jan 28, 2013 (gmt 0)

So, is your CTR down since the new image search rolled out?


 2:03 pm on Jan 28, 2013 (gmt 0)

Google needs to provide webmasters with means to opt out.

It's really annoying that webmasters keep having to recode their websites to "opt out of being scraped."


 2:17 pm on Jan 28, 2013 (gmt 0)

So, is your CTR down since the new image search rolled out?

It's very difficult to gauge at the moment introducing it like they did before the last weekend of a budget month.

I'm seeing extremely fluctuating AdSense earnings, nothing whatsoever up, some totally normal yet others doing nothing whatsoever. Overall I'm down compared to the previous few days and to the month's average but not as badly as the previous Sunday's test.

I shall wait a few more days to see which way the wind blows.


 2:17 pm on Jan 28, 2013 (gmt 0)


So, is your CTR down since the new image search rolled out?

There is minimal traffic from image search on 4 websites i am tracking. The traffic remained is the actual search traffic, nothing from images.

When people get the full resolution image, they have no reason to click to go to the URL.


 2:51 pm on Jan 28, 2013 (gmt 0)

I think it might be difficult to measure effects of the new display on traffic since Google was already displaying images ON TOP of the source page.

I'm afraid that this traffic was already lost to some extent with Google Images' old format.

Did I say I want Google to provide an opt-out mechanism?

Below is some referral history from Awstats from one of my websites:

Jan 2010
- Google (Images) 7,984/ 10,138

Jan 2011
- Google (Images) 173/ 396

Jan 2012
- Google (Images) 133/ 133

Jan 2013 (as of now
- Google (Images) 114/ 114

More data from a different website, on a different host:
Jan 2008
- Google (Images) 12,573/ 12,573

Jan 2009
- Google (Images) 2,709/ 2,709

Jan 2010
- Google (Images) 3,507/ 3,507

Jan 2011
- Google (Images) 89/ 196

Jan 2012
- Google (Images) 78/ 180

Jan 2013
- Google (Images) 44/ 44


 3:59 pm on Jan 28, 2013 (gmt 0)

BUT google says its much better for the website owners and more visits as results :) Once again why are they invited to any conference.


 9:02 pm on Jan 28, 2013 (gmt 0)

New wave is underway .... Currently new Google Image design works on all browsers.

Bandwidth on the server was increased significantly and the visits decreased... This is a shame what they're doing !


 10:06 pm on Jan 28, 2013 (gmt 0)


I robot.txt'd out search engines from my images folder.

I know I won't be losing much traffic. I might actually regain some. We shall see!


 10:08 pm on Jan 28, 2013 (gmt 0)

RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} bing.com
RewriteRule \.(gif|jpg|png)$ - [F]

RewriteCond %{HTTP_USER_AGENT} BingPreview
RewriteRule ^.* - [F,L]

Thats what I have against bing so they dont show the big images, works fine. On the big sites I have blocked them 100%.

What would this look like for google.?


 10:18 pm on Jan 28, 2013 (gmt 0)

@zeus - That code only stops them from accessing your .jpg, .gif and .png files. It does not stop them from using the ones they already have.

BTW - users coming from Bing search results that carry that referrer will see your site without images. I doubt this is what you want.

I think this is what you may have in mind (including the Google image bot)

RewriteCond %{HTTP_USER_AGENT} (bingpreview|googlebot-image) [NC]
RewriteRule \.(gif|jpg|png)$ - [F]


 10:47 pm on Jan 28, 2013 (gmt 0)

when I look at bing, with what I have in htaccess, I just see a little image in the big box and when they click the image they get to another page, be cause I have modified the error page. which is ok.


 10:50 pm on Jan 28, 2013 (gmt 0)

BTW - users coming from Bing search results that carry that referrer will see your site without images. I doubt this is what you want.

Nope, the landing page is referred by bing not the images.

I haven't blocked bots, they don't eat my bandwidth, hotlinking does. I don't see a reason for blocking bots.


If you don't want google to load your images from your servers modify your code to:

RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} bing.com [NC,OR]
RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} .google. [NC]
RewriteRule \.(gif|jpg)$ - [F]


 11:29 pm on Jan 28, 2013 (gmt 0)

I think we shouldn't block Googlebot now. First we have to fight and discuss. In Germany we did some trouble in our blogs and the first big news-sites began to think and write about it.

I argue this way: imagine Google announces an update in the websearch. When you click on a search-result a layer opens and you can read the whole article on the google result page. At the end of the article you can find a link to the source. Of course this is really user-friendly. You have not to wait for loading the source-page, perhaps with spammy ads in a waste layout.

This is exactly what Google now does with images. Stealing content and declare it as "user-friendly".

There was an unwritten agreement between Google and the image-owners: we gave the content to make Google's image search great - and Google gives us back the visitors. But now Google has brocken this agreement - they want it all. We, creatives, photographers, artist and so on, we just want to welcome the visitors on our pages, with the images embedded in our design, with the option to motivate users to have a look on our other works - because it's our content what people can find on Google. It's our option to say if we want to monetize these images or not.

It is a dramatic change in whats Google's goal. They are not longer a "search engine" - Google became a "find engine". Weather, Flight, Shopping, Knowledge graph and now image-search; Google tries to include as many contents as they could. It's our job to tell the people: stop, this is our content! Google is a search-engine, not a "content-engine"!

I hope many of us go out and tell it to other people. Because we are right!
Good luck, Martin

[edited by: mssfldt at 11:32 pm (utc) on Jan 28, 2013]

This 342 message thread spans 12 pages: < < 342 ( 1 2 [3] 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 ... 12 > >
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