gethan - 9:57 am on Jul 22, 2010 (gmt 0)
Answering my own questions:
1) Is google hotlinking to the source image on the high-res preview?
Yes. The image is hotlinked from the server hosting the image - so you not only lose the visitor you still pay for the band width.
Note: server based redirects (I suggest to a very large image stored on google's servers) work - and briefly display - before the pixelated low res version shws.
2) Is the results page the same as that seen in Asia a few months back?
No - this is a new slightly less evil but still evil version. IMO this is definitely not fair-use.
3) The high-res "preview"? if hosted by google is it a full copy of the image?
See 1. Your bandwidth is eaten by the google image leech.
4) Has this new interface been seen outside of the USA?
Yes - today the world - including Malaysia - where I'm currently based.
A few other notes;
- frame-breaking js seems to work.
A few other questions;
1) Are images from flickr treated this way? and any other big players?
2) Who will be the first photographer to sue google?