Leosghost - 11:25 am on Sep 26, 2012 (gmt 0)
However, if they were using images from site A to promote content from site B, then we'd have a real problem and that's not what's happening here whatsoever.
In the example I gave in the August thread, that is precisely what is happening..
Given the billions of search queries that Google deal with every day, it could be happening to hundreds of thousands or millions of images..sure watermarking would get your domain name out there, but some people do not want to "spoil" their images with watermarks right through the middle diagonally,( thinking of particularly a lot of artists and photographers here ) because watermarking in any other way can be, and is, simply cropped off..
FWIW, controlling content crawl and usage via robots.txt, .htaccess, robots meta, robots headers, etc. is easily doable so nobody is stealing much of anything anymore unless the webmaster permits it to happen. If a webmaster doesn't know how to do these things that's another problem, but not the SE's problem as all the tools you need are there if you know how to use them.
I have a firefox add on ( I did not write it, it is widely available ) that can defeat any of that..I can take any image of yours, and put it on my site as if it were mine..where Google can then, "find" it..
The only way to stop it is using a script I developed ( which we two have already discussed ), which currently has it's own problems with a side effect of hi-jacking sessions ..this move by Google, more than anything, convinces me that I need to resurrect it and solve that problem..