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Now I think Google still have the same problem as they had for years, if many other sites "forums, blogs, sites" are linking directly to your Images, those show up in a Site:yourdomain.com google image search which can be very bad for your site, which also can course to tricker that filter, those other sites can have bad text or images, which is now counted as part of your site.
on Jan. 25/26 google reacts and played up a two-weeks-old-backup in the image-index. So on Jan 26 all new pictures are gone, image search and rankings looked like two weeks before.
During the night the google-programmer fixes the problem - or they now use the old filter.
on jan. 27 google shows the new pictures. Now all of my new pictures are also visible in safeSearch.
This is just a theory. As allways there were too less people checking the images-Index to find out something "real & statistical".
Best wishes, Martin
So one of my new sites is less than 6 months old and I found out today that Google Image finally index a few images.
Google Image: example.com shows 5 images hosted on my own server and 3 other images hot linked from other sites. I am hoping more and more images to be indexed soon.
My site has over 2000 pictures.
What I find interesting is that the largest photos in terms of dimensions have been indexed first. We will see how it continues to index the rest.
[edited by: tedster at 6:02 pm (utc) on Jan. 31, 2009]
About other sites showing up in a yoursite.com search is not good, could give troubles, I have seen many sites where 90% was hotlinking sites rest was original site.
Anybody else who noticed? Zeus?
[edited by: tedster at 12:18 am (utc) on Feb. 8, 2009]
[edit reason] moved from another locations [/edit]
The interesting difference perhaps between my site and others is I use zero alt tags. This was kind of a test to see how important alt tags are to get images.google.com traffic. (It was also a deliberate attempt to be conservative with respect to using alt tags for SEO.)
One thing I just noticed about the SERP order for a generic search of my site, i.e: site:example.com, then click on Images, is the largest files show up highest in ranking.
P.S. Ask.com's image search is funny. I still get traffic to images that were removed five years ago. lol!