I have had hot link protection for quite some time however since the introduction of Google Instant I have noticed this past week the removal by Google of nearly all my images from their image SERPs.
I was thinking that something else may be at work, a Google glitch etc, however after going through loads of data today it suddenly became evident that my image referrals had fallen dramatically.
Does anyone know if my assumption may be correct and if so am I now faced with the option of either:
1. Accepting this huge reduction in traffic by retaining protection?
2. Allowing all this hotlinking just to get my image traffic and therefore AdSense earnings back?
Or does anyone have any other advice for what may be done?
Or am I barking up totally the wrong tree?