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Author Topic: Google developed a method to remove visible watermarks on a large scale  (Read 1795 times)

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« on: August 17, 2017, 15:05 »
+5
Check it out: https://research.googleblog.com/2017/08/making-visible-watermarks-more-effective.html

Quote
However, in On The Effectiveness Of Visible Watermarks recently presented at the 2017 Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition Conference (CVPR 2017), we show that a computer algorithm can get past this protection and remove watermarks automatically, giving users unobstructed access to the clean images the watermarks are intended to protect.

Quote
The vulnerability of current watermarking techniques lies in the consistency in watermarks across image collections. Therefore, to counter it, we need to introduce inconsistencies when embedding the watermark in each image.

This might be the reason that shutterstock is not included in the post, as they implemented variations in their watermarking procedure, as well as contributor names. At least in regards to watermarking, shutterstock seems to be ahead of other agencies.

However, the researchers say that this might be only a temporary measure, as methods might be developed which circumvent this problem:

Quote
While we cannot guarantee that there will not be a way to break such randomized watermarking schemes in the future, we believe (and our experiments show) that randomization will make watermarked collection attacks fundamentally more difficult. We hope that these findings will be helpful for the photography and stock image communities.

So if there is a time to push the agencies to decrease BOTH the size of watermarked images AND add variations in the watermarking procedure, it's immediately. I advise you to write to agency representatives to solve this issue asap. The agencies which will keep large previews with no variations in the watermarking procedure will lose my contributions, as I'll just assume that's a vulnerability that'll make my whole portfolio available for free (in a limited resolution, but still) to anyone. And that's a no-go for me.
« Last Edit: August 17, 2017, 15:08 by spike »


Bad Company

« Reply #1 on: August 17, 2017, 15:25 »
0
Bottom line= when we upload an image to the internet we no longer have control on it. Just a sad fact that we have to live with... :-\



« Reply #2 on: August 17, 2017, 15:55 »
+3
Bottom line= when we upload an image to the internet we no longer have control on it. Just a sad fact that we have to live with... :-\

We do need a better method than watermarks for protecting images.

Unfortunately with using agencies and RF you have almost no control over your images. If somebody copies an image only the agency can tell if it's legit. Micro agencies have no incentive to look into it and they dont provide contributors with client names so it's like a store with no employees, door locks or security guards to see who's stealing. At least with RM you can track and sue infringers.


« Reply #3 on: August 18, 2017, 01:01 »
+6
First we need to stop agencies giving our work away free and unwatermarked via holes in their api tech.

« Reply #4 on: August 18, 2017, 02:38 »
+7
First we need to stop agencies giving our work away free and unwatermarked via holes in their api tech.

Exact!
In my opinion the biggest problem is not people stealing our works; the biggest problem are agencies letting people stealing our works because of a lack of security on their sites (code).

drd

« Reply #5 on: August 18, 2017, 05:13 »
+1
First we need to stop agencies giving our work away free and unwatermarked via holes in their api tech.

Exact!
In my opinion the biggest problem is not people stealing our works; the biggest problem are agencies letting people stealing our works because of a lack of security on their sites (code).

Agreed


« Reply #7 on: August 22, 2017, 05:27 »
0
It's going to be a constant war between all the stock sites trying to protect our work and the thieves who want to steal it. Until they start prosecuting and punishing the thieves, I doubt it will ever change. Even then, it's like playing whack-a-mole with the thieves. There is no end to thieves, pirates, or criminals. Take one out, another pops up.


But good to see that SS actually spent resources to try and prevent stealing. Too bad all of the sites don't collaborate and pool some of their many millions of $$ of profit to find a real solution.

« Reply #8 on: August 22, 2017, 05:54 »
+2
There is one thing I did not understand.
What advantage can Google gain from that?
Can somebody explain me?
« Last Edit: August 22, 2017, 14:22 by Chichikov »

« Reply #9 on: August 22, 2017, 06:53 »
+1
Good that Shutterstock came up with the solution for images on their site. But people can easily find and steal just about any agency image from a client who has downloaded it and used the unwatermarked version online. Until there's a better solution for tracking and enforcing licensing this is a bandaid on a leaking dam.

« Reply #10 on: August 22, 2017, 12:28 »
0
First we need to stop agencies giving our work away free and unwatermarked via holes in their api tech.

Exact!
In my opinion the biggest problem is not people stealing our works; the biggest problem are agencies letting people stealing our works because of a lack of security on their sites (code).

one solution can be to upload a self watermarked file with the original and not just add a filter on the original.

OM

« Reply #11 on: August 23, 2017, 06:01 »
0
Good that Shutterstock came up with the solution for images on their site. But people can easily find and steal just about any agency image from a client who has downloaded it and used the unwatermarked version online. Until there's a better solution for tracking and enforcing licensing this is a bandaid on a leaking dam.

That's what I thought too until I tested one of mine on a pirate site (not going to post which one as I reported it to SS and they are taking action). Complete with author's handle included, it removed all the watermarking to give a completely clean image. I reckon that site relied on Google views for income as it wouldn't work with my ad blocker on. All social networking sites were shown at the bottom of their landing page and they encouraged you to share their service.
So.....SS had not solved the problem at all (at time of testing ~10 days ago) by adding the author's name to their watermark. They just gave the impressive of defeating the pirates.

Edit: Just checked that site. No longer accepts that my adblocker is disabled (when it definitely is) and requires an email address as well as the SS url of the image. Maybe it has been closed down after all.
« Last Edit: August 23, 2017, 06:38 by OM »

« Reply #12 on: August 23, 2017, 09:55 »
0
If the biggest companies in the world can't protect their expensive products (software) against piracy, neither will you.

All you can do is make it harder, but it will always be possible.


 

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