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Author Topic: Email from SS - Regarding Repeated Words and Phrases in Image Titles  (Read 37116 times)

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« Reply #150 on: June 30, 2016, 22:41 »
+8
I haven't received this email, but this looks like taken straight out of Franz Kafka's The Trial. People are accused of having committed a crime, but the details are not revealed. A remote, inaccessible authority is threatening with a punishment, but how can you defend yourself if you don't know what exactly your alleged crime is? Very Kafkaesque indeed.

A stupid bot has found some supposedly problematic images. Then the stupid bot should have returned their file IDs!
« Last Edit: June 30, 2016, 23:11 by LDV81 »


« Reply #151 on: June 30, 2016, 23:09 »
+1
I got the same email too. Shutterstock doesn't use the Title meta tag only the description, if I am not mistaken. Never less, I don't think that I have any image with repeating phrases. Not even sure how to check if I may have one for whatever reason.

« Reply #152 on: June 30, 2016, 23:28 »
0
When looking of what Shutterstock considering "Title Spamming" http://www.shutterstock.com/contributorsupport/articles/kbat02/000010523 then I don't think that I have anything like this.

« Reply #153 on: June 30, 2016, 23:39 »
+2
I didn't get the email and only saw one other person say they didn't get one. I checked spam and even searched emails to make sure it I didn't miss it.  Now I am paranoid thinking it was sent and I somehow missed it and I need to check titles.   :-\. Just can't trust their system either way.

if that was me you read, ... i did get one but only after i said i didn't.
still i  am not going to lose sleep over this, as it is very unlikely they are going to suspend everyone.
this is probably one of those f*ckups ss has been used to making lately.

i would write them to tell them to f***off but they probably think it is a compliment
to being such a f**khead.

« Reply #154 on: July 01, 2016, 00:22 »
0
i got a pm from laurin rinder telling me he had heard that ss is preparing the company to be sold off, this was related to the amount of images they are accepting, so this could be related, having 77000 contributors work for them, cleaning up titles, so they look nice and clean and buffed up before they put themselves in the store window
Who will buy SS? Investment company? That would be very very bad for us

« Reply #155 on: July 01, 2016, 00:28 »
+5
Since they don't have an easy way to look at, much less edit, titles, they can fire me before I'm going to go through 11,000 images that they approved trying to figure out what they hell they are talking about.
Same here, though I've only got about 5,000 images (just checked, it's more than 6,000). I've never changed anything in any of them after approval, so if their "algorithm" says it is spam now their reviewers didn't in the past.
I note that they have replied on their forum, saying they will deal with all the e-mails sent to them and provide examples of what their automated system found from each portfolio. That's not good enough. If they want us to take the trouble of editing the title/caption/whatever then they can provide the image number and a problem description for every bloody one.
I also note that they ask for patience because it will be a big job for them to go through all the e-mails. Well, boo-hoo, hard luck! I'm sure it won't be as big a job for them, answering a few thousand e-mails, as editing 5,000 images would be for me. But they don't even want to do that job properly as they, apparently, don't intend to provide a full list of "spammed" images, just an example. And if the example turns out to be an editorial image following their spammy guidelines (which I objected to from the start) what then?
When iStock brought in their "disambiguation" nonsense a decade back I had maybe a couple of thousand images but it took so long to go through them that I only did about half before I gave up.
« Last Edit: July 01, 2016, 01:03 by BaldricksTrousers »

« Reply #156 on: July 01, 2016, 00:28 »
0
No email for me .
Don't know what to think...

« Reply #157 on: July 01, 2016, 00:31 »
+5
I haven't received this email, but this looks like taken straight out of Franz Kafka's The Trial. People are accused of having committed a crime, but the details are not revealed. A remote, inaccessible authority is threatening with a punishment, but how can you defend yourself if you don't know what exactly your alleged crime is? Very Kafkaesque indeed.

A stupid bot has found some supposedly problematic images. Then the stupid bot should have returned their file IDs!

actually they're using the same method fotolia uses in their worthless 'rejection reviews' - there's something we didn't like about your image and here are 20 possible things that might be wrong with it. guess which one & correct it'

« Reply #158 on: July 01, 2016, 00:40 »
+8
This is the problem with crowd sourcing. They can waste tens of thousands of man hours pointlessly because it isn't their man hours. We are the ones having to pay out to fruitlessly search hundreds of thousands of images just because they couldn't be bothered to have a person spend an hour or two to get the script right and specify image numbers. Shows how much they value their contributors.


« Reply #160 on: July 01, 2016, 01:15 »
+21
...I note that they have replied on their forum, saying they will deal with all the e-mails sent to them and provide examples of what their automated system found from each portfolio. That's not good enough. If they want us to take the trouble of editing the title/caption/whatever then they can provide the image number and a problem description for every bloody one.

I agree. That's what I asked for in the e-mail I sent to support earlier today:

"Dear Shutterstock,

I think your software that identifies spam titles and descriptions must be broken. I received the e-mail today that asserted I have spammed titles or descriptions and I find that completely unbelievable.

Ive been with you since 2004. I take great care in managing titles, descriptions and keywords. I dont spam. Being told I do without even a single example of that - how hard would it have been for the software that flagged me to provide image numbers to back up this claim? - is just insulting and careless.

Please provide me with a full list of the images you think are spammed.

regards,

Jo Ann Snover
Contributor 249"


It is stupid, lazy programming to flag accounts without giving each a full list of what you identified.

It's lazy or non-existent QA that you don't sanity check the number of accounts flagged in case your code is broken - oh, it flagged 49,999 contributors out of 50,000; perhaps I should have another look at what's getting flagged.

It's asleep-at-the-wheel management not to ask your coding minions to provide some samples of what got flagged, how many accounts, the e-mail, and so on.

It's apathetic supervision by the contributor success team to skip review and/or editing of the rude and accusatory e-mail you send out to so many contributors

It's not a great idea to use a new domain name on the e-mail you send out requiring contributor action (I've never had e-mail from Shutterstock(at)shutterstockmail(dot)com before and it got caught in my spam filters). Sending out e-mail *and* putting a note in the submit area when you log in would have been useful/thoughtful to make sure the information gets to everyone.

To cap it all off, their own forum is awash with people telling them they've made a terrible mistake and the best they can do is say they'll send some examples if we ask? The dismissive tone towards contributors and any issues raised really smacks of a "the peasants are revolting, sire" attitude on their part.

Any goodwill towards them on my part is utterly extinguished. As long as they can manage to sell my images I'll continue with them, but they've grown too big for their britches and appear to have acquired iStock's knack for totally botching software changes. Not a happy combination.

« Reply #161 on: July 01, 2016, 01:21 »
0
I know some of you guys are worried and angry, but I don't think SS is crazy or stupid enough to ban unintentional violators. They're not going to go after people with a couple repeated keywords, but they will go after the blatant violators.

The ban hammer will come down and it's going to to be brutal for hundreds of spammy contributors. Those type of spammers probably have tens of thousands of the images and they're all titled the same way. Despite the warming, I don't think many of you guys won't be affected. If you think you have some images that violates their policy, change it. I've already gone through all of my images and made changes to some of the titles.
« Last Edit: July 01, 2016, 01:40 by Minsc »

« Reply #162 on: July 01, 2016, 01:39 »
+6
I know some of you guys are worried and angry, but I don't think SS is crazy or stupid enough to ban unintentional violators.
Agreed.
The ban hammer will come down and it's going to to be brutal for hundreds of spammy contributors.
If their spam detector flags up just about every account and can't separate spammers from everyone else it is rather hard to see how they will identify the real spammers and close them down.

« Reply #163 on: July 01, 2016, 01:46 »
0
If their spam detector flags up just about every account and can't separate spammers from everyone else it is rather hard to see how they will identify the real spammers and close them down.

It'll be easy for them. All they have to do is identify images with a single keywords repeated more than 2 times. They just need to filter out common words like "and", "of" and "with".

If an image title repeats a keyword 3 times, there's a really good chance it's spammer. They can easily pull up a list of all their titles and if they're all titled the same way, they will get banned.

I think this is an opportunity for all of us. By doing this, SS will improve the ranking system and flush out all the spammers from the top of the relevant category. This will lead to better discovery of relevant images. I think that benefits all non-spamming contributors.

« Reply #164 on: July 01, 2016, 02:01 »
+3
"were identified by our system as being potentially spammy"

How can a one believe in automated system so confirm.
And on top, the system shoots that it will suspend the account.

Man this is crazy, there are lot of contributors who don't find anything spammy and still got the threat to account suspension.

Edit: Sending an automated scripted email without manual search is also counted as spam.
« Last Edit: July 01, 2016, 02:04 by Artist »

« Reply #165 on: July 01, 2016, 02:14 »
+3
This is joke. Everyone knows who the spammers. Why not fire up the simple way, searching in the portfolios.
Filtering the spammer by title is another joke. Many spammer have good title:
Example:
http://www.shutterstock.com/portfolio/search.mhtml?searchterm=smartphone&x=0&y=0&media_type=images&search_cat=&searchtermx=&people_gender=&people_age=&people_ethnicity=&people_number=&color=&lang=hu&search_source=search_form&version=llv1&anyorall=all&safesearch=1&submitter=4359412&photographer_name=mydes&search_group=&orient=&commercial_ok=&show_color_wheel=1&sort_method=popular

6page = 6k images from one phone icon. Congratulation.

This is spam, or poor design, but the title is ok.
When this contributors fired up, tomorrow sing up again with, friends id card.
Many spammer staring again.
And what about this?
http://www.shutterstock.com/gallery-4359412p1.html
He have good titles, but when i see this portfoio i realize this is definitely spam. 17k images from 2016?


dpimborough

« Reply #166 on: July 01, 2016, 02:24 »
+3
But hey!!

It's free pizza Friday YAY!!  ::)


« Reply #167 on: July 01, 2016, 02:31 »
+5
I do not want to scare you guys, but there seems to be more to it. Like you, I was very happy to find "spammygate" email from Shutterstock in my inbox today. Like you, I claim it is a bogus accusation and a result of some poorly designed bot malfunction because I have never spammed my titles. Most likely, I have some images with repeated words in the title, but those are well justified like many of the examples already posted in this thread. After reading this thread, I was just going to ignore the whole thing, let the dust settle, and laugh at the incompetence of SS bot programmers in the meantime. However, after checking my portfolio in SS I found that it has 10-30 images less now than it used to have just a few days ago (I am not giving exact number here so SS cannot figure out my contributor identity). I am 100% certain of that because I keep detailed statistics after each upload cycle. But I imagine for some of you who have huge portfolios with 10K+ images, losses of 50-100 files could have gone unnoticed. It seems SS not only ran the bot to scan our images for supposed spammy titles, but what is worse, they actually silently deleted some images. And the worst part is that they did not even tell us which ones they deleted and there is no way to figure it out because it is not reported anywhere. I urge you to check your portfolio because this stuff is getting really ugly.

« Reply #168 on: July 01, 2016, 03:18 »
0
... But I imagine for some of you who have huge portfolios with 10K+ images, losses of 50-100 files could have gone unnoticed. It seems SS not only ran the bot to scan our images for supposed spammy titles, but what is worse, they actually silently deleted some images. And the worst part is that they did not even tell us which ones they deleted and there is no way to figure it out because it is not reported anywhere. I urge you to check your portfolio because this stuff is getting really ugly.
I get that feeling as well. I have around 5000 items on sale and I upload almost on a daily basis. My numbers keep changing all the time so I don't remember what my actual count was before this email.

Now I cannot figure out if any images have been removed.  :P

« Reply #169 on: July 01, 2016, 03:32 »
+4
I know some of you guys are worried and angry, but I don't think SS is crazy or stupid enough to ban unintentional violators. They're not going to go after people with a couple repeated keywords, but they will go after the blatant violators.

The ban hammer will come down and it's going to to be brutal for hundreds of spammy contributors. Those type of spammers probably have tens of thousands of the images and they're all titled the same way. Despite the warming, I don't think many of you guys won't be affected. If you think you have some images that violates their policy, change it. I've already gone through all of my images and made changes to some of the titles.

Fine words but my problem is that you are asking us not to worry as SS will not be incompetent ... after they have clearly proven themselves to be incompetent.

« Reply #170 on: July 01, 2016, 03:53 »
0
If their spam detector flags up just about every account and can't separate spammers from everyone else it is rather hard to see how they will identify the real spammers and close them down.

It'll be easy for them. All they have to do is identify images with a single keywords repeated more than 2 times. They just need to filter out common words like "and", "of" and "with".

If an image title repeats a keyword 3 times, there's a really good chance it's spammer. They can easily pull up a list of all their titles and if they're all titled the same way, they will get banned.

I think this is an opportunity for all of us. By doing this, SS will improve the ranking system and flush out all the spammers from the top of the relevant category. This will lead to better discovery of relevant images. I think that benefits all non-spamming contributors.

Well, it should be easy, I agree - but they don't seem to have been able to do that before spamming us all with their e-mail.

« Reply #171 on: July 01, 2016, 04:03 »
0
The same here... Just received the email. It could be that they changed keywords (split them), but the e-mail referring only the titles, which are 100% ok.

« Reply #172 on: July 01, 2016, 04:15 »
0
got this mail also yesterday and replied immediately stating that I have never ever changed any single character nor in my keywords, titles and/or descriptions after submission and that I expect an excuse for this false accusation as they accuse us of some fraudulent action >=99% of us have never committed.....
Quote
We have become aware that your portfolio now includes titles with spammy repetitive words or phrases
as opposed to before I guess

it would have been very easy for them to investigate as any change in the DB is timestamped to foolproof any date of change up to a milisecond

At least I will not take any action on it nor do I care, as I have much better things to do, there must be a holiday jobber sending out these mails.

To reach the high of impudence this mail is either signed not carrying any ticket number or alike to really follow this back or get a conversation. Calling this "unprofessional" is falling short. It's spam at its very best imho

« Reply #173 on: July 01, 2016, 04:27 »
+2
This can't of been sent out in error because they would of sent an apology email by now.  So I presume they seriously think that people with thousands of images in their portfolio will click thousands of links to check every title?  Still can't quite believe that they haven't foreseen the problem.

If they know what titles have repeated words, they need to send us links to those images.

This just makes me more determined to work harder to get away from my dependence on earnings from SS.  Instead of wasting time clicking almost 5,000 links, I will work on making new images and other ways to diversify my earnings.

« Reply #174 on: July 01, 2016, 04:31 »
0
Same for me, I received it last night !!!

And in the meantime just beafore, one of my last file, a set of two illustrated oysters has been rejected for 'spamming'.
My title was "Oyster Shell" and description "Illustration of a cartoon appetizing fresh and raw oyster shell, full and empty"

Where do you see some spam here !!!  :o


 

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