MicrostockGroup Sponsors


Poll

Were SS right to shut down the weekly Thieves Thread Update Project?

Yes
3 (3.5%)
No
75 (87.2%)
Don't know
8 (9.3%)

Total Members Voted: 84

Author Topic: Shutterstock suspicious accounts "wackamoles" update  (Read 27125 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

« Reply #75 on: February 23, 2019, 16:37 »
+1
So.....what now? Abandon identifying?

SS have notified me that the crowdsourced "wackamole" model isn't according to their rules and regulations and runs the risk of identifying legitimate accounts which may be shut down mistakenly.

I am sure many news organizations will be thrilled to do more extensive research about the public traded company

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/09/19/reader-center/confidential-tip-line.html
https://www.washingtonpost.com/anonymous-news-tips/?utm_term=.3e40e87445c5
https://tips.axios.com
https://www.thedailybeast.com/tips


dpimborough

« Reply #76 on: February 24, 2019, 02:55 »
+5
Innocent accounts could easily be identified and confirmed by Shutterstock,

IMHO this indicates that shutterstock are either

1. Lazy, can't be bothered brushing it under the carpet hoping it'll go away.

2. Are so incompetent they don't know what they are doing

3. Know full well what is happening (lets face it they have enough evidence) and
as a deliberate policy are allowing it to happen.

I see they totally failed to lock any of the other threads established by Brasilnut.



Brasilnut

  • Author Brutally Honest Guide to Microstock & Blog

« Reply #77 on: February 24, 2019, 07:03 »
+13
Innocent accounts could easily be identified and confirmed by Shutterstock,

IMHO this indicates that shutterstock are either

1. Lazy, can't be bothered brushing it under the carpet hoping it'll go away.

2. Are so incompetent they don't know what they are doing

3. Know full well what is happening (lets face it they have enough evidence) and
as a deliberate policy are allowing it to happen.

I see they totally failed to lock any of the other threads established by Brasilnut.

I think it's a mixture of 1 and 3. As for point 2, even if they don't have the competence, let's face it, they are a NYSE-listed company with 700+ employees in dozens of international offices. They can afford to hire fraud-detection experts, programmers, compliance officers, etc. This day in age, they can outsource less expensive resources in India, etc.

A small % of accounts were legitimate

A small number of flagged accounts out of the 500 in total were legitimate, particularly in the beginning of the Project. We all learn with experience. However, most worrying (for me) was that the list was taken at such face-value and some of the accounts were shut down without apparent further checks (i'm not privy to the processes undertaken). Overall, way too much risk put on me and I'm not even a SS consultant/employee. These wackamole processes take time and resources need to be devoted to double/triple/quadruple check any flagged account.

"Lazy, can't be bothered brushing it under the carpet hoping it'll go away".

As for point number 1, I agree it's more about keeping this issue hush hush, less public exposure the better...keep feeding investors false truths such as 550,000 contributors and 250 million content, even if a small % of that are fraudsters and some of the million are either stolen or spammy junk. It's common practice in a corporate world to manipulate and these are savvy businesspeople who need to make the best decisions for the company/investors.

"Know full well what is happening (lets face it they have enough evidence) and
as a deliberate policy are allowing it to happen".


Point 3 is tricky because if they know/knew it was happening and failed to do anything about it (or didn't do enough), that opens up a whole can of legal worms.

More transparency needed

I would have preferred / prefer a completely transparent approach to address the problem head-on and state publicly "Yes, we have a fraud issue and we are doing XYZ to combat it. These are our results for XYZ period, compared to ZJD period." Instead, it's sort of like...let's censor and this will all blow over in a few weeks. It's not too late and they may come out publicly but I wouldn't hold my breath...

Human beings are motivated by incentives

I would like to see this Project re-introduced with a sort of incentive system to flag fraudulent accounts with profits from fraudulent accounts being donated as a charitable contribution. Difficult for anybody to disagree with this approach as it's simply turning a negative into a positive and they're welcome to spin this as much as they want. Hell, we as contributors, can even vote on which charity and see the fruits of our work being put to good use.

Conclusion and some ideas

Even if a crowdsourced model isn't the most accurate, leading to some mistakes (which is completely normal for untrained contributors), it's by far the most efficient. Fking hell, 99.5% of copyright holders have NO IDEA that their work has been stolen, so what hope is there for any of them to use the time-consuming DMCA procedure!?

At least this public action brings immediate attention, for the better. Contributors, such as myself, care about the sustainability of the agency and these types of frauds and spammy accounts to a lesser extent, deeply affect the morale of contributors. The extent of fraud is turning many contributors into Doom & Gloomers.

Anyway, it was fun and useful while it lasted and I thank all those who supported and got involved directly and indirectly.

Alex
« Last Edit: February 24, 2019, 07:22 by Brasilnut »

dpimborough

« Reply #78 on: February 24, 2019, 07:39 »
+5
A very sensible and measured analysis Alex.

I think you perservered long and hard with this with no reward. :(

I makes me angry that SS really show no gratitude or wherewithall to solve the problem. >:(


« Reply #79 on: February 24, 2019, 08:23 »
+2
sS is really starting to piss me off as an agency that is turning on its own contributers (or business partners in reality)

Im just waiting for that first video sale under the new and exciting terms they recently announced - maybe thatll give me the push over the edge to remove at least my videos

« Reply #80 on: February 24, 2019, 11:45 »
+2
What if someone like stocksubmitter offered a content match notification service?  Maybe a monthly whole portfolio image search to find stolen identical shots in other accounts.  The agencies should do it on their own but since they don't... perhaps third party can fill the need. 

I would pay a reasonable fee for a service like that. 
« Last Edit: February 24, 2019, 11:47 by trek »

« Reply #81 on: February 24, 2019, 12:41 »
0
What if someone like stocksubmitter offered a content match notification service?  Maybe a monthly whole portfolio image search to find stolen identical shots in other accounts.  The agencies should do it on their own but since they don't... perhaps third party can fill the need. 

I would pay a reasonable fee for a service like that.
I'm pretty sure there's a service out there which was discussed a while back on here

« Reply #82 on: February 24, 2019, 14:07 »
0
Quote
I'm pretty sure there's a service out there which was discussed a while back on here

semi offtopic answer as for the "service" or technology,

Youtube already have a "free" tool available for bigger channels that scans and report to original video content uploaders any duplicate video attempt and  give them the option to report and terminate any copy of their work is stolen and reuploaded.

Uncle Pete

  • Great Place by a Great Lake - My Home Port
« Reply #83 on: February 25, 2019, 15:20 »
0
If SS had a real reporting channel that actually responded and looked into image theft, the forum thread would never have been started.

I'm sure their reasoning is, if one person is reported in public for having stolen images, and it's false, that would make the whole project negative for false accusations. But if they are looking and don't close down someone for a mistake, I don't see any huge problem. The reason they take time, is to prevent a false locking of an account. Fine, I defend that.

Now back to the start, many people reported a number of different stolen or copied, some stolen parts reused or traced vectors, and most of the time, nothing happened.

Before the public effort some of us wrote and got back a standard form letter telling us how to file a DMCA if we were the owner. Asking again, the same letter and "this is the way it is." Now I see they do allow private reporting. You need to post the link to the actual image and the copy, not just files or numbers. Lets see if private reporting works and the project was a success by creating a channel for reporting?

« Reply #84 on: February 26, 2019, 07:36 »
+1
A very sensible and measured analysis Alex.

I think you perservered long and hard with this with no reward. :(

I makes me angry that SS really show no gratitude or wherewithall to solve the problem. >:(
Well said. If SS doesn't keep up maybe there's a way to continue in private.

Brasilnut

  • Author Brutally Honest Guide to Microstock & Blog

« Reply #85 on: February 26, 2019, 09:10 »
+8
Going private isn't as effective, imo.

By EXPOSING the scale of the problem, it's easier for others to care and even help out. Also, there's a psychological shame factor involved. Numerous thieving contributors contacted me directly to plead to have me remove their name from the list. This is a potentially powerful deterrent.

Uncle Pete

  • Great Place by a Great Lake - My Home Port
« Reply #86 on: February 26, 2019, 13:20 »
+1
Going private isn't as effective, imo.

By EXPOSING the scale of the problem, it's easier for others to care and even help out. Also, there's a psychological shame factor involved. Numerous thieving contributors contacted me directly to plead to have me remove their name from the list. This is a potentially powerful deterrent.

Interesting, the thieves come to the SS forum, I suppose to troll for images to steal and ideas to copy.

dpimborough

« Reply #87 on: February 26, 2019, 14:38 »
+2
Going private isn't as effective, imo.

By EXPOSING the scale of the problem, it's easier for others to care and even help out. Also, there's a psychological shame factor involved. Numerous thieving contributors contacted me directly to plead to have me remove their name from the list. This is a potentially powerful deterrent.

Interesting, the thieves come to the SS forum, I suppose to troll for images to steal and ideas to copy.

Thats a reason I never post on the SS forum.

Beside the fact their moderation is non existant except in this case where they obviously deleted all of the whackamole threads

So no effort to solve the real problem but plenty of ability in shutting down discussions highlighting their incompetence.
« Last Edit: February 26, 2019, 15:11 by Sammy the Cat »

Brasilnut

  • Author Brutally Honest Guide to Microstock & Blog

« Reply #88 on: February 27, 2019, 08:03 »
+3
Going private isn't as effective, imo.

By EXPOSING the scale of the problem, it's easier for others to care and even help out. Also, there's a psychological shame factor involved. Numerous thieving contributors contacted me directly to plead to have me remove their name from the list. This is a potentially powerful deterrent.

Interesting, the thieves come to the SS forum, I suppose to troll for images to steal and ideas to copy.

Those "show your latest download" threads and "latest EL" make for easy pickings for the thieves.

Why do some contributors deliberately shoot themselves in the foot in this way?

---------

Meanwhile, SS's Ministry of Truth has completely deleted all threads related to wackamoling. Sad.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oe9I0QhV08w
« Last Edit: February 27, 2019, 08:33 by Brasilnut »

« Reply #89 on: February 27, 2019, 13:10 »
0
Did you save any of those lists - or at least take screen shots?

Brasilnut

  • Author Brutally Honest Guide to Microstock & Blog

« Reply #90 on: February 27, 2019, 18:01 »
+1
Did you save any of those lists - or at least take screen shots?

Most have been wacked, to be fair.

Brasilnut

  • Author Brutally Honest Guide to Microstock & Blog

« Reply #91 on: March 11, 2019, 14:45 »
+3


dpimborough

« Reply #92 on: March 12, 2019, 00:00 »
+4
At least this issue is gaining some awareness from Pixabay contributors.

https://pixabay.com/forum/chitchat-pixabay-related-or-not-14/interesting-article-about-copyright-infringement-8122/

Having read some of the comments made by Pixabay contributors on your link I am dumbfounded how naive these people really are and lacking in awareness that copyright infringement is theft.

They don't deserve to be called image producers or photographers :(
« Last Edit: March 12, 2019, 06:07 by Sammy the Cat »

« Reply #93 on: March 12, 2019, 11:24 »
+6
At least this issue is gaining some awareness from Pixabay contributors.

https://pixabay.com/forum/chitchat-pixabay-related-or-not-14/interesting-article-about-copyright-infringement-8122/

Having read some of the comments made by Pixabay contributors on your link I am dumbfounded how naive these people really are and lacking in awareness that copyright infringement is theft.

They don't deserve to be called image producers or photographers :(

And the usual everything is free there are no rights people, to justify that why they steal images, change them and upload to pixbay. Call intellectual property not property that can't be stolen. We can understand a thief and they justify their actions by poor ideology excuses. Alex is right, if a blogger can't afford $1 we are in trouble and so are they. I will not give away my pictures.

Uncle Pete

  • Great Place by a Great Lake - My Home Port
« Reply #94 on: March 14, 2019, 08:11 »
0
Just found another free place that I never heard of before. I was reading an article, Blog, and saw the credits. All but one Unsplash

The site landing page says, Beautiful, free photos. Gifted by the worlds most generous community of photographers.

License

All photos published on Unsplash can be used for free. You can use them for commercial and noncommercial purposes. You do not need to ask permission from or provide credit to the photographer or Unsplash, although it is appreciated when possible.

More precisely, Unsplash grants you an irrevocable, nonexclusive, worldwide copyright license to download, copy, modify, distribute, perform, and use photos from Unsplash for free, including for commercial purposes, without permission from or attributing the photographer or Unsplash. This license does not include the right to compile photos from Unsplash to replicate a similar or competing service.


Pretty much you can do anything, except copy to another free service? Very sad.

I was going to join and upload some Crapstock there, just for fun. Even that I'm against giving away for free.

Brasilnut

  • Author Brutally Honest Guide to Microstock & Blog

« Reply #95 on: March 14, 2019, 08:13 »
+3
More like "Beautiful, free photos. Gifted by the worlds most naive community of photographers."

Uncle Pete

  • Great Place by a Great Lake - My Home Port
« Reply #96 on: March 14, 2019, 08:26 »
+3
More like "Beautiful, free photos. Gifted by the worlds most naive community of photographers."

That's what the owners of the site are saying while they make money from free exposure uploads.

Hey someone help me, I don't want to be the devil sign + guy  ;)

Heart Collection:
    +666


Thanks, I've been saved.  8)

« Last Edit: March 15, 2019, 09:56 by Uncle Pete »

dpimborough

« Reply #97 on: March 14, 2019, 08:53 »
0
More like "Beautiful, free photos. Gifted by the worlds most naive community of photographers."

More like "Beautiful, free photos. Gifted by the worlds most naive community of photographers morons "  ::)

« Reply #98 on: March 14, 2019, 10:21 »
+1
More like "Beautiful, free photos. Gifted by the worlds most naive community of photographers."

More like "Beautiful, free photos. Gifted by the worlds most naive community of photographers morons "  ::)

I have to agree with this statement, most of them offer unreleased content with visible brands, logos etc. for commercial use.

« Reply #99 on: March 14, 2019, 13:07 »
0
I've reported my fair share of infringers over the years and the process has gotten slightly more complicated. I appreciate all the work you've done in getting all these infringers' portfolio taken down, but I think the few legit portfolios that was affected gave SS second thoughts about this process. It opened them to facing potential lawsuits. It just takes one to throw a spanner into the system and it blows up, and I think that's the case here.

I don't think anyone is happy with the new reporting process, but DMCA notices are probably the safest route for them. It protects them legally because the copyright holder that is filing the claim is legally liable if they make a false claim. Once you create a DMCA template, the process can be just as quick as before.


 

Related Topics

  Subject / Started by Replies Last post
35 Replies
11524 Views
Last post August 19, 2009, 15:03
by RacePhoto
1 Replies
4145 Views
Last post September 10, 2010, 22:47
by bobbigmac
25 Replies
15880 Views
Last post May 26, 2015, 05:40
by pixel86
12 Replies
3343 Views
Last post March 16, 2014, 09:38
by StockPhotosArt.com
6 Replies
2251 Views
Last post June 14, 2015, 10:28
by WeatherENG

Sponsors

Microstock Poll Results