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Poll

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

Yes
3 (3.6%)
No
72 (86.7%)
Don't know
8 (9.6%)

Total Members Voted: 81

Author Topic: Shutterstock suspicious accounts "wackamoles" update  (Read 25543 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

« Reply #125 on: April 22, 2019, 22:39 »
+4
I just deleted 2700 clips off Shutterstock and terminated my account with them, $1000 a month that will hopefully shift over to other agencies.

They were repeatedly allowing the same Russian thief to upload and sell my premium clips, stonewalled me when I requested information on how many times the stolen content had licensed, refused to even have a conversation about how to try and stop this problem and chose to honour the rights of the thief over the victim in refusing to give me the user details of the thief (like email address, name etc so I could pursue them.) It was against their "privacy policy."

An absolute scumbag company without an ounce of morality - I couldn't in good conscience continue to license my work through them. It felt extremely satisfying deleting my portfolio there.

I've registered all my works with the US copyright office and next time there's an infringement lawyers will be involved.


That is just disgusting behavior on their part. Good for you for ending your relationship with them. I know it cant be easy giving up money like that...it never is, for anyone. Just shows how greed corrupts ethics. What do they care, they make money off you, or the thieves, all the same to them.


« Reply #126 on: April 22, 2019, 23:09 »
+7
I just deleted 2700 clips off Shutterstock and terminated my account with them, $1000 a month that will hopefully shift over to other agencies.

They were repeatedly allowing the same Russian thief to upload and sell my premium clips, stonewalled me when I requested information on how many times the stolen content had licensed, refused to even have a conversation about how to try and stop this problem and chose to honour the rights of the thief over the victim in refusing to give me the user details of the thief (like email address, name etc so I could pursue them.) It was against their "privacy policy."

An absolute scumbag company without an ounce of morality - I couldn't in good conscience continue to license my work through them. It felt extremely satisfying deleting my portfolio there.

I've registered all my works with the US copyright office and next time there's an infringement lawyers will be involved.


That is just disgusting behavior on their part. Good for you for ending your relationship with them. I know it cant be easy giving up money like that...it never is, for anyone. Just shows how greed corrupts ethics. What do they care, they make money off you, or the thieves, all the same to them.

Thanks! It wasn't an easy decision but the feeling of disgust was really burning deep inside of me and actually making me feel really down and out (I'm usually extremely positive person and blessed to not get depressed etc.) Along with the royalty cut at Pond5 it was a nerve wracking couple of weeks but now I'm very comfortable with everything.

Decided to turn a bad situation into a good one (hopefully.) Raised my prices on Pond5 / my own website etc (since they can't be found cheaply on SS any more.)

But yeah, they're a rotten company devoid of ethics.

Brasilnut

  • Author Brutally Honest Guide to Microstock & Blog

« Reply #127 on: April 23, 2019, 08:01 »
0
oops wrong thread.

« Last Edit: April 23, 2019, 08:22 by Brasilnut »

« Reply #128 on: April 26, 2019, 01:08 »
+2
I just deleted 2700 clips off Shutterstock and terminated my account with them, $1000 a month that will hopefully shift over to other agencies.

I believe that would have been an extremely difficult decision to make but it's understandable. It's pretty sickening how sometimes, it can appear like SS are protecting their thieves. Would be good if you share your account of what happened on more public platforms like facebook and youtube. Or maybe even get the press involved. Would be good to cast a big spotlight over SS' sinful practices for the world to see.

« Reply #129 on: April 26, 2019, 06:39 »
+2
I would be interested to know what happens if you ever get the chance to pursue someone via lawyer for misuse/thief of images.

I dont hear of too many successful pursuits in this area, which is why I think that many contributers are resigned to stay with micros like SS even though they have a could care less attitude.

Respect for taking a bold move like this, and wishing you success.

« Reply #130 on: April 27, 2019, 07:30 »
0
I would be interested to know what happens if you ever get the chance to pursue someone via lawyer for misuse/thief of images.

I dont hear of too many successful pursuits in this area, which is why I think that many contributers are resigned to stay with micros like SS even though they have a could care less attitude.

Respect for taking a bold move like this, and wishing you success.
I wouldn't be at all surprised if any successful action would include a non-disclosure agreement unfortunately. Personally I wouldn't allow them in any circumstances.

Brasilnut

  • Author Brutally Honest Guide to Microstock & Blog

« Reply #131 on: April 27, 2019, 08:16 »
+2
I would be interested to know what happens if you ever get the chance to pursue someone via lawyer for misuse/thief of images.

I dont hear of too many successful pursuits in this area, which is why I think that many contributers are resigned to stay with micros like SS even though they have a could care less attitude.

Respect for taking a bold move like this, and wishing you success.
I wouldn't be at all surprised if any successful action would include a non-disclosure agreement unfortunately. Personally I wouldn't allow them in any circumstances.

What SS don't want is the extent of thievery being disclosed in the public sphere as has been done. Although it's understandable that they wish to product their interests, it shows their lack of transparency and conservatism.

With the above in mind, I've made a proposal to them to help wack those moles and keep it out of record, even going as far as signing a NDA. Waiting for an answer but have no expectations. This would, in my opinion, be a fair compromise and help to achieve some of the aims set out in the original wackamole thread.

« Reply #132 on: April 27, 2019, 08:24 »
+2
Contributors arent interested in public shaming the thieves, they are interested in protecting their property. SS has forced the public shaming because they ignore emails about thieves, and dont take DMCA reports seriously. Heck, they wont even fix the holes in their own software that allows the thieves to get the free high rez images! Nobody cares how they choose to handle the thieves, they just actually need to fix it!

« Reply #133 on: April 27, 2019, 20:07 »
+3
I would be interested to know what happens if you ever get the chance to pursue someone via lawyer for misuse/thief of images.

I dont hear of too many successful pursuits in this area, which is why I think that many contributers are resigned to stay with micros like SS even though they have a could care less attitude.

Respect for taking a bold move like this, and wishing you success.
I wouldn't be at all surprised if any successful action would include a non-disclosure agreement unfortunately. Personally I wouldn't allow them in any circumstances.

What SS don't want is the extent of thievery being disclosed in the public sphere as has been done. Although it's understandable that they wish to product their interests, it shows their lack of transparency and conservatism.

With the above in mind, I've made a proposal to them to help wack those moles and keep it out of record, even going as far as signing a NDA. Waiting for an answer but have no expectations. This would, in my opinion, be a fair compromise and help to achieve some of the aims set out in the original wackamole thread.

Rather than worrying about thievery being disclosed... they should content match their existing online content and close out the thieves. 
 
« Last Edit: April 27, 2019, 20:30 by trek »

OM

« Reply #134 on: May 29, 2019, 06:03 »
+2
Browsing Pixabay where Adobe and SS are sponsors I came across this one...not on SS but on Adobe with 5900 images. It was funny because the shot on Pixabay showed up in the large open window and the smaller (same) shot showed up in the smaller Adobe sponsored window. Pixabay showing camera used, date shot and a larger file size than the copy at Adobe.....must be simple for Adobe to check.

Edit: Pixabay upload 2013 and Adobe upload around end 2016 start 2017. Methinks 'Goldencow' needs a further look!

https://pixabay.com/photos/niagara-falls-waterfall-water-power-218591/

https://stock.adobe.com/contributor/201249961/goldencow-images?load_type=author&prev_url=detail&asset_id=127864673
« Last Edit: May 29, 2019, 07:11 by OM »

Uncle Pete

  • Great Place by a Great Lake - My Home Port
« Reply #135 on: May 29, 2019, 10:11 »
0
Browsing Pixabay where Adobe and SS are sponsors I came across this one...not on SS but on Adobe with 5900 images. It was funny because the shot on Pixabay showed up in the large open window and the smaller (same) shot showed up in the smaller Adobe sponsored window. Pixabay showing camera used, date shot and a larger file size than the copy at Adobe.....must be simple for Adobe to check.

Edit: Pixabay upload 2013 and Adobe upload around end 2016 start 2017. Methinks 'Goldencow' needs a further look!

https://pixabay.com/photos/niagara-falls-waterfall-water-power-218591/

https://stock.adobe.com/contributor/201249961/goldencow-images?load_type=author&prev_url=detail&asset_id=127864673

Odd isn't that. I see loads of common Microstock images, isolations, kids, bubble people, and then scattered, "World Traveler" scenic shots. I wonder why someone would risk their whole account, for a few images that are borrowed? What I mean is, doesn't look the like most of the account is recycled from others original works.  ;)

Looking did make me ask, where did the subject contents of the bubble people props come from. Certainly not all his? Is that allowed? Like can I take a violin illustration from someone else, add a little bubble man (sorry for not knowing the proper term for those ubiquitous figures) and now I have an image I can upload? Isn't that re-use and not allowed?

13,200 results for niagara falls  ;D

SS = 25,047 niagara falls stock photos

OM

« Reply #136 on: May 29, 2019, 10:49 »
0
My thoughts on his portfolio too. It's a big port to risk for the sake of a few shots of somewhere he's never been. There are so many Pilsbury Doughboyz and surrogates out there that I'm not even going to look.....I think that the originator of that character was a Greek guy. He must have made a few hundred grand with it in the time before everyone copied it.

Even so, I really have to wonder abour that Niagara falls shot...it's really very good and looking at the rest of the port on Pixabay (only 12 photo's!), it's OK but not that great.  She's had 79,000 downloads of which that one shot has been downloaded 75,000 times. Everything else seems to tally though if you look at her profile and camera used so maybe she did originate the shot.

What is absolutely certain is that 'Goldencow' didn't.

BTW, found it again on another free site ABSfreepic:
« Last Edit: May 29, 2019, 14:21 by OM »

« Reply #137 on: May 29, 2019, 12:26 »
0
You do know that every time you post a clickable link, you are actually helping the thieves. And then someone quotes the post, and doubles the help. Make it so the links to these thieves ports are not clickable. Thanks!

OM

« Reply #138 on: May 29, 2019, 14:23 »
0
Not sure how to do that so I've removed the last link. Not sure either how it helps thieves if their image is clickable. No-one here is going to pay for one of their images at SS are they?

« Reply #139 on: May 29, 2019, 14:57 »
0
Not sure how to do that so I've removed the last link. Not sure either how it helps thieves if their image is clickable. No-one here is going to pay for one of their images at SS are they?


SEO


example: pixabay dot com slash nameslash 342q dot com

Brasilnut

  • Author Brutally Honest Guide to Microstock & Blog

« Reply #140 on: May 29, 2019, 15:35 »
+3
Anybody working with Unsplash/Pexels/Pixabay is indirectly aiding and abetting criminal activity. Now we have Canva partnering up with them and spinning like it's such a great deal for us!


OM

« Reply #141 on: May 31, 2019, 01:54 »
0
Not sure how to do that so I've removed the last link. Not sure either how it helps thieves if their image is clickable. No-one here is going to pay for one of their images at SS are they?


SEO


example: pixabay dot com slash nameslash 342q dot com

Don't see a lot of people doing that. I'll just not post....it's easier!
Don't know if it's true anyway as I'm not an expert: Defer to Chichikov:

https://www.microstockgroup.com/30839/30839/msg533349/#msg533349


OM

« Reply #142 on: May 31, 2019, 01:57 »
0
Anybody working with Unsplash/Pexels/Pixabay is indirectly aiding and abetting criminal activity. Now we have Canva partnering up with them and spinning like it's such a great deal for us!

SS and Adobe are doing that with Pixabay by sponsoring them with advertising.

« Reply #143 on: May 31, 2019, 07:57 »
0
Not sure how to do that so I've removed the last link. Not sure either how it helps thieves if their image is clickable. No-one here is going to pay for one of their images at SS are they?


SEO


example: pixabay dot com slash nameslash 342q dot com

Don't see a lot of people doing that. I'll just not post....it's easier!
Don't know if it's true anyway as I'm not an expert: Defer to Chichikov:

https://www.microstockgroup.com/30839/30839/msg533349/#msg533349


He needs to do a little more searching. I get an error when I click your link.


« Reply #144 on: May 31, 2019, 08:01 »
0
Not sure how to do that so I've removed the last link. Not sure either how it helps thieves if their image is clickable. No-one here is going to pay for one of their images at SS are they?


SEO


example: pixabay dot com slash nameslash 342q dot com

Don't see a lot of people doing that. I'll just not post....it's easier!
Don't know if it's true anyway as I'm not an expert: Defer to Chichikov:

https://www.microstockgroup.com/30839/30839/msg533349/#msg533349


Is he an expert?

OM

« Reply #145 on: May 31, 2019, 19:57 »
0
Not sure how to do that so I've removed the last link. Not sure either how it helps thieves if their image is clickable. No-one here is going to pay for one of their images at SS are they?


SEO


example: pixabay dot com slash nameslash 342q dot com

Don't see a lot of people doing that. I'll just not post....it's easier!
Don't know if it's true anyway as I'm not an expert: Defer to Chichikov:

https://www.microstockgroup.com/30839/30839/msg533349/#msg533349


Is he an expert?

This is to where the link was supposed to direct:

Chichikov

Aparently not but who is?

"It is a (half) myth!
Apparently you repeat what you have read (like many others), but you don't really know how SEO works, and how a website rises in the rankings.
I often wonder why people who know nothing about it should feel compelled to peddle false information!

There are different opinions, on the part of SEO experts, that clicking on a link improves the ranking in search engine results.
According to few experts, this would place the site at a higher level;
According to others, this would only have an effect if the clicks are very numerous and repeated, and over a long period of time (several months, even several years).
Do you really think that the users who visited this thread and clicked on the links had a tangible effect on improving the ranking of these sites?
Still according to experts who say that clicks have an effect on site ranking, this effect would be so minimal that it is not worth considering, whether it is millions or billions of clicks...
And according to other experts, this would have no effect at all.
In fact, it seems that Google no longer takes clicks on url into account for ranking, since a many years now, to avoid the effect of click generators.
Do a research on the subject and you will find different theses on this subject, theses confirming it and theses invalidating it.
In fact, search engines are very secretive about how their algorithms work, and even the SEO experts are not so sure how it really works.....

That being said, I'm not an expert, but I'm sure you're far from being one too........"

Microstock's time has passed. It was good while it lasted and used to provide a reasonable supplemental income for a reasonable investment of effort. Now it doesn't (with still photo's, vectors etc). Agency greed, easing of standards, theft, free sites and the need to feed yo' Instagram page have caused disruptions in the status quo for MS'ers just as MS did in the early 2000s to the established stockphoto business. It's over and time to move on to something else. Attempting to hold back the flood of free or stolen by rendering unclickable links is, to my mind, like King Canute trying to command the tide to go back (prolly didn't do that really but you get my drift). :)
« Last Edit: May 31, 2019, 20:17 by OM »

« Reply #146 on: May 31, 2019, 20:31 »
0
So not an expert. Just bloviating on the subject. He/she posted that big long dissertation on SEO ... bottom line: it might help SEO, it might not. So lets err on the side of NOT helping thieves.


According to few experts, this would place the site at a higher level; As quoted by the non-expert.
« Last Edit: June 01, 2019, 07:01 by cathyslife »

« Reply #147 on: June 15, 2019, 18:42 »
+3
This is great (in a tragic way).

One of the most well known wildlife images of the last few years, accepted onto the site, presumably with no checking or verification:

https://www.shutterstock.com/image-photo/animal-monkey-primate-1379276279



Obviously the poster only has 200 images, of a wide variety of topics.  All of which are stolen.

Im just waiting for tank man or afghan girl to make an appearance.

ShadySue

« Reply #148 on: June 15, 2019, 19:32 »
0
This is great (in a tragic way).

One of the most well known wildlife images of the last few years, accepted onto the site, presumably with no checking or verification:

https://www.shutterstock.com/image-photo/animal-monkey-primate-1379276279



Obviously the poster only has 200 images, of a wide variety of topics.  All of which are stolen.

Im just waiting for tank man or afghan girl to make an appearance.

when I clicked on the thum and got to this page,
https://www.shutterstock.com/image-photo/life-sharks-1374920003?src=7DmC1syihrU5bcN3A0OdVw-1-7
There was a link to the same photo by another contributor:
https://www.shutterstock.com/image-photo/great-white-sharks-by-watersurface-view-634686533
Does SS take any action if someone other than the copyright owner points out these abuses?

« Reply #149 on: June 16, 2019, 03:00 »
0
Sadly they seem to refuse to do anything except a per individual photo report.
So there's no system for reporting mass stolen portfolios and it would need the original copyright holder to be identified and individually report each image.


 

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