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Author Topic: How to self police the network  (Read 6224 times)

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« on: April 21, 2013, 17:44 »
+1
As I was thinking about the network a bad idea popped into my head.

How are we going to deal with the nasty people... for example someone who want to sell warz or porn?

How do we remove them from the network?

Even worse how do we deal with someone doing something really nasty ( child porn)  How do we make it easy for the police to track them, while not effecting us?

Any thoughts?

Glenn


Leo Blanchette

« Reply #1 on: April 21, 2013, 20:00 »
+1
I hate writing long-winded posts. But sometimes you just can't one-liner it.

Glad someone is taking note. The world of stock photography isn't all about taking pictures of people in suits and cute illustrations.

I realized yesterday that this issue is going to come up quicker than I hoped. And the Symbiostock Logo is going to be seen even on sites where people are behaving badly.

This is one thread that REALLY needs attention.

I've taken steps to avoid putting myself in a position where I control people's choices. Personally I wish that everything could be "G" rated. No nudes, nothing racy...but I understand society has different tolerances. And I don't have to be connected with certain types of content if I pesonally don't want to.

I realized yesterday and especially today that I CANNOT list Symbiostock sites on the main site. Why? It suggests I endorse or favor content. Not only will it cause jealosy, but bigger issues.

Here's the problem: This is a free theme. Today someone got their first sale. Kept 100% profit. It did what it was meant to do.

 But its not an innocent world we live in. People are going to make it do what it was not made for eventually. Just because we make a car doesn't mean we're responsible for drunk drivers. And yet there is the need to keep our network "clean" from being associated with ... you know ... the other side.

I have no intention of overly policing anyone, but we REALLY need a solid group decision on the issues mentioned above.

I've made a decision
to remove Symbiostock branding from the initial install, so that the name can be protected. I've also made a decision to make symbiostock sites capable of spidering one another and following networks to collect network data, instead of leaving this responsibility to the main site. It actually helps the goal of keeping sites independent. It keeps me from having too much responsibility as well. This means if you want a network list to choose from, you need only aggregate one yourself from spidering the network.

So our biggest helpers like Cascoly can do his research on network stuff from his own site and have a pretty fun toy to play with (like everyone else) instead of needing the main site. I'm also going to make the theme export CSV data as well, for you nerd-heads.

Still there are the other questions above - how can we deal with or minimize absolute abuse of the system?

« Reply #2 on: April 21, 2013, 21:12 »
+3
I totally agree -- open source is just that - however, the network doesn't have to mean that anything goes.  since we're in this as businesses, it's reasonable to declare that the network will not accept sites with pornography or illegal activity (as defined by US laws since that's where we're located at the moment) .  as we develop additional networking options, there will be opt outs if site owners disagree with a particular usage.

as long as the theme gives us the ability to access networking data, there's no reason for Leo to make any statement.  any illegal site is free to connect with us, we can't prevent that, but we can reserve the right to reject any site that violates the symbio community standards.  hopefully, that will leave all 'legitimate' sites enough room to live free & prosper

I don't think this will really be much of a problem, except for  trolls & spammers - any site that we wouldn't 'allow' already has plenty of ways to promote their wares without needing to bother with us.
steve.

farbled

« Reply #3 on: April 21, 2013, 21:34 »
+3
I think if people want to join the actual "Symbiostock" network, they can ask to join in the SY forum. Forum members can find out quickly enough if a site is legit. That takes the policing out of Leo's hands and makes it a community decision on who comes and goes.

« Reply #4 on: April 22, 2013, 06:38 »
0
I agree with what has been said already.

« Reply #5 on: April 22, 2013, 06:58 »
+2
Leo

You are the Father of two children.

The Symbiostock Network, and the Network Theme. At some point in time they will have to be separated.

The Symbiostock Network is a group of micro-stockers who use your network theme, but it is evolving into something differentt then just a theme.

As users in the Symbiostock Network we have to step up and take a more active part in the creation and direction of the Network.

Your other Child ( the Network Theme) is yours , and yours alone to grow and shape the way you feel is important.




I think, that to be a part of the micro-stockers group ( The Symbiostock Network) we should have to register.  Cockroaches hate the light.  So to be a member of the network you have to show who you are... the same type of information we all provide to the angencies.

What people do with the Network Theme is none of our business, and hopefully will be a great business for Leo.

mattdixon

« Reply #6 on: April 22, 2013, 07:43 »
+4
Simple ways to police the network.

1 Function to see who's linked to owners site - option to block some network connections
2 Symbiostock directory - Sites are approved before they are listed - dodgy sites are never found
3 Dodgy sites that are detected go onto a blacklist the way Askimet handles spam - these sites are then blocked from the directory

Maybe have a link in the theme to have the ability to report criminal sites to the authorities.
http://www.iwf.org.uk/

Hopefully it will never get to this.

Please don't ditch the Directory, it will be the lifeblood of the network.


« Reply #7 on: April 22, 2013, 07:52 »
+1


Please don't ditch the Directory, it will be the lifeblood of the network.

So true!!!!!

« Reply #8 on: April 22, 2013, 08:12 »
+1
I agree with Matt and Glenn - the $$ theme and network will at some point become separate entities and was also going to ask about the ability to block incoming links as well as choosing the outgoing ones

For THE Network maybe we should have some specific rules and make it a large but closed network that you can only join when you have reached a certain point and been approved by the other members?

We could have the equivalent of associate and full members  (I am thinking in type so may ramble a bit)

Associate (whilst building up portfolio)
X number of images listed
Can link to member sites
Full members can see the style and quality of images listed to keep the quality of the network high to reduce the likelyhood of someone thinking they can post all their holiday or facebook type pictures and get money for them, it happens in the stock sites so it is bound to happen here

Full
X number of images listed (so that potential clients can have a reasonable choice and we have the best chance of keeping them interested)
Members link to you and you link to them
Agree that certain images will not be posted within the network - ie full frontal male or female we may need to be fairly explicit ?


I feel we need to think about these things now and get them set up to protect us in the future, otherwise the only way may be to have lots of closed networks which rather defeats the point.

« Reply #9 on: April 22, 2013, 09:25 »
+2
One easy way to "prove" yourself for the network is to show your portfolio from 2 or 3 stock sites.  If you are on and have more than 25 images ( for example) on Shutterstock, Istock or Fotolia then you are able to join The Network. This shows you are a stock professional.     ;)

« Reply #10 on: April 22, 2013, 17:25 »
+3
i'd rather just keep it simple & let anyone join the network who wants to, as long as they meet a few very basic requirements - such as non-porn. since these are photo selling sites I don't think we need to be concerned with much beyond that.  o'd rather spend our efforts improving search and other aspects of SEO rather than complicated qualifications for members.  let evolution play out - smaller sites will either grow or not

I don't think it will be a big hassle - sites we don't want aren't likely to spend the effort on SY in the first place and we can treat problems as they arise

steve

« Reply #11 on: April 22, 2013, 18:57 »
0
i'd rather just keep it simple & let anyone join the network who wants to, as long as they meet a few very basic requirements - such as non-porn. since these are photo selling sites I don't think we need to be concerned with much beyond that.  o'd rather spend our efforts improving search and other aspects of SEO rather than complicated qualifications for members.  let evolution play out - smaller sites will either grow or not

I don't think it will be a big hassle - sites we don't want aren't likely to spend the effort on SY in the first place and we can treat problems as they arise

steve

Agree 100%. I don't even see the problem. If there's someone no one wants to network with because of, ahem, adult content, this someone will be left out of the network automatically.  And as far as child porn and/or other criminal activity is concerned the general usage terms for the SY theme could just say that the theme can't be used for such activity. Leo would be off the hook. Everything beyond that would be police work done by the pros (RCMP in my country). If you want to add a link for reporting criminals, OK fine. I might be just naive, but I really can't see that link being used all that frequently.

« Reply #12 on: April 22, 2013, 20:25 »
0
Who I link to will be a limited number of people, and I will have control of that.

I want to link to photographers whose work I think is professional. Photographers who have the same or higher standards in shooting, editing etc., that I do.

The photographers who are on the network right now fit this bill.

When every and any person with a camera can join the network then the Photographers I want to link to, will stay away in droves.

Again I want to stress the difference between Leo's Network Theme, and The Symbiostock Network.  I think of them as two different entities.

As for people who don't seem to be concerned about porn showing up on the network.... from what I understand if it shows on my site, it has my IP address attached
It has taken many months to get my IP address white listed again after being black listed when I was hacked.  I need to be able to trust the people I network with, and the people they network with.....

« Reply #13 on: April 22, 2013, 20:26 »
0

I don't think it will be a big hassle - sites we don't want aren't likely to spend the effort on SY in the first place and we can treat problems as they arise


Leo's theme is so easy to install and get running that I think it would be a breeze for someone to flood the network with sites in just a few hours work. 
« Last Edit: April 22, 2013, 20:30 by grsphoto »

« Reply #14 on: April 22, 2013, 21:11 »
+1

I don't think it will be a big hassle - sites we don't want aren't likely to spend the effort on SY in the first place and we can treat problems as they arise


Leo's theme is so easy to install and get running that I think it would be a breeze for someone to flood the network with sites in just a few hours work.

but why would they BOTHER?   

« Reply #15 on: April 22, 2013, 21:16 »
0


Agree 100%. I don't even see the problem. If there's someone no one wants to network with because of, ahem, adult content, this someone will be left out of the network automatically.  And as far as child porn and/or other criminal activity is concerned the general usage terms for the SY theme could just say that the theme can't be used for such activity. Leo would be off the hook. Everything beyond that would be police work done by the pros (RCMP in my country). If you want to add a link for reporting criminals, OK fine. I might be just naive, but I really can't see that link being used all that frequently.

right -- the 5 network links aren't a problem -- but i'm looking to have a more expanded search network that would use the db of SY network sites, based on similar content -- so instead of selecting just 5, it would find a different, relevant, set each time.  in this case, those who participate opt in, and we can control the list.

« Reply #16 on: April 22, 2013, 22:09 »
0
and we can control the list.

If anyone can join the network, How do you see us controlling the list?


« Reply #17 on: April 22, 2013, 22:13 »
0

I don't think it will be a big hassle - sites we don't want aren't likely to spend the effort on SY in the first place and we can treat problems as they arise


Leo's theme is so easy to install and get running that I think it would be a breeze for someone to flood the network with sites in just a few hours work.

but why would they BOTHER?

Let's see... build 30 sites... load them with images with some of the most common searched keywords, submit to network... keyword searches and find image, but look that image is an ad for Viagra... or for a porn site.....

« Reply #18 on: April 22, 2013, 23:50 »
0


Agree 100%. I don't even see the problem. If there's someone no one wants to network with because of, ahem, adult content, this someone will be left out of the network automatically.  And as far as child porn and/or other criminal activity is concerned the general usage terms for the SY theme could just say that the theme can't be used for such activity. Leo would be off the hook. Everything beyond that would be police work done by the pros (RCMP in my country). If you want to add a link for reporting criminals, OK fine. I might be just naive, but I really can't see that link being used all that frequently.

right -- the 5 network links aren't a problem -- but i'm looking to have a more expanded search network that would use the db of SY network sites, based on similar content -- so instead of selecting just 5, it would find a different, relevant, set each time.  in this case, those who participate opt in, and we can control the list.

OK. I wasn't aware that we're discussing some future expanded network. It's easy for me to "police" my 5 network buddies I am linking to. If network search is going to be fed from some central db, then, yes, we need some control over this db. It just feels like that central db violates the very idea of SY, which I understood so far as symbiotic relationships of independent individual sites. Now we are going to depend on a central db? With it now comes some central db police that is watching over the SY network and has power to kick out individual sites or reject their application to be part of it? I don't know, this just doesn't feel like Symbiostock anymore and is IMHO not a good direction to go.

Who I link to will be a limited number of people, and I will have control of that.

I want to link to photographers whose work I think is professional. Photographers who have the same or higher standards in shooting, editing etc., that I do.

The photographers who are on the network right now fit this bill.

When every and any person with a camera can join the network then the Photographers I want to link to, will stay away in droves.

Again I want to stress the difference between Leo's Network Theme, and The Symbiostock Network.  I think of them as two different entities.

As for people who don't seem to be concerned about porn showing up on the network.... from what I understand if it shows on my site, it has my IP address attached
It has taken many months to get my IP address white listed again after being black listed when I was hacked.  I need to be able to trust the people I network with, and the people they network with.....



I am sorry to hear about your bad experience. It definitely explains your worries. As long as we stay with 5 hand-selected network buddies this won't be a problem at all. If we somehow expand the network/change the type of networking, I agree, this can easily become a problem.

I think what we should look for is some de-centralized networking solution that on one hand would greatly expand the reach of the network search and on the other hand would still be "self-"controlled (in a sense that each SY member's decisions with whom to network with will leave the bad apples stranded outside the network [of serious and responsible members]). Maybe up to 20 links (or more if you are still comfortable all of them are good partners) instead of just 5 would do the trick? Maybe every one of these many links could provide daily(?) a keyword list (with statistics) of images available. The search then would first look up these lists and decides then based on number/quota/whatever of matching keywords in each list which of the many links to use to actually show search results from. I am just brainstorming here and have no idea if this could work.   

« Reply #19 on: April 23, 2013, 00:17 »
0


OK. I wasn't aware that we're discussing some future expanded network. It's easy for me to "police" my 5 network buddies I am linking to. If network search is going to be fed from some central db, then, yes, we need some control over this db. It just feels like that central db violates the very idea of SY, which I understood so far as symbiotic relationships of independent individual sites. Now we are going to depend on a central db? With it now comes some central db police that is watching over the SY network and has power to kick out individual sites or reject their application to be part of it? I don't know, this just doesn't feel like Symbiostock anymore and is IMHO not a good direction to go.

I agree -- it's not a db as much as a table -- to make it easier to do searches over the network, to return a better match for the user.  anyone can submit to that table and the only requirements would be no porn, nothing illegal - no cops, no review , no authority.  anyone joining agrees to the rules.   when we post the list we state these rules, so  users know what to expect

what I plan to work on is a list of similar sites that are chosen at random (while limited to the 5 for processing reasons), then letting the user continue to search if they want to.  if you want to stay with the 5 designated sites, you can; if you don't want to participate at all, you can.

« Reply #20 on: April 23, 2013, 00:27 »
0

....As long as we stay with 5 hand-selected network buddies this won't be a problem at all. If we somehow expand the network/change the type of networking, I agree, this can easily become a problem.

I think what we should look for is some de-centralized networking solution that on one hand would greatly expand the reach of the network search and on the other hand would still be "self-"controlled (in a sense that each SY member's decisions with whom to network with will leave the bad apples stranded outside the network [of serious and responsible members]). Maybe up to 20 links (or more if you are still comfortable all of them are good partners) instead of just 5 would do the trick? Maybe every one of these many links could provide daily(?) a keyword list (with statistics) of images available. The search then would first look up these lists and decides then based on number/quota/whatever of matching keywords in each list which of the many links to use to actually show search results from. I am just brainstorming here and have no idea if this could work.

that's along the lines of what I've been thinking, too.  anyone participating in this expanded network would agree to have data collected and made available for searches, etc.  the keywords lists is a good idea, since with just 5 sites, some will match my site, but especially early, many wont have any results, but with 20 or more, the odds improve. again, those who don't want to link to similar sites can choose not to participate.


« Reply #21 on: April 23, 2013, 01:02 »
0


OK. I wasn't aware that we're discussing some future expanded network. It's easy for me to "police" my 5 network buddies I am linking to. If network search is going to be fed from some central db, then, yes, we need some control over this db. It just feels like that central db violates the very idea of SY, which I understood so far as symbiotic relationships of independent individual sites. Now we are going to depend on a central db? With it now comes some central db police that is watching over the SY network and has power to kick out individual sites or reject their application to be part of it? I don't know, this just doesn't feel like Symbiostock anymore and is IMHO not a good direction to go.

I agree -- it's not a db as much as a table -- to make it easier to do searches over the network, to return a better match for the user.  anyone can submit to that table and the only requirements would be no porn, nothing illegal - no cops, no review , no authority.  anyone joining agrees to the rules.   when we post the list we state these rules, so  users know what to expect

what I plan to work on is a list of similar sites that are chosen at random (while limited to the 5 for processing reasons), then letting the user continue to search if they want to.  if you want to stay with the 5 designated sites, you can; if you don't want to participate at all, you can.

I am not all against a db/table/whatever that is a representation of our network. Just like the list you've published, just bigger and fancier. If we can have that without "no cops....", great!
I guess the second part of your post is were the worries come in. In any case, it is worth a try. We'll see to where it leads (and if worries are justified) soon enough. Opt-in/out should appease critics, anyway.

« Reply #22 on: April 23, 2013, 01:09 »
0

....As long as we stay with 5 hand-selected network buddies this won't be a problem at all. If we somehow expand the network/change the type of networking, I agree, this can easily become a problem.

I think what we should look for is some de-centralized networking solution that on one hand would greatly expand the reach of the network search and on the other hand would still be "self-"controlled (in a sense that each SY member's decisions with whom to network with will leave the bad apples stranded outside the network [of serious and responsible members]). Maybe up to 20 links (or more if you are still comfortable all of them are good partners) instead of just 5 would do the trick? Maybe every one of these many links could provide daily(?) a keyword list (with statistics) of images available. The search then would first look up these lists and decides then based on number/quota/whatever of matching keywords in each list which of the many links to use to actually show search results from. I am just brainstorming here and have no idea if this could work.

that's along the lines of what I've been thinking, too.  anyone participating in this expanded network would agree to have data collected and made available for searches, etc.  the keywords lists is a good idea, since with just 5 sites, some will match my site, but especially early, many wont have any results, but with 20 or more, the odds improve. again, those who don't want to link to similar sites can choose not to participate.

If this would really work, I mean keeping those lists updated and searching them in a timely manner, it would definitely improve image buyers' experience with the SY network search. Again, Opt-in/out makes all the difference. (Funny that some big corporations just don't get that  ::) )

« Reply #23 on: April 23, 2013, 07:47 »
0
The need to be able to control what images get shown through my site is important, but the most important thing is making sales, either through SEO or the network.  Lets keep these ideas flowing


I agree -- it's not a db as much as a table -- to make it easier to do searches over the network, to return a better match for the user.  anyone can submit to that table and the only requirements would be no porn, nothing illegal - no cops, no review , no authority.  anyone joining agrees to the rules.   when we post the list we state these rules, so  users know what to expect


How do we deal with sites that, even though they agrees with the rules, break them? Do they get voted off? Unfortunately rules only work if you have a method of enforcement. I learned that teaching 5 year olds........I don't want to act as referee.

If I trusted everyone on the internet I wouldn't be bringing these issues forward....

Glenn

« Reply #24 on: April 23, 2013, 12:05 »
0
........I don't want to act as referee.

I neither. And that's exactly why we need some form inherent self-control. No cops... - If/when the db turns out to be a problem I'll opt-out of randomly supplied search links for sure. I can live with that for now.


 

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