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CrimsonSky

Bandwidth Thieves! Help!

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I have tried using the hotlink prevention tool in cpanel, and even consulted with Leezard on editing the .httaccess file to no avail. My images are being linked directly from unauthorized websites...if any one can help...I'd appreciate it

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Cannot you not see what IP they are on in the stats page? You could block the IP that way I believe.

 

Also, and this is a little harsh but will teach them good. I would also attempt to contact them and tell them to remove the contact. If no contact is possible, or they don't reply simply replace the images they are linking to with ones of " I'm stealing images" or " This image is being stolen" as the picture files instead. I would just rename you images for your own site if it's not to much work. Either way these are some ideas.

 

 

Mav

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the only problem with that is some of the images are on authorized stites (like mine) Thats why we have been trying to do it via htaccess

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Ah, then that would be bad then. I guess a solution would be to change the folder of the images are in. I guess it's a headache either way.

 

Do you have the ip of who is doing the stealing? Do you know what the domain name is?

 

Mav

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heh, theres a BUNCH of sites hotlinking his images, CrimsonSky's work is pretty popular

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this is what we put in his htaccess file, these are the sites that have permission to hotlink his images.

 

>RewriteEngine on
RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} !^$
RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} !^http://thebestcasescenario.com/ [NC]
RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} !^http://thebestcasescenario.com [NC]
RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} !^http://www.thebestcasescenario.com/ [NC]
RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} !^http://www.thebestcasescenario.com [NC]
RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} !^http://www.gruntville.com [NC]
RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} !^http://www.hardforum.com [NC]
RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} !^http://www.pheatonforums.com [NC]
RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} !^http://www.twistedforums.com [NC]
RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} !^http://www.ocaddiction.com [NC]
RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} !^http://www.yoshi.us/forums [NC]
RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} !^http://forum.x-trememodz.com [NC]

#RewriteRule .*\.(jpg|jpeg|gif|png|bmp)$ - [F,NC]

Edited by leezard

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Really, what does CrimsonSky do? Graphics, mods what? I'm curious now! :huh:

 

 

 

Mav

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Very nice work indeed. Strange, but nice! I was going to mod my next case but whats the use after seeing those killer cases. hehe

 

I wonder if you couldn't do a custom script or something that would allow people to access the images. Like php script or something that allows only those with the php code to allow the image to be linked and posted onto there site.

 

Mav

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Paul (CrimsonSky) got it working, was something to do with the way the file was viewed and then uploaded.

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the contact. If no contact is possible, or they don't reply simply replace the images they are linking to with ones of " I'm stealing images" or " This image is being stolen" as the picture files instead.

Heh - I've seen this done before - it's quite funny. :D

 

 

CrimonSky's work is awesome. I just read about his contest winning case in MaximumPC yesterday. :)

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yup, theres a few more magazines coming out with his work in them...wired, pc magazine uk etc. Hes working on a case now that we are taking to a competition in decenmber.

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the contact.  If no contact is possible, or they don't reply simply replace the images they are linking to with ones of " I'm stealing images" or " This image is being stolen"  as the picture files instead.

Heh - I've seen this done before - it's quite funny. :)

yep,

post-21-1057964684_thumb.jpg

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Is cross-linking illegal?

 

It might be impolite; but, I don't think you can get arrested for it! :)

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This was aimed at a site that copied my whole K9 page content

including links to my images.

Some of the material is copyrighted by others.

I have permission from each source to use and display the images (from my site)

And I put a lot of hard work into my own copy.

 

they just pasted my source into a frame,

and used my bandwidth to display the images.

four days after I changed the images

they removed the page.

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using any copyrighted materia without permission is illegal.

 

hotlinkng un copyrighted images isnt illegal, if they wanna help pay the hosting costs everymonth, hotlink away.

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But the person who makes the link is *not* using the copyrighted image.

The link itself isn't copyrighted. (If it were, Google wouldn't be able to save it!)

 

It's the person who browses the web page and downloads the image that is making the copy of the image, based on what the link points to. The link itself is legal.

 

Has anyone been successfully prosecuted for cross-linking images?

 

(I also see the words "illegal input" coming out of computer programs and ask myself if I am really risking a jail term for what I just typed in...)

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I found this from google when I had this problem

 

Important: Read about Copyright Laws

All copyright laws still apply on the Internet as they do in other media. But it is often confusing about what is legal to do and what isn't.

 

All original web pages on the web are copyrighted by their authors unless noted otherwise. Pages that do not have a Copyright © notice can still be protected under copyright laws, and almost always are. All images (including backgrounds, icons, etc.) are copyrighted. In order to use them you must have permission from the author.

 

Links to pages are not copyrighted, so you may link to copyrighted pages, but you may not use them as though they were yours.

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Links to pages are not copyrighted, so you may link to copyrighted pages, but you may not use them as though they were yours.

 

theres your answer, at least the way i understand it.

 

If someone puts a link to a picture that is on my site on their site thats all fine and good, because the person following that link is going to my site. (so to speak)

 

If someone hotlinks a picture (displays a picture from my site on their site using my bandwidth) thats wrong.

 

now, if that same person saves the picture off my site to their hard drive and then uploads it to their own server and displays it on their page you get into a whole nother issue

Edited by leezard

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All images (including backgrounds, icons, etc.) are copyrighted. In order to use them you must have permission from the author.

So if I copy your image and save it to my site and display it,

it is still your image, and I need permission to do this.

 

Not that many will follow this law.

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If someone puts a link to a picture that is on my site on their site thats all fine and good, because the person following that link is going to my site. (so to speak)

 

If someone hotlinks a picture (displays a picture from my site on their site using my bandwidth) thats wrong.

There is no difference between the two links you describe.

In both cases, the requesting client uses your server to supply the image.

The server that contains the link text is breaking no law in either case.

 

It's not "illegal"; it's just unfriendly. :)

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No it is illegal! If I take a picture of your artwork in another gallery and post a poster of it my gallery across town, that is copyright infringement. Plain and simple!

 

Check the federal law on this, it is a fact. No permissions, it is illegal, unless consent is given or the proper copyrights to the the owner are displayed. Fines are up to 150,000 U.S. dollars for such infringements.

 

Mav

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There is no difference between the two links you describe.

 

there is a HUGE difference in this

 

http://www.x-trememodz.com/images/reviews/...o/tnIMAGE90.JPG

 

and this

 

 

 

tnIMAGE90.JPG

 

the first link goes to the same image

 

if the first link is on someones page that gets say 50,000 views a day, thats not going to affect my bandwidth at all, unless someone chooses to follow that link, going to my site and looking at my image/text whatever. There is no copyright infringement involved because you cant copyright a URL and the person following that url is viewing the image on my server/site.

 

if the second hotlinked image is posted on the same site that gets 50,000 hits a day that 50,000 times a day that MY bandwidth is used, if that image is used without my permission that copyright infringement, i took the picture, i own it.

Edited by leezard

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quick question: how can u tell if your images are being hotlinked? Is it via noticing the bandwidth going up unexpectedly or is it something else?

 

!!blue

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I check CPanel and if the referring URL is going to an image, then it's being hotlinked. I usually fix that by making another image that says "I am a bandwidth thief" and name it the same as the image being linked to, renaming the original first. I find that usually they remove the image fairly quick!! :)

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I use to use a link tranker that records referers [urllog] but you can access referral stats through the cpanel [ Rock Sign ] and any odd url [eg. notmydomain.com] stands out and are usually hotlinkers.

Simply check the refferal address and hey presto GOTCHA!!!!

:)

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snap!!

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I find any conversation on copyright law and the Internet very interesting. On the Internet (or other media for that matter), as soon as you create an original work, it is copyrighted. This includes images, scripts, text content and even page layout.

 

This is true even if a page is not identified with the ubiquitous 'Copyright © 2003 by Somebody - All rights reserved'. I do recommend use of the copyright statement though in aiding in warnings to others who you may feel are infringing on your work.

 

Now to address the specific issue of hotlinking... this is the one I find most interesting. The largest abuser of this is obviously Google with their 'Google Images', they hotlink everyone!

 

I find it very interesting that they state from their very own site:

 

 

Are there any copyright restrictions associated with the images?

 

The images identified by the Google Image Search service may be protected by copyrights. Although you can locate and access the images through our service, we cannot grant you any rights to use them for any purpose other than viewing them on the web. Accordingly, if you would like to use any images you have found through our service, we advise you to contact the site owner to obtain the requisite permissions.

 

In addition they have this for those that would like their images removed:

 

Remove an image from Google's Image Search

 

 

Option 1: If you have access to the server that hosts your image or the site's webmaster:

 

If you need an image removed from Google's image index we require participation either by you or by the site's webmaster. Please add a robots.txt file to the root of the server. (If you can't put it in the server root, you can put it at directory level.)

 

Example: If your site is www.yoursite.com/images/dogs.jpg and you want Google to exclude the dogs.jpg image found on your site, you need to create a page called www.yoursite.com/robots.txt and on this page you need to place the following text:

 

User-agent: Googlebot-Image

Disallow: /images/dogs.jpg

To remove all the images on your site from our index, place the following robots.txt file in your server root:

 

User-agent: Googlebot-Image

Disallow: /

This is the standard protocol that most web crawlers observe for excluding a web server or directory from an index. More information on robots.txt is available here: http://www.robotstxt.org/wc/norobots.html.

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But Google images is not engaging in any copyright violation, or at least they could probably successfully argue in court that they are not (depends on whether their lawyer has a better suit than yours, which he probably does).

 

What they are doing would be claimed as "fair use." It is clear to anyone using their site that Google is not representing that the images are theirs. They are providing a search service, and any "reasonable person" posting information or images on the Internet should know that their material will likely be indexed and will be searchable at Google and many other places. If Google isn't selling your work, claiming it to be their own, or giving away for free what someone would otherwise have to pay you for, they are not violating your copyright.

 

 

P.S. I'm not a lawyer or anything, so don't go do anything you aren't sure is legal just because you think I said it was OK!

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I hope this isn't too far off topic.... I have on occation hotlinked images from other sites here in the forum, before the flaming begins I also include a text link back to the page where the image is hotlinked from, is this considered fair use?

 

It looks something like this (I'll use my own site for this example)

 

Greatfolios_small-copy.gif

 

image credit www.greatfolios.com

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Bill... credit or no credit it is still advisable to get approval from the owner before using someone's content. There is also an issue of stealing bandwidth...

 

note: hotlink protection will also prevent your images from being displayed in Google Image Index.

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Matman I am not so sure. There statement

Accordingly, if you would like to use any images you have found through our service, we advise you to contact the site owner to obtain the requisite permissions.
explicitly states that one should obtain permission to 'use any images'.

 

This is a direct contradiction to what they call as 'our service'. A database of copywritten images created via hotlinking for the sole purpose of adding 'value' to their service definitely is more then just 'viewing them on the web'.

 

Are there any copyright restrictions associated with the images?

 

The images identified by the Google Image Search service may be protected by copyrights. Although you can locate and access the images through our service, we cannot grant you any rights to use them for any purpose other than viewing them on the web. Accordingly, if you would like to use any images you have found through our service, we advise you to contact the site owner to obtain the requisite permissions.

 

Do not get me wrong, I do not mind my own images within their index and I use their database extensively but they are definitely being hypocritical.

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