"Today we're launching some changes on Google Images to help connect users and useful websites."
"Ultimately, Google Images is a way for people to discover information in cases where browsing images is a better experience than text."
Do you believe any of these statements? I am still surprised how easily corporations will hide their true motives, resolve any cognitive dissonance internally, and how easily others will forgive them.
I wonder how people within Google are feeling when this happens. And I don't mean "when a feature gets removed", there may be valid reasons to do that. But when the official communication about them contains manipulative statements such as above, how do employees who aren't allowed to speak up feel?
>For those asking, yes, these changes came about in part due to our settlement with Getty Images this week (see also https://www.theverge.com/2018/2/15/17017864/google-removes-v... …). They are designed to strike a balance between serving user needs and publisher concerns, both stakeholders we value.
So I guess they need to start by enforcing the rules on their own sites.
Why does Google always think they know what is best for me?
This is the entire ethos of the "AI Revolution" in tech. The algorithm "knows what is best for you". This will only get worse with more "AI" being applied to more tech.
Your value proposition is having my entire social network on one feed. You’ve done that. That’s all you have to do. Ditch the algorithm.
It's one thing for an application to provide sensible defaults. It's another thing entirely if it just second guesses the user.
Tried it and got tired of randomly noticing that it’s not showing me “most recent” any more, and not knowing at what point in time they had switched it back on me, and what I might have missed that I would have wanted to see during that time. You have to religiously go through the process of seeing if it’s set to “most recent” every time you visit. FOH.
DDG still works anyway, so it's not like I have no choice if I need to quickly find an image.
Today its Getty tomorrow some blogger hoping to make a dollar.
It's not the US, it's the EU, and it's not a ruling from a judge, it's an agreement directly with Getty.
I guess the enthusiasm regarding technology as a solution to the problems of humanity was unfounded and it needs to revert back to politics, hacking people...
2. For the more general problem of searching free images only try hitting tools -> usage rights and select as desired
'-' is still working. It also works with the 'site:' tag, so you can do things like '-site:w3schools.com'.
It would be interesting for google to globally A/B test “-site:w3schools.com” as a hidden default and see if their crawlers detect less overall brokenness in the web six months later.
https://www.google.com/advanced_image_search?biw=1404&bih=67... as a sample, and more detail at https://support.google.com/websearch/answer/29508?p=ws_image...
cat pictures -site:gettyimages.com
… reveals several services, but personally cannot judge. (TBH, haven't known even Unsplash -- thanks for that.)
Imagine how users would feel if they said "We're making this change because people keep ripping off images via our search. Since the public can't be trusted to follow copyright law, we're not going to make it so easy to break."
I'm sure the public would eat that s* up and ask for seconds.
But to make this clear, they'd probably have to disable the feature for 2 days "because of the Getty case", then come up with this as a compromise.
(Disclosure: I work for Google, but have nothing to do with that stuff nor any special insights)
As an aside, I've often used "View Image" to access the image when the page itself didn't contain it. This actually hurts not only user experience, but also the actual success of the platform at its intended purpose.
What else could they say that wouldn't anger Getty Images?
The book is free online.
They have been for a while now. They have a deal with the washingtonpost and nytimes to "feature" those two newspapers on google news and search. Check the waybackmachine and see how frequently washingtonpost and nytimes articles were on google news five years ago to now. It's incredible how prominently those two newspapers, but especially washingtonpost, are promoted on google now.
It also extends to their other properties like youtube. Look how heavily they are promoting kimmel, john oliver and other late night shows now.
But it applies to almost all of tech. The pressure put on tech by the establishment and their propaganda organs was too much.
Even HN is openly supporting the washingtonpost, nytimes and the establishment. I believe the mods called it "the standard". A "hacker" news site supporting establishment mouth pieces. Years ago, washingtonpost and the nytimes were scorned by HN. It's amazing how things change.
I'm not sure what's going on here though. It definitely isn't "some changes on Google Images to help connect users and useful websites." It's probably more to do with the fact that Google images is designed for viewing images, not finding links and that kind of makes it a content scraping site.
The idea that Google (or anyone) would speak normally (like a googler would speak, in a cafe) is oddly insane.
"After years of complaints and some lawsuits, we've decided to bite the bullet and take away the damned view image button. People use google images by searching for a thing and looking at the pictures. They don't really visit the website because well... they're looking for pictures not some random website that happens to have a picture. That means this isn't really a websearch site. It's pinterest with stolen content. Basically, Google images is kind of ilegal, but still dead useful. Hopefully this change will get the most litiguous photographers off our case and it'll be more or less business as usual."
I guess in this case speaking plainly actually does have nasty legal implications, but we do corporate speak regardless.
When OKCupid killed their app by making it a poorly implemented tinder clone with vestigial features, they pretended they had just discovered new and exciting things about first names, swiping and such.
Would it have really harmed them to say, real names are more normal now. Tinder is eating our lunch. Our average user keeps getting older. Our UI isn't as good for mobile or whatever reasons really drove those decisions. I'd be more interested in reading it then.
At the very least, ommit the meaningless stuff. Just say we're taking away this button and don't give a reason.
It would feel incredibly odd to lie like this between unincorporated natural persons in a noncommercial setting. Can you imagine telling your friends you'll noshow a bbq with some corproate-speak nonsense?.
People stopped caring a long time ago. It's became a new social norm. A corporation can't speak openly, they always need to "act in the best interest of the customer" and use other bs phrases. This battle has long been lost. Not just corporations - startups are equally bad, especially when recruiting employees who are supposed to work hard for their success.
Most of the brightest students from my university off to work for or start innovative startups solving hard problems or they got research jobs at various engineering/energy companies, but a large number who were just kind of OK students got some fuzzy job at google doing who knows what but getting paid a lot to be there.
Sometimes I'm shocked by the dumb designs and whatnot that google puts out these days and wonder what kind of people they have making these decisions, then I think back to some of the people I went to school with and things start to click.
That's my primary use of Google Images. I find that for a lot of things (at least things I'm searching for), that helps cut through a lot of the spam or generally lesser quality sites, even if the image itself isn't all that important to my search. Also, it's excellent when I don't know the specific name for an object... just use the best search terms I can think of for the object then browse images until I see one that's what I'm thinking of (or looks like it could be used for what I'm thinking of).
That said, I've also used it for grabbing images of something. But more and more often, I've used it just for searching in general.
Well, technically "to help connect users and useful websites" is true.
You now have to visit the website that had the photo if you want to download the full-size version, whereas previously you could bypass the site and download it from Google Images directly.
It's technically true but also completely irrelevant.
I'm guessing that soon we'll have a browser extension that will do it for us.
After a tip I've switched to an alternative search engine that still works in the old fashion
Lets assume for example, google found some Xenomorphs on the moon- which needed a human host to be transfered to a research lab in moutain view.
Instead of having one person do it, the task will be split up.
There is one doctor making sure the human hosts are fine.
There is a transport pilot flying the human hosts to the moon.
There is a grief counselor contacting the hosts familys.
There is another transport pilot flying them home.
Finally there is one person who designs the process, not knowing exactly what will be extracted.
And of course a person who tells a nice PR-lie.
Its the same distribution of organization that made Auschwitz run so well.
Now repeat after me- do not be evil.
I think you're onto something here but I think there is a detail you've missed - hierarchy.
It's not the number of people involved that allows a a terrible process to be completed but rather the number of layers of hierarchy.
Someone at the top says "just make this (outcome) happen" and if they say that to the person who actually has to carry it out, there is pushback or guilt or exposure. But if that person can, in turn, tell someone else a level below to "just make this (outcome) happen" eventually there is enough insulation (emotional, legal, etc.) that someone at the end of the chain can get the shaft.
You can't really do that with a flat (absent) hierarchy.
By default if the image is available on the web, it is meant to be seen. This is going to make high school PowerPoint users spend more time, and result in zero extra revenue and zero drop in copyright infringement.
The more interesting question is why google is doing this.
They got sued.
"These changes came about in part due to our settlement with Getty Images this week."
Why would they want that?
Money from a successful lawsuit?
Lawyers are not cheap and frankly Google would lose every case because they are in the wrong.
Since Google isn’t highlighting any such absurd ruling’s specific language then there must be some other reason.
If Getty can successful sue them, then any image rights holder can do so. Making an exception for Getty images doesn't resolve the underlying general liability or infringement. That means if another rights holder were to sue them for not addressing that liability for their images, now Google are infringing wilfully and subject to punitively increased sanctions or damages. That's reason enough to apply this remedy across the board.
Thus my suspicion. What’s a little sad is 15 years ago I would give Google the benefit of the doubt, but this reminds me how times have changed.
‘Still retaining functionality’ would require assuming permissive access to images as the default, which is what has got a Google into this mess in the first place. The whole point of this is that, for sites and rights holders that don’t explicitly allow access, Google cannot assume they grant it. They have to assume the most restrictive grant of rights, and adoption of metadata to indicate more permissive access is so poorly adopted it’s just irrelevant in practice.
Try the advanced image search options, just like many other modern image search engines, as a user, you can filter for permissive licenses. I'm not sure how they gather that metadata, but the results I'm getting, it's not poorly adopted at all.
So they could in fact retain the functionality for images with the right license.
Of course, I’m sure they do this in an intelligent way rather than literally a bunch of one off kludges.
Google for that exact phrase and see who made that observation.
So the author of that observation is Sergey Brin himself. Lel.
That's basically what Google got sued for in the EU and they lost. The friendly companies were other Google properties.
(Not to be confused with del.icio.us, which is now ... Pinboard.)
(Assuming that your post isn't a new form of Microsoft ad, that is.)
What's that then, I ducked it? :-)
I use Bing regularly. Sometimes I'll say I've binged something, but I have a hard time doing so without a little hint of sarcasm or self-awareness in my voice.
It gets weirder when people are using the term "Google-fu" - gotta say "search-fu" if you can't stomach "Bing-fu"; neither option is great.
But hey, the rewards points are redeemable for Amazon cards...
Remember: if you get a service for free, then you are the merchandise.
I get that some are dissatisfied by "paying" with ads. But the alternative would be a paid-for search engine. Not only would that potentially exclude some, it would also make it harder to access search for people from low-income countries. Currently, US and Europe subsidise operations for money other areas, allowing them to get the same search experience. That'd change with a paid-for model.
Like Wikipedia, right?
Some might argue the image is meant to be seen...in the context of the web page it's on.
Some would argue that speech in public between two people should not be overheard. But so what, the fact that some argue has limited value without lots of qualifiers.
Which part of any version of the http protocol spec covers this?
This is going to make Senior Architect PowerPoint users spend more time...
When I show my PHB why kubernetes is "the shit" and something we "really need", as I do with all my technical presentations: I get my propaganda directly from the suppliers. Am I gonna spend time visually describing how Oracles product suite hangs together? No, that's the job of someone who works at Oracle.
The sites themselves often have lower res versions in their articles, so 'view image' has repeatedly saved my bacon getting high res, clean, versions for reuse. Google Image search historically cut through the noise and got relevant images out in a highly usable format, while saving oooooodles of time digging out the appropriate graphic.
Also, I said architect reporting to a PHB, not a PHB architect, and that the time was used creating presentations, not that the volume of presentations themselves could be 'cut down'...
Paywalled photos as from news agencies are already published in severely reduced resolution and often with huge watermarks plastered over the entire photo, if they are even on the public web! If you're publishing paywalled photos in public, high resolution, and perfectly usable for stealing, you are doing something wrong already.
Actually, for _any_ case of content in websites, if you rely on a search engine of all things (designed to spider your website) to protect it you are doing something terribly wrong.
I wish Google would just have removed the Getty Images from their search index altogether and be done with it. If they don't want them there, just remove them all already. I hate this sort of collective punishment for the entire web just because of someone's "special interests" that honestly seem to boil down to webmasters with "special needs"!
>Google has long been under fire from photographers and publishers who felt that image search allowed people to steal their pictures, and the removal of the view image button is one of many changes being made in response. A deal to show copyright information and improve attribution of Getty photos was announced last week and included these changes.
Using the context menu to "Open Image in New Tab" essentially does the same thing so the functionality is still there.
No, actually “view image” loaded the source image at source resolution while viewing the image loaded into the DOM would show you the re-encoded, lower resolution, smaller Google thumbnail version.
Edit: actually it seems that Google has simultaneously deployed an update that makes the actual source image open so that might actually work.
Nothing's really changed in terms of capability; the UI is just a bit more awkward.
If you are, then that's very strange, and I have no idea why that's happening for you and not for anybody else. What browser and OS are you using?
But FYI, this is Safari on OS X.
The images don't all load automatically, though; an image only begins to load when you click on it individually, opening it within the viewer, on a Google Images results page.
Here is a screenshot example. Clicking on 'Open image in new tab' (or 'View Image' in Firefox) will open the image directly, and inspecting the page's source will reveal it is simply an <img> element with the URL as the src value. The size ought to make no difference; I tried up to 10 MP.
It may take a second to load, but that's how Google Images works: once an image is open in the viewer, it is quite literally just embedding the unadulterated source image within the page. It has been this way since at least 2010.
(Unless, of course, there is behaviour unique to Safari or OS X: of that I have no idea.)
We ban accounts that behave this way, so would you please (re-)read https://news.ycombinator.com/newsguidelines.html and comment only in the spirit of this site from now on? That means being scrupulously respectful of others, and generally not posting unless you have something substantive to say and can do so thoughtfully.
Edit: in this exact thread, another user too made same observation at https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=16390022
It also doesn't wrap the URL of search results in a Google redirect URL, so you can Right Click > Copy to get the actual URL of the webpage or image.
But most times I want information tailored specific to my issues so google is better for me 90% of the time.
It's generating its own fake news at this point.
Oh and I forgot the medieval Chanson which is ever earlier.
DDG is starting to feel a bit like AltaVista in that regard.
Most of their links come from their own webcrawler, Bing, Yahoo, and Yandex.
Honestly, this is why I love the Internet. Because while a company gets more and more focused on profits and power the Internet will just come up with something better... until that thing becomes the thing it hates and the pattern repeats.
A perfect example of this is digg and reddit. Reddit has gone so far downhill the minute someone has a real replacement it's going the way of Slashdot.
Fuck Google, Fuck Facebook, Fuck Microsoft, Fuck oracle, Fuck reddit, and Fuck all the other services that pretend to be for the user while they abuse the user.
Join me on the foss-side, we have source code. (Ddg has a cli search client just fyi)
Edit: Well it seems this is from legal pressure from Getty. Unfortunately that reason isn't enough to stop me from switching.
If you do that you usually end up with a low-resolution image on a url of the form https://encrypted-tbn0.gstatic.com/images?...
You do have to wait for the image to have fully loaded, mind, but otherwise it's quite literally embedding the image anyway - right-click, View Image, and you've got it.
If you left click a result first to give it focus, and then right click->open in new tab you'll get the original, full size, image.
Guess what, I think yandex.com still has it too.
It's seriously annoying that they had a feature that solved the problem then they took it away. Just like removing the "View Image" button.
"Great, a couple of transistors and resistors, an 8-pin IC - that looks about right. Let's just see how it works, and...oh. Nope, it's just that image, with no part numbers. And nothing else."
I can only guess that some people use it as a half-assed whiteboard to remember links and stuff, and Google picks up on that. The ironic problem for Google is, the 'pin' replaces the actual useful content which the Pinterest users were originally hoping to remember for later access!
I don't like it when people do that, so if I ever find myself in the position of needing to buy stock images, now I've heard of Getty Images and I'll make sure I pay someone else.
And they apparently own iStockPhoto and they are themselves under ownership of a large group.
Voting with one's feet works against local grocery shops, not global corporations.
I'm currently in the market for stock photos. The allotted budget isn't one those folk would miss, but it's more than enough to commission our own.
As a direct response to getty's behavior, I'll be commissioning the photos and making them available under a free license after around a year of use. It's also very unlikely that I'll be doing business with them in the future.
>Voting with one's feet works against local grocery shops, not global corporations.
It isn't as much of vote with my feet as it is adhering to one's own principles.
Also, thank you for mentioning istockphoto relationship with getty. I'll avoid them in the future as well.
IP law in the US hasn't functioned as intended for a very long time now. People seem to be starting to pick up on that more. I can only hope that continues and we eventually see some real reform.
This lawsuit was really rather pointless.
If you want the image, we all know how to find it, get it. How big of an annoyance is this?
A lot of times I am looking for images which are in the public domain, and for which if I go to the page in question, I have to then sort through dozens of images to find the one I had been looking at already in the search.
Here's an example. I've just done a search, found an image that I want to view larger, the image is long since in the public domain, but when I click on "visit" I get a page with a list of text links that I now have to sort through to find the full image:
Edit to add:
Now that I look closer, I notice that Google is actually embedding the original image, instead of a preview (they load a low-res preview, and then replace that with a hotlinked image), so you can just right click and choose "view image" now to work around this.
I guess that's OK for people who are technically inclined enough to know that you can do that.
I have a bias where I'm OK with the fact that people who take the time to learn the capabilities of the tools they use get better results from them. I figured this out within about 30 seconds of noticing that the view image button was gone, after sending feedback to say I didn't like the change.
This would be the wrong bias if I was designing a product. Of course, a product will be most successful if it maximizes discoverability and doesn't make the user think, which is exactly what Google has been coerced in to rolling back here.
Do you think that’s a valid justification to give the person who hosted it no credit and traffic for their work, instead choosing to leech the image directly from their server at their cost? The fact that they built a page around the image with relevant keywords that is the only reason you found it through Google in the first place. There’s nothing stopping someone from building a public domain image search that hosts its own images, but you went to Google for convenience.
Google does exactly that through "view cached/text only". You need to specifically opt your site out of the caching thing. I guess they could have done exactly that with images for those who complained.
There is no hit-and-miss experience with the "View image" feature -- you get access to exactly what you came looking for, and in a more convenient and speedy way.
So, with your search engine, you'd put in keywords to describe an image, it would then look at the webpages' text to figure out, if the image on there might be relevant, then it would present the images that it has found, so that you can select the webpage that you want to go to based on the image which's surrounding text on the webpage suits your keywords.
That does sound like a cool concept for a search engine, but ultimately just the regular web search will do the same without the fuzziness of images added in between.
As a result, I don't know anyone who uses image search to find a webpage.
You could have some protocol by which sites indicated that it can't be linked; but then everyone who embeds a Getty image would have to change their site to adopt that, and that would probably involve Getty having to change their licensing terms to require that, which would be a huge hassle for their customers who probably wouldn't bother doing it because it's difficult and doesn't help them out at all.
Or you'd have to do some kind of watermark embedding.
Anyhow, while it would be technically possible to do one of these things, I suspect that legally it was just a lot simpler to get Google to remove the feature.
Except that they didn't solve the problem at all, they only foisted it onto everyone else, who now have to deal with an inferior interface even when they aren't dealing with Getty images.
Chrome Extension "Straight to Full-Size for Google Images"
(At least Bing has really good image search.)
This is why I'm scared of Twitch getting big enough to draw itself into publishers' crosshairs and have similar controls for copyright and stuff as YouTube does.