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Photobucket Ransoming Users Accounts

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by D'Snowth, Jun 30, 2017.

  1. D'Snowth

    D'Snowth Well-Known Member

    It's hard to believe that anybody out there would still be using Photobucket, but they do, and I've been one of them: I've been using Photobucket for about twelve years now, and it was mainly at the suggestion of some people here when I was looking for a service to store pics to avoid using up space and bandwidth on servers that would host websites I did like KGZ and such. After all these years, I continued to use Photobucket simply because they were, once upon a time, the most reliable and secure image-hosting service out there: other alternatives were always (and in many cases, still are) sketchy.

    Then over the years, Photobucket started changing: I remember several years ago, they started distorting and compressing uploaded images as a way of conserving their own bandwidth . . . they eventually stopped doing it, but the damage they did was pemanent and irreversible, so now many of my older pics I have on Photobucket look like low-quality JPEGs that were edited in Microsoft Paint. More recently, they started resizing uploads that were over 1000px - I didn't have too many images larger than that size, but on some occasions, I would, so now, likewise, the damage has been done and is irreversible. Then they started policing what you could upload to your account, even if they were set to private (much like how private and unlisted videos on YouTube can still receive copyright strikes).

    Now the icing on the cake: over the past few days, I've been noticing images that were hosted on Photobucket on other sites were suddenly disappearing and being replaced with something that said 3rd party hosting had been exceeded, and as of today, my Photobucket images have been affected by this as well. I was really curious about what exactly was going on here, so after looking into it, I found out what's going on: Photobucket has decided to ransom its users accounts into having them pay $400 to upgrade their accounts to restore the ability to post images on other sites (including forums) . . . and from what I'm seeing, Photobucket isn't meeting their part of this ponzi scheme and some people out there have already forked over $400 to them only to have nothing changed back.

    I don't even know what to do, myself. I've got too many pics uploaded to my bucket over the past twelve years to move them to another service, meanwhile I still don't know of any reliable and secure image-hosting service out there.
  2. Old Thunder

    Old Thunder Well-Known Member

    What I've been doing is, instead of uploading my pictures to another site, I've simply stored them away in my files and then uploaded them directly onto whatever I needed them for. It's worked quite well (though I seriously need to clean out that thing :p ). Shame to hear about Photobucket, though, that sucks.
  3. MikaelaMuppet

    MikaelaMuppet Well-Known Member

    This is why I use Imgur.
    Hayley B and Zappetman like this.
  4. Bliffenstimmers

    Bliffenstimmers Well-Known Member

    This is going to spell bad news for the future of my webcomic. All of the visual elements, apart from the comics themselves, are hosted at Photobucket. They're still there for the time being.
  5. D'Snowth

    D'Snowth Well-Known Member

    This is bad news for anybody who uses Photobucket for that exact reason. I honestly have no idea what the Photobucket staff is trying to do: extort money from its users? Make up for lost profits? So many users have questions and nobody from the Photobucket team is answering them - this is just some new policy they initiated totally at random recently . . . but I mean really, $400 just to be able to link pics on forums and such? Some people have already tried paying them that and still haven't had this hotlinking restriction lifted yet.
    Zappetman and Old Thunder like this.
  6. ConsummateVs

    ConsummateVs Well-Known Member

    Bummer, I just starting using Photobucket. Are there any better photo sharing sites you'd recommend using instead?
  7. D'Snowth

    D'Snowth Well-Known Member

    Not really, because so many other ones out there are so sketchy, that Photobucket was the one I started using in the first place all these years ago because they seemed to be the most reliable, safe, and secure image storing service out there.

    I don't even know what I should do at this point: I'm really tempted to migrate to another service, but the problem is I have two different PB accounts (one for person use, the other for sites I maintain and such), both of which have hundreds of pics stored in them, so that would take a lot of time and energy migrating all of that content, not to mention all of the codes and links I would have to change - and even so, some forums like MC don't let you edit your post after a certain grace period of time.

    On the other hand, because there's so much backlash and outcry over this from PB users, I figure somehow, someway, this ransom will eventually resolve itself and things will go back to abnormal: it's doubtful and unlikely, but it's possible.
  8. ConsummateVs

    ConsummateVs Well-Known Member

    Would Imgur be an okay site to use? I only have like 3 pictures uploaded on Photobucket, anyway. And I would just use it to upload my art (until I get a DeviantArt), not personal photos.
  9. Bliffenstimmers

    Bliffenstimmers Well-Known Member

    Well, OP was right. I checked up on my webcomic to update the banner, and lo and behold, all of the website elements I uploaded at photobucket were replaced with a placeholder urging me to upgrade my account to enable third party hosting. Most of these elements have now been re-hosted at imgur, except for the gifs in the news posts, for I am too lazy. Thanks for the heads up!
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2017
  10. D'Snowth

    D'Snowth Well-Known Member

    I went with Postimage at the suggestion of somebody else - and, so far, it's pretty much as Photobucket always was: a service to host your images for hotlinking for free, they even auto-generate the copy and paste codes you'd need for direct linking, HTML and forum codes, etc. One difference is that while Postimage resizes larger images like Photobucket started doing, at least Postimage retains the original size for you to download, whereas Photobucket just completely resized the image and the damage is irrevisible.
  11. Schfifty

    Schfifty Well-Known Member

    I think I have a solution for displaying images on third-party sites.

    I discovered that you can get images to be displayed on third-party sites if you open the URL for the image (right-clicking it, copy the URL, paste it to the address bar, and go to it), view it on the Photobucket site, then immediately backtrack to the third-party site with the missing image. I just tested this on a thread here, and the pictures display just fine. Annoying part is, you'd have to repeat this procedure several times if you wanna see multiple images in a thread.

    Hopefully the developers don't catch onto this trick and get rid of it.
  12. muppethammer2

    muppethammer2 New Member

    If I ever had some images on Photobucket that I used for forums, if any, I'm not going to pay $400 just to gain back privileges to use my Photobucket images on websites. I have more important things to buy than that. It's a shame how a lot of images throughout the internet got lost due to this shady business decision.
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2017
  13. D'Snowth

    D'Snowth Well-Known Member

    Great, now PostImage is being affected. Their registered domain has been completely shut down for seemingly no reason, but unlike Photobucket, PostImage isn't ransoming anybody, but to link images, you now have to go back and edit image URLs to redirect to postimages.cc instead of .org.
  14. MikaelaMuppet

    MikaelaMuppet Well-Known Member

    That's probably why @BlakeConor14's images aren't showing up.
  15. BlakeConor14

    BlakeConor14 Well-Known Member

    Yeah that really wound me up this morning. It was playing up last night and has crashed this morning.

    Could be
  16. LittleJerry92

    LittleJerry92 Well-Known Member

    Remember the last time people used Photobucket?

    Neither do I.
    BlakeConor14 likes this.
  17. MikaelaMuppet

    MikaelaMuppet Well-Known Member

    It's why I use (and always will) Imgur.
  18. Old Thunder

    Old Thunder Well-Known Member

    I bet it's an early onset of Alzheimer's.
  19. BlakeConor14

    BlakeConor14 Well-Known Member

    I'll use that
  20. MikaelaMuppet

    MikaelaMuppet Well-Known Member

    Give it try, you might like it. :)
    BlakeConor14 likes this.

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