Bandwidth theft and constructed identity

Posted by jerry on April 27th, 2007 — Posted in Journal, New media

I was doing that rare thing this morning – checking my Technorati ranking when I noticed that some of the blogs that linked to me had links that just said [IMG] – so I clicked through and found images from my blog with neither attribution nor a link back to my blog – just when you load the image it is loading from my site – and using my bandwidth for no gain through attribution or link for people to click through!

I chose two strategies. The first was to go in and change the name of the image on m blog and then I edited the link in the post so that the bandwidth pirate’s blog simply shows no image, while mine remains unaffected. The second strategy, where the person is clearly and actively disregarding any netiquette through profligate bandwidth theft – is to out them.

I found a whole blog category devoted to purported travels of Christopher Clark – but not a single image was his – every one of them came from a different source – each drawing a little bandwidth from the other blogs or websites. The thing is, the photos were used and written up as though they were his! Was this a case of constructed identity? If so it seems a relatively rare occurrence. But for someone who purports to be something of an artist, he seems to have scant regard for intellectual property. Perhaps he – if it is a he – is simply a fraud. There is no email link from his blog so I couldn’t just write to him. So in my small way I’d like to draw attention to a bandwidth thief – one who parasitically draws on the resources of countless servers like a spammer.

Of course the proper way would be to seek permission to use the image and/or to upload a copy of the image on his own server and place a link with acknowledgment back to the source site. That way when his page loads it is only drawing on the resources of his own server/provider, while acknowledging that the intellectual property belongs elsewhere.

Did he really think that no-one would notice that he had linked to their images? Or that the little bit of bandwidth wouldn’t be missed? The thing is, if it were just one image, perhaps it wouldn’t matter too much. But imagine if his site were really popular – then every time his page loads, there is a download of the image too – each time gradually eroding the remaining bandwidth and forcing up the costs for the original host. A hundred images being hit a hundred times a day is a lot of hits for no gain for the original host. It is almost as bad as a spam attack.

So I have a little plea – by all means use my images – but if you do, please acknowledge and put a link back to my site – not just an [img] embed.

So endeth the rant


1 Comment

Comment by Lynne

HAD to check this jerk out! What a phoney! He’s got a link to your pic from the top of St. Paul’s (London) in today’s post. He’s sneaky, though. He doesn’t actually SAY he took all the pics – just makes the implication very clear…

Posted on April 28, 2007 at 12:08 am

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