back to article Photobucket says photo-f**k-it, starts off-site image shakedown

Photobucket is cracking down on people embedding on third-party websites images it hosts, until now, for free. The photo-slinging internet elder now says that anyone who wants to use its service to display photos it hosts on other pages – such as signature banners in forum posts – will now need to open up their wallets and …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Put your stuff into the cloud, they said. It's easy, they said. It's safe, they said.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Unhappy

      Put your stuff into the cloud, they said...

      ...'they' being the cloud sellers, of course.

    2. Infernoz Bronze badge
      Holmes

      ...until it isn't because stuff changes which you weren't told about before and/or didn't expect!

      That includes free/cheap being a temporary illusion, like a drug dealer temporary giving freebies to create a pool of future addicted customers, cheap printers (but expensive ink), or socialist Ponzi schemes like a state national health service or a state pension scheme!!!

      1. alex perkins

        Has "...a drug dealer temporary giving freebies to create a pool of future addicted customers..." ever really happened outside of fiction or a New Model Army song? Genuine question - from experience I never saw this happen and I could see this model be easily exploited by existing drug users. Yes, I'm sure there'll be an isolated example that was, or could appear to be, this - but did this ever happen wholesale?

        1. Huw D

          In a complete about face...

          Not necessarily "Tell you what I'll do, I'll make the first one free..." but definitely first time buyer discounts.

          #TrueStory

          I've slept on Justin Sullivan's sofa.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Yes

          Yep. I'm a cop and I regularly deal with people that have been given free drugs to get them hooked / keep them in the circle in which they find themselves.

          Although, to be fair, the majority of these people are either rehabilitated drug addicts (other druggies don't like to see people get out the gutter, so they'll give them free stuff to bring them back down) or girls going into the sex trade as a way to keep them in check.

          So, yes, it does happen, a lot sadly.

        3. RichardB

          Yes, very much so.

          Just look at the manner in which UK Students are drip fed debt as part of the long term plan to ensure 'credit' is seen as both normal and a good thing... it's all interest free to start with, then when you are so far in there's no hope to climb back out, they hit you with the fees and interest for the next 20 years or more.

          1. TheVogon Silver badge

            "Just look at the manner in which UK Students are drip fed debt"

            It seems perfectly fair that the privileged / likely high earners directly pay for their choice of education. Many other countries also do this.

            " it's all interest free to start with"

            No, it's at the RPI + 3%. So relatively low.

            "they hit you with the fees and interest for the next 20 years or more."

            You only have to pay if you earn more than £21K a year. And because it's over a long period with low interest rates, the payments are relatively low...And if you have not paid within 30 years, it gets wiped.

      2. This post has been deleted by a moderator

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        @Infernoz

        You are the winner of one of my very few down votes.

        Let's dissect.

        "free/cheap being a temporary illusion"

        If it's temporary then you must state that from the start.

        "like a drug dealer temporary giving freebies"

        Not sure how many drug dealers you have known in your life but they don't give away freebies.

        "cheap printers (but expensive ink)"

        You do know you can fill them yourself?

        "socialist Ponzi schemes like a state national health service or a state pension scheme!!!"

        You are a Tory that reads the daily mail and I claim my five pounds.

      4. John Smith 19 Gold badge
        FAIL

        "That includes free/cheap being a temporary illusion,"

        You were on an upvote until...

        "or socialist Ponzi schemes like a state national health service or a state pension scheme"

        This statement tells us you are

        a)Probably an American

        b) Definitely an Ahole.

        1. Mark 65 Silver badge

          Re: "That includes free/cheap being a temporary illusion,"

          A national health service is just about the only viable and effective way to provide one. If it is private you effectively get held to ransom over your health. How much are you willing to pay to carry on living a worthwhile existence with full mobility and a functioning body? Politicians (and people like the OP of the "socialist" rant) don't seem to get how the main things a society (and economy) needs are healthy, educated workers and a minimal legal framework within which everyone can operate. Minimal because things will find a natural equilibrium provided abuse (or lobbying) is not tolerated.

        2. Truckle The Uncivil

          Re: "That includes free/cheap being a temporary illusion,"

          @John Smith 19

          c) Probably consuming too much Tylenol.

        3. Gritzwally Philbin
          Unhappy

          Re: "That includes free/cheap being a temporary illusion,"

          > "..a)Probably an American.."

          Ehh.. I doubt that. Pretty much everyone I know and have spoken to over the last three years is of the mind that the for-profit medical insurance model is not keeping costs down, and when we here can read of insurance CEO's paying themselves millions and kicking back billions in stock valuations and dividends to the Idle-class investors.. brought to them by taxpayer subsidies.. Even the rich folk with their gold and platinum-plated insurance plans are getting hit with soaring costs - now that the Millennials are creeping into the medical need picture by coming down with costly with chronic diseases 25 years ahead of schedule..

          Keep your ears open, outside of the beltway or Fox news, most that still have to work for a living are grumbling that its getting close to time for a Single Payer here in the US of A.

      5. TheVogon Silver badge

        "socialist Ponzi schemes like a state national health service"

        Every first world country on the planet other than the US manages to have one. And they all have better healthcare and pay less for it.

        There is a film you need to watch to help cure your ignorance: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt4897822/

        1. Jamie Jones Silver badge

          Every first world country on the planet other than the US manages to have one. And they all have better healthcare and pay less for it.

          Yep: Cost of healthcare vs life expectency - by country

          1. hmv

            Not surprising.

            I do wonder what the life expectancy would be amongst USians who can afford health care; not that it's a reasonable system to say: "You're poor. Go away and die in a gutter."

          2. SundogUK

            That's rubbish. The US records live births as the baby being alive at birth. Almost every other country in the world records live births only if the baby survives 24 hours. This greatly skews the statistics against the US but nobody mentions it when throwing around these bullshit graphs.

        2. SundogUK

          That other countries have better healthcare is a myth.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      bypassing their advertisement revenue gets you a paddlin'.

      Our customers are leaving us because our servers are glacial and we need to buy more rack space and fiber bandwidth leading to a cut of the budget for employee salaries and perks.

      For what reason? To support the use of ad-blockers?

      Fuckin' freetards ruin things for everyone else.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Yes take your images elsewhere. Except of course there are very few services that will allow you to do this for free. And indeed why should they?

    Totally bored by the sound of whining freetards.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      What the hell are you talking about? There are literally hundreds of websites and services that host images for free. Imgur should be a really obvious one.

      1. EugeneFraxby

        yes to both of you. expectation culture demands that stuff stays free FOREVER!

        you can either a) continue moanning about it or b) use imgur and tell other people.

        choice is yours people

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      There's also a huge gulf between free and $400/year. I'd bet a bunch of those people would've ponied up for $5-$10/month.

      1. Danny 14 Silver badge

        It would also be substanitally cheaper to get some low level vps share with cpanel plugins. For 30 quid a year you get your own email, gallery and even silly amounts of storage.

      2. jason 7

        Yep

        I would be happy to pay $60 a year to just push some pics around but I guess I'll just go elsewhere.

      3. John Smith 19 Gold badge
        Unhappy

        "I'd bet a bunch of those people would've ponied up for $5-$10/month."

        That's the question of what constitutes "fair" pricing.

        If you make money off the internet, shouldn't you pay something back to the internet?

        Obviously that depends on how many people who use the service do make money, and what "something" should be.

        IIRC $400 is around the Adobe subscription level for their tools.

        1. SundogUK

          Re: "I'd bet a bunch of those people would've ponied up for $5-$10/month."

          There is no such thing as 'fair pricing' - people will pay what they are willing to pay. PB's pricing scheme is suicidal.

      4. TheVogon Silver badge

        "There's also a huge gulf between free and $400/year."

        Quite. They could easily have done something more reasonable for free accounts like just replaced the images with adverts 50% of the time so as to not totally screw up years of internet content....

    3. redmanjake

      There's a difference between paying your fair share and extortion

      It's all true and fair that Photobucket had a right to expect some payment for something they have been bearing for free for over 10 years. So how about they charge what it is actually worth? A full-on web site hosted by a professional service wouldn't cost more than $100/year, and you could host your photos on it and link them to forum posts to your heart's content. Photobucket demands $400 for this service?

      Why? Because they know that millions of their free customer have embedded links to those photos far and wide that will not work anymore. Even if you take all your photos elsewhere, you still have to edit all those posts you have made for years, and in many cases, you won't be able to edit a post that old because some forums don't allow that.

      Photobucket is EXPLOITING that fact by demanding an exorbitant fee. If they wanted people to pay up finally, they could easily have initiated the plan with a series of warnings and a fair price for the service based on the level of your usage. People with 2GB free accounts are not storing enough, nor generating enough hit traffic, to warrant a $400/yr charge.

      Whining freetards? Hardly. They are people who know when they are being fleeced. Just because it was free before doesn't give Photobucket the right to massively overcharge because they know they are the only place people can use if they want their old online posts to work.

      As for me... I AM one of those people mad enough to edit all my old posts. So I am making liberal use of forum search features to find all my linked images based on the directory strings in the filenames that have "photobucket" in them, and then replacing those links with the new photo locations (where I have already moved my photos). I will rehost all my photos to my own website (for which I only pay $100/yr thank you very much).

      Photobucket will be gone in a year. Nobody who is willing to pay for their service would choose $400/yr over full web hosting for $100/yr. And anyone who wants a free service certainly won't pay $400/yr.

      What selfish idiots. If they had only warned us and asked for some reasonable charge, even $50/year, they would have turned a mass of freeloaders into low-end paying customers and generated revenue. Now, they will generate nothing but their own demise.

      1. jason 7

        Re: There's a difference between paying your fair share and extortion

        Well for me life is too short and I can't be arsed to do that.

      2. LDS Silver badge

        Re: There's a difference between paying your fair share and extortion

        Given the price asked, it looks they really want those people go simply away.

        1. Chris 125

          Re: There's a difference between paying your fair share and extortion

          They might want those users to just go away, I'd agree with you based on their pricing structure.... but "those users" probably make up 80% or more of their user base. I don't know anyone who uses Photobucket for anything else than dumping pictures to put on a forum.

          So a huge drop in advertising revenue, a huge drop in page visits, their name is just going to go the way of FriendsReunited and Bebo. A very odd move.

          $400 definitely sounds like "get off my land" rather than "would you mind just giving us a bit to help towards our costs please?"

      3. Darren Sandford

        Re: There's a difference between paying your fair share and extortion

        I suspect there's an opportunity for someone to step into this space with reasonably priced hosting, and to allow linking to your photobucket account to enumerate your existing photos, then do all the internet searching for links for you, giving you a report on what you need to go and edit. It then moves them all the pictures over and you're done.

        Not seamless, but probably as close as you're going to get.

      4. Just Enough

        Re: There's a difference between paying your fair share and extortion

        "Just because it was free before doesn't give Photobucket the right to massively overcharge because they know they are the only place people can use if they want their old online posts to work."

        On the contrary. It's Photobucket's service and they most definitely have the right to charge customers whatever they like for it. Just like their customers most definitely have the right to decline and go elsewhere.

        Your old online posts won't work? Well that's life. When you post on forums you don't own using images from websites you don't own and don't pay for, under what sense of entitlement do you get to demand that both retain your content in perpetuity?

    4. Potemkine! Silver badge

      Totally bored by the sound of whining freetards.

      How much did you pay to make this witty comment on El Reg?

      1. IHateWearingATie

        Nothing of course.

        But I suspect the AC who posted this expects a service commensurate with the amount that was paid.

        I.e. none!

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    First they block adblock users and now this. I'll be sure to pop some champagne when they go out of business in a week. I really don't know what these morons are thinking when literally hundreds of other services exist that host images for free and have been doing so for years. Oh well, at least we still live in a time where being stupid gets you killed.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Photobucket was always the scummiest image host

    They wouldn't let you directly load an image without being redirected to a spammy frame.

    Imgur, being vastly more modern and cooler have a separate sub-domain for direct image links.

  5. jMcPhee

    Rattlesnake in a pinata...

    Oh, that's good! May I use that in a subordinate's performance review?

    1. Chris Hance

      Re: Rattlesnake in a pinata... @jMcPhee

      "Boss, why are you asking me to break a pinata, instead of just telling me about my performance results?"

  6. Notas Badoff Silver badge

    Have they tried...

    turning it off and on again?

    As in the site simply not serving those images for awhile, and then noting to enquirers that 'free' does have limits. 14 years and the users aren't amazed that the site is still there, might just need a little moola and 'free' has limits? It never occurred to them that they hadn't ever actually supported the delivery of their pictures?

    Common sense has become noticeably rare.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Have they tried...

      Fr33 st00f pl0x

    2. Woza

      Re: Have they tried...

      " It never occurred to them that they hadn't ever actually supported the delivery of their pictures?"

      Unfortunately many people don't understand how electronic devices like computers and phones work, even before you throw the internet into the mix. They seem to view them as magic boxes. And why shouldn't the magic within those boxes be free - after all, it's magic, right? Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain...

    3. Updraft102 Silver badge

      Re: Have they tried...

      If they've looked at the ads that have been served up, they've supported the delivery of the pictures. It may or may not be enough to allow the company to make money off of it, but they *have* supported it. And I'd hardly call $400 a year "a little" money, particularly when the cost has always been zero in the past.

      The question is one of how much bandwidth is being served up per ad view. Embedded images don't get much of a chance to display ads to the viewers; it's the uploader who sees them while using the web interface for that purpose. If he's running a business on eBay and has a lot of people viewing images hosted by PB, that could easily be costing them a considerable amount of money without any chance at a return, and I don't blame them for wanting to monetize that or put a stop to it.

      On the other hand, the person who simply uses it to upload images to various web forums is probably not going to be anywhere close to the kind of bandwidth that would justify paying that much.

      I've been using Photobucket for years for hosting images on various web forums that don't offer that themselves. I don't know when I created the account, but it was years and years ago (probably when I moved off of my dial-up account with its personal web space; I always used that before I used PB. That was a LONG time ago!). I would not be surprised if my PB is almost as old as the site itself. In that time, I've probably used it a dozen times to upload at most a megabyte's worth of images for posting on a low-traffic web forum, ultimately to be viewed a few dozen times. Maybe half a gigabyte total over ~10+ years. Very, very low volume stuff, and seldom used (but always the go-to when I needed it). It's been a couple of years since I used it last.

      Is all of that put together worth $400, let alone ten times that? Ten years of service would have cost four thousand dollars, and that's if it was only over ten years. I think $4000 for 500MB of cumulative bandwidth is a bit much. Of course, that's probably close to the minimum anyone who embeds would use it for, but that's just the point-- who does this high price target? It's clearly not me.

      For people using $400 worth of bandwidth in a year, whatever that may be, it's obviously an appropriate price. Is that the typical amount of bandwidth their embedding account holders are using, though? I would find that exceptionally difficult to believe. It would seem to make more sense to have a certain ceiling per month that will continue under the free plan, with a cost per gigabyte above and beyond that baseline.

      $400 just isn't a reasonable price. That's a "we're trying to kill off any demand for this service so we can get out of the business" price. If that's the goal, I would rather have them come out and say so rather than slap a completely asinine price on it and kill demand that way.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Have they tried...

        "Embedded images don't get much of a chance to display ads to the viewers;"

        Doesn't sound very smart to me. They could easily have gone two routes: used their tag design to include two images, one an ad; or spend a little image-processing time to embed ads in copies of the uploaded picture which would then be served. Either way would mean viewers see ads (and the second way can't be blocked without blocking the payload--Ka-CHING!).

      2. Gritzwally Philbin
        Thumb Up

        Re: Have they tried...

        That, I think is an accurate assessment of the situation: I too used PB very little - though I do think I may have an account from the very start - I am not certain anymore, once they started deleting the nude paintings I had been sharing with an art group - nothing obscene or pornographic - but skin was definitely out, so I bailed and switched to a yahoogroup which is going on 13 years now. I really don't know how the company managed to hang on this long with such a limited business model - it's as relevant to me now as MySpace (of which I do still have an all-but abandoned page). You're most likely correct: Photobucket is looking to bail on image-hosting.

      3. SundogUK

        Re: Have they tried...

        I agree with most of what you say but '$400 just isn't a reasonable price' is crap. It just isn't a price you are willing to pay. So you won't and you will go elsewhere. And most likely PB have destroyed their business by demanding it.

    4. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      Re: Have they tried...

      "14 years and the users aren't amazed that the site is still there, might just need a little moola and 'free' has limits?"

      I only recently discovered a BBC 5Live show called "Outriders", a now defunct tech magazine show. I downloaded all the podcasts and listen in the car. Every now and then there's something particularly interesting and the interviewee gives a URL. Once I get home, or pull over for a break, I have look and most of the sites are now gone or something quite different to what was described on the show. IIRC the show ran from ~20011 - ~2014, so not that long ago.

      One that especially comes to mind is artfinder.com. According to the interview, it was to be the art equivalent of an MP3 download/streaming site with as much as possible being free ot low cost downloads of images of artwork. Looking at it now, it's little more than an online shop, nothing is free and none of the images are of any decent resolution and are made as difficult as possible to access.

      Like many interesting and altruistic projects, they rarely last long with their original intentions, either because the funding model was badly formed in the first place or because they growed and growed enough to become attractive to the money men (and women)

  7. Sanctimonious Prick
    Paris Hilton

    Pulling The Rug From Under People's Feet

    Does this approach work in the commercial online business world?

    It'll be interesting to watch this space :)

    1. ecofeco Silver badge

      Re: Pulling The Rug From Under People's Feet

      It works almost everywhere. It's called market inertia, meaning that just enough people really are too lazy to shop somewhere else even when they are getting screwed, making it profitable for companies to keep screwing them.

      Eventually, the consequences catch up to the business, but it's often a long time.

      1. Mark 65 Silver badge

        Re: Pulling The Rug From Under People's Feet

        It works almost everywhere. It's called market inertia

        More like "bait and switch"

    2. John Smith 19 Gold badge
      Unhappy

      "It'll be interesting to watch this space

      It seems to work quite well for British banks.

      Who are all pretty s**t.

      1. TheVogon Silver badge

        Re: "It'll be interesting to watch this space

        "Who are all pretty s**t."

        And who are all mostly still free to use for basic account functions...

      2. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

        Re: "It'll be interesting to watch this space

        It seems to work quite well for British banks.

        I solved this one 25+ years ago - only use proper building or mutual societies. Yes, they can still be pathetic (Co-op, I'm looking at you) but they stand a far, far higher change of being good.

  8. bombastic bob Silver badge
    Meh

    no more bandwidth theft. just host it yourself!

    seems to me that the problem is solved by doing a 'save image' to a file, then host that file yourself.

    This assumes no copyright issues, of course. but then again who really seems to care about copyright of commonly used images online any more...

    but yeah, bandwidth theft is kinda bad. Wanting $400/year? Not much better.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: no more bandwidth theft. just host it yourself!

      Most forums--and a lot of other consumer focused sites--don't give users the ability to upload images. Just look at El Reg, for example.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: no more bandwidth theft. just host it yourself!

        Or text for that matter.

        You only have to criticise the author and you're likely to be censored here.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: no more bandwidth theft. just host it yourself!

          I criticise Andrew for being a copyright industry stooge all the time, and never get censored.

          1. moiety

            Re: no more bandwidth theft. just host it yourself!

            I got censored for the following...

            ------8<----------------------------------------------------------------------

            "Fighting copyright today requires a persecution complex, because concrete examples of real oppression are fleeting and trivial. The unfairness of copyright must therefore be imagined.

            This is almost Trump-esque in it's "I'll throw so much steaming bullshit into one sentence that people won't even know where to start refuting it" style"

            ------8<----------------------------------------------------------------------

            ...once. If it hadn't been censored, I probably would have forgotten all about it by now. As it was censored, and that irked me a bit at the time, I feel it's my duty to mention it at appropriate intervals, just to be annoying.

            1. robidy

              Re: no more bandwidth theft. just host it yourself!

              Will this become to the register what a man in a string vest is to Private Eye? Should we all quote it when we are devoid of interesting reader comments?

      2. I am the liquor

        Re: no more bandwidth theft. just host it yourself!

        "Most forums--and a lot of other consumer focused sites--don't give users the ability to upload images."

        That's the real shame of this, isn't it. All those useful tutorials and product reviews that people have posted on forums, going back years, now all broken.

        We can start using another image host but it won't fix all that old content; and how long before the new image host does the same, or goes out of business?

        It's much safer when forums allow direct upload of images, but funding the bandwidth and storage for that can't be easy when so many are hobby projects.

  9. mark l 2 Silver badge

    Hopefully they won't just 404 the externally hosted pics but instead replace them with one that says 'click here to view the image' and it then takes the user through to view it on the Photobucket website then there won't be any loss of potentially useful images.

    But where did they pick $400 per year from? Even if there weren't free alternatives and you were willing to pay. You can still save money by getting storage with a hosting provider and then paying someone of Fiver to go through all the photos on your blog and upload them to your new hosting. You also won't have to worry about breaching the Photobucket T&Cs on things such as nudity going down that route either.

    1. moiety

      Probably going to serve ads instead of 404s.

    2. alexmcm

      Or do what they did

      I remember a photo site that replaced the original image with a picture of a large bosomed topless old drunk women sitting on a park bench. I first saw it on a rather formal forum and had to alert the user that their post now showed said picture instead of what she meant it to show.

      Certainly worked, she had changed her old post in an hour.

      1. Jason 24

        Re: Or do what they did

        Something we did fairly regularly when I worked at a hosting provider, you find someone has hot linked to an image off one of your servers and suddenly bandwidth goes up dramatically to a particular site.

        Unfortunately that was a professional setting on family friendly web shops so no chance of putting anything rude up, just a new image with the words "image thief" on them usually.

    3. I am the liquor

      They serve an image that says "please update your account to enable 3rd party hosting" and refers to the URL www.photobucket.com/P500.

      Random example found through google:

      http://forums.watchuseek.com/f43/how-place-picture-photobucket-into-forums-28301.html

  10. Terry 6 Silver badge

    $400 a year

    OK maybe free was never going to last forever, even ad suported. But as a space to store and serve up a few jpg files $400 every year is a vast amount of money. And for pro use, why would you when you can get a bit of web space for a fraction of the cost?

    This is a actually not about charging - that's just a cover. It's about stopping it.

  11. J J Carter Silver badge
    FAIL

    So?

    Gave up on Photobucket when they started playing silly-beggars over ad blocking.

  12. GrumpyKiwi Silver badge

    Gave up on them a couple of years back. They used to have a tool that let you see who was linking to your images and which images were the most popular. Then they "upgraded" to support ... I dunno, sepia tones or something. And killed the tool. Simultaneously it became suspiciously easy to run out of free bandwidth.

    Swapped over to using OneDrive and have never looked back, until today. Just to crown things, one of their ads tried to serve me some malware when I logged in to delete my account.

    1. Ken Moorhouse Silver badge

      Swapped over to using OneDrive

      You might like to google "Frying Pan" & "Fire"

      1. GrumpyKiwi Silver badge

        Re: Swapped over to using OneDrive

        Microsoft already had their Photobucket level of Derp incident about two years back when they decided arbitrarily that "no-one could possibly want a link that lasted more than 24 hours" which meant that any new links would rapidly die. There was a fair amount of outcry about it and six months later they introduced an embedding option within OneDrive.

  13. Doctor_Wibble
    Boffin

    Billing via log files, surely?

    Surely they can do some kind of tiered billing by processing the logfiles to see who the big users are and then bill accordingly? Maybe even keep it free for the small-scale users, and the ones using it to host popular hi-res stuff probably knew this day was coming anyway. The suggestion earlier for 'click to view' would make sense, even if accompanied by a (preferably non-rage-inducing) ad banner.

    I'm tempted to blame the advertisers, for making their ads so effing obnoxious and stalkingly pervasive that a sufficiently large number of people blocked them.

    1. Updraft102 Silver badge

      Re: Billing via log files, surely?

      "I'm tempted to blame the advertisers, for making their ads so effing obnoxious and stalkingly pervasive that a sufficiently large number of people blocked them."

      Don't just be tempted to blame them-- do it! You'd be 100% right.

      If web ads were the equivalent of print ads in specialty magazines (computers, cars, etc.), it would be a whole different situation. I used to buy those magazines in part FOR the ads; I wanted to know what products related to my interest were available, from whom, and for how much money. Those ads never flashed, moved, made noise, attempted to track me as I read other magazines, delivered malware, forced me to interact with them in order to see the content, or anything like that. They also never made it take three times longer than it usually would to turn the page and begin reading an article. And on top of all that, they were more relevant than any "targeted" ad ever has been for me... it was targeted at people who are interested enough in topic X to read Topic X Digest, and that actually worked.

      There are a few sites that I whitelist in my adblocker. My requirements are that ads have to be unobtrusive, silent, non-animated, non-interactive (if I inadvertently mouse over one, it had better not do anything) and relatively lightweight, and free of the worst offenders when it comes to tracking (even if I can still stop that with NoScript, which I never turn off for anyone. Sorry, I am not about to leave my front door unlocked when I am in a high-crime neighborhood, and the web is exactly that).

      A site that connects to 30 or more third party domains for analytics and ad serving is not going to get whitelisted, no matter how nicely they ask, but I am always willing to keep monitoring the situation and consider adding them if they maybe drop it to one or two ad domains and adhere to all the other requirements here. First sign of an animated, reactive, or noisy ad, though, and it's back on the block list for you. If your business model depends on serving people nasty, obtrusive, spying ads, you have a problem.

      1. Korev Silver badge

        Re: Billing via log files, surely?

        The print advertisers did try some annoying things.... Making their advert smaller and stiffer so the magazine would always open there or even putting perfume in.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    If this move causes some of the me-me-me humble-bragging bloggers to just stop then I'm all for it.

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    That reminds me..

    I have a small system on which I collect and sort images from unsplash.com. Not that they're not wonderful over there, but downloading the ones I like means I can add tags to them so quickly find the image I need. I need to move those images behind a password or I'll end up blowing my bandwidth if people start hotlinking..

    1. moiety

      Re: That reminds me..

      I love it when people hotlink:

      1. Change name of image on your site

      2. In place of the original, put another image with the same name and path. Same size for best results. The replacement image should be something to thoroughly infuriate the hotlinker...gay/furry/whatever porn is usually good. Opposing political viewpoint. And there's always image editing for custom abuse.

      Not only do you get to exercise your inner bastard, but they're stealing your bandwidth, so you can feel all righteous about it too.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: That reminds me..

        All suggestions worthy of this site :).

        I'm just changing the rights - the problem with feeding dodgy images means you have to host them first although it's always an idea to set up a marketing image instead (must check later if there is a way to point all the hotlinks to one image, though, I guess that may hide in the .htaccess features). Also, it's just a simple Piwigo box that I set up somewhere so it doesn't have much in the way of access control or logging, it's far too basic for that.

        When I find time to spin up a Joomla site I'll add some sophistication and BOFH trapdoors, but for the moment this is good enough - thanks for the idea, though :)

        1. moiety

          Re: That reminds me..

          Well remember that you may be hosting the images, but it's the other guy that's publishing them It makes a difference. If you're after one-size-fits-all though, images might not be the way to go. .htaccess to open an iFrame/div/table containing text would probably be better (and use less bandwidth, if that's a concern)....with images your one image is going to get squashed to the proportions of your various hotlinked images, so it won't look very good most of the time.

          Ironically, it's often people who have a moral agenda who nick your stuff. Which makes it all the more rewarding when you goatse them.

          1. Doctor_Wibble
            Alert

            Re: That reminds me..

            > Which makes it all the more rewarding when you xxxxxx them.

            (sorry, not wanting to add to the word's popularity score)

            The problem with that policy is you end up punishing the wrong people, not the person who is actually guilty.

            I understand the sentiment but with reference to my burned retinas* I ask people to consider something, anything, else that does not inflict damage on the non-guilty parties!

            .

            * I'm reasonably sure this does not classify me as a pathetic snowflake, I did after all survive the emergency mind-bleach immediately afterwards

            1. moiety

              Re: That reminds me..

              Ah, but the person who is actually guilty gets moaned at. That's crowdsourcing, that is.

              There are more subtle options, of course.

      2. I am the liquor

        Re: That reminds me..

        You may not even need to rename the image on your site. On Apache you can set up .htacess rules to serve a different image depending on the referrer domain.

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Lolwut

    Who even does this? It's not 1998. Just use social media or get a cheap site host.

    Freetards on fucking photobucket

    I heard Friendster is awesome

    1. Martin-73 Silver badge

      Re: Lolwut

      You can spot the people who didn't read the article and/or the comments.

      The point is they're applying this retroactively... people have posts hosted on forums from years ago, and photobucket said 'look, we're a giant bucket to get photos from' [the clue's in the name]. Now they've turned to ransomware.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Lolwut

        > people have posts hosted on forums from years ago,

        So a post from 2002 will say some shit about Photobucket 3rd party linking. You're seriously suggesting anyone gives a shit... even a post from a week ago is old news

        1. keithpeter
          Coat

          Re: Lolwut

          "So a post from 2002 will say some shit about Photobucket 3rd party linking. You're seriously suggesting anyone gives a shit... even a post from a week ago is old news"

          It is that long-tail thing again isn't it? 99% of posts have a shelf-life of minutes to days, and 99% of interweb fora are instantly forgettable. But there are some special interest fora with considerable history, and within those, there are some threads that have lasted for a long span of time and that contain much useful information. Those will be significantly degraded.

          1. Neil Barnes Silver badge

            Re: Lolwut

            "So a post from 2002 will say some shit about Photobucket 3rd party linking. You're seriously suggesting anyone gives a shit... even a post from a week ago is old news"

            A post from a week ago may be old news in your circumscribed universe, but to those of us who *think*, perhaps we have other uses? Y'know, reference or something? Have you ever heard of the concept of a reference library?

            1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

              Re: Lolwut

              "A post from a week ago may be old news in your circumscribed universe, but to those of us who *think*, perhaps we have other uses? Y'know, reference or something? Have you ever heard of the concept of a reference library?"

              To be fair, he did only say 99% of posts. That probably accounts for all the FB and Twatter stuff leaving, at best, 1% of posts that might have a longer term use. The signal to noise ratio across the whole of the 'net is pretty poor.

            2. wayne 8

              Re: Lolwut

              Say Photobucket goes tits up. Then what do the hot linkers do then?

              If you are preserving for posterity, don't depend on a third party.

            3. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: Lolwut

              ...and if I ever posted an image that was important, I never hosted it on some free image hosting site

            4. earl grey Silver badge
              Paris Hilton

              Re: Lolwut

              "in your circumscribed universe"

              Sorry, i read that as circumcised and didn't understand what all the snipping was about.

              Maybe she knows.

  17. Will Godfrey Silver badge
    Meh

    Well that was news

    I'd completely forgotten photobucket even existed.

  18. a_yank_lurker Silver badge

    $400 per year

    I wonder if it would not be cheaper to have a Wordpress site with a copy of the images. Granted more work and bit of a pain but you have more direct control of the site.

    1. Terry 6 Silver badge

      Re: $400 per year

      Or just that free ISP web space that almost no one ever uses.

      1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

        Re: $400 per year

        "Or just that free ISP web space that almost no one ever uses."

        I did that for years from my Blueyonder webspace account. But a year or so back, VirginMedia decided free webspace was no longer part of the contract. Is webspace still free with most ISPs or is that just seen as an unneeded cost by the ISPs these days?

        1. Trilkhai

          Re: $400 per year

          From what I've been seeing while hunting for a new provider, the bigger & more popular they are, the less likely they are to offer any "old-school" amenities, including webspace. Some of the medium-sized ones like Sonic.net now seem to take the "you have to know it's there & search in order to find it" approach, either because they're phasing it out or to avoid confusing the non-technical types.

          1. moiety

            Re: $400 per year

            I wonder if it would not be cheaper to have a Wordpress site with a copy of the images.

            Why bother with wordpress? If you're just wanting a bank of images that you can throw into forum posts, just upload them into a directory. Make sure the directory has a blank index.html file in there so it can't be indexed and you're good to go.

            If you own a domain called domain.com, just make yourself a subdirectory called, say, grafix (don't use images...there's LOADS of things that have an /images/ directory) and just throw all your piccies in there with FTP. Then the path to a particular image would be:

            http://domain.com/grafix/image.jpg

            -----------------------------

            ISP freebies are best avoided anyway. You're probably going to move at some point and using the freebies can make that a nightmare. Especially email. Skip past the ISP entirely for your web empire and that way you don't have loads of work to do to extract yourself and -probably more importantly- no interruptions to service if your old/new ISP fucks things up. You'll still be in the game, even if you become resident in the local coffee shop or have to be nice to your neighbours.

        2. Kincaid

          Re: $400 per year

          Agreed. Free web storage from an ISP is something I actually don't hear of anymore. Some might but I haven't seen it in ages. Just like ISPs actually running their own USENET servers. Between costs and legal reasons it's simply easier for them to not run the servers. Let the customers get the service from a third-party.

          Another thing to consider with respect to using your own ISP web storage for images which might be linked to forums, etc, there's the area of privacy and some anonymity rather than leading someone who reads a forum right to your front door. Using a third-party location to store those images works out more nicely, IMO. But, Photobucket would never have been one of the sites that I used.

          1. moiety

            Re: $400 per year

            Any forums that allow images, I always assume you have no privacy anyway. It's simple to embed a 1x1-pixel transparent tracker gif. By matching up the server logs for the server hosting the gif with posting times it's fairly trivial to extract IP addresses for forum members over time.

  19. Alan Sharkey

    Try using postimage.org instead. Seems OK to me

    Alan

    1. Trilkhai

      Thanks for suggesting that — I've been trying to find a decent host, as the ones I had been using for the past several years have all either merged, shut down, or switched to crappy interfaces.

  20. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Third party hosting?

    That's a weird definition of "hosting". I guess what they mean is external linking?

  21. Terry 6 Silver badge

    Just logged into photobucket

    I just use(d) it as an extra backup store for some snaps. Remembered why I pretty much stopped a year or two back.It used to be very user-friendly. Then it got so much pushier and messier. It lost the feel of a nice little useful website for storing pictures (as noted above, the clue's in the name) and started to be a big business money grubber. Maybe they weren't making enough for it to have remained sustainable. Maybe they just got greedy. Either way to me it's just another site gone the way of Friends Reunited, from useful to ruthless to useless.

  22. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    $400

    As has been pointed out $400/yr buys you a nice virtual host with 2Gb RAM and 2Tb storage, plus a domain name which can be had for around $10-$15 when they're not on offer, or $1-$5 otherwise.

    You would need to be hosting an awful lot of pics on their site to make it worthwhile paying that sort of money to them.

    Btw, I am trying to check their pricing plans (no, not going to sign up), but the site seems awfully unresponsive.

    Ah, ok, it's loaded. They have $60/yr, $100/yr, and $400/yr options (and equivalent monthly plans at a 20% premium). Only the $400/yr plan offers what they call "third party hosting", which to me sounds like you get to host your pics elsewhere so not entirely sure why you would pay them $400 for, but who knows, maybe it's one of those "it's expensive so it must be good" marketing tricks.

    Anyway, the site looks like something out of 2005 alright. It may be time for them to thrown in the bucket (har! har! and the towel, and the sponge, and the water bottle)?

    1. Tannin

      Re: $400

      Actually. $400 a year doesn't buy you a virtual host, it buys you about 10 of them. Cheap hosting on a shared server provides way more than you were getting on Photobucket, and it costs about one-tenth of the insane price they are asking.

      $400 PA on a virtul hosting is quite expensive, but may be worth it depending on how much you care about 24/7 * 365 reliability and a help desk that speaks a language known to most people in your country.

      1. moiety

        Re: $400

        https://lowendbox.com/blog/woothosting-cpanel-reseller-hosting-openvz-instances-kvm-vps-los-angeles-and-miami/

        $5/yr with cPanel and 75Gb storage. You could have 80 of those for one Photobucket account price.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: $400

        > $400 PA on a virtul hosting is quite expensive, but may be worth it depending on how much you care about 24/7 * 365 reliability and a help desk that speaks a language known to most people in your country.

        Yes exactly. My own personal hosting bill is at around $600/yr but that includes about a dozen servers, about 1.5 Tb, and (crucially) lots of IPv4 interfaces, which are quite expensive. But I imagine if you are prepared to pay $400/yr, you would want that sort of quality and capacity out of it.

        If you do not care much about redundancy, performance, capacity, or convenience, you could get some change out of $50/yr, or even do it free by hosting your pics in something like Farcebook or Github or whatever.

    2. Alistair Silver badge
      Pint

      Re: $400

      "Anyway, the site looks like something out of 2005 alright. It may be time for them to thrown in the bucket (har! har! and the towel, and the sponge, and the water bottle)?"

      && Baby, Bathwater, tub....

      I feel sorry that you exposed yourself to that mess. Have one of these to help out....

  23. Giles C

    Loads of alternatives

    I don't use photobucket - my Personal preference zenfolio I am a customer and have the unlimited hosting and sales package for £100 per year other packages are available

    The image file is cheaper £5 per month iirc

    smugmug not sure of the prices.

    Any of these will host images for a smaller fee and you can link to them directly without any problems.

    Nothing is free these days.... well air currently is

  24. DrRobert

    I don't understand why this is a big issue

    1. Mage Silver badge

      Why it's an issue

      After 8 minutes to a day a post can't be edited.

      So people might have thousands of old posts that are not "useless". They can only continue using their images by paying the $400.

      Alternate better solutions only work for the future. I decided an ISP solution was bad about 2001 or 2002 and realised I needed a bunch of domain names. They still work when you change provider.

      But for EXISTING posts on 3rd party websites, people need to pay the $400 to keep the images. It seems a bit greedy and counterproductive, surely they would have more than 8 times as many customers at $50 p.a.

      Unless maybe they are flogging the business next week and don't care.

      1. Charles 9 Silver badge

        Re: Why it's an issue

        So as another poster said, what if Photobucket were to just disappear? Same effect, and now ABSOLUTELY no recourse.

        1. moiety

          Re: Why it's an issue

          At $400/year, they probably are going to just disappear.

  25. GrapeBunch Bronze badge

    ( ! )

    Colleagues south of 49 may say that the remedy to: bait and switch, is: point and shoot. Or not.

    In the old-fashioned world of web pages, the move would be fairly easy, with a bulk search and replace of /oldserver.com/funnydirectory with /newserver.com/seriousdirectory, then re-up the pages. Old days, old ways.

  26. Trilkhai

    Full site hosting's not easy for everyone...

    A bunch of people have commented that PhotoBucket's users could switch to a cheap full site host for far less money than PB's extortionate fee — while technically true, the reason a lot of those people were using PB because they lack the skills needed to host their own site. I'm fairly technically capable, wrote/hosted my own site & blog from 1996-2003, and I find modern 'tools' like C-Panel too much of a pain in the ass to bother with, so I sure wouldn't expect the less-technical crowd to deal with it.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Full site hosting's not easy for everyone...

      > A bunch of people have commented that PhotoBucket's users could switch to a cheap full site host for far less money than PB's extortionate fee — while technically true, the reason a lot of those people were using PB because they lack the skills needed to host their own site.

      I believe that was used as an example of just how unrealistic their pricing is. In practice there are hundreds of other sites where you can host pictures for free which non-technical users can handle.

      By the way, upvoted for typographically correct use of em-dashes.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Full site hosting's not easy for everyone...

      Well yeah, cPanel is literally worse than just editing all the underlying linux text configs.

      1. Ben Tasker Silver badge

        Re: Full site hosting's not easy for everyone...

        And yet, still miles better than Plesk....

        I suspect the reason OP has issues with CPanel is because he has a reasonable idea of where thing should reasonably be, how they should be configured etc. Cpanel on the other hand is designed to be usable by the less technical, so things aren't located where we would expect to find them.

        I've seen and dealt with far worse than CPanel, so I'd choose it over them, but at the end of the day I'm much happier just hopping on over port 22.

        1. Korev Silver badge

          Re: Full site hosting's not easy for everyone...

          Also it means that the host doesn't need to let you have access to a terminal. They can then only "offer" that on their more expensive products.

  27. Jason Hindle Bronze badge

    They got greedy

    I pay a relatively small annual fee for my Flickr and SmugMug sites, with no such limitation. Compared to SmugMug in particular, the Photobucket galleries aren't terribly attractive. I'm sure many long time users would pay a reasonable amount to make this problem go away, but $400 is absurd.

  28. John Munyard

    I've just stopped using Photobucket altogether and moved elsewhere. I occasionally linked my photo gallaries to forum posts but the thing that pi$$ed me off is that they recently started restricting the resolution of photos hosted there to a miserable 1280x720. Absolutely useless for photographers.

    Over 20 years I've seen many Internet companies get too bit for thier own egos, and screw thier businesses up, Yahoo! and MySpace amongst them.

    Photobucket's rather grandiose and pompous assessment of the value of it's subscription at $400 is almost beyond being mocked. Goodbye FB, you're just made yourselves ridiculously irrelevant.

  29. Haku
    Coat

    Someone should start their own free/low cost image hosting called "Liza"

    "There's a hole in the bucket, dear Liza, dear Liza,

    There's a hole in the bucket, dear Liza, a hole."

  30. Dapprman
    Thumb Down

    As a paying Photobucket subsciber ...

    I've never been that impressed by their service.

    I originally used WebShots, as they were the first photo hosting site where the limit was number of pictures, not data capacity, plus their limit increased the longer you were a member. Think it was +100 photos per month for leachers (like me) and 1000 for subscriber. Alas their business model (prints, mugs, etc) obviously did not work and so they changed their system completely, right down to removing all albums (glad I never paid). I went to Photobucket as they seemed decent and I wanted to keep my flickr account just to my 'arty' shots - I used WebShots for holiday and group photos. Even took out a lower end subscription for more capacity, which I've had for about 4 years now. Always found the website slightly clunky and iOS and Android apps refuse to show photos in the correct order (always doing date reverse), but it worked for my purposes and I could cross link photos to forums if I liked.

    Now that little used, but useful functionality has been removed from me it does make me wonder if I should drop my subscription and look else where (I need albums and the ability to restrict access to some - such as for photos from friends weddings).

    Oddly enough, for general fomu posting I've always used imgur.com.

  31. ecofeco Silver badge

    Just think of the search engine effect

    This is really going to screw up a lot of search engine results.

    Can't wait to see the results.

  32. Kincaid

    Holding images as hostages.

    I just find the whole thing sad and funny at the same time. Okay, nice job Photobucket. Sure, you'll get some people willing to pay you but did you really think this through first? Good riddance.

  33. Ken Moorhouse Silver badge

    The trend from "free" to "paid"

    This trend has already started with various techniques persuading people to either pay or go away (I mentioned OneDrive earlier in this thread). We would think that the likes of Google would be more professional, more ethical than this, but let me ask the question anyway...

    Suppose, just suppose that one day you fired up Google, typed something in, and up comes a paywall. What would you do?

    Then you login to Gmail, and same paywall.

    Now postulate the same with Microsoft's free email service.

    The first day it happens will be the day you are expecting a super-urgent email. So you pay the ransom, it may be a few pence. But supply and demand, lack of competition, that nominal amount will balloon, given time.

    This is the reason you need to keep control. To keep your systems on-premises.

    All these companies are monitoring the unfolding of the PhotoBucket shambles and discussing how they would do the same thing better. Maybe PhotoBucket had some urgent financial constraint to meet, hence the sudden hike. But you can bet your life that other players will play their cards in a more orderly fashion, so as not to let on their true agenda.

  34. John Smith 19 Gold badge
    Unhappy

    Let me suggest an exchange....

    If you make money out of the internet

    You should pay some money back too the internet.

    Just a thought.

  35. wayne 8

    Bitcoin would make it okay.

    It would be okay if Bitcoin was accepted payment method?

  36. kain preacher Silver badge

    Lets see, go daddy is offering cheap 100gb if data hosting for three years prepaid at $215 and that L and them doing back up for you. Oh and office 360 mail. $251 gets you unlimited data unlimited websites

    1. Ken Moorhouse Silver badge

      them doing back up for you. Oh and office 360 mail. $251 gets you unlimited data unlimited websites

      The Marketing and Technical Departments are like the Public Library where there's some kind of segregation between the Fiction and Reference areas.

      Back ups: Some big players have been caught out when their systems go down.

      Unlimited. There is a limit. It's just that you don't know what that limit is. It might not even be a hard limit, it may well involve such things as bandwidth used.

      Look at the History section and it is easy to verify each of these two are promises that cannot be guaranteed.

  37. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Several years ago

    Photobucket were caught selling their customers email addys and other private details.

    I dumped em on principal then. My decision was wise it would appear.

  38. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Blah blah blah

    "My free stuff that I've never given a fuck about supporting but is free, now isn't free, even though it's a business with overheads, but no, I want my free back."

    Blah blah. How often does this happen? All the time.

    People need to realise that stuff isn't free on the internet. There's always a cost, somewhere.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Blah blah blah

      No one denies that.

      It's the manner that grates.

  39. MJI Silver badge

    I am emptying it now

    Good job I do have my own hosting but then tonight I need to waste time changing my web site

  40. MJI Silver badge

    Just closing it now

    Downloading all my images and deleting the albums

  41. imanidiot Silver badge

    Once again, the few screw the pooch for the many

    It's not the small users hosting some images for a forum that cost too much bandwidth, but I've recently seen for instance eBay sellers hosting all their pictures on Photobucket. And some that host hundreds of high res pictures and spam them all over the place, including high traffic sites. It's sad they don't run an option for a limited bandwidth cheap option. $400 is just excessive for hosting a forum banner and some smaller pictures I have posted on some low traffic relatively obscure internet fora.

  42. The New Turtle
    Meh

    I wonder if this was always the plan?

    About 3 years ago, having been with 'free' PB for a long time, I used up the 'free' bandwidth and paid for another 10GB. Entirely fine.

    At the same time I enquired about using photobucket as a proper hosting site for my image galleries, but the only paid account option they had still showed adverts to visitors - there was no 'pro' gallery option to showcase customer's work. On that basis I continued using them to host images on other sites, but there was no future for them as a pro gallery, so I looked elsewhere.

    When I have had the misfortune to visit using a browser without ad blocking, the experience has not been pleasant. When visiting as I have been, with decreasing frequency recently, there have been nagging popups asking that I consider paying extra for the bandwidth I'm using, and I very nearly succumbed, except that I barely use them now.

    I'm grateful for the years of free image hosting, but can only consider that they have just decided that they don't want to continue running the site any more.

  43. earl grey Silver badge
    Trollface

    rattlesnake in a pinata... ®

    Ok, I'll bite...erm....

    New keyboard please; I may have to borrow that phrase. Let me know where to send the payments.

  44. Marty McFly
    FAIL

    Buh-bye!

    Not a heavy Photobucket user. Have a few threads locked on a few forums in the 'top subjects' sections that are full of Photobucket pictures. I guess those threads are hosed now.

    I understand their business decision. IMHO, it would have been much better if they grandfathered in existing content and made the change relevant to new uploads. That would have kept them from breaking tons on existing legacy Internet content.

    Fail, for being bad stewards of Internet content.

  45. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Really?

    http://support.photobucket.com/hc/en-us/articles/200724504-Storage-Vs-Bandwidth-What-s-The-Difference-

    "Direct views of your images/videos on Photobucket does not use any bandwidth"

    New tech developed by PhotoBog?

  46. DaddyHoggy

    Photobucket have done me a favour. All my old screenshots on various forums scattered around the Internet are now effectively dead.

    This is probably the final push I needed to get me to invest in my own domain and pay for my own online storage space, just like I did 10-15yrs ago before I got lazy and sites like Photobucket encouraged you to use them with (at the time), nicer UIs and management tools...

    I got lazy, my bad, it won't happen again.

  47. John Munyard

    Sod them

    Been with them for 11 years. Closed my account last night and told them why in thier feedback.

    If they don't want the clicks and advertising then there are plenty of others who do.

    1. cathyk2002

      Re: Sod them

      Agree with this

      I use it for a Fan Forum as not everyone has Twitter/Facebook/Instagram etc to see the celebs pics and often just visit the Forum to see what is going on etc and now all the pics I have linked have now vanished from the Forum and been replaced with 'that' logo !!!!! Now shopping around for a 'free' hosting website

  48. killakittyclaws

    well ill tell you one thing it doesnt take an html guru to find their photo url on ANY site that allows photo sharing. and what is photobucket but a site based off browsing "other peoples photos"? what im getting at is basically photobucket is generating revenue already from peoples shared photos. ( because other peoples photos is what brings users. ) they are benefitting from ads and running a pay for no ads service to every user and then now want to turn around and further benefit from your photos by charging you to share you own photo. they are benefiting more than the user is benefiting if you ask me. and frankly it will cause them to lose what they had eventually. they might burn bright for a little while but it will last only until people start figuring out they can host and post the urls from the other free sites available to them. im no fortune telling seer but it doesnt take a seer to see that photobucket will crumble to dust sooner than later for it.

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