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Old 07-01-17, 12:17 PM   #1
tyrion
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Better image handling request - Photobucket mess

Most of us are aware of the Photobucket debacle in which Photobucket now charges (too much) to host images that are embedded on websites (including these forums), so most of the images hosted on Photobucket are disappearing from this site.

One solution is to use another hosting service and many here are turning to Flickr and Imgur.com to host images. The problem with this approach is that while it might work fine now, there's no guarantee Flickr and Imgur won't pull a Photobucket some time in the future. (Another problem is it takes slightly more work to post images on Imgur, get the link, then embed the image here.)

The best solution, IMO, is if the images would be hosted here and under the control of bikeforums.net admin. Currently (I heard, I haven't investigated myself) there is a 100kb size limit to images posted here.

I propose/request 2 things:
  1. increase the size limit for images stored here, maybe 250kb.
  2. implement a good image uploader/optimizer for this forum. This would enable someone to upload any image and it would automatically optimize (shrink) the image (to the specified size limit) if necessary. Maybe there's a vBulletin plugin for this? A (reliable) third party solution?
Item 1 should be fairly easy. Item 2 would be more difficult. Not sure how much this would cost but there might be an ROI in having a reliable store for these images - the most comprehensive collection of bicycle imagery on the internet.
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Old 07-01-17, 12:30 PM   #2
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I would love an easier way to upload photos here occaisonally, but wonder about what would be involved in hosting a huge photo library with open access.

I suspect would want to look at it very closely before going into a new area.

Then there's the question of pricing, what would be a fair price, and would folks be willing to pay it.
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Old 07-01-17, 12:33 PM   #3
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I second the OP's suggestion of larger attachment sizes.

As we will all soon see in the near future, this offensive action from PhotoBucket is ultimately going to devalue BikeForums by removing context from the hundreds of thousands of threads of data and knowledge sharing. There is a simple protection: Fix the issue (resolution/size limits) causing people to post pics on a 3rd-party source.

Sure, people who want hi-res photos can still use Flickr or Imgur, but they too will fail or sell out, and we'll see a second and/or third wave of context lost on the threads here.

I think 250k is a fair limit. But if not possible, most tools can get a 1024x768 higher-res picture down to 200k with only moderate quality lost.
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Old 07-01-17, 12:55 PM   #4
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The BikeForums system does automatically shrink larger images to 100 kb.

I agree, that size is a little restrictive, and 150 kb to 200kb would be more appropriate.

There used to be a reasonably good image manager before the last upgrade, but unfortunately that was lost.



I can still see attachments, but for some reason I don't get thumbnails, and the system is slow and cumbersome to find old photos.

http://www.bikeforums.net/profile.ph...ditattachments

With the old photo manager, I had also started sorting photos to find them quicker, but again no longer possible, so I now have to go through every photo and read the titles to find old photos.

Keep in mind, the better the photo manager, the fewer duplicate photos uploaded, and thus the less space required for saving photos.

Bike Forums not encoding photos with the standard .gif/.jpg extension also makes it difficult for search engines like Google to pick them up.

The other thing is that by default new photos are dumped at the end of the post. An undocumented feature is to use:
[attach] image number [/attach]
to post the image anywhere in the message, manually entering the information.

However, when these are quoted, the images don't show up in the quotes.

Old images can be referenced by using:
[img] full image link [/img]
Again, generally entered by hand.

Oh, and the "Insert Image" icon is confusing for users, whereas one must use the attachments icon to actually upload photos.
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Old 07-01-17, 01:52 PM   #5
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I would like to see a increase in the upload size limit for paid members at least. That way BF is covered if there were an extra expense and get more paid members.
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Old 07-01-17, 01:54 PM   #6
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This pic is 700 x 438 but file size is under 100k so it didn't resize it to 640 or less. Not too bad. I would like to see an increase in upload size for paid members at least.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg 20170526_144610 700 85.jpg (97.4 KB, 118 views)
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Old 07-01-17, 02:18 PM   #7
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This pic is 700 x 438 but file size is under 100k so it didn't resize it to 640 or less. Not too bad. I would like to see an increase in upload size for paid members at least.
I think there might be a business case to allow all (non-newbie) members to upload bigger images. Increased volume of content and quality of content should attract more eyeballs and translate to revenue.
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Old 07-01-17, 02:26 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post

Old images can be referenced by using:
[img] full image link [/img]
Again, generally entered by hand.

Oh, and the "Insert Image" icon is confusing for users, whereas one must use the attachments icon to actually upload photos.
In a better world all images should be inserted the same way. One should just click the button and be given a choice of inputing an URL (of an image already on the internet somewhere) or selecting a file from local disk. If one selects a file from local disk it will be uploaded and resized/compressed/optimized according to forum parameters and stored/referenced under the forums domain.

Images should be inserted within the text where the user specified, not at the bottom like attachments are done now.

(I'm a programmer with expertise in software usability, so in this area I know what I'm talking about.)

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Old 07-01-17, 11:13 PM   #9
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I'll be brutally honest: if Flickr does the same, I'll drop them and be out of this forum at one and the same time. What's the point of posting here without photos? Both to share and to view? I already pay for 3rd party hosting and unlimited uploads. I assume those leaving Pee-bucket in droves are going to go somewhere, so there will be more income generated by those joining up. I'm sure, for example, were they to find that Flickr offers 3rd party and unlimited storage for $25 per year, they'd sign up in a heartbeat considering the $399 ransom over at Pbucket.

Flickr et al wouldn't need to jack prices at that rate. But if they do...

Sorry, but maintaining my contributions to this forum isn't worth $399 or (God forbid) more per year. I guess I'd have more time for riding my bikes; silver lining, you know

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Old 07-01-17, 11:27 PM   #10
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I have successfully posted photobucket images in this forum in the last couple weeks. That is when I can wade through all the popups to get a url. Look at this thread to see if you can see them, I posted 4 or 5 images there from pbucket:
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Old 07-01-17, 11:34 PM   #11
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....What's the point of posting here without photos? Both to share and to view?.....

I have something close to 30,000 posts without photos here. Most of them were to help people with technical problems. I'd hate to think that they were ALL pointless.

I don't have a dog in the photo fight, though I understand that photos are very important to others, especially the C&V crowd.

I suspect that the forum management may find the photo situation as an opportunity, and come up with some kind of competitive pay to play program.

Actually, even though I've gotten by without, I'd love it if BF offered an easy way to directly upload a photo from my computer to a post. If there were, I'd probably use it to upload sketches of photos specifically to make an explanation clearer.

So, even without the dog, I guess I still have an interest, and will add my voice to those asking for easier photo upload and hosting here.
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Old 07-01-17, 11:52 PM   #12
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I have something close to 30,000 posts without photos here. Most of them were to help people with technical problems. I'd hate to think that they were ALL pointless.

I don't have a dog in the photo fight, though I understand that photos are very important to others, especially the C&V crowd.

I suspect that the forum management may find the photo situation as an opportunity, and come up with some kind of competitive pay to play program.

Actually, even though I've gotten by without, I'd love it if BF offered an easy way to directly upload a photo from my computer to a post. If there were, I'd probably use it to upload sketches of photos specifically to make an explanation clearer.

So, even without the dog, I guess I still have an interest, and will add my voice to those asking for easier photo upload and hosting here.
I don't put a pic in every post. I'm sure you know that's not what I meant.

Try to imagine a build thread with zero photos. What's the point? As Geddy put it, pictures give pleasure to your eyes.

I dare say that if this forum were bereft of photos the majority would find something better to do with their time. I'm sure there are plenty of lurkers simply trolling through pics of our rides and enjoying them without contributing at all. I'm not knocking them, either. To each their own.

"This thread is useless without pics" is not just a saying around here, it's a way of life.

That's my take, for whatever it's worth. Probably 2 pennies.

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Old 07-01-17, 11:56 PM   #13
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I don't put a pic in every post. I'm sure you know that's not what I meant.

....
Reread my post. Imagine possible emoticons, where I don't bother putting them, ie after my reference to feeling that my posts were pointless.

If you still haven't figured it out, read the rest, and it should be obvious that I like the idea of BF being more accommodating of photos.

On the flip side, is there a reason that the status quo isn't OK, except for having to find a new photo hosting site? That's an honest question since I don't use a photo host and don't know enough about the issue to have an opinion.
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Old 07-01-17, 11:59 PM   #14
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Reread my post. Imagine possible emoticons, where I don't bother putting them, ie after my reference to feeling that my posts were pointless.
Nah. That would require too much assumption on my part and it appears I already made that mistake once in this thread. I'm more a direct and to the point kind of guy. YMMV.

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Old 07-02-17, 12:05 AM   #15
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Actually, even though I've gotten by without, I'd love it if BF offered an easy way to directly upload a photo from my computer to a post. If there were, I'd probably use it to upload sketches of photos specifically to make an explanation clearer.
As mentioned many times. Just go to the advanced editor. Click on the paper clip.
Click "Browse". Select your image, then click on "Upload".

Oh, use JPG images. It will resize anything > 100 kb. I never try HUGE images. Hmmm, just tried a 4mb image, and it didn't like it Ok, so one should keep the sizes within reason.

I can't imagine it is any more difficult than going to a 3rd party host.
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Old 07-02-17, 12:05 AM   #16
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Nah. That would require too much assumption on my part and it appears I already made that mistake once in this thread. I'm more a direct and to the point kind of guy. YMMV.

DD
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Old 07-02-17, 12:10 AM   #17
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As mentioned many times. Just go to the advanced editor. Click on the paper clip.
Click "Browse". Select your image, then click on "Upload".

Oh, use JPG images. It will resize anything > 100 kb. I never try HUGE images. Hmmm, just tried a 4mb image, and it didn't like it Ok, so one should keep the sizes within reason.

I can't imagine it is any more difficult than going to a 3rd party host.
OK, thanks for that. I'll give it a try.

EUREKA!

(photo loaded, then deleted successfully)
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Old 07-02-17, 12:23 AM   #18
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In a better world all images should be inserted the same way. One should just click the button and be given a choice of inputing an URL (of an image already on the internet somewhere) or selecting a file from local disk. If one selects a file from local disk it will be uploaded and resized/compressed/optimized according to forum parameters and stored/referenced under the forums domain.

Images should be inserted within the text where the user specified, not at the bottom like attachments are done now.

(I'm a programmer with expertise in software usability, so in this area I know what I'm talking about.)
Yeah, that is what most sites do, and more or less what we had before the software change a year or two ago.

There was an "Insert Here" command that would put in the ATTACH command as above wherever the cursor was.

As far as bandwidth, I think we used to simply get thumbnails in the messages that could be easily expanded. I actually found that a bit annoying, but perhaps one could go with mid-sized photos (say 400x500 or so 0.2 MP), then allow opening the interesting ones to a larger resolution (2 MP?) And, if one returns to the same thread, one might not always open the large photos, but simply use the preview photos.

One could even give unregistered users the thumbnails, while regular users get the mid-sized images or full-sized images.
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Old 07-02-17, 01:33 AM   #19
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I hope BikeForums owner's/admins will improve their image support. Every single forum I visit is littered with frustrations and questions about uploading a picture. Any forum that institutes easy image uploading and management will win the readership game. C'mon BikeForums - help us out here.
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Old 07-03-17, 12:04 PM   #20
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Thanks for all the input regarding this. After the 4th of July, I'll have a discussion with staff here about what can be done to implement the suggestions made here.
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Old 07-03-17, 02:00 PM   #21
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Just my $0.02: I, for one, would not have a problem with this being a "members-only can post pictures" forum if this photo loading issue could be resolved (preferably with easier loading of larger sized photos from our home/work computers). I would pay for that.
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Old 07-03-17, 10:05 PM   #22
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I would like to see a increase in the upload size limit for paid members at least. That way BF is covered if there were an extra expense and get more paid members.

The only problems I see there are that
  • getting new paying members is still hard
  • because of some incorrect perceptions about popups and exploits as well
  • etc.
And I would still have a very large and image intensive, mostly NON-HOSTED thread called Tempest, The Grey Bike Grows Up in Alt. Bike Culture if I had only realized that a simple setting was defaulted so that I had only links while logged in and no problems logged out. Que Sera Whatever, I killed 8 years of basic blogging and the maybe I could reconstruct it if Archive.org took enough slices of the site to recover it...


BUT the point is still that you can post a lot of images, they have to be ATTACHED at the end of the post and not inline if you don't have a host.


And that the internet will eat itself after 25 years.


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Old 07-05-17, 11:46 AM   #23
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I thought the system for inserting photos here was much more intuitive just a year ago or so, and the resulting quality was much better.

Most photos from my year-old iPhone are too large to attach directly without modification. The burden to helping someone or documenting something weird for posterity is, I find, just too much sometimes.

Consider this tread where I contributed several years after the last constructive feedback from another member. Of course, no need for the pictures do be duplicated at the end of the post, but the quality is basically limited by my lousy photography skills.

When one googles "spinning cantilever stud", at least here in Sweden, that thread is at the top of the internet search. That could be useful for any other person with the same problem.
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Old 07-05-17, 12:14 PM   #24
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Assuming the management does decide to be more accommodating of larger photos, which I agree would be good all the way around, I have one request/suggestion.

As it is photos upload immediately when we look at the thread. That's fine, because the size limit keeps the upload time short.

But larger photos take longer, and will bog things down for those with limited bandwidth. So, I suggest that only the thumbnail loads automatically, and the larger image doesn't load until requested.

Alternative, photos smaller than a cut off size might upload in full, while larger ones, just a thumbnail.

I ask, because I'm often on where my bandwidth is limited, and I've had the computer lock up for too long when opening various threads with photos. It's not great but OK, but could be a problem if the photos are large.
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Old 07-08-17, 07:45 PM   #25
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I think there might be a business case to allow all (non-newbie) members to upload bigger images. Increased volume of content and quality of content should attract more eyeballs and translate to revenue.

What do you do when they buy a membership, are no longer a newbie...can you see what a logistical nightmare that would have to be?


Our owner Internet Brands has dozens of sites like this one and they all use the same forums software. We get what the others get.
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