Photobucket accused of blackmail after quietly requiring users to pay $400 a year

scotto

Administrator
Staff member
Feb 15, 2004
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The Beach Strip
#1
Photobucket accused of blackmail after quietly requiring users to pay $400 a year to hotlink

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Thousands of listings from online marketplaces like Amazon and eBay are now filled with unsightly error images by Photobucket after the photo hosting site quietly introduced a $399 annual fee to users who want to embed images on third party websites. Users are now accusing Photobucket of extortion, as the service failed to make the update to its terms of service abundantly clear.



Users are accusing Photobucket of extortion

It all began last week when Photobucket announced in a short blog post that it had updated its terms of service that had begun taking effect from June 20th. Nowhere in the blog post did Photobucket highlight the most important change, which was that it will now cost uploaders $400 a year to insert their photos on another website using direct image links.

Photobucket, which launched in 2003, was previously free for all users to upload and embed images all over the web. It was a popular image hosting service of choice for early 2000s bloggers (think Xanga and LiveJournal) until the likes of Facebook and Instagram came along. Since then, it remained widely used by small businesses selling items through online marketplaces, offering 2GB of storage for free or $100 a year for 102GB of storage (the most popular paid plan, according to the service). The update to Photobucket’s ToS, however, means users are forced to upgrade to the most premium tier if they wish to hotlink.

You can imagine, then, the outrage that ensued. It appears some users can’t even download their own photos out of their Photobucket accounts without upgrading.
https://www.theverge.com/2017/7/4/15919224/photobucket-broken-images-amazon-ebay-etsy-paid-update
 

Sharla1

Registered User
Oct 15, 2009
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#2
I hadn't been on the site for quite some time. I am in middle of deleting all of the pictures on there. I do have many links on here though. I'll see if I can upload them later. I couldn't believe all of the ads on there now. It used to be a good site.
 

scotto

Administrator
Staff member
Feb 15, 2004
6,572
105
63
The Beach Strip
#3
I hadn't been on the site for quite some time. I am in middle of deleting all of the pictures on there. I do have many links on here though. I'll see if I can upload them later. I couldn't believe all of the ads on there now. It used to be a good site.
I guess you could just add them as an attached picture, but they did look so much better using Photobucket. It seems I have some time to move my pictures (and I have lots) as I was paying a small fee to keep the ads down. But I will get the boot too.
If you need a hand replacing your photos. let me know.
 
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