Why does TH not self-host images/video?

britechguy

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Jul 2, 2019
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I have never understood the recent trend toward pushing people to host images and videos on third-party sites. While it definitely saves the site owner on storage space, it also exposes a site such as this one to loss of an accurate historical record.

When so many posts rely on images and/or video as a substantial part of their content, having that possible "drop out" because an external hosting site closes up shop makes archival content anything from compromised to useless.

TH is certainly not the only site to do this. The cost of storage has done nothing but go down and down over time, yet most sites used to self-host this content, and now many don't.

I remember when one of the former major picture hosting sites decided that they were going to start charging all their users who had been putting stuff out there for years with them hosting for free. On several tech forums I'm on it was like an instant "historical black out" as those images were ripped out of all the posts in which they were used.

Not that I think I'll get it, but I do think that owners of sites such as this one really need to consider how pivotal both images and video are (and they already seem to know that) and that not having control over same by hosting it means that it can come and go at the will of others, which isn't good.

It would be nice if users could attach photos and/or video directly to messages rather than having to host them externally. Then having the option to display same inline in a message, if desired, would be helpful, too.
 

britechguy

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Jul 2, 2019
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I realize what the standard response typically is, given the profit that is made (and it is) by site owners for sites such as this it strikes me that hosting pictures should be "part of the bargain" for the reasons I stated.

And I really don't know if site owners really have considered what happens when an external host site goes belly up. PhotoBucket doing so, for all practical intents and purposes, has spread a plague of "broken image" icons across the internet. In messages such as tutorials, where screen shots often play a pivotal role, that's a disaster.

Storage has gotten cheap if you yourself have the hardware and even cheaper if you purchase from cloud storage companies such as Amazon Web Services (which is really, really unlikely to go belly up).

I just find it strange that cost seems to be the primary (sometimes only) consideration.

What's been done in the past doesn't mean the practice should continue, though I have very little doubt that it will.
 

Rogue Leader

It's a trap!
Moderator
We have already run into that issue (image site lost, images broken), I can tell you costs are not the only factor in the decision that was made not to host images.

Tom's is owned by a very large corporation (Future Plc), they have a full understanding of the costs and hosting needs.
 

britechguy

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Jul 2, 2019
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OK.

I wasn't expecting any change, really, but you have zero chance of getting something if you don't ask about it.

I don't have to agree with or understand the reasoning, but I am not the site owner, so the subject can be considered closed (and, in reality, was before I ever brought it up).
 

britechguy

Commendable
Jul 2, 2019
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On two, separate occasions and attempts, clicking on the offered link gets me an, "Oops! Cannot be found!" message.

And, now, for yet another of my unsolicited opinions, if by "cover" you mean the animated GIFs that so many are using down near their signatures I only wish those would be plunged into the ocean never to be seen again. They're distracting as hell, just like most animated images stuck in at random places are.

We now return you to your regularly scheduled program. (And you have to be of a certain age to get that reference).
 

Colif

Win 10 Master
Moderator
you can change settings to not see sigs if you want to.

My flashy gif is a link to the Forum feedback sticky thread, my other image just links to the How to award Best Answer thread - both are just there to hopefully help people if they randomly click them.

When the day comes it is easier for a new person to work out how to mark a question as solved without everyone having it in their sigs, I will happily have no sigs.
 

britechguy

Commendable
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For myself, I do want to see sigs.

What I don't want to see is these %$ things that blink, shake, etc. They are distracting and have never been a help.

And let me be clear, it is entirely within the rights of those using them to do so. But I really believe that many who do have never considered how absolutely hated this sort of visually distracting detritus is. Seeing anime characters get zapped by lightning, shaking Windows 10 logos and advertising for this forum, and similar [the examples are endless] just takes away my ability to concentrate easily on forum content. And there is no way to be rid of it unless I were to be willing to rid myself of signature content I do want to see, such as the "how to mark best answer correctly" note, as but one example.

It's not images, per se, that are problematic.
 

britechguy

Commendable
Jul 2, 2019
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True, if I were using uBlock Origin, but under Brave I'm not because I don't need it here.

I am, truly, not trying to get into a pissing match here. One of the reasons I use ad blockers and browsers that ad block is not because I hate ads on principle, but because they use exactly the same sort of animated "HEY, LOOK AT ME!!" techniques, coupled very often with sound, that make my browsing life miserable.

If most web advertising were akin to print advertising, where it was just an appealing image, informational text, and links I could choose to click through to or not, I would never have installed my first ad blocker.

Also, in my case my dislike is just that: dislike. I have no issues that I cannot overcome with images such as the "big, shaking blue" you use in your signature, but that is not true for a lot of the readership on the internet. For folks with attention issues, vision issues, and a wide variety of other things these kinds of visual targets are far, far harder [if not actually impossible] to filter out easily and effectively.

The "target audience" of a site such as TH is far, far broader than I think many people can and do appreciate. I try to write, and format, with that in mind. And I'm not saying that you don't, but I have no idea as to whether anything I've said in the immediately preceding paragraph is something you (both you, personally, and the generic "yous" reading) have ever considered. I can't, and shouldn't, be able to dictate to you what you do but I have no problem trying to make others aware of things they may not have considered.

P.S.: Tried the "Block element via selector" option when right clicking on that image in Brave, and it doesn't block. I will try the uBlock bit just to see if it does under Chrome or Edge Dev.
 

NightHawkRMX

Illustrious
Im fine with the best answer thing but the other gifs are distracting.

Nothing really major and i dont feel like much should be done, but it is annyoing, buth like an ad before a youtube video. Unfortunately, an adblocker doent affect them.
 

Colif

Win 10 Master
Moderator
I get not wanting flashing lights, its why we restricted the size of sigs (thats another story best not started) and there aren't that many compared to the ads non users see here (another story) and nowhere near as flash ads were 15 years ago... all my browsers have ublock, I don't recognise internet with ads.
 

britechguy

Commendable
Jul 2, 2019
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Colif,

A quick follow-up on the element blocking. It doesn't work, at least not "permanently" and globally.

I can get uBlock origin to block that image, but if I go to another page or even go back to the one where I set up the element block initially it's back again. I could also be doing something wrong in terms of saving the element block entry.
 

VADemon

Honorable
Jul 6, 2014
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Vanishing images are a source of pain. Tinypic is shutting down all image hosting this september. Yet another loss.
But what can you say when even TH articles can't keep their images? https://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/ram-speed-tests,1807-9.html - even if you right click and open the image in a new tab, proceed despite the HTTPS certificate warning, you'll notice the image's gone.
You can't view the article in the Internet Archive either, so it's a loss-loss.
The Internet was envisioned as a library of public knowledge, but it's not living up to the true vision.
 

Colif

Win 10 Master
Moderator
Most libraries don't even keep copies of books older than 10 years old now, so a Tom's article from 2008 only missing some images is actually still maintaining more old info than your average LIbrary in your town. Yes, not all libraries are the same, special purpose ones will often have older books but anyway.

I don't know why that article is like that as it was created 7 years before I joined.
 

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