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[Official Topic] Jan 18th PIPA/SOPA blackout

Flickr Staff

CateyCate PRO says:

Ahoy, Flickr members!

As you may have noticed, Flickr decided to join a bunch of websites in taking a stand against two proposed bills in the U.S. Congress, PIPA (Protect IP Act) and SOPA (Stop Online Piracy Act). Check out the blog post

** If you view Flickr in English, you will see the option to darken photos across the site for the day. Once you've 'darkened' a photo you can tweet it, to help spread the word.

** You can opt out. This means none of your photos can be 'darkened' by you or others. It will also remove the 'darken this photo' message for others on your photos. Opting out does not mean that all your photos go dark. If you accidentally opt out you can opt back in. Just go to any photo page to opt in or out.

** You can only darken 10 images and after that you won't see the option anymore. You can continue to tweet other darkened images though.

If you have any questions, post them here!


Staff update Jan 19 12:13am PST: The SOPA/PIPA darken features have been disabled.

Staff update Jan 18 2012, 9.22am PST:
Updated opt-out preferences and limits removed

[edited to update with opt in info.]
Posted at 1:19AM, 18 January 2012 PDT ( permalink )
Zack Sheppard (staff) edited this topic 81 months ago.

← prev 1 2 3 4 5
(1 to 100 of 472 replies in [Official Topic] Jan 18th PIPA/SOPA blackout)
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helen sotiriadis PRO says:

if you hit opt out by mistake, is it possible to opt in again?
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Steve-h PRO says:

When I first saw this big black notice my immediate reaction was that I had picked up a virus and someone had hacked my computer. And the first thing anyone going on line learns is NOT to click on anything.

Perhaps I am the only flickr member to be frightened by this , but I do think you should have approached this differently, perhaps giving people a warning that you were going to do it and to give those interested in involvement in US politics the chance of of opting IN rather than opting out.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Neal Romanek says:

I have accidentally opted out and am frantically trying to find a way to opt back in. Any ideas?
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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CatMacBride PRO says:

does each flickr member only have the ability to darken 10 images in total? (including their own and someone elses) and if you darken 10 images can other members darken more of your photos?
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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+gAbY+ says:

me too... need help here... i want to blacken my gallery!!!!!!!
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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il progetto says:

same here... accidentally opted out. I tried logging in from a different browser but no luck...
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Alucardo PRO says:

I'm looking for a way to opt in again after having hit opt out by mistake...
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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litherland PRO says:

@Steve-h, Flickr in fact gives users both options. Photos are not blacked out by default; it is up to individuals to decide whether or not to participate, and which images should be included.

This is one of the most creative approaches to the blackout that I have seen thus far.

But yeah, users need to have a way to redress destructive actions.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Yannis_H says:

Same here: I hit opt-out by accident....
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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weareuglybutwehavethemusic. says:

I hit opt-out by accident !
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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guasch says:

me too, accidentally hit "opt-out".
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Seth Reiben says:

Opt outed by accident, man...
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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*Margareta* PRO says:

Well, Flickr isn't only used by Americans. I find this irritating.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Pam UK says:

I don't think we should be made to worry about something we don't fully understand. Fortunately I didn't take any action.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Flickr Staff

deerkoski says:

Opt back in support is now live. Go to any photo page and click on the 'Opt my photos back in' link.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Not Quite Me says:

I did consider whether I should join this initiative. Then I read further. Choosing to black out my photos is a decision for me to make but for Flickr to allow others to black out my photos, presumably without my agreement, is just not on. So I opted out.

Apparently that's not enough for Flickr and I now have a black box appearing under each photo inviting me to opt in again. Roll on 19th January.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Lune Rambler says:

This is worrying - that my photos can be "got at" like that, and scare me! Please do not do this again Flickr. There are other ways to spread a message
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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jenniferbeinhacker.com PRO says:

i hit opt out on one photo....but the dark imagine appears still on my other photos......so how do i get rid of this image above my work for all time on all my photos?
i was on another photo and didn't see the opt out there...just opt back in.

do i have to see the opt out 9 more times and click it 9 more times before it disappears altogether????
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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guasch says:

aww yeah, sweet. thanks flickr staff guys.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Yannis_H says:

I cannot find a button/banner saying "darken my gallery". Where is it?

(I am using Mozilla 9.0.1)
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Steve-h PRO says:

It IS a good cause, but I think flickr has made a dog's dinner out of it. It is quite wrong to allow anyone to black out someone else's photo.... and it is equally wrong to to try to force people to opt back in.

I DON'T LIKE FLICKR TRYING TO BULLY ME !
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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aenee PRO says:

I find this very annoying too, i don't want that message under my photo's not even for one day. This is MY account, i payed for it ! i really don't like this action by flickr !!!!
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Marlis1 PRO says:

not sure I find this amusing. For non US members this does not make sense- what can we do against a stupid US government proposition?
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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grannie annie taggs PRO says:

I agree- maybe a worthwhile thing esp for the US - but it has been handled very badly
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Patrick Costello PRO says:

"For non US members this does not make sense"

If Flickr shuts down as a result of this legislation, that won't impact you in any way?
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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jenniferbeinhacker.com PRO says:

so i have to darken 10 images.....whether i agree with the bills or not (not saying either way as that is my business)...in order to get rid of this banner thing on all my photos????

if i just hit opt out (which i did) how come this banner thing doesn't disappear...doesn't opt out mean i don't want it on my photostream photos?

if i darken it , 10 times, then 10 of my photos are darken across the site for the day....what site???? flickr????? so no one can see those particular 10 photos all day????

or....i just have to wait until 19 jan. and then flickr will take it down????

this is so confusing....

and i do agree , with what some others have written, that i am uncomfortable with others having access to my photos on my photostream and can darken them without my knowing it (if i understand correctly that they can).

there are some folks on flickr that may want to make mischief and darken everyone's photos that they come across...

can you not wait until tomorrow to remove this banner...can you remove it now??????
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Ben Ward says:

“Choosing to black out my photos is a decision for me to make but for Flickr to allow others to black out my photos, presumably without my agreement, is just not on.”

For those expressing this sentiment in general: That's what SOPA, PIPA and similar pieces of legislation around the world *are*. They're devices to reduce the amount of effort, care, vigilance and due process required on the parts of copyright holders to have entire websites taken offline when accused of hosting copyrighted content. One day your website is there, the next someone clicked ‘Darken this photo’ on your entire business.

Except, of course, that an actual implementation of one of these laws wouldn't give you an easy ability to opt out.

It's SOPA and PIPA in the US today, but it's some other piece of legislation in your country tomorrow.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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ceila♪♫♪ PRO says:



"For non US members this does not make sense"

I put Flckr in French -:).
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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CatMacBride PRO says:

I think it's working ok...I've darkened out my top 10 most interesting, thanks for bringing my awarness to the issue...
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Steve-h PRO says:

@ Ben Ward - Thank you for t he explanation. I'm glad someone has put it so clearly, but I still think flickr has handled it badly.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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oafish care says:

Would have been nice if we were asked first before being opted in.
And even if you opt out the horrible black box still shows under every photo I have.
EPIC FAIL FLICKR.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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*Margareta* PRO says:

Make sure you remove the black banner on my shots NOW, your action is as scary to me as the law you protest against.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Yannis_H says:

The attempt to control the internet is a serious issue and we should stand against independently of countries. USA could set up a bad example in the western world. In the end analysis, internet is above boundaries, ethnicities, borders - to argue that this is an American issue and it doesn’t concern the rest of the world, goes against the heart of the internet substance and spirit.

This is not to say that Flickr acted wisely: allowing anyone to control whether my content will appear or not, is to a great extend, the same mistake the US Congress is about to do – just that, instead of companies or legislators, the right to stop freedom of expression in Flickr is given to individuals. Suppression, however, is one and the same, independently of how it works (from up to down or from down to up).
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Kindred Souls PRO says:

.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )
Kindred Souls edited this topic 81 months ago.

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Flickr Staff

Xerxes2K says:

jenniferbeinhacker – Once you opted out, your photos will show up without any SOPA/PIPA overlay, you or others will not be able to darken your images any longer, and only you can see the banner that informs about SOPA and PIPA and Flickr's awareness campaign.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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CatMacBride PRO says:

Kindred Souls, I would say this is more like your attention being brought to the possibility of your rights being violated permanently in the future read Ben Wards Comment above :)

very well said Ben :)
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Patrick Costello PRO says:

People here seem to be missing the point of this protest.
"This is complete violation of our rights to allow others to darken our photos."

(a) it's a 24 hour thing
(b) you can opt out
(c) the legislation this relates to will allow others to restrict what you share on the internet, permanently with no opt out.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Top End Shooter PRO says:

Take your bullshit propaganda of all my photos. I don't care to assist your political agenda. YOU should have asked and I would have said. NO.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Patrick Costello PRO says:

+1
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Top End Shooter PRO says:

And why do you think people have rights?
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Patrick Costello PRO says:

The message on your photo is you being asked. You can say no. Take the message off yourself by opting out.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Patrick Costello PRO says:

"And why do you think people have rights? "

So the US government can unilaterally deny them?
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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renearedman says:

I do not want to be part of this I feel violated that they put this on my pictures without my permission. I choose opt out but it is still there. How can I get it removed
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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*Margareta* PRO says:

I opted out and got a big black banner under all my shots for others to blacken them.
I haven't seen during my flickr years that you have taken action against similar laws in any other country, not even the really grim laws in China and other dictatorships. I don't want to wait untill tomorrow to have that black punishment banner removed.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Yannis_H says:

Allowing a suppression "because it's a 24 hours thing" is a very interesting concept. Not at all democratic, not at all western and not at all civic. Dictators have used time limits as an excuse for the violation of rights they impose... So, it's very interesting concept!
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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florriebassingbourn PRO says:

I don't think we should be made to worry about something we don't fully understand.

This comment gets my "Ostrich" prize to date.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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martian cat PRO says:

It makes no sense for me to blacken out my photos. Why would I want to do this?

If I do not want to have any blackened photos, how many photos do I have to do what to avoid this?
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Patrick Costello PRO says:

Of course it is democratic. You can vote yes or no; opt in or opt out. At least for now. If the legislation is passed, that option may be denied you completely.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Patrick Costello PRO says:

Just opt out. You don't have to join the protest if you don't want to.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Patrick Costello PRO says:

From the OP in this thread:
** You can opt out. This means none of your photos can be 'darkened' by you or others. It will also remove the 'darken this photo' message for others on your photos. Opting out does not mean that all your photos go dark. If you accidentally opt out you can opt back in. Just go to any photo page to opt in or out.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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martian cat PRO says:

So, if I select opt out, nobody can darken my photos?

But, that black message stays in place for how long?

How do you remove the black message?
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Yannis_H says:

I was referring to the 'time limit' excuse. It is not democratic - period.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Patrick Costello PRO says:

Only you see that message after you opt out. And the whole protest is only for 24 hours.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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ColleenM says:

For those of you who believe that what the US Congress does will have no impact on your Web experience:

The two bills being protested against would require US ISPs to block access to your photos and website along with forbidding companies like Paypal from letting anyone use their services to transfer funds to you.

This blocking and refusal to let you use services would happen based on the claims of music or movie companies, without any judicial oversite. All that would have to happen is that someone in a large corporation would send an email asking that your images/site be blocked and money transfers be forbidden.

There is no judicial process involved. It is corporations deciding whether you were breaking the laws and applying penalties on their own say so.

Still think it won't affect you?

What the US Congress is proposing would adversely affect you whether you care or not.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Patrick Costello PRO says:

It's a 24 hour protest giving members a taste of what the legislation might mean. If you don't want to experience the effects then you can opt out. I fail to see how that meets any definition of "undemocratic".
In any case this is a privately owned site and not a democracy. If Yahoo decide to double your subscription fee, they won't put it out for a vote.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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jenniferbeinhacker.com PRO says:

hello Xerxes2K -thanks for the clarification
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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*Margareta* PRO says:

I still feel violated. Even if only I can see the banner. I want it removed, it's like forcing me to wear somebody else's shoes.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Patrick Costello PRO says:

So how will you feel if the legislation is passed and this sort of thing becomes the norm?
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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ColleenM says:

You'll feel more violated when you are blocked from posting photos and using internet payment services by some company you've never had any dealings with, without any courts being involved.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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martian cat PRO says:

Thank you for the explanation.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )
martian cat edited this topic 81 months ago.

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*Margareta* PRO says:

I don't support pirate activity and I don't think that US = the whole world, if you excuse me.
Protest
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Yannis_H says:

A private owned site offering paid services. First crucial issue.
A private owned site operating in the net dealing with public content. Newspapers are private owned enterprises too - the nature of their business, however, is different. Second crucial issue. In order to realize your mistake, change your phrase into: "this is a private newspaper, not a democracy'. Internet is media and the rules of freedom of expression applies fully. It's not so hard to understand it....
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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ColleenM says:

Margareta, you could be affected anyway. It doesn't matter whether you actually support pirate activity.

US corporations could claim that you did, and other US corporations would be required by this law to block access to your site and block you from use of various internet money transfer methods.

Paypal would have to block your account whether you'd actually done anything wrong or not.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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ColleenM says:

Yannis_H

There are no privately owned internet services where the rules of freedom of expression apply. All US internet companies would be required to enforce copyright laws by blocking access to internet services and to your website.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Patrick Costello PRO says:

You totally lost me. Newspapers print all sorts of rubbish and routinely invade the privacy of individuals, quoting "the public interest". They get to publish your pictures for free under the editorial aspect of the Fair Use provision in the US Copyright law.

And this paid service comes with "terms of service" that you agreed to. They certainly allow for the site to add messages to your page. Indeed, Yahoo can delete your whole account on a whim. It wouldn't be good for business, but it would be perfectly legal.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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well-groomed look says:

Great idea for people to be able to opt-in their own work, but I'm not entirely comfortable with the idea of being able to blackout other people's images without their consent.

Seems an invasive step too far that could lead to abuse, panic and confusion.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Kindred Souls PRO says:

=
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )
Kindred Souls edited this topic 81 months ago.

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ColleenM says:

For those of you who want more information about the strike, here is the page where many people are re-directing their own websites to today

sopastrike.com/
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Zoom Lens says:

I'm sure anxious congressmen are perusing blacked-out Flickr photos and having second thoughts.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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personne.de.chandigarh PRO says:

Much as many would have wished it to be otherwise, they simply do not have a moral locus standi on the issue, not being U.S. citizens. But, certainly, any measure which could result in the curbing of free speech and expression on the net ought to be a strict no-no.

On the other hand, having gone through the rather painful process, not always successfully, of getting web sites to take down pictures they have hijacked from my photostream, I wonder if this is not a totally gray area on which it'd be foolhardy to take or express a stance without adequate knowledge of all the issues.

But as Flickr supports the cause, so do I. So darkening it
is :-)
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Patrick Costello PRO says:

"not entirely comfortable with the idea of being able to blackout other people's images without their consent"

Nor should you be; which is the whole point of allowing it for a few hours. Experience a little bit of this intrusion and then decide whether it's a good idea before it's too late.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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~Terrie K ~ says:

the sky is falling!!! ( rolls eyes). Exactly what 'help' does this propaganda have to do with how Flickr's site works which is quite often quoted by the regular "helpers" here to many members that post opinions on Flickr changes. Seems the regular "helpers" support this change since they are very vocal in promoting the political propaganda to those that dare to oppose being forced to participate. Even if it is a good cause this is a political issue and should not be 'forced' site wide onto all members.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Patrick Costello PRO says:

Flickr is just one site. If I change my vote at the next UK election that won't bring down the government. But if enough people join in ...
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Patrick Costello PRO says:

Not true. We are also actively directing people to the opt out button if they need it.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Yannis_H says:

(a) Acrobatics of the sort ‘it’s only for 24 hours’ do not apply when referring to the freedom of expression.
(b) I repeat: the Congress wants to pass a bill allowing control of the flow of information in the internet. Flickr, by allowing anyone to hide pictures, does exactly the same thing. To fight a mistake, it commits the very same one.
(c) An internet site is a media. It has to be treated as such and cannot be treated otherwise. A cheese factory is subject to laws on hygiene, a mass media is subject to laws on freedom of expression.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Patrick Costello PRO says:

OK, I'm obviously a bit dim. How is Flickr curbing your freedom of expression?
Does a library curb your freedom of expression by requiring you to go outside to shout?
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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cnmark says:

Once you opted out, your photos will show up without any SOPA/PIPA overlay

I have opted out when this black box came up first..
Now my photo pages do again show an annoying black SOPA/PIPA banner that urges me to opt back in.
How can I turn this annoyance totally off?
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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*Margareta* PRO says:

I feel used, Flickr is not the right forum for politics.
Now the flickr mice try to sound like lions. I'm sure the US governement is really scared.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Henk oochappan says:

I believe there are better ways then fooling around with photos on a photosite, so I opted out and removed it by CSS in google chrome :

div#pipa-sopa-blackout-form{display: none !important;}

pollution gone
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Patrick Costello PRO says:

Only you see that if you opt out.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Zoom Lens says:

Flickr is curbing freedom of expression by allowing others' to exercise control over your private photos. No one should be allowed to darken my photo...but they should be allowed to darken their own if desired as a form of protest...or whatever.

Patrick...really...it doesn't matter how many people participate in this silly thing Congress is going to do exactly what it wants to do!

How much positive change has the Occupy Movement brought about, and it's much more visible than Flickr, et al. The rich still run things as they want to, and give themselves increasingly higher bonuses.

Watch Jamie Johnson's (the Johnson heir) documentary:

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_One_Percent
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Janet 59 PRO says:

As a British flickr user I rather resent having this put under my photos with out my consent. The USA legislation has nothing to do with me. We should have the option to remove it altogether. It's unsightly and puts people off commenting.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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fanatical approval PRO says:

Only the notice has been rolled-out site wide. Click the opt-out link and no one will be able to darken any of your photos, nor will they see the message. Furthermore, I wouldn't assume all of the regular "helpers" disagree with SOPA or agree with the strike. They are explaining the situation to those that apparently don't understand.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Patrick Costello PRO says:

They aren't allowing it; you are. If you don't want anyone to darken your photo, just opt out.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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C-Aida PRO says:

Fortunately I could opt out of it and stop others from darkening my photos.

I would prefer an option to get rid of the political banner alltogether but it`s not a real problem, just slightly annoying.

Flickr is otherwise a good site in my opinion. Many good things here, but it`s human nature that we usually only give feedback if something is wrong :)

Keep up the good work.

greetings
A.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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ausfi says:

Soon after I darkened one of my photos, both the page and internet where closed, with the message that something harmful was trying to access my datasystem. I hope there is no connection? This has happened more than once.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Patrick Costello PRO says:

I'm a British Flickr user. Flickr is a US site, so the legislation has a lot to do with me.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Zoom Lens says:

I shouldn't have to opt out of the norm!
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Patrick Costello PRO says:

Flickr can't cause the closure of the internet. The US government on the other hand, would like to try.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Patrick Costello PRO says:

Console yourself with the thought that if the legislation passes, you won't have an opt out button.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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well-groomed look says:

Those in the UK who are bemoaning that SOPA and PIPA don't affect them obviously don't know much about SOPA/PIPA/DEACT.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Zoom Lens says:

Won't need one. And as someone who has had my intellectual property stolen before, I support this legislation. It's not going to affect anyone who is operating within the law. Flickr will go on as normal, as will the Internet. For those who have stolen my photos and other intellectual properties and tried to pass them off as their own it will help to make life more difficult for them, and I'm all for that!
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Steve-h PRO says:

Having read all the comments, I accept that it is a very serious issue, and it obviously will affect non-US citizens, but I am curious to know why these black paragraphs have only been inflicted on English-speaking members. If those in favour of this protest are correct - and I assume they are - surely people of all nations should have been given the option.

I repeat - I think flickr has handled this very badly. Perhaps it would have been a lot less controversial just to have closed the whole site for the day as Wikipedia has done.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Roger T Wong PRO says:

Great idea, thanks for giving us the option to take part.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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cnmark says:

Only you see that if you opt out.
But I do not want to see this annoyance. Thought the implication was quite clear in my post.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Patrick Costello PRO says:

"Perhaps it would have been a lot less controversial just to have closed the whole site for the day as Wikipedia has done."

You don't think some pro members might have been even more upset by the denial of the service they pay for?
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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*Margareta* PRO says:

Patrick Costello Have you been appointed to handle this discussion or are you a volonteer?
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Patrick Costello PRO says:

We all know that some members of this site ignore IC law and repost copyrighted material. So if that results in Flickr being blacklisted, that won't bother you?
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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ausfi says:

Patrick, I did not say Flickr did it. Some harmful addition did. I just wanted to make sure that darkening the photo had nothing to do with it. As no-one else has mentioned the matter, it is probably something else. I'm not so savvy about the workings of the internet.
I would rather staff answer this than another user.
I certainly do not want that legislation to pass.
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

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Patrick Costello PRO says:

I think Flickr members are well versed in discussing issues without needing any handling :-)
Posted 81 months ago. ( permalink )

This thread has been closed by Flickr Staff.

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