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[locked, redirected] flickr now censoring all moderate and restricted photos from Germany

myfear says:

Follow up for the discussion started in
www.flickr.com/help/forum/en-us/35971/page6/

You are welcome to say anything about this.

(edit: link not working)

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

Official fresh start (a new topic)

Older updates from staff:
fifth · fourth · third · second · first
Posted at 11:29PM, 12 June 2007 PST ( permalink )
George (staff) edited this topic 94 months ago.

(101 to 200 of 4,960 replies in [locked, redirected] flickr now censoring all moderate and restricted photos from Germany)
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Mark Howells-Mead says:

OK, and when you go to "My Account", which logo do you see then?
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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Sunneschii says:

(I had to go to the German yahoo site to have a look at that logo...)
It's the normal Yahoo logo that it's on "My Account". One without Deutschland written underneath.

The funny thing is: I can see black boxes. My bf with a free account (and Yahoo Deutschland Yahoo account) doesn't even see that the pictures are there.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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Mark Howells-Mead says:

Do you see Fabio Borquez's photos?

www.flickr.com/photos/fabioborquez/
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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Sebastian Nohn says:

www.nohn.org/blog/archives/32-My-photos-are-unavailable-t...
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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Sunneschii says:

Yes, and now I AM confused.
I can't see these pictures: www.flickr.com/photos/redheadraye/sets/72157600080670323/
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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Mark Howells-Mead says:

That is odd. I think there is definitely a bug there somewhere, it seems as though there isn't just one problem here... I'd suggest waiting to see what Flickr say, before changing everything around.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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Sunneschii says:

Good idea... i'll have dinner now.. ;-)
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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Mark Howells-Mead says:

Ä guete!
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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oliver regelmann says:

This is unacceptable!

My pro account expires in August and I'm seriously considering not to extend it. Yahoo's and flickr's management should really reconsider their plans for this site... there have happened just too many issues (arbitrary censorships of some users' photos, rebekka's stolen-pictures-incident, this actual censorship etc.), it's not fun anymore.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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myfear says:

10 hours without any resonse from flickr? I do not realy know, what to say or even think about this .....
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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SFG says:

Could we please have an official statement for this issue?

I'm not paying flickr to be locked out from seeing pictures. This very annoying!
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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rim light says:

Wenn das so weiter geht...
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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myfear says:



Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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myfear says:



Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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OptiRoc says:

It is absolutely unacceptable what flickr is doing with us!
I think they are going to loose most of their paying german customers.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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kaiuhlemeyer says:

If they go on linke this, they can do it alone, without me, my photos and my monthly payments

zensur NEIN DANKE! DO BLOG ABOUT IT!
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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Jay16K says:

I always use a US Adress for my Internet Website Accounts, and the international or US Sites, so I am not affected, although i live in Germany.
The only odd thing I am experiencing is that i most likely won't be able to extend my Pro Account because i don't have Credit Card and that i can only pay with Yahoo Wallet and no longer Paypal...
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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myfear says:

The thing that gets me realy started: It seems as if the voices are ignored ... nobody posting anything about this up to now ... I am realy interessted to know about the "why" ...
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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Jim Skea says:

@myfear: I imagine they're having a very long early-morning meeting about what to say.

As for the "why", I'd bet my bottom dollar it has something to do with German laws about sites that display Nazi or Neo-nazi symbols there.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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manganite says:

"I am realy interessted to know about the "why" ... "

Hm, the 'why' will be the interpretation of flickr/yahoos lawyers of the German laws in that sense that the method flickr uses to handle with unsafe pictures is not sufficient.

When you open an yahoo account you can type in any age, so a ten year old could get an account which allows him to see unsafe pictures.

I guess that german laws require some more sophisticated method to proof your age...
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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fbz_ says:

please flickr team and yahoo execs, don't censor your members, paying members, foreign or otherwise. please don't be idiotic. kthxbye.

dude wtf omg
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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birdyboo says:

Jim Skea I'm not sure that many people who might post Nazi related photos would think to filter them. I'm thinking of people who might be putting old family photos from that era up as well as relics.

It does seem like this is going to need a very carefully worded statement. It's a little surprising though that a response for this action was not anticipated. It would be unfortunate if Flickr gives the appearance of encouraging people to circumvent German laws.

I'm wondering about how German based photography sites are run. Do they require something similar to the SafeSearch?
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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Sebastian Schubanz says:

i can't believe it!!!!
this is just stupid.

ok, i know this is not a pornsite and i usually don't expect to see nudes all the time. but at least there is a picture here and there, i would love to see it too.

i love flickr, but as i'm censored now, i feel like living in china and i'm very frustrated! :(
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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Scy83 says:

A lot of people seem not to know this, so I'm putting it in bold in this thread for everyone to see: If you're not using Nazi symbols for propaganda, but for documentation, art or anything that makes it obvious that you don't think like the Nazis did, showing swastikas etc. in Germany is perfectly legal!
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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Sebastian Schubanz says:

birdyboo:
"I'm wondering about how German based photography sites are run. Do they require something similar to the SafeSearch?"

not all of them. there are a few that show nude just for paying members, like the largest one fotocommunity.de.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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Walwyn says:

I suspect they are waiting for some of the heat to cool off. No point stepping into a maelstrom, or fanning the flames.

I've yet to see a case where there wasn't a reasonable explanation from flickr, and it normally turns out that they are evil. This will be based on legal advice concerning German censorship laws.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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Jim Skea says:

I'm not sure that many people who might post Nazi related photos would think to filter them. I'm thinking of people who might be putting old family photos from that era up as well as relics.

I agree. We don't know the background here but say you were served with an injunction to prohibit the display of certain material in Germany, subject to a daily fine (often hefty) for non-compliance. The first thing you'd want to do would be to try to show you're taking the necessary steps towards compliance, and one of the possible measures would be to filter all images deemed "unsafe" by the users. Personally I don't think that's the right solution, or a good solution, but I can see why Flickr staff might take such a step until they can get something more discerning into place.

I'm wondering about how German based photography sites are run. Do they require something similar to the SafeSearch?

If the problem is nazi/neonazi symbols then a Safesearch wouldn't be necessary since just carrying that content would be prohibited on a server located in Germany.

@Scytale: I'm aware of the laws that cover scientific and educational use (and also the fact that use of Nazi symbols is permitted in anti-nazi propaganda). But can you guarantee that's the case with all such images on public display on Flickr?
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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kucharo says:

I hate censorship just as much as the next person, but I can't help but think that a lot of energy is being misdirected at Yahoo/Flickr instead of at the local governments who are most certainly demanding the censorship. In order for Yahoo to operate in countries outside the U.S. they have to abide by local laws or face legal action and service blocking by local authorities. Yahoo is not just a US company, they are incorporated internationally which makes any legal action the equivalent of Yahoo being a German corporation or a Singaporean, etc.

If there is any apparent "evil" in this, it's that Yahoo is behaving like any other corporation and protecting themselves both legally and financially. Anyone who thinks they would do less is very naive about the nature of a corporation. While you might demand that Flickr assist you in defeating your local laws, it's not in their best interest to do so.

Yahoo is a large corporation, they are not individuals who can easily bypass legal and technical restrictions with few consequences. So while you have a legitimate complaint by being paying customers, you also agreed to the TOS when you signed up. It's a two way street. Simply paying for something is no guarantor of complete and total freedom, especially if you are bound to the restrictions of a TOS agreement.

So by all means, protest the censorship. Just direct it at the right source. Using Yahoo/Flickr as a proxy for a legitimate disagreement with local censorship doesn't make much sense.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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Pacdog says:

I'm not surprised per say, but dissapointed that the Staff have not even posted one reply here... The yahoo lawers must have their fingers on this one..
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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Sunneschii says:

Well... for a part of the affected people that might be true.
But some others here are not Germans. But as we do have a German Yahoo ID, we fall under the same law. And it seems that it's impossible to just change the Yahoo account from a German to a US one, to get normality back.
What I want from flickr is that they say something, tell us what way out does exist.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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Lars Pohlmann says:

the photos have been taken out of interestingness, it seems...
i could be wrong, though...

zensur
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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Spiritus Negator says:

Even if Flickr would have the impression that certain content (may it be Nazi propaganda or simple nudes) is prohibited to display under german law, it is definitely not the right measure to block all content that is flagged as "moderate" or "restricted". In fact I'm pretty sure that this collides with the german anti-discrimination laws. You cannot punish a whole group - in this case a whole nation - just to filter out a few questionable photos.

But either way, it is now high time for Flickr staff to show up here and to address the issue! Come on, it's almost noon over there in sunny California! This is not funny, really not funny!
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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Proggie says:

Why does it take so long for Flickr to respond to such things? If this is an intended behaviour, why can't Flickr tell all its German customers ahead of time what the plan will be, and their reasons for implementing it? Staying silent on the issue is just fanning the flames.
It's bad enough that individuals were being censored (by mistake or not), and now whole countries? We need answers NOW!
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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kucharo says:

Fair enough, but they have to do that. Lawyers and accountants are the two groups that run corporations, by and large. Especially when the company is publicly traded. I'm sure the staff would love to do something, but they are just employees.

At least that is the case here in the US.

Sunneschii has a definite complaint though, if she doesn't live in Germany and isn't a German.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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Cody-cool says:

Copy and save this, it's flashing.



Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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Jim Skea says:

it is definitely not the right measure to block all content that is flagged as "moderate" or "restricted".

@Remmy1: I wholeheartedly agree.

One of the things I can't understand is why these filters were implemented on the same day as internationalization. It would be a huge and unfortunate coincidence if an injunction had been served on the same day.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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swisskiltbear says:

Well,

Yahoo! does have a reputation of being, err, very proactive when it comes to perceived legal issues. (China, anyone?)

Current german laws suggest no direct reason for such sweeping censorship, especially as the images are not hosted on servers in Germany.

The media laws and rather strict laws for the protection of minors quoted here only apply to content hosted in Germany, or more precisely, on servers located in Germany. This is also the reason that many german "adult" sites have now moved ther servers to other European countries.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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Sunneschii says:

I don't live in Germany, and I'm not German. I'm only German speaking.
And nowhere on my Yahoo account it says now (I changed from German content to US content today) that I have some connection with Germany. But still, I can't switch off SafeSearch.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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kucharo says:

I'll agree with Remmy1 on that as well. However, it might be difficult to obtain a level of filtering granularity that would allow some things and not other things. Also, the local authorities might be involved. Everyone has a legitimate complaint in the lack of response to this specific problem.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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23hq.com/eeek says:

Until today, I've loved Flickr and recommended it to everyone interested in photography. In fact, I've converted several friends to Flickr. But obviously you are not interested in your German users, since you've crippled our accounts so we can't use Flickr's full functionality.

If you don't change your TOS, so I'm allowed to turn off Safe Search I will definitley now renew my Pro account. And I'm quite sure I'm not the only German user you will loose.

There is no law in Germany that forbids me to look at pictures of nudity. In fact, the laws regarding nudity or even pornography are much more liberal here than in the US, so there's no reason to restrict what we're allowed to see.

You don't want German money? There are plenty of other places we can spend it. Crippling the accounts of German users will make your competitors very happy.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx says:

Flickr, a bunch of cowardly capitalist pigs.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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Angry Lawn Gnome says:

It will not simply be German users who stop paying flickr. I'm an American and find this action reprehensible. If flickr continues in this policy, I will be migrating to a competitor, as well as bad-mouthing flickr to everyone I can, at every opportunity. I refuse to pay my money to support censorship and will proactively work against it.

Staying silent on the matter isn't helping flickr's public perception at this point, the damage is increasing rapidly as users learn of this and hear nothing.

Against Censorship
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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view-askew says:

Tinybr2 says:

Copy and save this, it's flashing.


Yes indeed it is. So please take it away, it's going to give me a frickin seizure.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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The Searcher says:

Considering it's in their FAQ, it obviously isn't a bug or mistake. But I think Flickr is going to have a very difficult time ahead if it continues. Compliance for self-filtering is based on one simple thing: choice. Each viewer is given the choice to decide what type of images they want to see. If that choice is taken away from them, that freedom that's already out of the bottle, well. I don't think it's going to be put back in without a fight.

Filtering will completely fail and crumble in the affected countries. People in Germany, as an example, will simply start setting up multiple free accounts, and set all images in them to "safe". If Flickr comes along and sets the account to "restricted", then they'll simply start another free account. And another, and another.

And unlike the usual purposes for this, defrauding Flickr for free bandwidth, porn sales, etc. The people doing this will have the moral highground; they'll be doing what they think is right in a free society. Allowing everyone to make the choice for themselves for what they want to see. So they'll keep at it, longer than if it were just for personal gain.

The filter system will lose its ability to filter reliably, adult and violent and politically embarrassing images will be everywhere. And without the incentive to self-filter, the incentive of choice?

Well. Flickr staff will be very, very busy.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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Canopus Archives says:

@loupiote

why? i don't think that's necessarily the case. if the swastika is not meant to represent the nazi party, i don't see why it should be marked "moderate"

for example, i don't think this photo should be "moderate": [photo not linked for brevity]

after all this is a very old hindu symbol. i have seen it on many objects from india.


I'm afraid you are wrong there although easy to confuse them. The one you showed was the Nazi swastika, the Hindu one rotates in a clock-wise direction and is a symbol of life. This one is a purposely done corruption of the Hindu symbol and rotates counter-clock-wise. Actually, to be more correct, the counter-clock-wise swastika denotes dark, evil forces as the inverted pentagram does.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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janoc100 says:

Well, while I am not affected by this censorship yet, I am sure I will *NOT* renew my pro account subscription if this nonsense is not fixed. What if Denmark or Slovakia are censored next? Are we on the same level as the totalitarian regimes in China or some Arab countries?

I am not going to sponsor a company which feels that either I need a nanny or which does not respect freedom of expression.

Yahoo, you have made an excellent move how to kill a formerly great service :(
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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~~David says:

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Swastika
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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::sarah:: says:

Canopus Archives...see the actual photo page for a discussion ad nauseum about that very topic (I couldn't sleep one night and read the whole thing...all 4 pages of it at the time.). There isn't really any need to start the same thing here.

I was thinking earlier that maybe everyone should calm down a bit until someone from Flickr's staff explained why they did this...but they've been curiously silent.

There has to be some reason external to Flickr for why they locked down the filters for the groups they did. It wouldn't make sense business-wise for them to arbitrarily do this. They had to know the fallout would be huge.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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~~David says:

If this was my company, and I had been forced to restrict users content due to local legislation, I would have the decency to explain the situation to those users first, instead of cravenly implementing it in silence. Then again, this *is* flickr, so what do you expect? :-(
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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The Searcher says:

The only reason China's not on that list is probably because there's no way Flickr could enforce the setting of public protest images or historical event images (like Tiananmen) as "restricted".

But if it continues, or if the list of countries grows, they aren't going to be able to easily enforce the setting of any images to non-safe.

babblingfaerie: I think you're right. the fallout will go way beyond just the affected countries. People that were mistakenly or self-servingly crying "censorship" over things that weren't really thus? Well now they can actually use the word correctly.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )
The Searcher edited this topic 94 months ago.

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stereotom says:

Against censorship!
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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RubyMae says:

It would be nice to see a reply from flickr staff. Hysteria and speculation are running wild.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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davidteter says:

I love the complete and total lack of commenting by the Flickr help staff.

Nice community you got here, Heather.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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adietrich says:

I thought China is not on that list because they're doing the work themselves ? As is Iran.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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Walwyn says:

They had to know the fallout would be huge.

Has anyone of influence actually picked up on it? What are the German media saying?
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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heliumcowgirl says:

its unbelivable. I cant see the pics of one of my best friends anymore. He's artist. taking nude pictures. and now there ist no pics available for me anymore!!! hell!!!

bestfriend
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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Visual Impact says:

This affects everybody on flickr.

The rest of us are now gagged from communicating freely with those who are blindfolded.

I'm waiting for an explanation from flickr staff.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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The Searcher says:

It would be nice to hear another side of this. Right now the mob is growing, and sadly, there doesn't seem to be much of a reason for it not to be.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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RubyMae says:

Truly, because at some point, no matter what the response from flickr staff, no one will be willing to listen.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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Yves. says:

Really strange that nobody of the flickr-staff doesn't have a word to say to all this here!!!

Sorry guys, but I feel a bit like in Kindergarden!
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )
Yves. edited this topic 94 months ago.

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Proggie says:

i don't think anybody will be listening anymore. I fear a mass exodus of people fed up with censorship. If it's nazi stuff they're worried about, why not just filter on tags instead of lumping everything in. This is insane. Makes no sense. You can see hard core porn on german tv, and nudity in mainstream german magazines, but flickr is censored. This is crazy. It HAS to be a bug.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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jsprhrmsn.photography says:

I noticed that the protest images are not shown anymore in the "7 days most interesting" page.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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atomtigerzoo says:

Sadly none of the media except heise.de did pick this up.
I heard of some users sending this to the media like spiegel online and so on, but no reaction.
This is really sad, since it is a great danger that flickr is doing this with us and none is responding!!

Also... HELLO FLICKR!!?!?!!
Would be really nice to get an answer until the waiting period of over a half day of yours in California. Or is the sun burning down on your Tequila Sunrise? Oh you can't tell since alcohol is restricted... damn...
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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Mark Howells-Mead says:

flickr.com/help/forum/en-us/42675/226885/
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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atomtigerzoo says:

I noticed that the protest images are not shown anymore in the "7 days most interesting" page.

Yep! I tried searching too.
Might be that now the censoring really starts - or there are some nice, cute, little, none restricted kittens in the game now...
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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gocarrt says:

Yeah, these tag mobs are really swirling...

www.flickr.com/photos/tags/thinkflickrthink/interesting/
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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atomtigerzoo says:

OK! That's it!! ANSWER!!! :P
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )
atomtigerzoo edited this topic 94 months ago.

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davidteter says:

Ironic, isn't it?

that today's photo from Heather (queen of the flickr help staff) is:

Bye bye Berlin
flickr.com/photos/heather/544151244/


Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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The Searcher says:

atomtigerzoo: it's early. The swirl of all this is barely twelve hours hold. The China thing was going on nearly a week before press picked it up. Give it a day or two.

Also, Explore is weird under normal conditions. Those protest images were likely only up there because of the popularity of viewing and commenting and favoriting from within China. Once that was cut off, images could lose their hold on the Explore top 300 pretty quickly. Tag searches show they're still around.

[PS: can you elaborate on what happened to your comment?]
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )
The Searcher edited this topic 94 months ago.

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view-askew says:

jsprhrmsn says:

I noticed that the protest images are not shown anymore in the "7 days most interesting" page.



They call it "interesting photos from the last 7 days". The images you are talking about are not photos, are they?
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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control.cancel says:

This whole thing is disturbing. I can't believe there's no response at all from Flickr staff.

I have a few images flagged as "moderate". No nudity, just going on the "better safe than sorry" theory based on the voluntary nature of the filters.

Since the filters are clearly not voluntary any more, I think I'm going to change them all to "safe". Anyone who doesn't like it can go fuck themselves all night long. This really, really pisses me off, and I'm not even German.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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atomtigerzoo says:

@The Searcher: Yep, I know! :) Thats why I said they probably didn;t delete them from Explore/Interestingness
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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The Searcher says:

view-askew: yes. The images from the protest in China that likely started the blocking, as well as the Tiananmen Square images that were popular during the anniversary.

control.cancel: they can f@#k you too, if there's a concern you aren't filtering your images properly. Your entire stream could be set to "moderate". That's why I think the protests will come from a flood of free accounts, so their personal paid accounts don't get hurt.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )
The Searcher edited this topic 94 months ago.

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jsprhrmsn.photography says:

They call it "interesting photos from the last 7 days". The images you are talking about are not photos, are they?

I can't agree more.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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Canopus Archives says:

@heliumcowgirl

What? You mean you can't see her only six photos that are full frontal nudes showing genitals and all and marked as Public. How strange, I can.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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Walwyn says:

This whole thing is disturbing. I can't believe there's no response at all from Flickr staff.

Its unlikely that flickr staff will respond. There will likely be some sort of corporate announcement in due course but I doubt they'll enter into any public online debate.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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control.cancel says:

Yes, I know they can reset the account, but whatever. Do you really want an account on a service that does this sort of thing?

It makes me wish I actually had some pictures that clearly should be flagged, so I could un-flag them in protest. Sadly, my "moderate" pictures would probably pass muster as "safe" -- though in this New World Order I guess you never know.

I strongly encourage anyone with flagged images to unflag them en masse. The entire meaning of the filters has changed -- they no longer mean what they meant when you initially flagged your images.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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RubyMae says:

Perhaps the legal team has instructed the staff not to say anything until they've vetted an official statement? (Although, I don't see why that would be necessary, as I don't think a change in the TOS (while infuriating and frustrating) is illegal, so it's not as if Yahoo has subjected themselves to liability with this change - just a loss of customers, perhaps)
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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loupiote (Old Skool) pro says:

Its unlikely that flickr staff will respond. There will likely be some sort of corporate announcement in due course but I doubt they'll enter into any public online debate.

Although Flickr's Stewart has often jumped in some hot on-line debates to give some explanation about what is going on.

This is clearly one of the hottest help thread today (strange that it is not in "Hot Topics" / "Angesagte Themen" yet). People are understandably more concerned about censorship (a fundamental issue) than about localization of flickr in german (a nice improvement, but merely cosmetic).
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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RubyMae says:

(It's about to get ugly - staff is awake and lurking - just check the "customer service thread." But don't take my suggestion as an incitement to riot, it's not intended to be.)
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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The Searcher says:

I suppose that means the backburnered, allowing non-flickr members to see "moderate" images (with a warning screen) is now really backburnered.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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benrobertsabq says:

I wish someone from Staff would at least say "We're legally prohibited from discussing this. Sorry." Or something. They can respond without being drawn into a discussion.

But in the absence of that, if you think about it there's no logical reason why Flickr would block certain types of material in certain countries unless they thought they were compelled to by law.

It takes work to make things operate differently for Germany and the few other countries, and Flickr doing that work doesn't make sense unless there is a compelling reason for them.

I agree it sucks, but I don't think it is arbitrary on the part of Yahoo/Flickr. Flickr may even be bound by a Yahoo agreement that Flickr has no control over. That's how life is when you're the small company of a larger parent company.

Still, some kind of staff response would be nice, even if just to say "We hear you but we can't say any more right now."
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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ipernity.com/home/robert_k says:

Walwyn "... I doubt they'll enter into any public online debate"

Well, why don't they tell that, instead of you. Better than having 178 comments on a hot issue and not responding at all.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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::sarah:: says:

Media so far:

www.heise.de/newsticker/meldung/91085
www.spiegel.de/netzwelt/web/0,1518,488279,00.html

from the "official" filters thread. I may have to go learn German... ;-)

It would be nice to hear another side of this. Right now the mob is growing, and sadly, there doesn't seem to be much of a reason for it not to be.

I can't agree with this more.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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control.cancel says:

If it were (just) China or whatever it would make more sense, but there's no reason to block flagged images from Germany, since flagged images will largely be flagged for sexual content, which obviously isn't illegal in Germany.

I don't expect Flickr to debate, but some indication of what's going on would be nice. At the very least, I must re-evaluate flagging in general since it clearly doesn't mean what it used to mean. But it would be nice to know what it does mean now.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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loupiote (Old Skool) pro says:

don't worry, they will react once they start getting really bad press in german media and blogs.

it's usually the best way to get large companies attention: bad press. a bad reputation has a negative effect on business, and business / money is the real bottom-line.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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Lars Pohlmann says:

flickr might not be quick, but heather surely is there and "heather is blocking you."

shortly after i posted "the sign" in a comment under a photo of hers.

too sad. i really thought she was great...
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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control.cancel says:

In fairness, of what possible use is it to hijack a customer support rep's comments to post your protest image? I wouldn't blame Heather for blocking you.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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funkaoshi says:

Why would Flickr suddenly decide, "Hey, lets fuck over our users in Germany." There is probably a lot more to this story. It doesn't take much for people to get their pitch forks out on the Internet.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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Mark Howells-Mead says:

I don't think that this is something for which individuals are to blame. The issue is certainly that the Flickr implementation of German law, without announcement or explanation, has been badly effected, but that's not a decision a single person would take.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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benrobertsabq says:

Again keep in mind Flickr is a subsidiary of Yahoo, which may have German Terms of Service agreements which bind Flickr without Flickr's control. Or any other number of factors we don't know about.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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heliumcowgirl says:

well, at least the closed some topics in the forum
www.flickr.com/help/forum/en-us/42676/
www.flickr.com/help/forum/en-us/42105/

and that's sort of an answer to.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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control.cancel says:

Of course there is more to the story that we don't know about. So... let's hear it.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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Mark Howells-Mead says:

...any other number of factors we don't know about...

Precisely. I know that everyone likes a good bandwagon, but I really am sure that there is a valid explanation and that an official press release/statement to the users is coming. This isn't some backwoods hacker's system, this is a subsidiary of Yahoo!.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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The Searcher says:

malanamars: It isn't fair to hijack a staff member's personal photostream for your issues over their company. That's Heather's personal space, she gets to decide what goes in it, and no one else. Keep your comments in here, in your own stream, or your own groups. I'd block you, too.

benroberts: I think it's becoming obvious that Flickr was in some way compelled to comply with certain countries' rules and/or laws. But I think the actual issue is way bigger; It's the sadness that Flickr did comply. And why they felt they had to do that, why now, after being active in those countries for so long?

And most important: what's next? How many more countries are going to be shuttered, how are these internal viewing tools going to be used against us in the future?
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )
The Searcher edited this topic 94 months ago.

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loupiote (Old Skool) pro says:

well, at least the closed some topics in the forum
www.flickr.com/help/forum/en-us/42676/
www.flickr.com/help/forum/en-us/42105/


the first one was closed because it duplicate this thread. so nothing strange there.

the second thread was create "closed" from the beginning because chinese proxy tend to block pages that contain certain "sensitive words", and in the other thread open to discussion, those words popped and therefore those pages were blocked in china. so flickr created this blocked thread so that chinese users could be informed on the developments regarding flickr images being blocked in china.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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Mαciomhαir says:

What is the legality of banning certain images in Germany under EU free market rules when they are available elsewhere in the EU?
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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kucharo says:

Maybe in addition to excoriating the Flickr staff, someone could put up some information to lodge complaints with the governments of Germany, Singapore, Hong Kong and South Korea. They are at least as complicit in any censorship as Yahoo and from what I can tell they are the only real culprits here. The last few commentors have been right on. Why would Flickr want to deliberately piss off a whole slew of users unless they had external pressure to do so? If they were really on a rampage of censorship, then everyone would be affected. But they've been very particular about which countries this applies to.

Doesn't sound like an organized campaign of total censorship to me.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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Neo Saguaro says:

Where is Flickr staff input on this? I find it very disturbing that we've not heard a peep from any of them.
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

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loupiote (Old Skool) pro says:

What is the legality of banning certain images in Germany under EU free market rules when they are available elsewhere in the EU?

my question too, i raised that point here already: www.flickr.com/help/forum/35971/page7/#reply226064
Posted 94 months ago. ( permalink )

This thread has been closed by Flickr Staff.

(101 to 200 of 4,960 replies in [locked, redirected] flickr now censoring all moderate and restricted photos from Germany)
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