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Monday, June 30, 2008

And I was the "BANDWIDTH THIEF"! I couldn't believe it, but IT WAS TRUE!

As a learner, there are a lot of things I do not know yet in this blogging world. One of it is being a theft! Specifically, a bandwidth theft. I actually left a message in the tagboard of the owner about me looking for that specific photo but the owner, who is the webmaster at Static Brain located my blog and told that what I did was not too good. Although I was unaware of it being a bad act (or theft), ignorance of the law as stated, excuses no one, right?But wait! Don't think that the whole thing totally made me bad and turned all to worse. Technorati icon

The good news? I learned a lot from it and I was pardoned. It even turned better. I apologized of course and removed the image that I copied the link and just pasted to link to the original one. I never knew it was so bad. IT WAS A BANDWIDTH THEFT!.. and I committed it.

The image that you can see HERE is the image in question, which was originally taken from Static Brain, a very good site with great contents. Cick HERE to see the website of Static Brain.

Below is the explanation by Static Brain's Webmaster about the whole thing. In fact the original versions are all in the comments section of my posts entitled Banned from Adsense? You Need Not Worry! You Can Still Earn that Bucks! and Now We Have PR 5. So What Now? Shall We have it Forever?. Just click those links and look at the comments section if you have the curiosity to see them.

The following are some portion of the explanation on Bandwith Theft and the subsequent settlement of the issue. I do hope it can educate you as well and this bandwidth theft be lessen:

Hey, heard of bandwidth theft? You need to copy any images you are trying to use from someone else's server to your own. Did you notice it disappeared from your page? My hotlink protection was messed up but it is working again. I don't appreciate you trying to hotlink to my images, because then I wind up paying for bandwidth you are stealing from me, by making my site serve images for you.

Many webmasters don't mind if you use some of the images on their site, within reason, assuming that they are not copyrighted and that you give credit. However, it is very important that you do not direct link to images on someone else's server (site). This is called bandwidth theft, and it can cost the webmaster in question money.

What is direct linking? Direct linking is when you display an image from one site on a different site (such as on your own site, or on a forum or blog). If the site you are direct linking to is yours, there is nothing wrong with this.

But if you are direct linking to a site that is not yours, it is bandwith theft (also called hot linking, hotlinking, remote linking, remote loading, or leeching).

For example, if you post one of my images like you did — that's direct linking.

Basically, if staticbrain.com appears in the image URL in your html, you're direct linking to an image on my server.

What should you do instead of direct linking? This depends on whether you have your own webspace or not.

If you have your own website or webspace: The key is saving the image to your own computer, and then uploading it to your own site.

If you want to use an image on your website, you first need to save the image to your computer. You can do this by right-clicking on the image and choosing "Save Picture As" (Explorer) or "Save Image As" (Firefox). Then, you'll need to upload the image to your website, in the same way that you upload your other pages and files. Finally, include the image on your page as you normally would, but using your own address

If you do not have your own website or webspace: You have two choices - get some free web space to host pictures on, or link to the page the image is on instead of directly to the image itself.

Get some web space of your own to host images on:
photobucket.com and flickr.com will allow you to store photos and link to them directly.

Why is direct linking such a no-no? There are a few reasons. Some of them are more important from your point of view, and some are more important from the point of view of the site owner you're stealing from.

Bandwidth Theft is the big reason for the person you're stealing from. Bandwidth is basically data transferred from one computer to the next. When you loaded this page, it used some bandwidth by sending the data from my server to your computer. It's sort of like electricity — when you turn on a light, it uses electricity. When you view a web page or image, download a sound file, or access any other file on the internet, it uses bandwidth. (Click here for further explanation on what bandwidth is.)

For some sites, bandwidth is free. Many sites on the internet are small, and are hosted by free web hosts. These hosts do limit the amount of bandwidth the sites can use, but most sites don't use enough bandwidth to ever exceed this limit, so they never have to pay for bandwidth. So, your theft of their bandwidth won't cost them money, but if other sites direct link to their files, they might go over their bandwidth limit, and get kicked off their host!

Moreover, large/busy sites cannot be hosted by free web hosts — these webmasters have to pay for web hosting. Generally, they pay a set amount per month which will include a set amount of bandwidth. (The more bandwidth your account allows, the more your monthly fee will be.) Plus, if a site uses more than the allowed amount of bandwidth in any given month, they have to pay extra fees, which can be very high. So, sites direct linking to their files will cause their total bandwidth to go up, and may cost them money!

If your neighbor secretly ran an extension cord to your electric outlet to run his appliances, this would be stealing your electricity, and your electric bill would go up — you'd be paying to keep his house running, and you would NOT be pleased. This is much like bandwidth theft — if you direct link to an image on my server, it uses my bandwidth, and I have to pay the bill for your site! This is obviously not okay. And it's actually pointless, since most of the sites that direct link are small sites on free hosts, so it's not as if they need to save bandwidth — for them, it's free, but for some of us, it's very expensive!

Broken Images (or worse) is a reason not to direct link from your point of view. You have no control over files hosted on someone else's server, so you never know when your page might suddenly be full of broken images! The site you're linking from might move, or their server might go down, or they might delete/move/rename their images. Sometimes webmasters will even replace the stolen image with a different one to intentionally make you look silly/bad. (For example, they might replace an image of Britney Spears with one of a pig or of something pornographic, or they might replace it with an image stating "Bandwidth Thief!") If you save the files to your own server, nobody but you can touch them!

Longer Download Times is another reason. Telling a web browser to draw files from multiple servers can make your page take ages to load. When you link to servers other than your own, web browsers have to waste time that could have been spent downloading looking for the new server. This can really slow down or even halt the loading time of your own web page.

Consequences! If your misuse of the internet is costing someone else money, you can bet they're going to take issue with you! They may contact you demanding that you remove the files, they may delete or replace the files as mentioned above, they may go straight to your web host and have your site shut down, or they could even sue you. Why take the chance? Technorati icon
I accept your apology about the bandwidth theft. I assumed you did not know what you were doing or you would not have done it. That is why I tried to explain it to you. I did delete your comment on my site like you asked also.

If you want to publish an article using my comments about bandwidth theft like you said, it is okay with me to do that. Hopefully you can make more people aware of the issue. I do not think a lot of people know what they are doing when they hot link. Hopefully you can change that by writing about it.

Also you can use any image of mine you want to, as long as you store it on your own server, or a place like photo bucket. It is also okay if you copy my words too. The only thing I would like is if you link back to my main site www.staticbrain.com and not to the image location when you credit me when you use my stuff.

I apologize if I appeared to be grouchy or angry when I notified you of the problem, but I have been having a big problem with bandwidth theft, and I have to pay for my web hosting. It is not a free site. staticbrain.com is a registered paid domain.


I understand the concern of that person. It then challenged my negotiation skills. I could have reacted negatively but since I acknowledged my mistake, admitted it and apologized, I got the better side of things. Moreover, if I was on that person's side, I would have reacted worse. To be ignorant is not an excuse, thus, I am the Webloglearner! Technorati icon


  1. I've just started my blog recently and did not know about bandwidth limits .

    I was lucky - my webhost provider sent me an e-mail before it cost me a lot of money !

  2. Webloglearner,

    Thanks, I just learned something I never should have done... Looks like I would have to host my own image^^

    Thanks again you just saved my butt from being called a bandwidth theft

    -The Hideaway

  3. Hey buddy, thanx a lot for your inputs. I hope I do it the right way now. By the way, your new post is really amazing.

    You have a sense of making a site look as catchy as possible. It is really bright and lucrative.

    Keep in touch :o)

    Cheers !!


  4. hi.
    as a new blog writer we all make mistakes. i have been blogging now for a few years and i have made a few mistakes when i first started. I have known static brain from blogging out here for quite some time now. She is a wonderful lady and she and i have become great friends. we all learn from our mistakes. :)

  5. Heyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy my friend your blog is simply amazing. I have certainly not made the wrong choice to come back and back and back again on your site. You will soon have a domain of your own, you will go a long way my friend.

    P.S. I am working on both the blogs.


    Cheers !!


  6. very nice and educational post! this one is really worth reading. thanks for posting this.

    he (is he a he?), anyways, he was good! and you're great for accepting that you made a mistake, which i think is a honest mistake because you weren't aware of it.

    more power and take care!

  7. I heard of bandwith theft, but really didn't know what it was. Thanks for the heads up. Everybody makes mistakes!

  8. When i first started to blog, that thing also happened to me but some bloggers guide me so a big thanks to them.

  9. Vicy was here.. Please vote for my Janeth Vicy's Life Journey again here !! www.carlotaonline.com

  10. I didn't know about bandwith theft. I think i may have to host my own images now.

  11. use a free service to host your own image or the image that taken from other site.
    there is lots of free image hosting to host the image. one of my favorite is imageshack.

  12. That is why I use imageshack. Now I'm going to use my own webspace on server for images. So I'll need to edit htaccess file. All those with custom blog do this to prevent hot linking.


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