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Jonas Voss

New hood

New hood

Moved once again, this time to Deptford. So far it feels like a jewel in South London, and I look forward to exploring the area more. I'll have a 30% longer commute, but that simply translates into more time in the saddle every day, which can't be bad.

Top photo is from Dirty Apron in the Deptford Market Yard, they serve a great breakfast and good coffee. Later we had coffee and cake at London Velo, a coffee/bicycle workshop place. Bought a bell for my bike there, nice people.

 

coffee and cake

Jonas Voss

My experience with Pixsy's Takedown service

3 min read

One of the perks of paying for a Flickr Pro account is that you get a limited free account with Pixsy, a service that scours the web for photos from your Flickr account, to see if they are being used anywhere.

If you find a that your photos are being used without your permission then Pixsy offers, by just one click, to send a Takedown Notice to one or more sites. Besides requesting that your picture be taken down, the takedown notice also requests the site to amend the article that was using the photo, to include a paragraph saying that the photo has been removed due to copyright infringement.

I gave it a spin, and a few of my photos had been used without my permission. Most prominently these two pictures of MF DOOM from a concert in Dublin in 2010, were being used by wellknown websites:

https://www.flickr.com/photos/voss/5079060535/

https://www.flickr.com/photos/voss/5079060937/

So I hit the Takedown Notice button in Pixsy, and here's what came out of it.

I've sent out a total of eight takedown notices at the end of October through Pixsy. Seven was to commercially run websites with global reach and recognition, and the last one was to a personal website with no obvious commercial scope.

WebsiteCompliedReplied to emailRemoved pictureAmended article
Website 1 (2) No No Partially No
Website 2 No Yes Yes No
Website 3 (2) No Yes Yes No
Website 4 No No No No
Website 5 Yes Yes Yes Yes
Website 6 No Yes Yes No

In terms of full compliance to the requests in the takedown note, only 1 of 8 was 100% successful. The 100% successful one was an American university newspaper, that besides using my photo uncredited, also allowed visitors to buy printed copies of my photo, through their website. Nice.

Another prominent website's legal counsel replied that they genuinely didn't know that I was the copyright holder of the photo, and claimed that in those circumstances, using my photo without crediting me was within the fair dealing doctrine of UK copyright law. Guess what, it isn't.

It is true that you can use orphaned material on some ocassions, but photos are specifically omitted from this clause. It's also true that you can use material without crediting it for news reporting, but photographs are specifically omitted from that clause as well.

One of the websites that I sent out two takedown notices to (for two separate photos), removed the image mentioned in one, but didn't remove the one mentioned in the second. I'm looking at you, factmag.

All 'n all, I guess a 87.5% success rate on the initial purpose of the takedown notice, to make these sites stop using my photo without my persmission, is not too bad. The question is: Would I have had the same success rate if I had simply written my own requests for them to take down my photos, without all the legally binding text included in the ones from Pixsy? I might have to test that, as I still have a few photos being used without my permission.

Anyone else out there tried the takedown service from Pixsy and are willing to share their results?

Jonas Voss

No worries brayden, good luck with the photo shoot (:

Jonas Voss

Jonas Voss

My friend Simon released his app called Peregrine this week. From the description:
"Pick a starting point and an end point – Paris to Berlin, Mumbai to Kathmandu, Vancouver to Mexico City, or anywhere else – and walk the journey with your own steps. Every day, you'll see a new photo taken at the place you've virtually reached."
iOS only, get it here: https://itunes.apple.com/dk/app/peregrine-journey/id1430790121?mt=8

Jonas Voss

Consuming Instagram differently

4 min read

I've been looking for a different way of consuming Instagram. Facebook has introduced more and more features in their neverending quest to wrestle users from Snapchat and onto Instagram, and I don't care for those. I like Instagram, the photo sharing part, not so much the TV and Stories part. The other reason is that whole privacy thing, of course. Turns out big social media players weren't quite the stewards of our personal data we were hoping for, and spending less time on actual social media websites seems like a good thing.

Except for some musicians and photographers, I don't follow brands on Instagram. I mainly follow people I know. Family, friends, and tags. Being a camera and photo enthusiast, I enjoy looking at photos taken with a variety of cameras and film, and a lot of people use Instagram to show their analogue makings.

For a while I used an app called Hermit on Android. Hermit is a wrapper that turns mobile web versions of websites into apps. It has ad blocking, and a bunch of other nice features. Using Hermit helped me get rid of ads on Instagram, and their algorithm somehow works differently on there as well. I liked the ordering better, it seemed to be more chronological. Only downside: I had to consume it on my phone. It was good, but not great.

Granary.io and Atom to the rescue

Thankfully, people much smarter than me are creating tools for consuming silo'ed social media in different ways. One such tool is Granary.

To be able to get the feed of your friends, and not the feed of your own damn self, you need to find your sessionid cookie value from Instagram. Do the following:

Edit: There's actually a much easier way to do the below, by using https://instagram-atom.appspot.com/ - thanks to Ryan for pointing it out.

  • Open the Chrome Browser
  • go to instagram.com and login with your account
  • after logging in, open the developer console of your browser, and reload the page
  • find the "Application" tab and click it
  • in the left hand panel there's a "Cookies" item, click the chevron to the left of it to expand it
  • click on the line that says https://www.instagram.com
  • in the list of cookies like csrftoken, ig_cb, mid, and rur, there should also be a cookie called "sessionid"
  • copy the value of sessionid

Next, open Granary.io, and click on the Instagram logo. Granary will load up this url, and then you have to fill out some fields. You need to fill in your Instagram username, select @friends from the dropdown, select "atom" as your format, and paste the cookied ID you gathered above, into the last field where it says sessionid cookie (for @friends) and hit the GET button.

When Granary has done its thing, you'll end up with a link below the form. With the cookie value removed, mine looks like this:

https://granary.io/instagram/l3traset/@friends/@app/?format=atom&cookie=

This link holds your liberated Instagram photo feed. I plugged mine into my Feed Reader and into Aaron Parecki's Aperture and now I can read my Instagram feed on my phone using Indigenous, and on my desktop, all with no ads and no stories. Glorious!

Is anything lost?

Besides losing the ads and stories, you also lose the ability to favourite a post on Instagram, and to add comments to a post. However, I don't necessarily see this as a loss. If I want to Like a post, I can just do it on my own personal feed, and it ends up looking like this. Sure, if it's a post from a friend of mine, they won't know from their post, that I liked it. But you know how you can fix that? Write them an email. If your feed reader lets you email a post, you can email your friend saying you liked their picture.

Not being able to comment might be the biggest loss, but if you can live with that, then I think you should do it, go forth and liberate your Instagram feed.

This will definitely be the way I will consume Instagram until we've all moved over to Pixelfed.

P.S. I'm not sure how long the sessionid cookie lives for, so you might have to reconstruct the link in Granary once in a while, but that should be about it. Also, don't share that sessionid with anyone. I'm pretty sure it can be used to log into Instagram as you.

Jonas Voss

Above the City

Fantastic composition in this photo by Alkan Hassan.

Jonas Voss

Team Zorkul posing for album cover photo for the soon to drop "Quest for Water"

Missing our two team members @netuttobylooand Mohammed from the shot, which is why we went with another cover photo instead. Bonus team member: Daniyar. The Tajik who crosses mountain passes at 4900m wearing jeans and a hoodie.

An IndieWeb Webring 🕸💍

Jonas Voss