Hey, who else?
I was frustrated.
They took two photos off of my Hub "17 Most Significant Animes in the United States".
If I do a "Top X Blah Blah Blah" type list, EACH ITEM GETS ITS OWN PICTURE. That's just common sense. But no, for no reason, the editor took out two perfectly good images from the Death Note and Cowboy Bebop sections. Ok, so I thought, fine, I'll just put two other images in those sections. Nope. They led me to believe initially that I would have the final say, that is, that if I undid previous HubPro edits, it would stay that way. Nope. They have the final say. The only way to get my Hub done MY way was to opt out. I'm happy, and I encourage other Hubbers to do so.
It's a broken system. You cannot run a Hub account by numbers and algorithms alone. Sometimes you need more than 1 or even more than 2 Amazon or eBay links. Sometimes you need more pictures than that which is "recommended". I understand if they gave us guidelines for editing our own stuff, or if they went into our hubs and SUGGESTED edits, but this is just an attempt to force us to comply with some arbitrary Google optimization rules that may or may not be what's best for our individual situations. They want to control the content of the site for their own financial gain, it has nothing to do with yours. If I start to lose creative freedom, I'm leaving for a site that will give me more control, or starting my own site.
Who else is a happy opt-out-er? Tell me your story!
I don't believe you can opt out any more, but even if you can, it's always a good idea to pay attention to their directives, even if you disagree with them.
You have to remember that this is a business that exists for the purpose of making money. You have made no financial investment, but the team has. This, as well as the guidelines in their TOS, gives them the right to do whatever they feel is necessary to keep the site afloat.
You agreed to their terms when you hopped aboard the HP train. Fortunately, you do have the option to leave, but I would think very carefully before doing that. Leaving is not as easy as you may think and rarely includes many of the protections you get here.
Whatever you decide to do, good luck.
By the way, I just took a look at that hub and it appears that none of the photos have been accredited and nowhere do you show that you have permission to use them. I'm surprised the team didn't simply unfeature you for that reason alone. Did YOU draw those photos? If so, your name should appear under them. If not, you need to show that those who did draw them have given you permission to use them. They, indeed are beautiful, but either way, they require accreditation.
I disagree about always having to add a credit to photos, though it would be nice to have a non published element where we could justify our reason for not including a credit. The only time I add a publishable credit is when it is requested to do so by the original source (such as Wikipedia). I generally pay money (a license fee) to use the images in my articles. My articles have still been published on HubPro, so I don't believe the image credit would be an issue?
Unless you use photos that are not public domain and require permission but you do not ask for that permission. Then you can be sued, and people do sue for stealing their work, which is what you are doing when you just randomly use photos that are not yours and are not public domain.
Yes, the team does not have the manpower to police this issue, but people who do not show accreditation always leave a question mark and even if they think they're safe, many times they're not.
It's well worth the extra few minutes do give credit where credit is due and show readers that you are legal.
It adds credibility, and is the right thing for writers to do, even if you, personally, disagree.
If I've paid a licence fee for a photo, I will always disclose the source. Reason? I want other people to know that it's not an image they can use freely.
An awful lot of people still believe that if there's no copyright tag on a photo, it's free to use. Which is nonsense of course, because the reverse is true - but there doesn't seem any way to get that message out effectively. Therefore in the meantime, I try to do the right thing by photographers and make sure there is something to make a potential thief pause.
When you say the "Source" do you mean "istock" or the name of the photographer.
Well, published official art, screen caps, movie posters, DVD covers and so on are mostly what I use and I think the readers can assume it's official art unless I say otherwise. I credit fan artists from Deviant Art or other sites. But with official art, it's part of fair use to distribute those materials for the purposes of education or critique, much like how it is fair use for a YouTube anime or movie critic to use the promotional trailers or clips of the original show/movie.
It's really a completely different ballpark from using regular artwork or photographs that have an original source. Whole teams of people own the rights to say, a Fairy Tail poster, there's no way I can credit anything that is such a huge collaborative effort with many animators, writers, storyboard artists, CG artists, producers, etc. to credit. Even if I go for companies, there's the company that publishes the original source material like the manga, the company that produced the original anime, the company with US/English dubbing distribution rights, I would get an endless list of names that would just be an eyesore and a nuisance to the average reader, plus it is as covered under fair use as say The Nostalgia Critic using video clips.
Do remember that the income on HubPages is shared on a percentage basis. So if they get some financial gain out of their changes, you benefit equally. And vice versa.
Personally I do think HubPages is going overboard with some of the changes it's making in HubPro - but they are ultra-anxious to avoid the kind of Google slaps that happened to the main site and therefore they're trying to future-proof the sites against a possible tightening of Google policies. I think they are going too far but they are running the show.
The big problem with opting out of Hub Pro is that means none of your Hubs will get moved to the new niche sites. And as you rightly say, HubPages as a concept is broken - that's why the new niche sites are being created - so choosing to stay on the main site is not a wise idea. If you're going to do that, you might as well bite the bullet and move to your own site right now.
Don't get too excited. You may have opted-out for HubPro Premium, but it isn't possible to opt-out for HubPro Basic. They can and will still edit your Hubs. And you do not have to opt-in to anything to be considered for a niche site.
I hate the editing too, but I eventually realized HubPages is a different site than it used to be. It is no longer reasonable to allow people to publish anything they want without oversight. To some extent that means less creative control for writers.
For some writers this means HubPages isn't a good fit for them anymore, and if that's how you feel there are certainly other options out there for you.
For me, my goals and HP's are similar, and as long as they are making decisions to get us both there I am happy with them.
On the whole, HP pro is good value, but sometimes they do not know when to leave well alone.
I think it depends on the editor. I have been lucky, and for the most part, my hubs that sell have not been eviscerated. Most all of the Amazon capsules remain in place, as they regularly produce sales.
Having said that, I got into a "war" with one nudnick, and ended up moving the hub more out of spite than what was good for the article. It had been transferred to a niche site, but unfeatured over a link. I spite my face in defiance.
I think there are one or two editors with little common sense. They just see rules, and can't apply them judiciously. Management should take a look-see via random selections (or complaints from well received authors) and see who is making good edits and who is chasing off good articles and authors.
I have been obliged to correct minor typos and major keyword misuse in the past, after HubPro.
The last of my pages to be edited, saw two call out capsules in succession added (different variations). Call out capsules are H2 headers and they use 2 in a row? Ugly and bad SEO.
I left them in place that time, because I did not want the page to slowly drown in the swamps of the main site. Not as courageous you, lol.
The problem is, that the more powerless people feel, the less likely they are to involve themselves here.
Having said all that, I am going to publish some new pages just to see what happens.
I have had callout capsules used as paragraph headings, and I find it bizarre. I think of callouts as being employed to highlighting a sentence or phrase that is particularly intriguing, in order to keep the reader enticed. Callouts instead of minor headlines is weird. Having said that, my pageviews are up 300-400%, so I will just shut up, and watch in open-mouthed amazement.
Callouts were obviously designed to highlight especially important pieces of text, but HP are using them for section headers. It works well enough, if you do not get carried away. A huge number of H2 headers is just a way of overdoing the SEO and can make the page harder for search engines to categorize.
Anyway, 300 per cent boost is worth a little suffering, I suppose.
Worth remembering, though, that this result is not something that you should really be congratulating HP on.
Your pages are finally doing as well as they deserve despite HP's former mistakes.
They have yet to attract google slaps on the new sites but managed to get plenty on the old ones.
All of which makes me disgusted with Google. That an article or hundreds of them, written exactly the same way, but transferred to a new domain, garner 4x the views from Google. Things like this may find them in an antitrust suit yet. They have an awful lot of power on the internet, how they use it, is to me, questionable.
HP's mantra was to let anyone publish anything and let Google sort the wheat from the chaff. Unfortunately, this was an overestimation of Google's powers. Google obviously works better at selecting quality at the site level, rather the page level.
All the garbage on HP sank the site, despite plenty of good pages.
It is quite important to be accurate in your perceptions of the company that sends you the majority of your traffic.
Yeah but then maybe you need better editors, or some way for the original writer to have the final say if they don't like the changes. The current way they handle it is too authoritarian.
Loved my Hub Pro experience. One of my Hubs went viral after it got edited.
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