To settle a dispute with rights holders, Google has removed a function from its handy image search engine.
After Google itself, Google Images is probably the second most used search engine. It provides easy access to a selection of images relating to a subject. Google has enriched this search engine over the years by adding options such as searching for a particular image size or a predominantly used color.
Today, the firm is doing the opposite and announces that it has removed a very popular function from its engine, the “Show Image” button. It made it possible to access very simply to the desired image by bypassing the website that hosts it and whose page could sometimes be too heavy to display or block access to it. The “Consult” button is still there to access the web page in question.
The removal of this feature is the result of a dispute between Google and rights holders such as Getty Images that has been going on for several years. The copyright holders criticised Google for making copyrighted images available too easily without indicating the constraints on the use of these images.
Google and Getty Images just signed an agreement on February 8 that should allow the former to use the contents under license from the latter. The removal of Google Images’ “View Image” button was one of the requirements of the contract.
Trained as an algorithmist, an honestly subjective journalist by profession, I’m also a video game enthusiast and therefore a real geek. I was banished from this caste the day I confessed my dislike for Star Wars and Super Mario.
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