There are certain rules of etiquette that often requires one to behave in a manner consistent with the mores of the people around them. This applies to social situations to help facilitate the ability to interact with other people in a meaningful fashion, as opposed to earlier men who, not having evolved much at the time, decided a better means of communicating would be swinging from the trees they were camped in, and flinging feces at each other.
I maintain that certain changes in network usability by anyone has allowed us to take a giant step back into those good old days, and to use new, shiny, digital feces instead of the old brown stuff.
You see, once upon a time the ability to post information on the network required that one learn a little something about it. Anyone wanting to host permanent information needed to buy a host, learn to code, and then put their wares out there for all to see. There was a certain amount of blood, sweat, and tears required to effectively create something that would be worthy of putting online.
Recently an explosion in online awareness has allowed companies to leverage cheap methods for allowing people to easily place whatever content they wanted online without having to learn very much. The unfortunate rise of giant black-holes of mindless dribble began to rear their ugly heads in the form of places like MySpace.
Now the masses had a means of quickly and easily putting content on the network without having to go through the process of learning what was really required to make it work. Unfortunately this process is readily skipped in favor of a background-du-jour, an embedded music player, fancy fonts, and ultimately pictures.
Unfortunately, the new users of this veritable publishing utopia couldn’t be bothered to learn how the network works. They just wanted to play. And of course they wanted to share what they find in this brave new world. Such as pictures. They just couldn’t be bothered to find out what the mechanics are to actually being able to show images online. Such as finding their own image hosting.
You see, the purveyors of this “mini-bake-website” mentality probably did not want to have to foot the bill for the bandwidth required to host all of it’s users pictures. So they didn’t give these neophytes the option. And having not had to learn how things work, these new users found it easier to only have to embed an address to be able to proudly display an image from somewhere else on the network right there on their shiny-neat-and-new web page.
No need to have to go out and actually go through the tedious task of finding a method of actually hosting the image themselves. Even worse is the likelihood that most users of this newfangled tool probably don’t even care in the first place.
So what is there for us to do? Why, encourage image hotlinking from our personal sites, and then quietly replacing the linked images with something a bit more fun, of course!