What was TinyPic?
TinyPic was a free photo- and video-sharing service. Users could use TinyPic to upload, link and share images online. TinyPic was supported by advertisement next to the images and videos.
The service supported the upload and hosting of JPEG (jpg), png, gif and TIFF files. Images that were larger than 1,600 pixels were automatically resized to the largest acceptable size while keeping the original aspect ratio.
Videos on TinyPic could not be bigger than 500 megabytes or longer than 15 minutes in length. They allowed high-definition videos too, as long as they were no larger than 500 megabytes in size and no longer than 5 minutes in length. Most video formats were supported.
TinyPic was acquired by Photobucket but permanently shut down on September 9, 2019 because of declining ad income.
Tiny Pics, Big Critics
TinyPic did not have a perfectly reputable reputation. In fact, they generated a lot of criticism on more than one occasion.
One of the main concerns was the website’s policy of deleting images and videos that were not associated with a user account and that had not been viewed for 90 days. This meant that many posts and websites using TinyPic ended up with a “picture not found” error instead of a picture or video. To make matters worse, sometimes URLs of deleted images would be reused, resulting in old image links showing unintended content.
In 2009 Reddit users discovered that the service no longer allowed direct links to photos, when they were referred by reddit.com. This change took users by surprise, leading to a lot of confusion and frustration.
Another low was in 2010, when Argentinian users were blocked from accessing the TinyPic website. Thousands of users no longer had access to their stored images. TinyPic’s response to the debacle was a sign, appearing a month later, inviting users to join Photobucket without offering them a solution for images and videos previously stored on TinyPic.
Later that year, the list of countries that could no longer use TinyPic services grew. These service interruptions annoyed users and a lot of them called for a TinyPic boycott.
In July 2019 the homepage recommended users to switch to Photobucket, a paying service. The end was nigh: TinyPic shut down on September 9, 2019.
Life after TinyPic
Are you wondering what happened to all the images and videos on TinyPic?
Users were given time to download their images and switch to Photobucket. TinyPic’s servers were slow, making it impossible to archive everything. There were some attempts to retrieve the images, but none were hugely successful. You can take a look at the results of the undertaken efforts by user JustAnotherArchivist or sneak around in this collection.
There are a number of TinyPic alternatives out there that have profited from TinyPic shutting down, like Imgur, Flickr or Imgbox. Unfortunately, these alternatives come with their own issues. Imgur doesn’t allow hotlinking and can’t be used for websites, blogs or advertising. Flickr has had some issues with censorship and copyright enforcement while Imgbox doesn’t support many file formats.
If you are looking for a sound alternative, Img.vision is a reliable image hosting website developed especially for hotlinking. It allows you to organise and edit your uploaded images and link them when, where and however you like. It is user-friendly and has a wide range of pricing options.
Check out the Img.vision if you are not already a fan!