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Author Topic: WEBSHOTS NEW "SMILE" really gave me a "SNYLE" today  (Read 6809 times)
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Sketch
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« on: October 04, 2012, 11:49 AM »

This morning I got an E mail from Webshots that they are going to bail out and give all of our old photos to a new photosharing called "SMILE!"

Being as good a kite flyer as I am a computer nerdolddo'....I  thought I would check out this new SMILE and at first it looked like a great idea.
However stupid is....as stupid does....I foolishly uploaded the SMILE downloader...thinking that this would make things easier------------------------------------------------------NOT!
IT TOOK OVER MY ENTIRE COMPUTER.....INCLUDING MY PASSWORDS TO MY PRIVATE COMCAST ACCOUNTS...CHANGED ALL MY SCREENSAVERS....ETC.
Top things off....I COULD EVEN REMOVE THE PROGRAMS FROM MY "ADD N REMOVE"....
FINALLY....to get back on track...
"As a last resort...I had to RESTORE MY NEW COMPUTER to a previous date...change all my passwords on my both my AOL and COMCAST!
So far it seems to have solved the problem....OPPPPS! I KEEP GETTING E MAILS FROM "SMILE" TELLING ME TO "CONFIRM MY ACCOUNT...or they will dump all my photos...S A P!

After all that I thought I would check out my Norton programs....AND FOUND THAT MY COMPUTER WAS AT RISK AND NEEDED TO RUN A BRAND NEW UPDATE!
Opps...Just noticed that I just recieved another E mail from SMILE a second ago.....
 Cry Cry Cry Cry Huh Huh Huh Shocked Shocked Shocked!

So far it appears that this new SMILE...IS MORE LIKE "SNILE or FROWN""  at least for the time being?
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« Reply #1 on: October 04, 2012, 11:55 AM »

http://www.gwtwforum.com/index.php?topic=8530.0

nice....always good to hear that transitions are happening well.......
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« Reply #2 on: October 04, 2012, 02:51 PM »

Thanks for the links pertaining to WEBSHOTS...
I wish I had done more "R&D about their bailout to "SNILE"..OR "SNYLE"...OR JUST rename it somethin' like?Huh?? "SCRATCH N "SNIFF N STIFF!" the paying Webshot photographers?   Cry Cry

So far...NUTTIN' TO "SMILE" about Webshots new "SMILE!!!" Wink
« Last Edit: October 04, 2012, 08:00 PM by Sketch » Logged
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« Reply #3 on: October 09, 2012, 12:28 PM »

Since you raised the issue in another post, I looked back at this one. I thought it was sketchy from the start, but allowed that I might be wrong, so I held my tongue. Today, though, I was curious enough to investigate. I created a Webshots/Smile account (I didn't have a previous one) and installed the Smile Desktop software.

This morning I got an E mail from Webshots that they are going to bail out and give all of our old photos to a new photosharing called "SMILE!"

Being as good a kite flyer as I am a computer nerdolddo'....I  thought I would check out this new SMILE and at first it looked like a great idea.
However stupid is....as stupid does....I foolishly uploaded the SMILE downloader...thinking that this would make things easier------------------------------------------------------NOT!

First thing, downloading something from an emailed link is not wise. I suspect that what you received was spam, with a link to a virus-laden executable.

Here's a small bit of knowledge about website URLs that might be useful: they start at the most specific and proceed to the most general. Let me explain.

I'm a Marylander, so I navigate to http://www.msa.md.gov/ (Maryland State Archives). The tail end of that (md.gov) is the domain. msa is the sub-domain, which resides within the md.gov website. So, when you see an email with a link to ebay.<something here>.com, it's not part of ebay's website. Rather, it is someone simply replicating a portion of his site to look like ebay, and either infect you with viruses or steal your identity. (Either ebay account and/or credit card info.)

IT TOOK OVER MY ENTIRE COMPUTER.....INCLUDING MY PASSWORDS TO MY PRIVATE COMCAST ACCOUNTS...

I'm not sure what you mean by this, unless you mean it has opened up your computer to hacker being able to execute whatever he wants on it. But I suspect that's not what you mean. Also, passwords: I suppose a keylogger could pick these up, or a virus could look for passwords you've saved in your web browser. But you'd have to elaborate. This isn't clear.

CHANGED ALL MY SCREENSAVERS....ETC.

Smile Desktop actually does change the screensaver, and this is annoying as a default behavior. I would not trust a software publisher who thinks this is a good idea, even if the software is for maintaining image albums.

Top things off....I COULD EVEN REMOVE THE PROGRAMS FROM MY "ADD N REMOVE"....

Smile Desktop uninstalled just fine for me, with one exception. It said some files had to be removed manually. Its screensaver was still loaded in memory. I killed it with task manager (I suspect a reboot would have worked fine) and was able to remove the remaining (mostly .dll) files. Not the best removal I've seen, but hardly unusual for something that sets the screensaver.

FINALLY....to get back on track...
"As a last resort...I had to RESTORE MY NEW COMPUTER to a previous date...change all my passwords on my both my AOL and COMCAST!
So far it seems to have solved the problem....OPPPPS! I KEEP GETTING E MAILS FROM "SMILE" TELLING ME TO "CONFIRM MY ACCOUNT...or they will dump all my photos...S A P!

This sounds like more spam/phishing. Unless Webshots/Smile is actually doing a purge of inactive accounts, which could be happening. There are probably a lot of inactive accounts. Regardless, I would not click on any links in that email, even if it looks legit. I would go to the website manually to confirm.

I'm glad you got whatever malicious software off your computer. I feel your pain. I'm a computer professional, and I've had my share of malware installed by my own carelessness. But I don't think there's anything wrong with Smile's app. I think you got a virus solicited via email.
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« Reply #4 on: October 09, 2012, 12:39 PM »

mmmm.... the screensaver dealie all by itself is suspicious. Those boogers are notorious for embedded malware. Even if everything's okay, it was a crummy thing for them to have done.
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« Reply #5 on: October 16, 2012, 11:11 AM »

And its not going to be free.


"Does Smile offer a free membership?
Last Updated: Oct 15, 2012 02:21PM PDT

Smile will only be free to everyone until our official launch later this fall, when it will be a subscription service. We will offer a free 30-day trial so that you can decide whether you’d like to subscribe, but like many other photo services, we will no longer offer a free membership. For information on subscription plans, please see our Pricing page."
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« Reply #6 on: October 16, 2012, 11:22 AM »

red sweater Smiley

Whats the easiest way to move all our pictures from webshots to another web hosting site?
Or isnt there an easy way?.



Derek.
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« Reply #7 on: October 16, 2012, 11:33 AM »

well..you should have originals on your hard drive..right?
just delete them in smile/webshots and redo in another program....
i would imagine that trying to get them migrated right now would not go over easily-if at all...
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« Reply #8 on: October 16, 2012, 12:23 PM »

Doesn't seem like a very smart company who abandons their current customers, plans to charge for what others give away, and prevents ad revenue by requiring login to view shared images. 
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« Reply #9 on: October 16, 2012, 03:09 PM »

from Wufer's post..it sounds like they do not care at all about the state of things at present.....
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« Reply #10 on: October 17, 2012, 09:12 AM »

red sweater Smiley

Whats the easiest way to move all our pictures from webshots to another web hosting site?
Or isnt there an easy way?.



Derek.

I've never maintained a Webshots account. I created one to see how bad this Smile software could be.

I thought I heard (in this thread? or another, since we have a few about webshots here) that there was a tool/method to bulk download pictures. I'd expect there to be one, and hope that it would always be available. Of course, I'd also expect a web photo manager to be free (at least for the first handful of GB), since there are so many free ones out there with great reputations. But Webshots/Smile looks to be breaking all sorts of expectations. And not in the good way.
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« Reply #11 on: October 17, 2012, 11:37 AM »

Doesn't seem like a very smart company who abandons their current customers, plans to charge for what others give away, and prevents ad revenue by requiring login to view shared images.
I just don't get the idea that viewers would have to sign in to view an image. Bad form for sure. Bet you won't be able to embed images into places like this forum, either.

Charging for the service, as long as it's a reasonable fee seems okay if it gets rid of ads. It's frustrating to have to dodge a bunch of visual garbage when all you want to do is look at a pitcha.
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« Reply #12 on: October 17, 2012, 05:26 PM »

The WebShots staff will have a promising future working the night desk at a tow truck impound lot.  Roll Eyes


I hear that they are trying to pay for a new  tow truck...this one owned by WEBSH*TS is ready for the junk heap in Dec.

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« Reply #13 on: October 17, 2012, 06:18 PM »

It took me about a week to upload all my photos to Picasa from the computer here at home. At that time, uploads were limited to 5 at a time. The text is mostly gone from the older photos with only a few having had the text transferred one at a time.

Picasa is, by far, the best photo service I've found as far as

lack of ads
size of photos allowed
ease of use

In fact Webshots lowered their max upload file size to 1600x1600 IIRC.

The ads were the most annoying.
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