A funny thing happened to me over the weekend. Someone sent me a message about my comic Amoeba Hugs appearing on the Meta Picture with no credit to me. This helpful reader of mine was doing what I had asked of my readers in a blog post of mine called "Ups and Downs of Producing Online Content."
Here was my request: "If you see anyone sharing my comics without mentioning me, just comment with a link to me. And if you see someone stealing and/or taking credit for my comics, then let me know so I can unleash the beast."
On the Meta Picture, there is a tiny link at the botton of the post that says, "source." Aha! So maybe this aggregate website of interesting things took the 2 seconds necessary to find out who drew this wonderful comic and credit them.
I clicked the link. I was directed to Pinterest. Hm. That's a strange direction for a source credit to go. But I have a Pinterest page for Beatrice the Biologist, and I have pinned this exact comic there, so maybe via Pinterest, the ultimate source of this comic, my blog, can be found.
The person whose pin was listed as the source pinned the image from science.memebase.com, one of the I Can Haz CheezBurger websites. The person didn't pin it from the original post on that website even, but rather pinned the image alone on its own page. So I can't tell if CheezBurger had a link to me, although I doubt they do anyway.
I wondered how long it would have taken any person in this chain to find out who drew this comic. If you google "Amoeba Hugs," my original post is the top link. So far so good.
I tried the reverse image search engine, TinEye.com. Failure. It found exactly 0 results for the Amoeba Hugs image.
Last chance: the new Search by Image function from Google, found at images.google.com.
I dropped in the link to the image from Meta Picture, and something glorious happened.
Yay. Google as usual is the candle in the darkness.