Missing image - old record

Please fill out the following sections to the best of your ability, it will help us investigate bugs if we have this information at the outset. Screenshots are especially helpful, so please provide those if you can.

Platform (Android, iOS, Website): Website

App version number, if a mobile app issue (shown under Settings or About):

Browser, if a website issue (Firefox, Chrome, etc) : Safari (Mac) 14.0.3

URLs (aka web addresses) of any relevant observations or pages: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/1052160

Screenshots of what you are seeing (instructions for taking a screenshot on computers and mobile devices: https://www.take-a-screenshot.org/):

Description of problem (please provide a set of steps we can use to replicate the issue, and make as many as you need.): This observation previously had a photo. Now the photo apparently isn’t loading. What can cause this? If the observer deleted the photo, wouldn’t the observation go away?

Step 1:

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Step 3:

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I also met some old observations like that.

Yes, earlier this week I discovered some of my older observations had their photos missing too. For example, https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/949868

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It seems to be some problem with amazon AWS:

Request URL: https://inaturalist-open-data.s3.amazonaws.com/photos/1203083/original.jpeg?1413269137
Request Method: GET
Status Code: 403 Forbidden

First image is missed because it was taken from facebook which has no such content now.

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@kildor Good sleuthing. I would have expected iNat to be caching its own copy of that Facebook image.

Mine might be an unrelated issue. It might not be coincidental that it dates back to the time when New Zealand was running a separate instance of the iNaturalist code, before the iNaturalist Network brought us all together. I would have uploaded this observation to that site, which was imported into the main iNat in early 2014. I’d be surprised if these have been blank for six years though without anyone noticing. I’m guessing something more recent has tripped things up. It’s odd that all photos from https://www.inaturalist.org/photos/1203077 to https://www.inaturalist.org/photos/1203086 are gone, but the earlier and later images, like https://www.inaturalist.org/photos/1203076 and https://www.inaturalist.org/photos/1203087, are still showing. All were part of this old NZ site.

Thanks, @kildor. So please help this non-techie understand: Am I correct that the observation in question (in my original post, above) actually points to an image hosted on a 3rd party site and not on iNat proper?

I’ve run into several of these. Most of the ones from 2014 seem to be photos uploaded to Flicker and then to iNaturalist, and the Flicker account apparently doesn’t exist any more. However, one was easily fixed by the user.

There are a small number of cases of photos like this that show up as “Processing…”. Many of them will be photos that were once hosted on third parties that are no longer accessible. A year or so ago we started to make local copies of third party photos and you may have received an email about some if we were unable to access the originals.

If you ever see a case like this for a photo of yours and you know you still have a copy of the original version, I’d recommend deleting the broken version and uploading the original again. At some point we’ll do another cleanup and will likely remove anything that remains broken.

As for the issue Jon was experiencing - photos that appear broken and cannot be resolved - some of those might be related to recent photo migration (see more info in this thread). Early in the process a few photos were updated with incorrect URLs. No photo files have been lost, rather some just had wrong URLs. I think I fixed all yours Jon. At the end of the bulk migration we’ll run an audit of all photos to make sure their URLs are correct and resolve to fix any remaining instances.

If anyone else notices broken images (images that don’t appear, not those that say “Processing…”) please let me know and I’ll look into it.


@pleary Thanks Patrick! Mine are working again.

Yes, you are right.
I’ve answered to two posts with two different problems.