Photo metadata being stripped out when trying to post an observation

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 on Mac Book Pro running Big Sur 11.7.10

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

Browser, if a website issue (Firefox, Chrome, etc) : Chrome version 17.0.5938.149

URLs (aka web addresses) of any relevant observations or pages: N/A

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 just started earlier today; about 12:35 MDT.

Step 1: When adding an observation, I start at the “add observations” screen, click on “choose files”, then select the photo(s) from the appropriate folder.

Step 2: Photo uploads, but date, time, and other metadata are missing.

Step 3: I can manually add the information from the file screen, but the metadata regarding camera make, exposure time, ISO, and such don’t get imported. Or, I can try and add a second photo, combine them, and delete the one that I don’t need once the date / time / metadata fields are populated. That only works if there’s another photo close enough in time and shooting conditions to be accurate, though. This is a link to an observation that I manually loaded the information for date & time; if you click on the info icon, you’ll see how much of the other data is missing.

Location is something I add manually under most circumstances; my camera isn’t new enough to have onboard GPS.

Let me know if there’s any more information that you need. As I said, this just started this afternoon. The upgrade to Big Sur is recent as of a couple of weeks ago, but everything was working fine up until now.

Thanks,
Becca / Goth Hobbit

I’m not able to replicate in Chrome on my computer running macOS Sonoma.

Are you able to email/dropbox/google drive some of those images to help@inaturalist.org?

I faced this exact problem on Safari if that helps you

I can, but D and I put our heads together to troubleshoot this afternoon, and the problem might be on this end.

Specifically, it looks to be be something introduced into Preview since the upgrade to Big Sur that causes Preview to halfway turn a JPG into a PNG in certain instances. (The Adjust Size and Save windows won’t tell you that, and the extension still comes up as .jpg, but the file size triples and the PPI resolution drops to 72 no matter what it’s supposed to be.) We’re pretty sure that that’s where the problem is cropping up, we just haven’t figured out why.

If it makes more sense to close the bug report, then please do. Or, I can email the images that are glitched, as well as the originals—which have all of the original metadata intact, so far as I can see. I’m open to either option, so let’s go with whichever one works for you. Thanks for looking into it, @tiwane!

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