eBaum's World

eBaum's World

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About

Ebaum’s World is a website used to share photos, games and flash animations. Launched in 2001 by Eric “ebaum” Bauman, the site has a large userbase that has at times been influential on the development of memes and participated in raids and events that would later gain notoriety. Ebaum’s was bought by the ZVUE corporation for $16 million in 2008. Since then, Eric Bauman has claimed that he and the original Ebaum’s World staff have been fired from the site and the company continues to use his name without his consent, giving others the impression he is still employed. [1]

Reputation Online

h.3 Content Thievery

Similar to 9gag Ebaum’s World has a generally negative reputation among other online communities. Ebaum’s is reputed to frequently post content from other websites without permission or attributing it to its original author. Since Ebaum’s watermarks its content, this gives users the impression that the content originated on Ebaum’s. Sites that experienced this regularly include SomethingAwful, 4chan, YTMND, Newgrounds, Weebl’s Stuff and Albino Blacksheep. [2]

Ebaum’s has also seen threats of lawsuit from companies like Viacom [3] for hosting content without permission.

Feud with SomethingAwful

The feud between users of SomethingAwful and Ebaum’s World purportedly dates back to 2005, when Ebaum’s began using images from SomethingAwful’s popular PhotoshopPhriday without permission. [4] Another key incident what escalated tensions between the two communities occurred on May 26, 2006, when SomethingAwful was forced to begin using a more invasive watermark by a surge of images hosted in Ebaums that were cropped to remove the SomethingAwful watermark.

Content Commercialization

Ebaum’s has been criticized by multiple persons for attempting to make a profit off user-submitted content, which often isn’t theirs to begin with. Ebaum’s maintains an online store selling Ebaums merchandise. An attempt to make a TV show, hosted on Fox, featuring highlights of Ebaum’s content, was begun in 2006. At this time, it is reported that the webmaster of Albino Blacksheep was contacted by members of the show’s production team, who requested permission to use the site’s content without informing him what it was for. After this appeal was rejected, the project faded into obscurity.

References

[1]Eric Bauman’s Blog
[2]Wikipedia Article on Ebaum’s, Section Copyright Infringment
[3]court TV becomes truTV
[4]Wikipedia Article on Ebaum’s, Section Copyright Infringment

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