Why sharing a picture goes pear-shaped in many cases

As it happens a lot that you get a link from a friend saying “Look at this cute cat” and once you open the picture you actually get to see a “big pink dog”, I went on and tested some of the most visited news sites in Germany to see if it’s possible to share a specific image out of a gallery just by copying the URL from the address field.

Here is what I came up with.


The link I tested on this site was this one. Sharing on non-mobile devices works well however once viewing this link on mobile you get this. #fail


I tried to share Image 4 in this gallery. Impossible as you always get to see the first image. #fail


Here I tried to share Image 6 from this gallery. Nope, again no chance to share this specific image. #fail


On this site I wanted to share this image of a wale. And surprise, surprise this is the first image I can share between different devices. #good


Seems like we now have a run. Sharing this picture works like a charm as well. #good


Oh look at the tiger on picture 4. What you actually see is not a tiger at all but some other animals. On my Android 2.3 device you even have to close 2 Pop-ups (asking if you want to install the App) before you get to the article, but no wonder still no tigers. #fail


Here I tried to share picture 13. Unfortunately this is not possible, as you always get to see the first picture, on mobile the same of course. #fail

Results are frustrating

To sum it up, out of 7 tested sites only 2 provided me with a link to a specific image which I could share with whatever device I like. One (spiegel.de) is doing his job on desktop, but once you go mobile they fail completely. As a side note – sueddeutsche.de was the only gallery where you could use your keyboard to navigate through the images, which is a terrible quota.

I really don’t know why so many sites have problems changing the URL while clicking through there “fancy” JavaScript Gallery. It’s just some lines of JavaScript, to add a different hash to the URL for every image and on the other hand checking if a hash is present to show the image the user asked for. If you don’t like hashes in your url you can also use the HTML5 History API like this cross-browser Solution.


I am really the only one who is pissed of, that fancy effects seems way more important than some of the basics? I absolutely hope not.

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