I was uploading some pictures to my Facebook Fan Page and I noticed the “Download in High Resolution” link on the bottom right of the image.
A few months ago I had read that FB was going to implement this feature but I’d forgotten all about it.
I clicked on it to give it a try and sure enough, it downloaded my original size file, which was about 1200px wide by 1500px tall.
Interesting, but not something I really wanted to have going on with my FB page. I’m sure many photographers out there are being caught unawares while their hi-res photos are being downloaded for free.
Anyway, I started hunting for a setting or checkbox or something to let me turn this off, but I came up with zilch.
Finally, I determined that the only way to prevent people from downloading hi-res files from you is to simply not upload hi-res files.
Normally I don’t do that anyway, I usually re-size them to Facebook preferred size. I found that doing this prevented Facebook from resizing the images and introducing it’s horrible compression artifacts.
After some Googling I discovered independent verification of my findings in a short video by photographer Dustin Meyer:
It pretty much breaks it down to what I stated earlier: If you don’t want people downloading your hi-res images off your Facebook Fan Page, the only way to prevent it is to not upload hi-res images.
If anyone discovers another way, just let me know in the comments or email me.