Thingiverse

So I received an interesting email today, the body of which is quoted below:

Regarding Thingiverse Content:

AR-15 grip and stock by oryhara

Two part AR-15 lower receiver by oryhara

As a Thingiverse User, you have agreed to accept and abide by our Terms of Use (the “Terms”).  Our Acceptable Use Policy in section 3.3 of the Terms describes use of the Site “to collect, upload, transmit, display or distribute any User Content… (ii) that…promotes illegal activities or contributes to the creation of weapons…” as a violation.

In exercising our policy enforcement discretion, we have decided to remove the above-captioned content as of today.

Please contact me with any questions.

It mentions two ‘things’ which I’d posted to thingiverse, which they felt the need to remove from the site.  Ok.  It’s their site, they can run it how they like.

I’ve never really liked the manner in which it was run.  There was far too little quality control and far too much useless junk.

Thing 21574 is describes as an OGRE HVY tank, but the actual file(required when posting a ‘thing’) is an empty file.  So what does this mean?

It means that a user made a thing, printed it, took a picture of it, and posted it as a ‘thing’ with a picture but did not include the file others would need to print it.

And this thing became featured on their front page!  this empty thing.  this thing with no actual thing in it.  This thing is a very clear violation of the terms of use, which prohibit posting of a thing without the source files needed to make it.

Thing 19294 is not a thing at all.  It is a pile of scrap ABS from failed prints.  this is just one example, but a number of these such items exist, and they have no benefit whatsoever to the 3d printing community.

I could spend hours combing through thingiverse looking for all of the things i don’t like, but i have better things to do with my time.

As I’ve seen these disappointing ‘things’ in the past, i tend to move on, and get over it.  I never intended to collate them into some kind of miserable hoarder’s memento about how horrible thingiverse is.

Every time I see a thing posted with “I haven’t printed this. hope it works,” I sigh and shake my head.  This user has now unloaded the testing of his or her model onto the other users of thingiverse.  We have to spend our printer time and filament proving out this untested design.  And if the model in question is not marked ‘work in progress’ then one should expect it to work out of the box.

I go to thingiverse to find models for things i might want to use, models I won’t then have to spend some amount of time making myself.  If someone else has already done the work of measuring something and modeling it, thingiverse is usually where i go to find that.

And every useless or empty ‘thing’ makes it harder to find what I’m looking for.

I have only posted a few things to thingiverse, despite the numerous models which I’ve made.  The process of uploading models to thingiverse is very time-consuming, and my iterative design process yields many models when only the final one is of real value.  In the interest of the other users of thingiverse, I only upload models to thingiverse which i’ve tested.  I only put quality models up.

I think the site would benefit if other users did the same.  It’s not a trash can; don’t put junk on thingiverse.

And if thingiverse wants to pull the models I spend weeks testing, printing, perfecting, and feature crap instead? that’s their choice. It’s their site.  This one is mine, and on it I’ll write what I think about them.

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9 Responses to Thingiverse

  1. Have Blue says:

    Many thanks for re-posting your files! I need to dig through my hard drive and post mine as well, as I unsurprisingly got the same email.

    I share your discontent with the quality of Thingiverse – I made it a point to never post anything to the site that I had not personally printed myself, and I wish far more people took that level of pride in their contributions.

  2. AdmiralFDG says:

    For me, it comes down to thingiverse has been too heavy handed in how they handle their community. They like to take unilateral action without considering the consequences it will have on the community they are trying to build around the site. In the end, that’s what’s going to kill them.

    They don’t have the quality (as noted already) to be a curated site, and they don’t have the openness to really facilitate a good community. That leaves a mediocre product ripe for being picked off by sites that do either (or both) of those things well. The hacker community isn’t one to stick around a product for it’s momentum – these are the people who habitually adopt the new.

  3. Josh says:

    It seems like we’re in desperate need for alterntive website:
    – with sane content policies
    – with proper quality control

    Do you know of any viable alternatives?

    • turomar says:

      We are not petulant children. We are not jprusa, altering all of our existing models to ‘occupy thingiverse’ and running away to hide because thingiverse does 1 thing that upsets us.

      Thingiverse exists, despite its flaws, and I will continue to use it. I will download models I want to print, and upload quality models which I feel benefit the community.

      I’m certainly open to a better site for models suited to 3d printing. I’ve yet to see one in my internet surfing.

      • AdmiralFDG says:

        But the point is still valid, an alternative that is a better home for a community. Josh wasn’t suggesting we throw a fit, just find a better alternative and let thingiverse rot.

        I don’t want to destroy thingiverse, I just want to see their site go unused from their own poor decisions in the light of superior alternatives.

    • Bry says:

      Check out Grabcad. It’s a grown-up version of Thingiverse.

      • turomar says:

        seen it. have an account. not as streamlined or easy to use as thingiverse, but that is where i go when they dont have what i want. requiring an account in order to download was kind of a big minus in the ease-of-use category. also browsing/searching left a bit to be desired.

  4. JM says:

    You should absolutely also upload files to http://defcad.org/ as they’re hosting everything else gun-related that thingiverse took down.

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