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FAQ


New subscribers

Assuming you already have your images and text in digital form, typically you can have a basic website up and running in under 30 minutes. The more advanced features like setting up online sales and linking your own domain name will take longer to set up.
Due to the large variety of websites out there, there is no automated migration path that can import an existing website to run on Zhibit.org. You will have to manually upload your images to Zhibit.org and effectively create your site from scratch.
Yes, Zhibit.org was designed from the grounds up to simpify as much as possible the creation of your website and our user friendly website will guide you through the process of creating your own step by step. A basic understanding of web browsing (not authoring) is all it takes to get started.
Your login ID is also part of the URL to your website, which is given high importance by search engines when indexing your site. You should therefore use terms that you want your site to be associated with , for example "johnnyphotography". Just remember that this ID also needs to be easily memorable so don't go over board with one that is too long.
Yes, Zhibit.org comes with a free and unlimited trial mode.
No, we only ask you for payment if and when you activate your account.
Yes, only active subscribers of Zhibit.org who host and maintain a website with Zhibit.org are eligible to be listed in the directory.

Subscription payments

At Zhibit LLC we are very sensitive to the privacy and security of your information. To eliminate unnecessary risks, we do not store on our servers any of your financial information. Instead, we let PayPal - the leading online payment processor - handle all transactions. You give your billing information to PayPal. PayPal then deducts the monies from your account and transfers them to us. At no time does PayPal share with us any of your financial data. If we don't have it, we can't lose it.
Although PayPal processes all payments for Zhibit.org, a PayPal account is not required to subscribe to Zhibit.org and a major credit card is all it takes. A PayPal account is only required if you wish to establish automatic payments for your account's subscription. In addition, some of the enhanced features of Zhibit.org, namely selling online, do require linking a PayPal business account.
At this time we cannot accept payments by mail or wire. We work with PayPal because it helps us to reduce collection costs as well as offer a level of protection (for you and for us) against fraud. If you do not have a credit card, opening a PayPal account will allow you to make payments directly out of your US bank account. Please refer to PayPal's website for more information.
Zhibit LLC cannot currently accept payments by any means other than online through PayPal as the costs of administering these payments manually would be prohibitive. Most credit card companies offer innovative ways to confront fraud, including for example the use of randomly generated virtual account numbers that are only good for one purchase. If that number is lost or stolen, it can't be used for anything other than for the original transaction. You are encouraged to check the website of your credit card company for more information on how to use your card securely online.
Due to the fact that automatic payments to Zhibit.org are managed by PayPal, we do not directly know or keep your credit card information. Any changes you want to make to your payment method, including to credit card data, must therefore be made at your PayPal account. You can update your credit card information after logging in to PayPal under the My Account | Profile | Financial Information | Credit Card screen. In certain instances, such updates might trigger PayPal to notify Zhibit.org of the cancellation of your autopay subscription. Rest assured that in this case your data and any unused balances are safe. Simply resubscribe to Zhibit.org to reactivate your account.
Some PayPal accounts experience an error when attempting to subscribe with no payment at all. This is a known issue with PayPal and charging a small amount is PayPal's recommended workaround. Rest assured that the $1 is applied towards your subscription time and isn't lost.

Buying and selling on Zhibit.org

An easy-to-follow wizard will guide you through the process of linking your PayPal business account with Zhibit.org. Then, all you need to do is put a price on each item that you want to offer for sale. Visitors who view these items will be presented with a "Buy" button that, when clicked, will direct them to PayPal where they will be able to effect payment directly to you. At the completion of the transaction PayPal will email both you and the buyer. You will then need to fulfill the order and deliver the items to the buyer.

Shipping and handling and tax charges are calculated by PayPal during the checkout process based on the settings you specified for your PayPal business account. Please refer to PayPal for more information regarding these topics.
When you buy through websites hosted on Zhibit.org, you can rest assured that your credit card number is safe. All purchases made through Zhibit.org are completed through PayPal, the leading online payment processor. This means only PayPal has access to your credit card information; not Zhibit.org, nor the seller.
Zhibit LLC is not involved in transactions between buyers and sellers hosted on Zhibit.org and for such inquiries you should contact the seller directly through their website on Zhibit.org.

If for any reason you wish to dispute the transaction (e.g. if the goods are not delivered to you), you should do so no later than 45 days past the purchase date. Disputes should be filed with your credit card company and/or through PayPal. In this case, don't hesitate to contact us if you need any further information about the transaction or the seller. We're here to help.

Domain name

There are three possible methods to configure the address (URL) to the website you create on Zhibit.org:

a) A sub-directory under Zhibit.org's domain name is automatically created for you based on your chosen login ID. For example, if your login ID is "johnqpublic", the URL to your site will be www.Zhibit.org/johnqpublict.

b) If you own your own domain name, e.g. johnqpublic.com, you can use web forwarding or other similar means to redirect users to your website on Zhibit.org, i.e. to Zhibit.org/johnqpublic. When users type your domain name in the browser's address bar, they will be redirected to Zhibit.org from which point on Zhibit.org's domain name will appear in the browser address bar. While it is possible to use masking to obscure Zhibit.org's domain name we do not recommend you employ this technique since it will clash with search engines and confuse your visitors. Please refer to your domain name registrar for instructions on how to set up web forwarding.

c) A transparent mapping of your domain name to point to our servers in a way that will completely obscure Zhibit.org's domain name is available through domain aliasing on select subscription plans. Once set, Zhibit.org will serve all HTTP requests going to your domain and in effect will become your domain's web server.
At this time only one (primary) domain name can be linked to each site on Zhibit.org by means of domain aliasing. However, it is possible to link additional (secondary) domain names to your website through web forwarding of the secondary domain names to the primary domain name. Then, visitors who visit one of the web forwarded secondary domains are redirected to the primary domain and will thereafter see the latter in the address bar of their browser. Please refer to your domain name registrar for instructions on how to set up web forwarding.
Zhibit LLC does not itself register domain names. There are many domain name registrars out there and we encourage you to shop around and choose the one that best fits your needs. The only requirement is that the registrar provide you with complete control over the DNS settings of your domain. More specifically, you should be able to configure the A-record of your domain to point to Zhibit.org's IP address.

The following registrars have been proven to work with Zhibit.org: Network Solutions, Yahoo Domains, DynDNS, Register.com and GoDaddy.com. Zhibit.org's domain aliasing wizard will present you with step-by-step instructions on how to set the A-record for your domain for any of these registrars.
Follow the instructions at GoDaddy to forward your domain name to the URL of your Zhibit.org site. Make sure to select the options to "Update my DNS setting to support this change" and "I am permanently forwarding my domain". Do not use masking since this technique will clash with search engines and confuse your visitors.
When it comes to websites, it's important to differentiate between the registration of the domain name and the hosting of the website. Some hosting companies will register a domain name for you, as long as you also host your website with them. However, it's unlikely that they will allow you to link the domain name to a website hosted elsewhere, e.g. on Zhibit.org.

In this case, we recommend you open an account with a domain registrar such as GoDaddy.com and transfer the registration of your domain over to them. This will put the domain name under your full control independent of the hosting service you ultimately choose. Once the transfer is complete (could take a few days) you'll be able to link the domain name to your Zhibit.org site using either web forwarding or domain aliasing, and finally close your account at the old hosting company altogether.
At this time Zhibit.org's services do not include email hosting. Most subscribers of Zhibit.org use their web-based email accounts (Hotmail, Gmail, Yahoo, etc.) to receive emails. You will need a separate solution if it's important to you to receive email at your private domain name (i.e. yourname@yourdomain.com). Typically, domain name registrars offer email hosting services at an extra cost and you may want to start your search there.

Uploading images

Zhibit.org can accept BMP, GIF, JPG, PNG and TIFF image formats (PSD, PDF and RAW formats are not accepted). At this time only images with an 8-bits/channel RGB or ARGB color model are supported and an error will occur if you attempt to upload, for example, 16-bits/channel or CMYK color modeled images. It is therefore necessary to convert non-RGB images to the RGB color model before uploading them to Zhibit.org. In Photoshop, you may convert between color models using the Image | Mode menu options.

Zhibit.org automatically scales the images to best fit various web page layouts so you generally do not need to resize images before uploading them. For smoother uploads, we recommend uploading images that are no larger than 2400 pixels in width or in height and that are under 2 MB in file size. Large images, especially TIFFs, may take too long to upload over a slow internet connection. In this case we recommend scaling down the images, but to no less than 600 pixels in width or in height, before uploading them. In any case, uploaded image files must not exceed 16 MB in size.
Verify the file format is either a BMP, GIF, JPG or PNG. TIFFs are also acceptable but generally not recommended because of their large size which affects upload times. Do not upload a Photoshop PSD file, an Adobe PDF file or a camera's RAW image file. In Photoshop, you may convert between file formats using the File | Save As... menu option.

If the image file size is over 16 MB, you must scale down the image before uploading it. In Photoshop, you may scale images using the Image | Image Size... menu option. If the image format is TIFF, converting it to a JPEG will significantly reduce its size without the need to scale it down. In Photoshop, you may convert between file formats using the File | Save As... menu option.

If the image file size is over 2 MB and you are using a slow internet connection such as a dialup modem, the failure may be due to network connectivity issues. Try scaling down the image and reduce its size before uploading it again. In Photoshop, you may scale images using the Image | Image Size... menu option.

Check that the color model of the image is 8-bits/channel RGB. In Photoshop, you may convert between color models using the Image | Mode menu options.
While artistic nude is generally allowed on Zhibit.org, we do set limits and we will not tolerate material that is clearly pornographic, or that we otherwise, in our sole discretion, find inappropriate. Please exercise your best judgment when posting material that you suspect might be offensive to others.

Other features

No. All sites hosted on Zhibit LLC are based purely on HTML and rely on Javascript for dynamic presentation. An HTML-based website has the advantages of much faster rendering and response times, better indexing by search engines, compatibility with almost all browsers and devices and the ability to deep link to internal pages.
In order to maintain the integrity of the sites hosted on Zhibit.org, complete editing control of the HTML code of your site is not possible. However, Zhibit.org does allow inserting HTML code fragments, including scripts and widgets, into individual pages.
Yes, absolutely. If the edit box you're using to edit your data has buttons over it, such as for the free form pages, use the "web link" button (fourth from the right) to insert a link. Highlight the text you want to turn into a link, click the button, then enter the URL.

If the edit box does not have a toolbar above it, you can place a link by writing the URL as part of the text and the link will be created for you.

Exposure and promotion

Firt, verify that your subscription plan comes with search engine placement. Otherwise, Zhibit.org won't submit your website to Google (and other search engines for that matter).

With that in place, search engines crawl Zhibit.org periodically and any changes, including the introduction of new websites, are discovered with a delay of anywhere between a few hours and a few weeks.
Zhibit.org employs search engine placement and optimization techniques to better assist search engines in understanding the content of your web pages. To take advantage of these techniques, always enter meaningful and relevant titles to your content. When a title is not enough, use the description field and include your key search terms. Also, writing a blog about topics related to your website is a great way to teach search engines what your site is about.

Another method to help boost search engine ranking is to link to your site on Zhibit.org from other websites such as online bulletin boards, discussion forums, social networks, social bookmarking services, etc. Incoming links increase the reputation of your site in the eyes of the search engine and should eventually boost its ranking.

Also note that search engines are known to decrease the importance of stale content, so update your website as often as you can.
Subscribers are randomly selected to be featured on the home page to allow everyone an equal chance at it. Only subscribers listed on Zhibit.org's directory are eligible to show on the home page.
We do not believe there's a one size fits all solution when it comes to marketing and so while Zhibit.org provides the tools to create a website, we generally leave its promotion to you. You know your art best and we believe you will be its best promoter.

It's important to realize that it takes time to build an internet presence and one cannot expect to do it overnight. Optimizing your site's content to search engines, publicizing its URL online and offline as much as possible and purchasing of online ads such as through Google AdWords are just a few ideas that can get you started.
There are two ways to measure hits on your website. Zhibit.org includes a basic visits counter that can be seen after logging in to your account. For those interested in more sophisticated tracking, Zhibit.org can be integrated with a third party analytics provider, such as Google Analytics.

Legal matters

Zhibit LLC is in no position to provide legal advice and we encourage you to check with a professional for the relevant laws of your locality. If you are a resident of the US, you may want to take a look at the website of the Small Business Administration for a list of resources in your state.
It is important to understand that there's no foolproof method to prevent content shown on a public website from being copied. Anyone claiming otherwise is not being truthful. As a matter of fact, when a visitor sees one of your web pages, a copy of that page resides in their computer's memory. Anyone with sufficient knowledge and intent will be able to make a hard copy of that content. That being said, Zhibit.org does its best to protect your copyright on several levels:

1) By default, Zhibit.org restricts the dimensions of images that are made available for visitors to no more than 600x400, which is sufficient for web display but unusable for print. Keeping the high-resolution originals of your images secure is the only way to fully guarantee that they will not be used without your permission.

2) Zhibit.org can superimpose a "copyright" watermark on your images. Although it is technically possible to remove these types of marks using software such as Photoshop, it involves a lot of work and will most likely be noticeable.

3) Zhibit.org employs several technical means restricting visitors from easily copying images off your website. As mentioned above, these means are not foolproof and a person with sufficient knowledge and intent may be able to circumvent them.

4) A copyright notice is displayed at the bottom of each of your site's pages, stating your legal claim to the content. Please visit the website of the United States Copyright Office for information regarding the copyright laws and your rights under them.
We require rights to your content because, by its nature, Zhibit.org will modify your content (e.g. by cropping it) and publish it worldwide, often edited and embedded in other forms (e.g. in web pages containing other subscribers' work). We require these rights to protect Zhibit LLC from potential lawsuits. We do not sell your content and in fact, selling your work is not part of the rights you give us.

Zhibit LLC may from time to time publish advertisements that include images, text or other content you've uploaded to the website. The purpose of these ads is solely to promote your website and the services of Zhibit.org. Participation in online advertisements is on an opt-out basis; for printed advertisements we will ask your specific permission before using your material.

Zhibit.org uses only what is currently uploaded to the site. Other than for backup purposes, we do not maintain copies of content you deleted from your site so you're always able to control what our system has access to. Once you delete your content from the site, we stop using it immediately. Note that we are not responsible for removing copies of the content that are not under our immediate control, such as those held by search engines, caches, etc.
 
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