For example, if I embed this random image in a forum, it will show up normally:
If I try to view the image in a new tab, it will redirect me to the main page:
If I copy the image location there, it is:
The difference is in the sub-domain, the "direct" embed link is "i48", the actual direct link is "oi48" - this is true for all tinypic uploads (though, the server numbers might be different: i38 vs. oi37 for example).
If I embed the "oi48" image, trying to view it in a new tab will work without redirecting to the main page.
So how do they do that?
And if I try to access the direct "oi48" link by typing/pasting it in the address bar, without first loading it in a forum post (for example), thus not having it in my cache, it will still redirect to the main tinypic.com page just like the "i48" link.
I also think funnyjunk.com used to add hotlink protection to the mix: a hotlink image ("Please go to funnyjunk to view this image") would show, and when you opened the image in a new tab, it'd redirect you to the image's page (for example, funnyjunk.com/funny_pictures/589823/Place/), but I'm not so sure if that's really what it did (they allow hotlinking now). Though, I guess if that would be possible, everyone would be using that method...
Would it be possible to implement a hotlink protection and a redirect to the image's main page? If so, how?