The trouble with Flickr

I made a couple of comments on Twitter last week about Flickr’s snail-like evolution.

That #Flickr is advertising as “New” the newly introduced “Upload” button in their primary nav. is what makes #Yahoo! doomed.

That Upload button is the most significant software upgrade in the last 24 months. #Flickr #Yahoo!

Reading Gizmodo’s article on a similar subject just now, I was quite close to the mark.

Since Flickr was bought by Yahoo!, there have been few technological developments that are visible to the end user. The odd screen may have received a makeover, and I think I can now see other people’s photos on maps. But beyond that, there’s little.

In fact, the main difference to me is that I was forced to start paying for the service (on 30 July 2008), as I needed to upload more pictures than the free account allowed. I don’t resent this. All services should be paid for.

What I resent is the lack of focus on me as a user by Yahoo!

I’d love to be able to log in with other systems’ credentials.

I’d love to be able to allow my Facebook followers automatic access to my protected photos.

I’d like a much richer interface for seeing my friends’ photos.

I’d like to be able to upload videos more than 90 seconds in length.

I’d like all photos taken on my smart phone to automatically upload to Flickr when in WiFi range, and for these only to be accessible by myself.

I’d like a much improved interface into my own photostream—timelines, montages, albums.

I’d like my geotagging of my own photos to have a positive impact on me, rather than merely fuelling other people’s views of the world.

Instead, I have none of these features. Instead, I have the privilege of losing access to all bar 200 of my photos if I ever stop paying.

Flickr will not die. Certainly not for a long time. Instead it will live a long dull life. Its user base will remain uninspired and unimpressed. And its functionality will creep forward while those around it bound past it. I wonder whether I’ll be a part of it.


One Response to “The trouble with Flickr”

  1. Yazz on May 16th, 2012 08:19

    What a depressing state of affairs! I really like flickr, mainly because I’ve tapped into a community of likeminded photographers, both local to me and from around the world. But I can’t disagree with anything you’ve said. Very sad.

    ps: I don’t like the new upload button, and it’s not radically different from the old one anyway… and it’s had the ‘new’ label for ages now…

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