What’s Flickr all about?
Get inspired. Get answers. Get visibility with the world’s largest photo sharing web site.
Flickr has grown into one of the premier photo hosting and sharing sites on the internet, boasting an upload rate of more than 7,000 photos per minute. Flickr allows you to store and share photos with friends and family, or to the world. It’s entirely up to you.
Flickr provides features that allow you to browse exceptional photography by both amateurs and professionals to inspire you to greater heights. It is also a platform to display your photographs to a worldwide audience.
Here is a rundown of the basics of Flickring, and how you can take advantage of some of the site’s powerful features.
Getting onboard Flickr
You’ll need a Yahoo! ID to create a Flickr account. If you have a Yahoo! E-mail account, you’re already there. Otherwise, you can quickly create an ID on Yahoo! or Flickr itself.
You can sign up for a free Flickr account, which allows you to upload 1,000GB of free storage for photos and videos. There are limitations on size, so if you’re interested in using Flickr, check out their upload limitations guidelines.
You can edit and organize your photos, set them for private or public viewing, order prints and other products and keep in touch with your family and friends.
A “Pro” account costs a nominal annual fee and includes unlimited photo and video uploads and other features we’ll discuss in a bit.
See and be seen on Flickr
Flickr lets you add tags to your photos so they can be found by those searching within Flickr as well as searches on internet search engines like Yahoo! and Google. You can build a network of contacts, such as photographers whose work you admire, and join groups devoted to various types of photography. Users can leave comments on public photos and mark them as favorites.
Flickr developed a patented feature called “Interestingness” which ranks your photos according to an algorithm that measures views, comments, favorites and the speed by which these are amassed. A daily collection of the photos with the highest “Interestingness” are featured on pages called Explore. Explore is a good place to browse for photo ideas and inspiration.
Placing your photos on a map to mark the location in which they were taken increases the chance that they will be seen. In fact, photos high in Interestingness show up on local Yahoo! news pages serving those geographical areas, increasing their potential audience. In addition, you can browse a map of an area to which you will be traveling to view photos taken there and gather ideas on what to shoot, where and when.
Peeking behind the lenses
Flickr users have the option of displaying their photos’ EXIF data (the More properties link), which lists the camera and settings used to capture an image, providing others with a measure of assistance in knowing how to capture a similar image.
Speaking of cameras, Flickr tracks the number of photos made on hundreds of brands of digital cameras each day. You can search for photos high in Interestingness made with virtually any brand of digital camera to:
- assure yourself that your camera is able to take pictures of similar quality and
- check out a camera’s capabilities before purchasing one.
Flickr group members also share knowledge about particular types of photography in groups dedicated to various categories.
Flickr users maintain control over their photos by setting their licensing levels – whether it’s All Rights Reserved or allowing usage under various Creative Commons licenses. Many publishers and web content creators browse Flickr images for illustrative purposes. A number of Flickr members have negotiated their way to having their photographs featured in magazines, books and web sites.
Many groups hold competitions in which group members vote on entries in various themed contests. Some organizations have created partnerships with Flickr and have moved their competitions onto the photo sharing site.
Sponsors like Nikon, Hewlett-Packard and Ford have established groups on Flickr to solicit photos for use in their marketing campaigns.
Going “Pro” at Flickr
Users who opt for the paid account get additional features:
- Their Flickr experience will be devoid of advertising, which only free account users encounter.
- The upload limits are all but removed.
- The Stats feature allows you to see how many views, comments and favorites any or all of your photos are accumulating and where those views are coming from. You can see who links to your photos from sites other than Flickr.
- See the word “Pro” displayed next to your user name (for ego purposes). 😉
Flickr continues to grow and add features to serve the photo community. At an initial cost of free, it’s worth checking out.
Be careful, though, many users confess that Flickr can be addictive.
Share photos hosted on Flickr
Flickr offers several ways to share one or more photos uploaded to your account. You can choose to make them public, share only with family and/or friends, or post to popular social networking sites