Tag Archives: photos

SmugMug buys Flickr – should we stay or should we go?

Flickr Photostream

So the wait is over. When it was announced that Verizon was to buy Yahoo! there was concern as to what was going to happen to Flickr. Yahoo! never did much in terms of developing Flickr and what it did do was rubbish. Trying to add the location of your photo is an interesting experience at the best of times. You might be able to pin it onto the map but the name of the place is all too often wrong. I used to spend half my time on Flickr manually changing the location – not something to be taken on lightly – but I generally don’t bother now. It’s not worth the effort.

Then there are the auto generated tags that Flickr adds to your photos without asking for confirmation. (Flickr pulls out all the stops with automatic tagging). These are sometimes relevant and it is helpful to be reminded of tags that might prove useful when searching, but the error rate is far too high to leave Flickr to its own devices when generating these. Deleting the oddballs after you have uploaded individual photos is not too onerous but checking a back catalogue of thousands of photos for rogue tags is not really feasible. It explains why Flickr search results often include photos that no way match your search terms.

It would also be nice if we could have interfaces with social media and mobile apps that actually work.

And finally, many of us are looking forward to not having to use a Yahoo! account to log in.

Unfortunately, the email that is hitting subscribers inboxes right now states:

“Nothing will change immediately with regard to your Flickr account.?You will still access Flickr with your current login credentials and you will have the same Flickr experience as you do now.”

They do, though,? go on to say:

“We will continue to work to make your Flickr experience even better.”

Hmm. We shall just have to see if that is going to work out. In the meantime we have until May 25th, 2018 to decide if we want our Flickr account and data transferred to SmugMug. If we don’t:

“you must go to?your Flickr account?to download the photos and videos you want to keep, then delete your account from your?Account Settings?by May 25, 2018. If you do not delete your account by May 25, 2018, your Flickr account and data will transfer to SmugMug and will be governed by SmugMug’s?Terms?and?Privacy Policy”.

So there we have it. I shall stay with Flickr/SmugMug for the time being and see how things develop. In any case, I shall be backing up my Flickr photos as usual just in case something goes seriously awry.

Getty Images is NOT making all of its photos freely available

Composting_Toilet_Barracks_Lane_20120422_2My Twitter feed and other social media this morning is full of posts and updates saying that Getty Images is making all of its images freely available. It is not. Read the “Embedded Viewer” section of its Terms and Conditions at http://www.gettyimages.co.uk/Corporate/Terms.aspx for what you can and cannot do.

They are making a limited selection of images available for “editorial purposes (meaning relating to events that are newsworthy or of public interest).”

Embedded Getty Images Content may not be used: (a) for any commercial purpose (for example, in advertising, promotions or merchandising) or to suggest endorsement or sponsorship“.

Getty also reserve the right “to place advertisements in the Embedded Viewer or otherwise monetise its use without any compensation to you.

Ignore these T&Cs at your financial peril!

As for the image associated with this article, it is not from Getty but one of my own. It is a decommissioned composting toilet at Barracks Lane Community Garden, Oxford. Please feel free to use as you wish.

Are your Flickr photos backed up?

Are your Flickr photos backed up? If Flickr accidentally deleted part or all of your account would you be able to quickly restore your collection? My own complete photo collection that has been gathered together from mobile devices and various cameras is stored on my laptop and an external hard drive, but my Flickr photos are a small subset and are organised differently. I would not relish having to rebuild my Flickr sets from scratch.

Flickr has just announced that it?will be down for?planned maintenance tomorrow (Thursday 24th) from 4 PM PDT to 10 PM PDT. As far as I am aware there have been no major data losses so far as a result of maintenance and upgrades by Flickr, but it once accidentally deleted a user’s entire account (Flickr user gets back account after its accidental deletion http://thenextweb.com/media/2011/02/03/flickr-user-gets-back-account-after-its-accidental-deletion/). Flickr did, however, eventually manage to restore the account.

You cannot assume that maintenance and upgrades will be without incident, though. A couple of years ago some bloggers using Google Blogger lost posts as a result of problems that arose during maintenance. (Blogger still down; 30 hours of posts lost http://www.neowin.net/news/blogger-still-down-30-hours-of-posts-lost). My husband was one of those whose posts never reappeared but thankfully he had backups. Some of his articles are quite long and detailed so he is in the habit of preparing them offline before uploading to Blogger. He also has a full backup created using Blogger’s Import/Export option (it can be found under Settings, Other). Flickr, however, does not offer an option to export your data so one has to resort to third party tools.

One of the best tools I have found to date for backing up a Flickr account is Bulkr (http://clipyourphotos.com/bulkr). This has to be downloaded to your computer and requires Adobe AIR to be installed. The free version allows you to download your photostream (small, medium or large sizes but not the original) and up to 15 sets.

?Bulkr download sets screen

If you want to download all of your sets, the original sized photos and include the metadata (title, description, tags) then you will need to upgrade to the Pro version, which currently costs USD 29.99/year. There is a Pro+ option, which is a one time payment currently offered at USD 49. Bulkr does not download comments.

An alternative is?MyFlickrBackup (http://myflickrbackup.com/), which costs USD4.99 and requires .NET Framework Client Profile to run. It?downloads original sized photos and all of your sets, but not the metadata. Two other programs that have been recommended to me but which I haven’t yet tried are FlickrDownload (http://www.onstation.org/flickrdownload/) and?photoSync (http://webecoz.com/).

I’d be interested in hearing your experiences of any of the above, or if you know of other useful Flickr backup apps.