Last week I got an e-mail from Flickr. That’s the service I use to store some of my photos and, like many of you, to organize them in sets. Better word than organize—separate them. I have photos of a wedding and a funeral: the photos and the commentaries I could make were more appropriate when kept separate.
The e-mail was excited to tell me:
"Amazing things are happening at Flickr. We’ve made a lot of important upgrades to your service that we wanted you to know about."
Note, they had already done it and now they wanted me to know. What were these changes?
"Biggr.That’s right, a terabyte*"
Thank heavens the asterisk explained what a terabyte is—
*500, 000 pictures, 537, 731 6.5 to be exact.
The cute spelling continued—
"Spectaculr. Share in full resolution
Wherevr. Available anywhere you go."
Of course I went immediately to my Flickrpage and was taken aback by what I saw. It looked like a collage, but I had had no input into what photos I wanted in what size. After some research I made a little more sense of what had been done, although as a Pro member I found no indication of whether my Pro subscription would be refunded now that I had a free terabyte.
I thought I would find some assistance by googling help (there didn’t seem to be a help button on the Flickr page) and came across a help forum with almost 30,000 comments. Among them was “What an UTTER heap of CRAP”, Stupid, stupid and more stupid”, “It sucks”. Some I couldn’t repeat. Apparently the comments were shut down and there are another 6,000 in the new comments page. Many of the comments covered technical issues I could not understand, but there were enough dealing with aesthetic issues to let me know I was not alone.
I must admit that over the years Flickr has made it much easier to upload photos. I was using it as a vehicle to allow friends and family to follow our lives visually and yet provide an input for narrative. I have yet to find out what will happen when I try to upload new photos and create new sets—and I must figure out how to remove the berries in the banner.
Do any of you use Flickr? Any concerns?