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By 2 November 2018 | Categories: news

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Remember Flickr? Yep, the site that was once the foremost photography sharing site before Instagram came stomping along. If you still have a Flickr account then you better take note of the latest development.

Two important things have been announced on the Flickr blog. Firstly, that terabyte of free storage you received? Well that’s heading out the window, and seemingly with good reason. Andrew Stadlen, VP of product at Flickr noted that by giving photographers 1 TB of storage in 2013, Flickr became a dumping ground of sorts, with many users simply using it as a storage facility.

This has led to the demise of the core reason for Flickr – the community’s love of photography and discussions through groups. “We know those of you who value a vibrant community didn’t like this shift, and with this change we’re re-committing Flickr to focus on fostering this interaction,” Stadlen noted. For this reason, beginning on the 8th of January 2019, free accounts will be limited to 1000 photos and videos.

He said that, by giving away a full 1 TB of storage, it created data that could be sold to advertisers, which meant advertisers’ interests were prioritised above that of the photography community. Since the ‘new’ Flickr will run on subscriptions from those paying for Pro accounts, Stadlen notes, “We want to build features and experiences that delight you, not our advertisers; ensuring that our members are also our customers makes this possible.”

There’s also the small problem that all Flickr users required a Yahoo account to log in. That nonsense will come to an end, seeing that when SmugMug bought Flickr from Yahoo, they started to work towards a system where you can use any email address to log into Flickr. This will now be ready in early 2019.

We always liked Flickr, but with the massive success of Instagram it seemed like Flickr has lost a lot of its usefulness. Hopefully making these changes will help – they are indeed long overdue. But if Flickr will be able to compete against the IG giant, well we doubt if that would be the case. Maybe that’s not needed though. Many photographers still require community input and a place to showcase photographs in an environment that’s not limited by the size of a smartphone screen. Flickr can indeed not only offer that, but excel in this above their competitors. Let’s hope for the best.

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