Well, after a few years of sharing photos on Flickr, I have decided to move on to better and greener pastures. It has been something I have considered for about a year and when my pro membership was up for renewal last month, I opted to let it expire and just keep free account.
Originally, I planned to keep the free account which limited my online portfolio to only 200 photos and it would just become 200 of my latest additions instead of my complete collection. That idea changed however after Flickr decided to deny my API requests from Lightroom to upload a couple of my newest shots. 2 weeks after my pro membership expired, I was unable to upload photos from Lightroom and received a message instead that asserted only pro members had access to Flickr's API channels.
Ok, Flickr you are already losing ground and members to many other photo sharing alternatives so I guess I am now part of that statistic. The added steps needed to share my photo's with Flickr aren't major considering it is same steps I will be using to share to Google+ (Picasa) and 500pix but the lack of enthusiasm for Flickr these days just doesn't motivate me to continue the charade with them.
Don't get me wrong, Flickr is ok. Not great, but is ok for what it offers. However, it has become apparent that those who that get the most recognition, comments, and views on Flickr aren't always those sharing the best work. It seems it is more about building a network of people who are willing to give a comment and view for a comment and view in return.
Many times, the photos with the most views and comments are sub-par quality and just a result of a very active author in the community. Not really a bad thing but it sure is not a true reflection of the quality of the work.
Flickr could use some serious help with it's social networking too. The current group model is very sad and doesn't help increase user interaction as well as it could. The groups have an archaic message board and posting system and often become just a tool for photographers to use for increasing their photo views. The more groups a photo is posted in, the greater the amount of comments and views typically making the social interaction of the groups less important.
Flickr seems to have also become a bit heavy handed with control. They have taken it upon themselves to become photo police and removing photos and terminating accounts without warning for many people. While I understand the need for limits on material posted to public such as not wanting Flickr to become filled with pornography, they also seem to use this control to thwart political postings in which they are in disagreement with. They are also inconsistent in their policing making this even more frustrating for contributors.
There are things I do like about Flickr, however. I like the huge member base and have many friends and contacts through Flickr. They will be missed but I am in hopes many of those whom I enjoyed sharing comments and work with might follow me to the greener pastures.