Do you pay for Flickr?

Interesting article I read on DPReview regarding Flickr CEO sending email out right before Christmas stating that the company continues to bleed money and that he is asking everyone to signup and pay for Flickr Pro. He didn’t come right out and state that the company would fold soon, but it may based on how many people sign up for PRO.

Leo, I believe you may know this guy. Any thoughts?

Do you use Flickr? Would you pay for it?

I used Flickr in the past but have moved on since then. Some of my photos are still there but i am not Going to continue using a platform that keeps changing their terms of service every couple of years.

This was discussed on TTG last Sunday during Chris Marquardt’s segment. It seems that the desire to rescue Flickr was the goal from SmugMug. Unfortunately, it seems they didn’t do their due diligence.

I’m starting to put my photos out there. Flickr does the best job of displaying photos. I got the email from the CEO and decided to upgrade to Pro taking the 2 year discount.


There are reasons to be a Flickr Pro user and perhaps speaking to other photographers here so apologies to others less inclined or happy with directly social usage online.

So first of all Pro version is a backup and a useful one.

  • unlimited automatic full quality uploads of all JPEGs on your computer
  • Direct links to various sizes of photos for sharing/embedding
  • Plays nice with the rest of the Internet/IFTTT etc.

Secondly, the work is treated with respect.

  • no ‘optimisation’ (Google) or whatever crunching Instagram call their process
  • The images are large, full screen, looks great
  • Camera data is shared if you want - EXIF data is a great teaching tool, directed my students to look at how the great Pete Souza set up his camera for each shot documenting the Obama WH -

Thirdly the respect extends to ownership

  • copyright and usage is yours to determine
  • images and galleries can be private, share what you want when you want to who you want.
  • The embrace of Creative Commons alongside all of that.

Then, the great images.

  • yes there’s wonderful photographers there (more on that in a min)
  • the Commons: collections of major photographic and cultural archives available for free eg the wonderful @nlireland

Okay. No I don’t go there for the community and discussion groups, that time has passed. The world has moved on and the community is all on Instagram.

Instagram features the public in their droves as well as professionals in their various forms from Fine Art to photojournalism, wedding and sports etc. That is where the ‘heat’ is.

But it’s for what? It strikes me that Instagram is a toehold for professionals to connect with the public and each other. But that is all it does. It doesn’t do any of the previous. You scan it and jump in, all of us moving along and wave at each other and that’s it.

It’s not that useful or informative, it’s not supposed to be. That would slow you down. The point is the ride, seemingly together but everyone somehow feels alone.

French artist Louise Druhle posits that a topology for the Internet reveals that the ‘slope’ of the early Internet was lower, promoted spending time and meandering, but now has become steeper and hurtles us to ever fewer places.

There’s a compulsion at play here. Instagram hasn’t mastered photography or its needs, it has mastered this compulsive behaviour in its users. Professionals are as deep in this as anyone else.

So if you’re a photographer and you’re concerned with your practice, don’t compare Flickr with Instagram. They’re different beasts. If you would find what Flickr does useful or worth supporting, then take a pro subscription out and use it. There’s a discount code going 25in2019 well worth taking up…


No and

Pro user since 2005. Chris Marquardt and I discussed the shocking email from Chris McCaskill two Tech Guys ago. I sincerely hope Flickr can survive.

I have three grades for my photos:

Level 1: Snapshots - suitable for my personal collection (and display on my Google Home screens) but not public

Level 2: Keepers - stuff I think is good enough to share on Flickr

Level 3: Gallery - my best shots, worthy of printing. Displayed at (Smugmug)

I’d hate to lose a place to put that middle tier. I guess my blog. But it’s a real thrill getting a shot in Flickr’s Explore tab once in a while.


No I closed my account.

Yes, Pro user since 2012.

They need to come up with a viable plan and stick to it. They should not change direction every few years disappointing those who had subscribed in their previous plan.

I had all my photos there but the developments of the last few years forced me to look for alternatives. I am not a pro so public exposure is not what I am after anyway.

I noticed that. (Yes, I’m stalking you :grin: ). How come? I follow you on Instagram. Do you use anything else?

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My engagement is on Instagram and Twitter. So that’s where I go. G+ used to be my top engagement, but Google screwed it up so a lot of my content/chatter went unnoticed. I’ve actually slown down my Instagram posting. Rather do Instagram stories now because people that follow me seem to get more value out of it. I’ll eventually get back to uploading on YouTube regularly.


Twitter and Instagram are so evanescent. Once a photo scrolls off it’s never seen again. I think social media devalues one’s work. In fact, social media devalues everything!


Lol!!! Hence why I put more actual energy into “stories”

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I’ve been paying for it for years and will continue to do so. It’s a bargain for what it offers - a real photography focused social network with unlimited backup and a great community. Sure, isn’t as large as IG, but it actually feels like a real photography community and not a vanity network. I hope that they can find a way to make it work.

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Here is a link to the segment that @Leo referred to where he spoke to @ChrisMarquardt about this:


Forgive my ignorance, how long do Instagram stories last?


No worries, sir. They’re only good for 24hrs unless you specify to save them as “highlights.” I’ve created a few highlights that people may find useful such as “Life at TWiT” or “free phone wallpapers” and a few others.

I loaded a few photos onto Flickr years ago, I mainly use it to host my avatar for forums that don’t support uploading images themselves.

Have been on Flickr since 2006… paying for Pro for a number of years now. They doubled the price, but ALL my photos are there. I hope they survive! The uploader tool they have is priceless. It will de-dupe from many drives and upload.