The Staff Speaks: How Marissa Mayer Can Save Flickr

The Phoblographer has a Flickr group, but to be quite honest, we don’t do much with it. Though most of us were at least at one time very avid Flickr users, we’ve all gone our separate ways. Me personally, I run a Flickr group as part of my day job. So with the recent news of Marisa Mayer becoming the new CEO of Flickr coupled with the single serving sites created around the whole shebang, we chatted amongst ourselves about how Flickr can be saved and changed.

Chris Gampat: Editor in Chief

– Get rid of 200 photos for free accounts

– Better and forced metadata management

– Easier ways for group admins to manage their groups

– Instagram popular page (something like it that is more prominent than their current popular page)

– Commenting, favoriting and sharing of photos and activities from your news feed

– Incorporating new additions from groups into your news feed

– Incorporating newly submitted photos from your friends into your news feed

– EXIF data displayed on the right naturally

– More prominent sharing buttons

Most importantly, I believe in a brand new homepage for us Flickr users similar to Facebook’s News Feed and Twitter’s News Feed. I want to see what my friends favorites are, photos added to groups I follow, the latest threads in said groups, the latest photos my friends added to their pages, etc.

Seriously, why can’t I have all that in one place?

Felix Esser: News Editor

The site desperately needs an optical overhaul. Do away with the giant login page and direct the user to a page showing random pictures of Flickr members (be they the latest submissions, popular pix or a selection by Flickr staff). Give the site a sleek and stylish, easy to operate layout and interface. This way, it will instantly become more attractive to current and new users.

This, and whatever Chris says 😉

Peter Walkowiak: Lead News Writer

Special return pricing for old expired pro users.

I’d like a system like Instagram’s old popular page. Depending on how many people like the image in a short amount of time it appears on the main page.

Some way to show off your photos to people who don’t follow you. A way to discover other photographers whom you may like.

Thursten Kent: Multimedia Producer

I almost feel like the whole brand itself needs a refresh. Flickr should have a clean, easy to use layout. Getting your content on there should be a snap. Make it so anyone from mom and dads, grandma and so on can easily use it. The creative commons for your work should be plainly seen with each picture you post as well.

Anyone remember when Abercrombie and Fitch stole a photo from Flickr and made a t-shirt out of it?

Sander Martijn: Contributing Writer

Obvious one: only 200 photos for free users? Pretty much every other photo service offers more than that for free users. My pro account expired and I don’t really use Flickr any more so i didn’t bother to renew – that’s the only reason I know that’s their limit for free users. They need to compete with Tumblr, Instagram and all the others out there and 200 photos won’t cut it.

Mike Pouliot: Contributing Writer

As an ex-Flickr Pro user, I have a few things to add:

It obviously needs a major facelift. is so clean and easy to use, it’s miles ahead of Flickr’s current design. I want to see large, high res JEPGs without having to click through a million menus and settings.

Flickr should really be spit into two, one area for serious photographers and one for people that want to share photos of their kids, families, etc.

I hate sifting through tons of crap just to find something interesting. When I go to 500px, 99% of the photographs that I see are people’s best work while people simply dump all of their photos (including the crap) onto Flickr. They should make Flickr free and make the pro/enthusiast account (whatever you want to call it) paid. Within the paid area, it people should be encouraged to only put up their best work. And name the new pro account something without Flickr in the name. Keep them completely separate. I don’t want people just paying the $25 so they can upload more pictures of their kid’s soccer game.

Get rid of all of the awards. That shit drives me nuts. You spend the time uploading a photo that you’ve worked really hard on perfecting and someone comments on it “You get a gold star!”. Are we in the first grade? Take the gold star and…yeah.

I do like the groups and communities but they need some serious help. There should be a legit forum space with notifications, separate search functionality, and a better layout. Maybe even a marketplace to sell or trade used gear.

I think they have quite the challenge on their hands. People have been using Flickr for a long time and it’s going to be hard to get users to break habits.

Travis Lawton: Contributing Writer

The whole “Explore” system has to be revamped. But I’m not even sure where to start suggesting changes since it’s such a mystery on how an image gets into Explore. They don’t need to necessarily tell us exactly what the algorithm is looking for but some hints would be nice. I do believe something like that does need to stay in though as like it or not, getting an image in Explore generates a ton of traffic for that image and your stream.

I used to be a Flickr junky until this past year. I realized I was spending WAY too much time investing in posting, viewing, favoriting, commenting, friending, etc. just to further my “status” on this photo sharing site.

Chris Gampat

Chris Gampat is the Editor in Chief, Founder, and Publisher of the Phoblographer. He also likes pizza.