Flickr - Take Two
I expressed my initial thoughts on Flickr in a previous post. One week later, and after having played with some of the more advanced features, my opinion has changed a little so I thought I'd post an update.
I still think the Flickr interface is a little ugly. There's too much white and it seems a little old and unstructured, but you learn to live with it I suppose. A few themes would go a long way I think. Especially some darker flavors.
As for the interface, it's actually not bad. The online uploader is easy to use, gives great progress indicators, and even resumes the upload if your network dies, or you restart your computer. Great!
The online Organizer is also fairly good. It makes easy work of dropping photos into sets and changing permissions (although batch operations seem to take quite a long time for some reason, changing permissions on a group of 100 photos takes about 10 seconds or more). Anyhow, the Organizer is usable.
The GuestPass system makes it easy to share individual sets with friends/family that don't have Flickr accounts. However, there's no way to create a GuestPass for a collection of sets. This is a much needed feature as you don't want to be sending out a new email with a new cryptic link every time you create a new set. The feature has been requested on the forums for almost three years now, so I don't think it's coming.
I think what Flickr is lacking is an easy & flexible way to share photos with different guest groups. Ideally, what I would like to see is the ability to create a number of guest groups, each with a single guest link to your main page, where they can select to view your Photostream, Sets, or Collections. Then, in the Organizer interface, when changing permissions for a set or for a batch of pictures, you should have tickboxes for each Guest Group, so you can select precisely who can see what.
This is basically an extension to the way it works now so that you have more than the Family and Friends default groups.
Also on the video side...not sure what they were thinking... 90 seconds is very limiting and makes it useless for general purpose video sharing. I can understand if they don't want to enter the video business, but I really think they should, even if they offer the service as an account addon for extra money. It would be great to store all my pictures and all my videos, in full, on the one site.