Flickr Away!

January 26, 2008 at 6:41 am (photo_sharing)

I am so very excited about the possibilities of Flickr.  My students have been telling me about it for a while.  What would bring them to tell me about it?  Well, I have photos of some of my trips on MSN Spaces and Snapfish that I have shown them to illustrate elements of the curriculum.  Snapfish keeps sending me nasty messages saying they will delete my photos if I don’t order anything yet when I have tried to order, they wouldn’t ship to Canada, a similar problem that Jess mentioned with Flickr.

Another problem with Snapfish is that if family members don’t have an account, they can’t see my pictures.  And that pretty much cuts everyone out!  So, what I’ve come to realize as a very unwise thing to do (particularly after reading Flickr’s Important Security Note) is give my family and friends my login information.  Really, how is this any different than a student at school logging in as their friend because they forgot their password!  Yet, we share a wiki username and password so that there can be multiple editors.  I will have to think some more on this one!

Something else that is beginning to trouble me is the number of usernames and passwords I have.  I really don’t know how I’m able to keep track of them all:, Edmonton Journal, Bloglines, Angelfire. Yahoo, Snapfish, Hotmail, WordPress, Flickr, MSN Spaces, Edmonton Public Library, U of A…the list goes on.   Those are just the ones I can think of off the top of my head.  I’m sure there are more.  It’s a password world!

After numerous attempts I finally remembered my Yahoo account information.  I couldn’t use the helpful reminders as I used bogus info.   Mechelle De Braene in “Virtual Supprt via the Blogosphere” in Coming of Age: An Introduction to The NEW Worldwide Web confirms this practice by saying “Our rules include safety guidelines such as not to reveal students’ and/or teachers’ names, addresses, phone numbers, or the name of the school.”  But what about all the class webpages and blogs that I have visited?  All that school and teacher information can’t be phoney.  And if you want to have an authentic conversation with other people in the world don’t you have to present yourself and not a facade?  I finally was able to log in to Yahoo to activate Flickr.  Katie mentioned in her blog that Flickr was connected to Yahoo so I was glad to know this so that I didn’t needlessly set up another Yahoo account. 

After activating my Flickr account I was taken to “Some pointers to get you started…” that had three main links.  First was upload your first photo which I did and was easy as pie – choose photo, upload, add title, description, tags).  I was half expecting it to tell me my photo was way to big (I shoot digital in 9.0) but it didn’t and was surprisingly quick as compared to Snapfish for my old PC. 

Next was the Flickr Community Guidelines which I did read to see what their security and copyright guidelines were all about.  The first thing at the top of the page is:

Flickr accounts are intended for personal use, for our members to share photos that they themselves have taken.

This made me wonder about the logistics of copying the images of others and stockpiling them in your Flickr account for educational purposes particularly when this says that you are only to store photos that you have taken yourself.  However, reading further it specifies to give credit where credit is due.  The last third of the webpage identifies reasons why the Flickr account may be terminated (e.g. inappropriate, illegal, prohibited, creepy, non-photographic content, etc).  I wonder how often this actually happens?  Lastly, I “Explored Flickr” and was amazed at the wonderful photography that there was.  I went to interestingness from the last seven days.  Every time I reloaded there were nine amazing new photos to look at.  I don’t know what I liked better: the pictures or reading the titles that came along with them – in all different languages: French, English, Italian, Spanish and Scandinavian languages to name a few!  There could be a class discussion on this alone!



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