Flickr, UX and Creative Commons Search

Creative Commons Search on Flickr Is AnnoyingYou'll notice I use a lot of images from Flickr - some mine, some others - but all are Creative Commons Licensed. I have a fair amount of images on Flickr, I pay for a pro account and have really no other issues with Flickr but one.

Every time I do a search for a Creative Commons Licensed image - really, the only ones that matter to me since I can use them legally, I have to do go through 5 steps every damned time.

(1) Do a search.

(2) Wait for results to start loading.

(3) Click Advanced Search.

(4) Select the Creative Commons search.

(5) Click 'Search'.

There's no way for me to set this as a default search type. It has been as annoying to do for as long as I can remember, through at least 3 evolutions of Flickr changing their user interface.

If there is one thing Flickr could do, it would be to fix it so that I didn't need all these steps to do what I want and, I might add, what I pay for. It's not that my $25 or so a year entitles me to controlling what Flickr does - but it really would be nice if they addressed this for those of us who contribute toward the Creative Commons and who use it on a regular basis.

C'mon, Flickr. This is really bad ux.

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Farming Facebook: Go organic.

One of the things that people still hang on to as a metric - for whatever peculiar reason - is how many 'likes' they get on their Facebook page(s) - a flawed metric, to be sure.

Engagement in social media is always more important than a snapshot of people who 'like' something.

So you can advertise on Facebook and get likes - but those likes do not translate to engagement.

The page discussed in the video is something along the lines of a honeypot, and the theory put forward in the video is that people in click-farms (places that get paid to click 'like') click the ads to get past algorithms that might spot them, thus causing people to spend ad money to google while the click-farms make nothing.

That's a nice way to look at the data. A less nice way might be to say that Facebook might be paying the link farms less than the revenue that they generate from the ads to click the ads. That's speculation, but it also fits the data.

Either way, the net result is the same: Facebook ads aren't that useful - and it does make one wonder whether other paid social media exposure is worth it as well.

If the metric is the amount spent versus the number of 'likes', followers, et al - it's a flawed metric because you can't gauge whether you're actually getting exposure. The only real metric is engagement and interaction - something most people impossible to measure. But you can measure engagement in various ways.

Counting the number of shares/retweets is one way to measure engagement. Another is mentions, where someone mentions you - and lastly, comments on things that are posted, conversations that are had, etc. The unfortunate part of measuring engagement in these ways is that it's quantitative and omits qualitative.

Qualitative, of course, is much more tricky.

So save your money and grow your social media presence organically. It's 'slower', but if your social media is important to yourself and/or your organization, don't think that the number of likes/followers someone has is worthwhile. It isn't. It's about interaction, engagement and community.

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Today We Fight Back Against Mass Surveillance

We are rapidly entering the age of no privacy, where everyone is open to surveillance at all times; where there are no secrets from government.

- William O. Douglas, Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States,

dissenting, Osborn v. United States, 385 U.S. 341 (1966)


Today is the 11th of February, 2014 - where Americans and the rest of the world are joining in to curtail the mass surveillance that has become a reality - a mass surveillance that has been resisted for decades and whose resistance has obviously faltered.

It's time to do something about it.

On this site, as well as many other sites across the Internet, we're making it possible for you to call and email your legislators. If you're not in the USA, you can sign a petition in support of the Principles Against Mass Surveillance.

It's time to rein mass surveillance in.

  • The NSA "has secretly broken into the main communications links that connect Yahoo and Google data centers around the world." The New York Times
  • The NSA collected "almost 3 billion pieces of intelligence from US computer networks" in one month in 2013. The Guardian
  • The NSA is collecting the content and metadata of emails, web activity, chats, social networks, and everything else as part of what it calls "upstream" collection. The Washington Post
  • The NSA "is harvesting hundreds of millions of contact lists from personal e-mail and instant messaging accounts around the world, many of them belonging to Americans." The Washington Post
  • The NSA "is gathering nearly 5 billion records a day on the whereabouts of cellphones around the world." The Washington Post
  • The NSA "is searching the contents of vast amounts of Americans’ e-mail and text communications into and out of the country." The New York Times

It's time to change things.

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