Reexamining the Reblog

JenT:

Apologies to my regular readers for yet another post on the new Reblog, but this is my current bugaboo and with good reason.

It’s all well and good to discuss reblogging netiquette and karma, but the nuts and bolts of reblogging are broken and we community members cannot fix this. Besides the written content in a reblog still being overly long, the current iteration of reblogging a post with visual content pulls every image in that post into the reblogger’s Media Library whether it’s used in the reblog or not. I’ve discussed this on this site and at length on WPcomMaven.

Further aspects to consider: what are the ramifications if someone reblogs a post that contains purchased stock images which are licensed only to the original site? What about posts where a person has permission from the original content creator to post their content (not a reblog), but then someone else comes along and reblogs it? There are too many aspects of reblogging that WPcom doesn’t seem to have thought through to the end or perhaps that their Terms of Use absolves them of any responsibility.

Don’t get me wrong, I’ve been on WPcom now close to 8 years and continue to recommend it to my colleagues and clients. However the new Reblog needs some tough love that only Staff can give.

Originally posted on The Daily Post:

The last time we discussed reblogging, your opinions in the comments were mixed:  some of you felt that reblogging was a great compliment, and others felt that it was something akin to theft.

We here at The Daily Post love a good etiquette debate, so let’s wade back in, shall we?

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Flickr ending Share to WordPress option March 25th

SS St. Paul circa 1900

For the full story: [Official Thread] Welcome back HTML Embeds! Goodbye to some sharing options.

The salient part is:

Secondly, we are announcing that we are deprecating the support for our built-in sharing options for WordPress [Ed: spelled in the original with a small "p"], Blogger and LiveJournal on 3/25. Deprecating features is never an easy decision, but we have seen that all of these services combined are now adding up to less than one percent of daily share volume from Flickr.

Which I understand to mean that this method will no longer be supported: http://en.support.wordpress.com/images/flickr-photos/#blogging-your-photos (link to Internet Archive)

Meantime, the flickr HTML embed option is being brought to the “new flickr experience” in addition to the current iframe embed, which we cannot use here on WordPress.com.

Of course, this does not affect the WP o-embed method of copying and pasting the link of the flickr image page on its own line in your post or page. Or at least I hope not!

Ocean Liner, SS St Paul
(HTML embed from the original flickr experience coming soon to the “new flickr experience” near you.)

Photoblogging Made Easy: Exploring Gallery Types

JenT:

If you’ve spent any time on my site, you know that I seriously love the Gallery feature. It’s an elegant and easy way to make photos look good on any site and just about with any theme. Combined with the Photo Carousel, the Gallery really makes your photo displays stand out.

However, due to the way the new Reblog currently works, reblogging a post that contains multiple images has an unexpected and decidedly unwelcome side effect if copyright is a concern. Right now all the images in your post are copied and transferred to the reblogger’s Media Library, regardless of how many images are used in the actual Reblog itself. In spite of a Staff reply in the forums to the contrary, I very much hope this is a bug and will be addressed. You can read more about it and some additional complications in the comments on wpcommaven The New Reblog, Part 2-Images Gone Awry.

Reblogging gone awry- how did those images get in my Media Library?

What does the new Reblog function mean for me personally? For a short moment, I considered watermarking my images, but wholeheartedly dislike them. So the only real recourse I have is to upload fewer images at lower resolution. I want to believe that people will be honest and abide by my CC License if they choose to use my images, but also know that I tend to wear rose-colored glasses.

Originally posted on WordPress.com News:

Photographs capture moments and bring life and color to our blogs, websites, and portfolios. In this age of digital storytelling, images are key elements in our narratives. With over 200 themes in the WordPress.com Theme Showcase, some designed for photography, there are many ways for you to tell your stories.

Photographers and photo bloggers can choose from a number of versatile premium themes to take their passion to the next level. But you don’t need a premium theme, or even a photoblogging theme, to display your images in polished, professional layouts. Let’s take a look at gorgeous image showcases on free themes that are great for personal blogging and writing, created with the built-in gallery options in your Media Manager.

Bushwick

Square tiles gallery on the Bushwick theme

First up is Bushwicka lightweight blogging theme we launched at the end of December. While ideal for bloggers…

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Just Published: A Complete Photography 101 Guide

Featured Image -- 3849

JenT:

My favorite series on The Daily Post just got its very own e-book. Packed with great tips and advice from fellow WordPress.com photographers on everything from viewing with a photographer’s eye, right down to processing your digital images. Download it now!

Originally posted on The Daily Post:

Here’s another free ebook to add to your virtual bookshelf: Photography 101: The Basics of Photography and the Power of Visual Storytelling.

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Flickr Woes

It's Broken

IMG_1059
It’s broken

electricia1 posted in the Community support forums that flickr has changed the way images can be embedded. At the moment this is done with an iframe, which of course is a “no-go” for WordPress.com users.

However, there are other ways you can embed your flickr photos in your WordPress.com site, the easiest is still just copying the URL of the photo’s page from your browser’s address bar and pasting that on it’s own line, unlinked in your blog post. For more info here’s WordPress.com’s Support document on using flickr. Just be aware that if you are using the new Beta version of flickr, you may not be able to blog your photos directly from flickr to your WordPress.com site. In my photostream, that link is no longer active to me, although it was set up and working correctly in the previous version of flickr.

(And the irony is not lost on me that the flickr blog is hosted on WordPress.com. See the bottom of the blog. It may say “Powered by WordPress,” but the link reads http://www.wordpress.com. LOL)

Update: 20 December – It seems that either from the flickr or WPcom end things have changed. Yesterday the above oembed image was just an image. Today if you mouseover the image, the flickr watermark and my name show up, along with the ability to browse the other images in my flickr photostream directly from this image. I’m going to be doing some more experimenting in the coming days.

In the meantime, insert image by URL continues to work and unfortunately, my flickr sets which were previously visible as an embed, are no longer so. (sigh)

Update 2: 20 December – We can’t get our pants on fast enough with the changes going on. For me the above image is back to what it was yesterday, i.e. a simple image with no watermark or arrows on mouseover. If you are seeing it differently, please let me know in the comments.

Holding On vs. Letting Go – The Future of Online Imagery

Ford_A2010_resized

So you think you have a good reason or excuse to use a photo you found on the Internet without asking the photographer who took it? Let’s see if it can stand the test.

via 10 Bogus Excuses People Use When They Steal Photos from the Web.

This article started life as a note on why anyone would steal your photo given the number of free or low-cost resources available to bloggers today. As I was writing it, the universe kept tripping me up by throwing articles at me on letting your digital images go, some with very compelling arguments/viewpoints. For example:

If you were to take an informal survey of everyone in your morning train/bus/subway/tram car commute whether they would license their photos in such a manner so as to let other people use them freely, without knowing what the end-product was, I suspect that there would be a split along age lines, with those having grown up from day one in the Digital Age being more likely to let their photos go. Before you jump on me for being ageist, stop and think about how the overall attitude towards online privacy has tipped over the last 5-10 years and what demographic has joined the online community in that time.

And to add to the mix, the flipside:

As a photographer who has encountered her photos used both with and without permission, I still tend to cling to the idea that it couldn’t hurt to ask beforehand, even if my Creative Commons licensed photos both here and on flickr don’t really require it. It’s the human thing to do.

Credits:

  • h/t to @MacManXcom for posting the video on twitter
  • Featured Image: David Hume Kennerly [Public domain or Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

* Update 22 November 2013: Photographer wins $1.2 million from companies that took pictures off Twitter