[at-l] OT: websites for photo display

Victor Hoyt vnhoyt at gmail.com
Wed Apr 21 18:45:32 CDT 2010

On Apr 21, 2010, at 4:52 PM, Linda Patton wrote:

> Need pros and cons, and first choice, of the various websites for 
> (free) image hosting, allowing one to upload photos for mass 
> viewing...Flickr, Picasa Web, Kodak Gallery...what others should 
> be considered? 

I realize you said "free", but...

Some of the pay sites are quite reasonable. I've used one called PBase for years, but it's quirky, and requires some work to make it look good. On the other hand, it is probably the purest place to showcase images, short of high-end stuff. No ads, no BS. It's $25/yr.

Zenfolio is also very good. It displays images very quickly, and has some nice preset gallery styles. Also $25/yr.

I use a rather expensive site for clients, but that's a bit irrelevant here.

So, anyway...

When it comes to the free sites, I'm afraid none of them really showcase the images well. They're more about sharing. Lately they also seem to more about candy, like maps, and face recognition. Sites like FlickR and Picasa use white backgrounds, and lock you into their structure. (I really hate white backgrounds for web viewing of good images.)

I've used FlickR for a long time for my family, and snapshot stuff. It too is quirky, but for social media functionality, I think it's probably best. If you're Mac based, FlickR you can upload directly from iPhoto. It takes a while to get used to the structure of Sets and Collection, but once you do, it's pretty easy to use. You are locked in to their "look", which I do not like.

Google's Picasa is also good, but though I love Google for geeky things like Voice, GMail, and Wave, I don't think they have their heart in the more mundane things like image sharing/viewing. I may be wrong, but that's my impression. I see a lot of people here like the service. As little as I like the viewing experience on FlickR, I like it on Picasa even less.

Honestly, though I have a Facebook profile, and use the service to stay in touch with people, I think they're the worst of all when it comes to images.

Bear in mind that all of these sites work best if you learn how to optimize your image files for the site's specific needs. Most places have good FAQ sections that will cover that.

I hope that's not too much information. I can carry on a bit it I'm not careful.


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