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[Official Thread] Update on Creative Commons licenses and “In Memoriam” accounts

Flickr Staff

adstads says:

Hi Flickr friends,

Today, we announced two important updates that deepen Flickr’s commitment to our members and to the worldwide photography community.

All public Creative Commons works on Flickr are now protected from deletion.
Creative Commons licenses have been an important part of Flickr since we introduced them on our platform in 2004. We've made it simple for Flickr members to license any photos in their account under any of the Creative Commons licenses and designations, which has resulted in Flickr being the largest single repository of freely licensed material anywhere in the world. We now host more than 500 million public CC-licensed works, with many more uploaded every day.

When we recently announced updates to Flickr Free accounts, we stated that freely licensed public photos (Creative Commons, public domain, U.S. government works, etc.) as of November 1, 2018 in excess of the free account limit would not be deleted. We wanted to make sure we didn’t disrupt the hundreds of millions of stories across the global internet that link to freely licensed Flickr images. We know the cost of storing and serving these images is vastly outweighed by the value they represent to the world.

In this spirit, today we’re going further and now protecting all public, freely licensed images on Flickr, regardless of the date they were uploaded. We want to make sure we preserve these works and further the value of the licenses for our community and for anyone who might benefit from them.

In conjunction with this announcement, we've disabled bulk license change tools in the Settings, the Camera Roll, and the Organizr for Flickr Free accounts. We've done this to prevent community members from flipping all their images to a new license without first understanding the significant implications of the various free licenses we support. Any member (Free or Pro) can still change the license of any of their photos on the photo page.

We've supported Creative Commons for as long as we've been around and we’re thrilled to do so for newly-uploaded content as well.

“In memoriam” accounts for deceased members.
Since we announced changes to Flickr’s Free and Pro accounts on November 1, we’ve heard from members who are concerned about what will happen to accounts owned by deceased members, and what will happen to their own accounts when they die. We’re photography lovers here at Flickr, too, and we love the idea of photographers’ legacies living on in memoriam—that’s why we’re pleased to announce today that we’re offering “in memoriam” accounts to existing Flickr members who have passed away.

In memoriam accounts will preserve all public content in a deceased member’s account, even if their Pro subscription lapses. The account’s username will be updated to reflect the “in memoriam” status and login for the account be locked, preventing anyone from signing in.

We’d love your help to identify any existing accounts that deserve in memoriam status so we can make sure their contributions to the community are preserved. To nominate an account, please read this article in the Flickr Help Center. If our Support Heroes can verify the required details, we will preserve the account in memoriam.
Posted at 4:20PM, 8 March 2019 PDT ( permalink | reply )
adstads (staff) edited this topic 2 weeks ago.

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Flickr Staff

adstads says:

Thanks to:

Stig Nygaard for sharing the news about the Creative Commons changes here: www.flickr.com/help/forum/en-us/72157690248817103/

and

MabelAmber️®***Pluto5339*** incognito for sharing the news about the "In Memoriam" accounts here: www.flickr.com/help/forum/en-us/72157677063892027/

You both beat me to it today!

Also, here's a related post from our friend Ryan Merkley, CEO of Creative Commons: creativecommons.org/2019/03/08/flickr-announcement/

And for some additional context, here's an article from Digital Trends about these changes: www.digitaltrends.com/photography/flickr-creative-commons...
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )

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mcnod says:

Maybe some of the members who have been incessantly complaining that you guys don't listen or don't care will come along and apologize, or at the very least, they will begin to understand that ideas and suggestions that make sense just take some time to accomplish. Congrats and thanks for what you do.
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )

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East Texan the original says:

Did my thanks in the wish list.CC accounts,In Memoriam accts,and the return of Pro Gift..An excellent trifecta.Well done.
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )

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simonov says:

As more and more Flickr users kick the bucket, I wonder how much this will cost -- and what percentage of Pro subscribers' fees -- it will take to support deceased users in the future.
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )
simonov edited this topic 2 weeks ago.

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GothPhil says:

Many thanks for the update.
It's great to see confirmation of the continued importance of CC, and the recognition of the value of all public and shareable content, Pro or otherwise.

I feel for those who've deleted content already, before being offered the option to protect images by making them public and CC, where that might have been appropriate. I was half-way through a batch of uploads when the original CC deadline passed, and took a chance by finishing off the batch, on the offchance they might still be safe, and I'm glad I did.

Much appreciated.
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )

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Scarlet Pimpernel says:

adstads:

“In memoriam” accounts for deceased members.


I'm going to fill in the form and try again to try and save a deceased member account that i tried to save before through support. I have no death certificate though.

Just one point though we only have until the 12th March the deadline to save those accounts before you start deleting free members photos down to 1000. That's only a few days away, and two of those days are the weekend.
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )
Scarlet Pimpernel edited this topic 2 weeks ago.

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Midnight-Blue says:

Sounds like the smart thing to do to me. Shows they are listening to what members say, even if they don't always implement what is asked for. Just hope their are not a lot of people who are going to be upset to discover that photos they have already deleted wouldn't have gotten deleted if they had a CC license.

Does this mean that people with free accounts will be able to upload over the 1,000 limit if they make the photos have a CC license? Or will they still have the 1,000 limit no matter what their photos are licensed as?
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )

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teh resa says:

I will fill out the form with just the flickr page, url for a few I know about. The comments on the recent photos and sometimes the profile, tell the story. There are also discussion threads in various groups about deceased members but I'd have a hard time locating those.
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )

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teh resa says:

Also thanks a million!
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )

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conall.. says:

Excellent news! Both of these initiatives are very positive developments.
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )

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whirrdz says:

Thanks for this update! And thanks teh resa: for letting us know. I am contacting Georgia's family on another site.
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )

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Kendall Whitehouse says:

These are both great steps forward. Thanks so much.

It may also be helpful to provide an option for current account holders to "pre-approve" memorialization of their accounts and provide a directive regarding how the accounts should be handled.

For example, I currently retain an "all rights reserved copyright" on my photos. While I'm still here, I prefer to connect with anyone wanting to use one of my photos. Once I pass away, this obviously makes no sense.

I'd love to have the option to specify that once I've passed away, all my public photos convert to a CC BY-SA license.

Thanks again for all you're doing to improve Flickr.
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )

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ndgcatlady says:

for days now I can't download my photos. Why don't they fix this! I need my photos!
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )

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conall.. says:

excellent news!
Both of these initiatives are very positive developments.
I have just filled in a flickr-in-memoriam-account-request and it was straightforward to do. You dont need to have a death cert - other evidence is admissible.
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )

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micael18 says:

conall..:

Did you get the account saved? I have also tried - but there's nothing happened yet.......
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )

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GothPhil says:

Midnight-Blue:

Does this mean that people with free accounts will be able to upload over the 1,000 limit if they make the photos have a CC license? Or will they still have the 1,000 limit no matter what their photos are licensed as?

This doesn't affect the upload limit on free accounts. It's simply about safeguarding content that was uploaded before the upload limit took effect.
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )

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Stig Nygaard says:

GothPhil:

This doesn't affect the upload limit on free accounts. It's simply about safeguarding content that was uploaded before the upload limit took effect.


Wrong, this is a new announcement. Read it again.

Edit: I see in previous comment that you have read the new announcement. I might just be misunderstanding what you are trying to say? But it sounds like you are referring to the terms from the original CC-announcement months back?
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )
Stig Nygaard edited this topic 2 weeks ago.

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vodanhnoname1999 says:

When the update is complete ?
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )

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kmacgray says:

vodanhnoname1999:

The update of what?
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )

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GothPhil says:

Stig Nygaard:

Correct - nothing has changed regarding the upload limit, this is, as far as I understand it, about now being able to protect previously uploaded content by making it public and CC, even if it was uploaded after Nov 1st, or was still private/copyrighted at that point.

Apologies if I worded my response above ambiguously.

(edit: reworded)
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )
GothPhil edited this topic 2 weeks ago.

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East Texan the original says:

Scarlet Pimpernel:

Yes ,perhaps a "pending change in status" stopgap protective measure is needed to protect streams in process of being verified for "in memoriam" status.In our case we anticipated this move and each of the dozen or so folks in our group has at least one or two accounts that were pro gifted a year via a prepaid card.So now each one of those is now responsible for securing "in memoriam" status for those streams over the next 10 months or so. Perhaps more smaller local groups are needed should Flickr not grant a "pending " status.
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )

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spelio says:

adstads:

This is excellent news...

Thank-you,

I have often wondered about leaving funds in a bank account to re-new my membership for a number of years after my demise.

I would hope a child or grandchild might take over the account to preserve and add to our family history.

Would this be possible, as much of the Family history is registered on flickr as family or friends?

There are even private images with some family records that would be OK for a family member to access after we pass.

What would be the situation for all these photos?
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )

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spelio says:

adstads:

that’s why we’re pleased to announce today that we’re offering “in memoriam” accounts to existing Flickr members who have passed away.



Will this apply to existing members who die in the future?
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )

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Stig Nygaard says:

GothPhil:

Re-reading the announcement above, I agree it is not very specific on future uploads (which I think is your point?). But read the post over at Creative Commons:


I’m happy to share Flickr’s announcement today that all CC-licensed and public domain images on the platform will be protected and exempted from upload limits. This includes images uploaded in the past, as well as those yet to be shared. In effect, this means that CC-licensed images and public domain works will always be free on Flickr for any users to upload and share.


(bold type added by me)

Over at Digital Trends, they put it this way:


Creative Commons images and other freely licensed photographs will no longer count toward Flickr’s 1,000-photo limit on free accounts

Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )

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MabelAmber️®***Pluto5339*** incognito says:

adstads:

So acquiring the In Memoriam status is one thing, but is there still the possibility for the "executor" of the estate of the deceased to get access to the account and manage it from then on?

I asked about this at Support two months ago and got this response:

Quote:

"Although we do not currently have a way to memorialize accounts, we are looking into the possibility. In the meantime, if you know the designated executor of the estate for this member, have them reach out to us. We will absolutely do what we can to assist them with getting access to this account."
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )

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GothPhil says:

Stig Nygaard:

Creative Commons images and other freely licensed photographs will no longer count toward Flickr’s 1,000-photo limit on free accounts

... which is not yet true, as I'm still blocked from uploading, even though 2,300 of my 2,301 images are public/CC. I'm still apparently above the 1,000 limit for free acounts.

Unless the new policy hasn't been fully implemented yet...? I no longer get any of the pop-up warnings, but uploading is disabled.

Maybe give it a day or two... ;-)
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )

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conall.. says:

micael18:

Not sure but yes I think so. I just filled in a flickr-in-memoriam-account-request this morning.

The account still has pro status so it wasnt actually in immediate danger of losing pictures. Also it is very possible that his family have actively decided to keep the pro payments going- i just dont know. Maybe the request I put in is unnecessary or there is already contact between his family and Flickr. The individual died in September 2016 and there has been no activity on the account since a year before he died.

As I understand that the standard process will be that Flickr need to review the evidence and the account - presumably this will take some time - I am sure there will be lots of these requests and that Flickr will need to be certain that they are doing the correct thing on each account.

During the process of submitting there was some message saying something like that photos would not be deleted while the review of the account/evidence was going on. So presumably if it were an account that had reverted to free status then the act of submitting a flickr-in-memoriam-account-request would have stopped any impending cull of photos until a final decision was taken by Flickr
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )

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Scarlet Pimpernel says:

adstads:

Flickr has gone up in my estimates. Thank you and the member of staff EMcIsaac that contacted me to say that he has memorialized that account that i have been on about after taking a look at my support request again that i made to support a few weeks back. Thank you so much for that :-)

Screenshot_20190309-150509_Chrome
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )
Scarlet Pimpernel edited this topic 2 weeks ago.

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mcnod says:

adstads:

The account’s username will be updated to reflect the “in memoriam” status

If I search flickr members using the term In Memoriam I currently get about 50 returns. I checked a few and they do not seem to be ones being verified and bestowed as such by flickr. Is there or will there be a way to search and view only the ones approved and set up by this new change?
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )

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micael18 says:

Scarlet Pimpernel:

The account, I tried to get saved, doesn't show "in memoriam" yet, but it was at 21:41 o'clock, friday I did the request - so perhaps, I have to wait to after the weekend to see, what happens. And the only "proof", I have was a thread about the account here in forum, which, I linked to in my email to Flickr.

And I also check my email, to see if Flickr writes to me, but only the "noreply"-email is there.
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )
micael18 edited this topic 2 weeks ago.

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Scarlet Pimpernel says:

micael18:

I didn't fill in the form. It was a was a request that made to support to try to save the deceased account a few weeks back or longer. Staff took another look at that after seeing my comments in one of the attached thread links at the top, or in this thread.
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )

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micael18 says:

Scarlet Pimpernel:

So, I will just wait to see, if anything happens.... No need to worry about pictures. They ARE sent to the user, who wrote here!
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )

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Lensjoy says:

Stig Nygaard:

Creative Commons images and other freely licensed photographs will no longer count toward Flickr’s 1,000-photo limit on free accounts

I believe this is incorrect. The announcement by Flickr says nothing about suspension of the 1000-photo limit.
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )

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Lensjoy says:

adstads:

Can you please clarify how this latest change affects the 1000-photo upload limit on free accounts? This is getting very confusing.
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )

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Stefano Rugolo says:

Greatly done!!
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )

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Scarlet Pimpernel says:

mcnod:

Is there or will there be a way to search and view only the ones approved and set up by this new change?


They may of may not do that. Members that have set there accounts so that they are not searchable likely those accounts will remain that way.

I don't know if flickr has changed anything about those In Memoriam accounts, or have just changed the screen names only with In Memoriam added so that flickrs computers read that as not to delete those accounts. Though if that was the case any free members could add that to the screen name to override deletions if they have not deleted down to 1000 already. Saying that though there has to be more to it than that. More likely those accounts are logged somehow by staff..
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )
Scarlet Pimpernel edited this topic 2 weeks ago.

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mcnod says:

Scarlet Pimpernel:

I don't know

Thank you for you input. Perhaps Andrew will see my question buried in these comments and shed some light. I suspect that there will be some entry in the API, either for the member or their photostream that will indicate a flickr approved In Memoriam account. As soon as I see an account that I am sure flickr has set as such, I may be able to search for more of them if my hunch is correct.
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )

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Cube Ace . says:

simonov:

I would think as memory storage costs come down year upon year and that a deceased accounts images will not match the storage requirements of current uses who's still and video requirements will increase exponentially, that the matter of how much storage cost per deceased account will become minimal compared to current users.
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )

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Midnight-Blue says:

I don't know if Flickr intended to change anything regarding free account photo limits with the CC license deletion change, but from the news articles I have read about these changes it is certainly being interpreted that way.

Engadget states in their post: "Now, its VP of Product, Andrew Stalden, has revealed that the platform will leave all CC images untouched, even those uploaded in the future." Based on the quotes posted above from Creative Commons and Digital Trends and the articles I have seen, I am thinking that CC licensed photos will not count towards the 1,000 limit. But a definitive statement from Flickr saying so would be nice. (Btw, Andrew's last name is Stadlen and not Stalden.)
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )

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Walwyn says:

Seems t mcnod:

Maybe some of the members who have been incessantly complaining that you guys don't listen or don't care will come along and apologize


I wouldn't have thought so as this seems to be little more than spin. Unless the CC images aren't counting against the 1000 limit. it does very little to fix the CC issue. Indeed the damage has probably already been done. People with CC images will have been deleting them to get below the 1000 limit, and deleting accounts, and if the 1000 limit does still apply then the CC images will continue to be deleted as user want to add more content.
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )

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striatic says:

This is a very human decision, and should be applauded. So clapclapclapclapclapclapclapclapclap! : ]

All of my photos are CC licensed and have been for over a decade, so my photos will be protected and I will not need to edit my account, other than making public some private photos that are just colour versions I've linked to from their public black and white versions.

That said, instead of my plan to edit my photos down to 1000 and losing the pro account, I'm actually considering renewing my flickr account. I'd need to decide to start posting again, as 50 dollars is still too much for just a small, very old archive of photos on the web. At least now I've got a little time to think about it, without the threat of massive photo deletions.
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )

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Pacdog says:

striatic:

Good to hear from you. It's been a long time. =o)
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )

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teh resa says:

Even if you don't have a death certificate, it would be good to buy time by nominating the accounts of people whom you know have passed away. Link to the profile, comments, and other evidence. It can't hurt, to have it considered.
striatic: high five!
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )

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teh resa says:

I think it is still a good idea for everyone to go through their photos and cull the rubbish that got uploaded in response to that awful (2013?) decision to bring in that "auto-upload-everything" experiment. I tried it just out of some duty to give it a go, but what I uploaded then, straight from camera, continues to clog my personal searches of my private flickr photos. It will be tedious to fix, but probably should be done.
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )

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Senator Chinchilla says:

"We wanted to make sure we didn’t disrupt the hundreds of millions of stories across the global internet that link to freely licensed Flickr images. We know the cost of storing and serving these images is vastly outweighed by the value they represent to the world."

If you all really didn't want to disrupt the history of this website, there wouldn't have been a deletion in the first place. SmugMug knew Flickr had a 1 TB limit when they agreed to purchase the company, and it is their ethical responsibility to uphold it. I'm sure smugmug has an army of lawyers that have made their decision legal, but that hardly makes it right.
Posted 2 weeks ago. ( permalink | reply )

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Joe Shlabotnik says:

This is wonderful news, thanks!
Posted 10 days ago. ( permalink | reply )

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striatic says:

Let's say I have all my 3000+ photos CC Licensed and Public, with the exception of one private photo that is also technically CC Licensed.

What happens to the single private photo when my pro account lapses?
Posted 8 days ago. ( permalink | reply )

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histogram_man says:

Thank you very much for the news on the Creative Commons. As I get older, the prospect of having images preserved to act as a record of how things were becomes more attractive. I have many landscape and architecture pictures, hopefully taken with some level of competence (I have never uploaded everything I take) which are ideally suited to this. I have converted the vast majority of them and I hope to add many more.
Posted 8 days ago. ( permalink | reply )

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Scarlet Pimpernel says:

If now i set all my 1000 photos CC licensed, will they have to be turned from private to public? And will i then be able to upload more than 1000?
Posted 8 days ago. ( permalink | reply )

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GothPhil says:

Scarlet Pimpernel:

From what I can tell, the 1,000 limit is not based on the licencing and privacy settings, so changing these won't affect your uploading restriction. It doen't for me, anyway.

This was already a bit confusing when announced in November, and the new policy appears to have made it even more confusing, since messages have gone out to the effect that future uploads of public/CC images will not be affected by the 1,000 limit on free accounts. Whereas my account remains locked even though all but one of my images have been public/CC from the time they were uploaded, as that has always been my default upload setting.

Either the explanation of the new policy is wrong, or it hasn't been implemented yet. Or my account is broken. But I don't get any warnings anymore, except when I try to upload...
Posted 7 days ago. ( permalink | reply )

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mag3737 says:

GothPhil:

Either the explanation of the new policy is wrong, or it hasn't been implemented yet. Or my account is broken. But I don't get any warnings anymore, except when I try to upload...

As I sort of implied in another thread just now, my money's on "hasn't been implemented yet". Just guessing, though.
Posted 7 days ago. ( permalink | reply )

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juggadery says:

GothPhil:

my account is blocked from new uploads too (1000+ pictures, majority CC). I get 'blue' warnings on blockade, no more 'red' warnings on deletion.
Itn does'n fit the good news on exclusion CC photos from the 1000 limit. I still count it will be implemented although with delay - because it is the staff post (at the very begining of this thread) that quotes the announcement in media.
Posted 7 days ago. ( permalink | reply )

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Walwyn says:


In this spirit, today we’re going further and now protecting all public, freely licensed images on Flickr, regardless of the date they were uploaded. We want to make sure we preserve these works and further the value of the licenses for our community and for anyone who might benefit from them


Essentially what this says is that if you are a paid account and your account lapses then the CC content will be preserved, irrespective as to whether the CC content was upload pre or post Nov 1 2018. It says nothing about non paid accounts being able to post past the 1000 limit, or CC content not being counted. All it says is that the public CC content won't be deleted. Anything else that might have been wanked on about by outside tech journals (which are notorious peddlers of bullshit) is not part of any one's deal with flickr.
Posted 7 days ago. ( permalink | reply )

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C-Aida says:

adstads:

, today we’re going further and now protecting all public, freely licensed images on Flickr, regardless of the date they were uploaded.


Does this apply to all the future uploads as well?
Does it mean that the free accounts will get unlimited storage space as long as they make all their photos public and CC?
Posted 5 days ago. ( permalink | reply )

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Azchael says:

adstads:

Thanks for the news. In regards to the "in memoriam" accounts:
I think it should be possible for an heir of the deceased to still access the account and view the "private" photos. They should not have the option to upload new photos but edit the existing ones. In today's world one would inherit old photo books, be able to rip out photos, rearrange them, write something next to them or just keep them as memories. As photo books are being replaced by online albums I would assume that this could live on. On my account I do have a high number of private photos, neatly organized (well I hope so at least), in the hope that my children and grandchildren will be able to view them later on also when I am not around anymore. That would be a true "in memoriam" account in my point of view.

How can that be verified? Well in the same way that right now photo books are being inherited. There is a will and a public opening of the same or, in case there is none, a split of assets according to law. The account would be one of those assets that can be inherited.

Cheers
Azchael
Posted 5 days ago. ( permalink | reply )

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striatic says:

Flickr help got back to me and gave me a very welcome and very clear answer:

"- It doesn't matter whether the CC content is private or public - none of it will be deleted.
- All CC content is safe from deletion, no matter if you are Pro, free, private or public.
- If you are a Free account and have 5,000 CC photos, you won't be able to upload any further content unless you purchase a Pro account.
- If you are a free account with 1,000 photos with a non-CC license, you won't be able to upload any further content even if it's CC unless you purchase Pro."

So in fact all photos, CC or no, are counted toward the 1000 photo limit, but very importantly in addition to that - Flickr will not be deleting any private photos so long as they are licensed CC.

We also won't be able to upload any more photos if we have 1000 or more, no matter how they are licensed.
Posted 4 days ago. ( permalink | reply )

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Nionyn_ says:

striatic:

Thanks for posting that. It's very helpful.
Posted 4 days ago. ( permalink | reply )

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Hans Kerensky says:

The “In memoriam” account is a great gesture from Flickr !
Thank you for that !
Posted 4 hours ago. ( permalink | reply )

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