To Flickr, or Not to Flickr

Written on May 22, 2013 at 12:00 pm by Michelle
Filed under: Article with tags: , ,

The Blythe community has gone into a bit of an uproar after Flickr unceremoniously revealed a new layout and style. Many people – including non-Blythe individuals – have been referring to Flickr’s facelift as being similar to Facebook. In addition to the new changes on the web-based website, their mobile app has also been changed.


As a Pro account holder for Flickr, I’m a bit iffy about the changes. As of May 20 2013, there are three different account types being offered by Flickr and here are some of the specifications:

  • Free – 1 Tb of space, max. 200mb/photo, 1GB/video, ads
  • Ad-Free – $49.99/year – same as above, but without ads
  • Doublr – $499.99/year – 2Tb of space, all other features the same as above

But if you had a Pro account? Just a taste of what was available:

  • Max. 50mb/photo, 500mb/video
  • Unlimited storage
  • Ad-free
  • $24.95/year

Flickr, so soon after announcing the intention to purchase Tumblr, decided to scrape the previous model (Free and Pro accounts) to go with the new model (Free, Ad-Free and Doublr). I personally think that spending $500/year is steep. I’d rather take the $500 and invest it into something else, if I was that into photography (which, I am not). At $50/year just to take away ads? That’s already double what it used to cost for a Pro account, for one year ($24.95/year). Of course, nothing in life is free. By opening Flickr up to advertisers, the many account holders become the product that’s being sold rather than making revenue off of Pro account holders. Granted, if you think about it, $50 for 365 days of ad-free web-browsing, that ends up being $0.137 per day for ad-free browsing. Doesn’t seem like a lot in the grand scheme of things, does it? But if you want to avoid spending $50 per year, continue reading on!

What if I already have a Pro account?

If your Pro account was extended by the 3 months of ‘gifted’ Pro by Flickr, I found that users have been saying that they do not have the option of renewing their Pro account. Additionally, if you were given the “Gift of Pro” by a friend, you are also unable to renew the Pro account status because you weren’t the one who paid for it. Sneaky little loophole, isn’t it?

If you paid for your Pro account yourself, you have the option of keeping the Pro status and all it’s features (including the ad-free browsing capabilities and the option to renew once your subscription is up). The price is currently staying the same ($24.95/year). My Flickr Pro is set to expire on April 1 2015 – so I don’t know if the price will still be the same then!

For those that would like to switch from Pro to Free status, it would appear that you do have the option of doing so. And if you had paid for the account (rather than being gifted Pro status), people have been reporting that they can get a prorated refund. You have until August 20 2013 to decide if you want to stay with your Pro account or if you wish to make the switch to Free. For those that are worried about ads, there have also been reports that ad blockers (there are many plugins available for many popular browsers) are able to block the ads on accounts on Flickr that are Free.

As for the app…

I can’t give anyone an opinion about the Apple-friendly version of the Flickr app, but I updated my (Android) Flickr app to the new version and it mimics the updated website quite nicely – only I like the layout on the app a lot better than on my computer. I spent some time playing around with the app and I find it easier to navigate and to move from one section to another. I can actually get to my groups on the mobile app now – which is a huge plus. The way the website is designed is more mobile friendly than web browser friendly, but I’m still getting used to both of them. Nobody has mentioned seeing ads on the app yet, so I’m unsure if ads will soon be part of the Flickr apps or not.

Do I stay or do I go?



Some people in the Blythe community have decided to leave Flickr out of anger of the changes. Many people have moved to Ipernity. Another alternative for Flickr is 500px.

I will have a post up about these two alternative photo-sharing websites after I get a chance to explore both options a bit more thoroughly (before the August 20th deadline).

5 Responses to “To Flickr, or Not to Flickr”

  1. Jane AKA @maidensuit

    It’s really angering when you pay to use a service… which then changes. I had a pro account for a couple of years, but now I am a free user on Flickr. As I don’t pay to use it, I’m still quite displeased with the changes, but do use it as a free service, so it’s less skin off my nose to uproot. I also use Tumblr for free, and they make changes all the time, and I just deal.

    However, I’ve had a paid LiveJournal account for years and LiveJournal (especially in recent years) tends to roll out changes without consulting their userbase — the people that create ALL their content that makes others want to join the site/pay for its features — that make me sincerely angry, because I have paid to have things a certain way. Before joining the Blythe community, the vast majority of my online experience revolved around LiveJournal. Changes always suck, but I think it’s when you are paying for a service and the service revamps into something you don’t want and/or becomes an eyesore that it becomes really enraging. Since Flickr serves as a method of advertisement for creators in the Blythe community, it’s understandably upsetting to have something you depend on in that way shaken up.

    Sorry for the long comment — I just haven’t really talked about this anywhere, to anyone, so all my thoughts came out!

  2. Pam says:

    Thank you very much for all of this info. I had a pro account and will have to think hard on it. I don’t think it’s worth $50 a year to me though! 🙁

  3. Brigitte AKA @hautecute

    I’m probably going to leave – though I forgot my password and when I tried to un-auto-renew my account I got locked out so now I have to deal with that hassle. Yahoo permanently flagged me as a shop (when my shop was closed oddly) so I’m in an eternal ban from searches, etc. I’m not planning on sticking around just because I feel like they target the doll community and are particularly unwelcoming towards it.

  4. Laura AKA @plastic_fashion

    I am one of those that left Flickr for good. I think Ipernity has lots of potential for being a place to come together as a community. I am being patient as things are changed on Ipernity. I am very flexible person but I just rather be on Ipernity.

  5. Rhisiart Hincks says:

    Left Flickr, more or less, last year and very pleased with Ipernity. Quieter, yes, but just better… Photos well displayed and management which is human and European and not corporate, impersonal and rude.

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