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Oh good, another “I’m quitting _______” post

I want to love Instagram. Really. It’s the least toxic of the big social networks and it’s mostly photography-centric. My problem with Instagram isn’t the content. My problem is with the feed. I don’t like it. In fact I don’t like it to the point of quitting the whole thing.

I get it, we’re beyond the halcyon days of reverse-chronological timelines on any significant social network, but good grief I can’t make heads or tails of what Instagram is feeding me (see this article for a few examples.)

They also seem to have ramped up the number of ads to every-half-dozen-posts-is-an-ad levels.

And their API is still read-only so you can get stuff out but can’t put stuff in via any method other than their own tools (with exceptions).

I’m out.

I know, I know, this has happened before but I’m doing it (and writing it down) anyway. After all, it’s not like I don’t have any perfectly fine image sharing options. Let’s see…

You get the idea.

It’s hard to not be where everyone else is, so who knows how long this will last, but it’s worth another attempt so here we go.

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  1. @jack I’m still quite happy with Flickr, despite a flirtation with Instagram. I still maintain an account there, but no longer post. And like you, the feed algorithm has annoyed me to the point that I’m increasingly spending less time there.

  2. @jack @retrophisch I wonder if services that haven’t actively gone off the deep end can be made relevant again just by some concerted effort of committed users? I have a Flickr account from ages ago (in the black hole of time when I’d stopped using film and didn’t have digital, so I never really posted), so my recollection of Flickr’s problems is vague, but more of “lack of love” than “becoming toxic” or “shooting self in foot”….

  3. @retrophisch Indeed. I walked around for a year mumbling “Please everyone, just use Flickr instead” but no one listened. I still think it’s a good service but their ownership by Oath puts me off.

  4. @jack I’m on the fence with it. It’s the one social app I truly enjoyed, for a while. Taking an extended break from it at the moment, and bringing some of my favourite pics over to my blog. Might delete my account later though…

  5. @jack there are a lot to like about it. You just upload and they figure out where to place the images(categories etc) probably machine learning or something. There are also a lot of people that are active there. Liking photos, commenting etc. It is a popularity contest, but far more enjoyable than others.

  6. @hjertnes I didn’t read the details but it had something about selling stuff, payments and what cut 500px took. I don’t remember if they were selling stuff they were not authorized to sell or if that was some other company

  7. @hjertnes To be honest, I created an account when 500px first launched but I felt too intimidated by the high quality of the photos posted there that I think I uploaded one or two photos … and was kind of ashamed of them 😏

  8. @bsag @hjertnes @jack they have several themes to choose from … at least if you go with anything beyond the basic level. And yes, you can tweak many things (a good thing in my book) but I think that it’s not too complex to do that. The help in the user forums and support is also good in case it’s needed (I would go so far to say that Smugmug has one of the two-three best support departments I’ve used).

    As an example: I completely changed my Smugmug site in 3-4 hours this week, that time includes deleting most of the photos, re-organizing the few that was left, select some new in LR and upload them to Smugmug.

  9. @jemostrom @bsag @jack I think I used SmugMug a few years ago, but never liked it. It feels way too much like the Gallery stuff we all used in 2004. What I would like to see from a gallery thing is something where I could just upload stuff and it shows them in a nice grid, with some tagging stuff and automatic handling of scaling images for various sizes.

    I don’t think it would be too hard to make it, but hosting images can get expensive…

  10. @jemostrom Good to know. I changed a few things then got a bit stuck. I’ll take a look at the help docs. If I can tweak actual HTML/CSS I might find that easier than the graphical theme configurator.

  11. @bsag @hjertnes @jemostrom I really have 2 use cases: 1. A stream of photos for social sharing. 2. Galleries for organized collections on “display”. SmugMug works well for #2. I like that there isn’t a stream there by default. I’m looking for a solution to #1.

  12. @jemostrom Unfortunately, the iOS app only exposes the photo in the share sheet. You can copy a direct URL and then run a workflow, but at that point, you can always get a direct link to a resized version immediately from the site. Not an ideal workflow.

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