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2015/05/15

Photo Social

Although Facebook is the ultimate image sharing site right now, it does have some issues with it.  One of the biggest is that they are claiming ownership of images you post on their site.  You still own your images, but although they say it is for them to be able to cover themselves legally in handling and hosting your images, there are stories that keep popping up of people's images being used by FB and other companies.

Also, Facebook is about a lot more than just photography. The real interests I have online are playing games to relax, and learning about photography - seeing the work others are doing and sharing my own work.  Since really becoming interested in iPhoneography I have spent a lot of time looking at phone apps and more recently image sharing sites.  There are a lot, and each has its own unique workflow and appeal for users.

The obvious ones include Instagram for phone images and then there is Flickr (1,000 GB free!).  What else?

There is my dilemma.  What is the best all in one spot image sharing site? I have not found one perfect one for my own tastes yet, but there are a few that I have liked enough to set up accounts on and share some images. 

My list includes:

EyeEm  - As other reviewers on the net have said, Instagram is about sharing your life and EyeEm is about sharing images that are interesting and artistic.  Plus, Instagram kills your image resolution to a poor 640x640 pixels and does not allow anything to upload except through your phone.  EyeEm welcomes photos from all formats of cameras and they have a marketplace where your images can be sold for real cash, not just photo credit.

VSCO - A lot of serious photographers that I know like this one, and even though I have given it a try several times and it just is not very intuitive to use.  The app on the phone has some nice filters, and the company offers some filters and presets for use in Lightroom and Photoshop that work well.

Mobitog -  This is a community hat also recently added a phone app. It is more like a forum discussion group in that you have to post images into a new thread and to view the images you have to visit the forums and lick on the thread titles to get into them.  It encourages more discussion about the images, but it makes for slow browsing and discovering of new images and meeting new photographers.  They are also VERY STRICT that the images must be taken and edited solely on phones.

Oggl (by Hipstamatic) - A pretty new site that allows you to use your purchased Hipstamatic film and lens paks for free (just import them) or you can use the basic films and lenses in the app for free.  They also have an annual subscription option for $10 a year that unlocks all of the filters (lenses and film paks). 

Gurushots - This site is one that is full of image competitions with real prizes and is free to use and enter.  Upload your images based on the category of the challenge and then vote for other photos.  Easy to see and use, and a lot of strong images there.  Want to know how good other people think your photos are?  give it a shot.

And the newest joined site for me is YouPic.  This site breaks things into categories and keywords, and is easy to explore new images, rate them (and give ratings based on content, composition, technical, and creativity.  It is becoming my preferred image sharing app.

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