Firstly some obvious things, but you’d be amazed how many people forget;
Be nice, be honest, be constructive, give as well as receive.
If you join a group with specific rules, follow the rules.
At the start of the 52 Weeks group there are always some people who join just so that they can spam the group with their own photos that are nothing to do with the weekly theme or taken in the time specified. People who misbehave spoil it for others and are quickly bounced out of the group.
Please abide by the age certificates. If your content is meant for adult eyes only, flag it as such. Everyone has different tastes and there are some things that should not be on general circulation – your account will be closed by Flickr if you fail to abide by this rule.
As I have already mentioned, give as well as receive. Be generous and comment/ fave other people’s photos too. I have to confess I’m bad at this sometimes – especially when I’m busy, but with the Flickr App on my phone it’s easier to find a few minutes to comment and fave.
Be wary of following thousands of people.
OK this is my personal take, but if you choose to follow me and I see that you already follow 5,000 other people I can be fairly sure that you’re not going to see my photos unless you spend all day on Flickr. This tells me that you’re only following me so that I follow back and you gain a follower – you’re only doing it to promote yourself.
I don’t work like that and only follow people I am genuinely interested in, so that I can look at their work and comment/ fave.
If your aim is to promote your skills and talents then do join groups and get involved in the community – but don’t forget to fill in your profile page with some personal data about yourself and remember to include links to external blogs/ websites/ Facebook/ Twitter/ Instagram etc. so that people can follow you outside of Flickr too. And remember to keep this up to date (or write content that won’t date).
On the other hand, if you’d prefer to remain more anonymous, that’s OK to – only give up as much information about yourself as you’re happy with and don’t feel pressured into giving away more. There are plenty of people with many thousands of followers who are actively involved in groups and discussions but are still private and don’t even have their face in their User Icon.
Check your settings with respect to download rights – do you want your photos to be freely downloadable? What licensing arrangement do you want? It doesn’t happen often but some people do find their photos stolen from time to time. Personally, I only upload small files 1100px typical max so while someone could download the image it can only be printed at around 6”x4” and used online.
Incidentally did you know you can use Google to search for your images? Go to Google.co.uk (or whoever), click on “Images” in the top right, then drag and drop a photo onto the search bar. Google will go away and try and find that image in other places – worth doing from time to time with your most popular or best images.
Consider if you want to watermark you images. Some people do. I don’t because if the watermark is big enough to stop someone mis-using your image then it is likely to spoil the image and I don’t want that. If it’s small enough to keep the shot intact, it’s probably small enough to be cropped or cloned out and therefore useless. Some people like to put a logo in there to promote their brand which I guess is OK.
On the subject of file sizes, you can effectively use Flickr as cloud storage and upload large size files too. There are charges for uploading larger amounts of data so check to see if it’s worth it.
But do get involved – you can dip in as much or as little as you like, but I think that you’ll soon find yourself a Flickrholic like millions of others!