Sunday, December 21, 2008

Ten things you can do to improve interestingness and increase chances of getting into Explore

Most photo enthusiasts have their own flickr account. If you are one of those, you might be familiar with the term Interestingness and Explore. Basically, Interestingness is a term used on how "interesting" your photo looks. If it garners enough attention then a lot of people will view it or add them to their list of favorites. Then your picture will make it to the "Explore" section of flickr where only the "best or most interesting" photos are included. If you're are new to flickr and would like to know how to get your pictures to that "elite" stage, here's an article written by one of my flickr contacts kevindooley that discusses on how to do that.

I know that some of you are going to yell that Flickr "interestingness" and Explore are silly things to worry about, and that's fine... But for those interested in how it works, let me run down a quick top 10 list.

Caring about getting into Explore per se is silly, because Explore has a big random component to it. However, Explore is important because it is the only "signal" we easily have about how "interesting" the photo is. Flickr doesn't give us the actual interestingness number so Explore is a good way to know it must be pretty high.

Why does interestingness matter? If you get happier the more people that see and appreciate your work, then you care about interestingness. Beyond your contact network, the vast majority of Flickr views come from search engines. Flickr has a zillion photos, so if you're photo isn't Flickr-interesting, people will never see it come up in the search engines.

Ten things to do to improve Flickr Interestingness:

1. Take good photos.

2. Have a good network of contacts who will view and comment and fave.

3. Post to at least one group, but don't post to more than five for the first few days. During the first week, posting to lots of groups hurts; after the first week, it helps.

4. In first week, don't post to more than a few award groups.

5. Have notes.

6. Have map and camera data. If you block camera data, or use film and don't add the camera meta data, you'll be penalized, A LOT. There's thousands of film people or people who don't want to give up their "secret settings" who can't figure out why they can't get into Explore... This is it!

7. Have a title and tags and text that people will search for, as that drives search engine traffic.

8. Don't upload too much per day. Maybe 3 max? If you upload more than 3 per day it not only hurts interestingness, but it taxes your contact network. It also means any given photo is de facto seen by less people, since most contacts only look at last 1-4 photos.

9. Be active. If you give significantly less than you get, it terms of views, comments, and faves, all of your photos will be penalized significantly.

10. Challenge yourself. There's a lot of competition when it comes to grabbing people's limited attention. Take interesting photos!


Cashmere said...

Aaah.... I have an account overdue with no pics! Thanks for shedding some light on the Flickr. I'm a total noob.. ;P

MasRoy said...

Kang Brix, link exchange yuk? blog ente dah ane link di blog ane, silakan cek ya kang...

Brix said...

@Cashmere: no problem... glad to have helped you. :)

@masroy: hi! sorry I can't understand what you're saying but if you're asking for a link exchange, sure! :)