A few short years ago, Flickr was unquestionably the largest and most popular image sharing site on the internet. It was clean, fast, easy, and social. In fact, it was one of the first websites to embrace the concept of social media. Flickr was on the cutting edge of the internet, and it was growing fast. But over the past couple of years, as websites like Tumblr, Facebook, 500px, smugmug, Instagram and Imgur have risen to fame and evolved to meet the needs of a more social internet, flickr has, for the most part, stayed entirely the same.
Flickr's decline, or rather, stagnation, can be in part attributed Yahoo purchasing flickr a few years ago. In a recent Gizmodo article, titled 'How Yahoo Killed Flickr and Almost Lost The Internet,' Gizmodo goes into detail about how Yahoo's poor corporate culture, lust for the almighty dollar, and bloated middle management led to the neglect of one of the internet's favorite websites. The article is well worth a read for anyone interested in a brief history lesson on social media and image sharing, but that's another topic for another day.
An unknown internet user and flickr lover recently created the website www.dearmarissamayer.com which contains nothing more than a plea for Yahoo's new CEO, the well-known Marissa Mayer, to 'Make Flickr Awesome Again:'
The website has quickly gone viral, garnering five figures worth of shares on Facebook and twitter, and enough reddit 'karma' to last a lifetime.
Much to everyone's surprise, flickr was quick to issue a reply on their own website. An equally simple message was created and posted at flickr.com/dearinternet:
I don't really love Flickr's reply here, though I am glad that they acknowledged the recent outcry. They have some of the brightest minds and engineers at their disposal (one need look no further than Marissa Mayer herself), yet urge people to apply for only a handful of jobs available on their website. It's also well-known that Yahoo's middle management and iffy corporate culture isn't going to be the most attractive option for new hires who could really improve flickr. Yahoo would be able to turn Flickr around pretty quickly if it felt it was worth investing in, but nothing has really changed over the last few years, which leaves me wondering.
Do you think Flickr will 'become awesome' again? Or has Yahoo's takeover started an irreversible change for the worse? Even though I have been a 'pro' user for six or seven years at this point, I have personally stopped using flickr for anything more than an extra hosting website for easy sharing on websites and blogs. Still, there are even more attractive options for that now, such as Imgur. Not to mention the sparkly gifs. Marissa, if you're reading this, I promise I'd come back to Flickr if you got rid of the sparkly gifs and group invites. Pinky swear!